Power Between Different Racquets

Discussion in 'Racquets' started by Bmr, Oct 17, 2012.

  1. Bmr

    Bmr Rookie

    Aug 11, 2006
    Hey all,

    So I was doing a very in-depth comparison last night between my Speedport Black and the new Head Extreme Pro 2 that I purchased last week. The Head is by far and away the better volleying racquet. It's not even close. And i'll even give it the edge on two handed backhand. However, when it comes to Serves and forehands, the Black absolutely can't be touched in terms of the pace i'm putting on the ball. My friend even commented how he can't handle my forehands at the net from the SPB. No matter how hard I hit with the Head, I cannot generate the same amount of power on my forehead. It's like the SPB is a turbo-powered, trampoline launching machine.

    Now, i'm thinking in my head that it's going to be impossible to make the Head generate the same pace on the forehand/serve while maintaining the other qualities I like. However, I could be wrong. Could it be as simple as dropping tension on the poly I use another couple of pounds?

    Can anyone comment on on experiencing something like this with different racquets and what you did, if anything?

  2. TennisCJC

    TennisCJC Legend

    Apr 20, 2010
    2 biggest factors relating to power are mass of the racket and tension. If you want more power, try adding lead to increase swing weight and/or lowering tension.

    There are articles by TW on how to apply lead and several good threads in this forum on how to do it. I am not going to go into it here as the other threads and TW have done a good job.
  3. Mig1NC

    Mig1NC Professional

    Jun 13, 2009
    What about stiffness? Would you rank stiffness above or below tension?

    How would you compare tension's impact on power vs. tensions impact on launch angle?
  4. Bmr

    Bmr Rookie

    Aug 11, 2006
    FYI - I strung the SPB with Gosen Polylon SP at 62 pounds. The stiffness of this racquet is 70. The Head I strung with the same string at 60/61 and the stiffness is rated at 69. Seems pretty close. I'm not sure what dynamic is at play here, but the SPB definitely has the ability to launch the forehand and serve with more power if I swing as hard as I can.

    The one thing I do notice is that the Head has a slightly more dense string pattern than the SPB.
  5. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

    Dec 28, 2008
    Top players hit hard with a huge variety of different rackets. Use one of those, forget about the racet, and practice harder.
  6. KenC

    KenC Professional

    Aug 31, 2009
    The Cliffs of Insanity
    I think a lot of people, myself included, find that when demoing racquets one does something particularly well, while another does something else really well. In my case, the Pure Storm Ltd. GT lets me hit my best serves, probably because it is very HL with a low SW which helps generate a lot of RHS. OTOH, the Pure Storm Tour lets me hit the biggest FH due to the high SW. The BLX90 lets me hit my best 1HBH for some reason, maybe because of its overall weight.

    In my case my racquet demo 3 years ago convinced me that the PSLGT was the best overall racquet for my game. When in a high pressure match, it was the best racquet to pull me through. Over time I improved my technique to hit better FHs and BHs. I also took the time to find the best string and tension for the stick as well, which ultimately gave me more power.

    I recently switched to the PK Ki5 315 for elbow reasons, but am pretty much set on using it going forward. It is a racquet that doesn't do anything "the best" but does everything really well. But the big test of a racquet is how it performs in a high pressure match, and the PK 315 is holding up for me like the PSLGT did.

    So, my advice is to do the real acid test by playing a tough match with each one. Usually the choice becomes much clearer in these situations. Then go back and work on technique to fill in the other things that the racquet doesn't do exceptionally well for you.
  7. Bmr

    Bmr Rookie

    Aug 11, 2006
    Ken - really nice post..thanks for your insights. I think you are probably right. Us tennis players always seem to ask the inevitable question: why can't this racquet do everything perfect.

    Part of my game has always been putting people on the defensive with the ability of my forehand on the SPB..but I think I should be able to adapt with this racquet. I'll try different tensions and string combinations and see what I can come up with. It just does everything *really* well, whereas the SPB has a couple weaknesses.

    I will have to test them both in high pressure situations and see which comes out on top.


    Last edited: Oct 19, 2012
  8. Chotobaka

    Chotobaka Hall of Fame

    May 19, 2012

    Excellent post, man. I have come to realize that the trade-offs and compromises with racquets usually boil down to my own issues (age and long term sports injuries) and have less to do with the racquets themselves. The key is to consciously find the work-arounds. At this stage of the game for me, it is no longer easy to just pick up a racquet that addresses my physical needs and yet does everything perfectly on the court.

    As an aside after playing for a couple of hours I picked up my friend's Extreme Pro 2.0 (mentioned by the OP). I had been alternating between the Pacific X-Feel Pro 90 Vacuum (what a tremendous stick off the ground!) and my regular X-Force. Even though I was a little pooped, I found the Extreme Pro to have gobs of power -- actually too much if I really hit out. Perfect with an easier stroke -- no work at all. Just a very easy stick to hit with. Big sweet-spot, easy spin and actually quite solid. I only wished it had a little more flex (maybe low to mid-60's RA would be perfect).

Share This Page