Racket size for juniors

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by newpball, Jul 20, 2013.

  1. newpball

    newpball Legend

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    So my son just turned 6, he is about 4 foot tall and plays tennis with me every day.

    Right now we are using the orange balls and he plays with a 23 inch racket. Before I had him play once in awhile with a 25 inch racket just to check but every time he was clear he liked the smaller better. That is until today, he insisted to try my new 'Nadal' 27 inch racket. Way too big of course but I noticed he actually swings with that racket as opposed to the 23 which has hardly anything to swing with as it is mostly racket head. :)

    The APD is strung with poly so after a few hits I had him hit a little bit more with a slightly HH Head and a HL Volkl strung with gut and he was quite enthusiastic. And I was impressed, amazing to see such a little guy swing with such a big racket. :)

    So now it seems there is no more road back, he has got to have a larger racket. So there are 25, 26 and the full size rackets.

    I have heard there are coaches who have the opinion you should just give them the 27 so they learn from young age what they are going to use their whole life and then there is the other extreme who wants 6 year old kids to play with a 21 inch 'Spongebob' rackets and hit red balls.

    So what are your opinions and perhaps your experiences on racket selection for juniors?

    By the way feeding orange balls with an APD strung with polyester strings adds a whole new dimension to the idea of hitting with low power. ;)
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2013
    #1
  2. TCF

    TCF Hall of Fame

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    I used to be in the camp that they should have 27 inch frames as soon as possible. My girl at age 5 could wallop the ball with a full size frame. A 7 year old in our group plays with a full size frame.

    I changed my opinion though. Sure they can nail ground strokes at a very young age with full size sticks. But I think it the rest of the game suffers....drop shots, slices, volleys, various serves.

    My girl is now 8, very tall, could handle the full size, played some G12s with the 27". But a month ago we went down to a 26" Wilson Juice, very light racquet. She has greatly improved her drop shots, slices, angle volleys, control, and can hit a nice variety of serves.

    I wish the 7 year old boy in our group would follow suit. He can nail the ground strokes but can not serve a lick or volley well with the large frame. But once a boy finds he can blast balls with a full size....it can be hard to get him to change back to a smaller racquet!
     
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  3. lightthestorm

    lightthestorm Rookie

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    There's a 9 year old girl in the state that uses a full size racket... she's barely 4'5 and I doubt she weights that much either. But she's a really good player, and she won the state championship for the 10s at the age of 7 and have been playing only 12s since. Still she garnered enough points the previous year to be the 2nd alternate for the Southerns (for the 12s).
     
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  4. SFrazeur

    SFrazeur Legend

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    The racquet length is going to depend on what court size and ball they are using. Red, 36' must use 17"-23" frames, while Orange, 60' can use at max 25" but will have trouble hitting with much depth with anything less than 23". Of course those on full 78' with yellow or green dot balls are in a different situation. I am a big fan of 26" and 26"+ racquets (26"-26.5").

    The way I think it best to find the max racquet size that a child can maneuver is to have them grip a racquet correctly at the bottom of the handle and have them hold their arm straight down at their side. If the can do this without touching the ground then it is a good size.

    The full 78" court with standard, "Yellow" balls is not a race, it takes as long as it needs to take.
     
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  5. newpball

    newpball Legend

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    He plays on a full court and with orange balls. I love the full court for him he is really running a lot!

    So we settled for a 25 inch racket and he loves it. He got so much more power with this racket.

    I taught him the double hand backhand but he also likes to play the double hand forehand. So everything is double handed right now. :)
     
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