Stiffness index relevant?

Discussion in 'Racquets' started by Big Boris, Aug 30, 2009.

  1. Big Boris

    Big Boris Rookie

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    I am considering buying new frames. I am thinking about some different alternatives that I could lead up to be basically the same, apart from the stiffness, which I can not do much about, once I ave bought the frames.

    The racquets I am thinking about are for example:
    - Bablolat pure storm
    - Wilson ksixone 95
    - Dunlop 200, or whatever the blue 95 sqi version is called
    - Donnay pro one international

    The wilson is around 10 units stiffer in stiffness index than the others above, according to the specs on the TW site.

    How relevant are the stiffness ratings in actual play?
    Would one notice the 10 unit diff?
    In a way that I get more ball feel and spin from the softer frames?
     
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  2. Meaghan

    Meaghan Hall of Fame

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    stiffness plays a major part in how you play. The stiffer the racket the more powerful and stable but a lack spin and feel than with softer flexier frames.

    I stopped playing the 6.1 cos I couldnt get much topspin and i was finding it hard keeping the ball in. The serve was great and control and stability to be better than everything ive tried.
    I ended up with the ex03 rebel, same spec as the 6.1, softer frame.
     
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  3. fuzz nation

    fuzz nation Legend

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    Stiffness plays a major role in the way a racquet will perform, but that single index number doesn't tell you exactly where the flex in the frame occurs. One racquet that's more soft in the throat like the Yonex RQiS 1 Tour may have a significantly different feel from the Donnay Pro One, which I think has more even flex throughout. Feel is subjective though, and when it's good, we know it when we feel it on the courts.

    I'd expect that you'd be aware of a significant difference between frames that vary by only 5 or 6 points in flex as long as the weights, balances, etc. are rather similar. A more flexible racquet typically has more spin potential which can mean more control, but less pop, especially if it's not so heavy. If it's too soft for you, there may not be enough life in your volleys or serves. Too stiff and it may be much more harsh feeling or put too much zip on your strokes.

    That Wilson is rather hefty so despite its stiffness, it may not feel so harsh for you since the ball doesn't push it around as much as a lighter frame. Its combo of stiffness and heft will probably furnish some extra power given the same stroke - expect that one to perform really well for serve and volley play. That Donnay is the flip-side of the coin; comfortable with great feel and control, but less power than others. I can take my full swings with this frame from the baseline and land my strokes with lots of confidence, but there's less pop off this racquet for me to scoot the ball through the court as effectively as with a stiffer or heavier frame.
     
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  4. Power Player

    Power Player Talk Tennis Guru

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    Stiffness is definitley a major factor. I am learning I like a lot more flex in my racquets from playing with a Donnay.
     
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  5. Gee

    Gee Professional

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    Me too. I used to play with TF335 but recently I am playing frequently with PK Black Ace 98 that has a very nice soft flex. I actually like it better than my regular TF335.
     
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  6. Big Boris

    Big Boris Rookie

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    If you take the tension down really low with the Donnay, don't you get enough power then, plus even more spin. Sounds like heaven :).
     
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  7. Big Boris

    Big Boris Rookie

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    It seems that many posters favour soft frames. Not only in this thread, but I think I have read it also in other ones.

    Why is it then that many of the best pros, even spin players like Nadal and Federer, play (or at least advertise) stiffer frames?
     
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  8. Meaghan

    Meaghan Hall of Fame

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    Do we definately know???
    I mean Djoks flex is 51...I think most pros are low in general, as high flex generates too much power, I suppose thats why roddick tension is about 70.
    Fed has a super control racket so the stiffer the more stable and he hits with less topspin than others.
     
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  9. pshulam

    pshulam Hall of Fame

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    Why do you care what the pros prefer? Do they really play with stiffer frames?
     
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  10. THESEXPISTOL

    THESEXPISTOL Hall of Fame

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    I love the K95.. It's 69RDC.
    My Extremes Pro are 68RDC but are waaaaayy more flex than the K95..
    The K95 feels like a baseball bat when compared to the extreme..

    I loved the K95 but i was needing more headsize to learn the strokes and and less stiffness..
    I bought 3 Extremes, leaded up close to K95 Specs and it's my holy grail..
     
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