training with a wooden racquet?

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by madamadadane, Apr 7, 2008.

  1. madamadadane

    madamadadane New User

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2008
    Messages:
    17
    i have trouble sometimes with the forehand and i totally just "shank" the ball with my frame and the ball goes flying sometimes, so i thought i might buy a wooden racquet with a small frame, then practice with that then move up to my regular racquet and would it improve my game? or if the weights of the two racquets are different will it affect my natural swing speed, and set up?
     
    #1
  2. Rickson

    Rickson G.O.A.T.

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2004
    Messages:
    12,740
    Location:
    USA
    Get a record player and a pair of roller skates too. BTW, I'm selling my VHS...
     
    #2
  3. raiden031

    raiden031 Legend

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2006
    Messages:
    5,997
    Maybe a wooden racquet is too drastic a difference than your game racquet. I practice with a 92" racquet and my game racquet is 100". It seems to help but I'm not so sure because there are alot of other factors involved in my performance. But one thing I know is for sure is that my game is improving because I notice it and others around me notice it.
     
    #3
  4. albino smurf

    albino smurf Professional

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2008
    Messages:
    961
    Location:
    In a cloud of yellow fuzz
    betamax or videodisc only.
     
    #4
  5. FaultsNAces

    FaultsNAces Rookie

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2008
    Messages:
    109
    This seems to be a popular trend (playing with a woodie); a number of the HS players in my area are doing this.... They also use them to warmup, only switching to the modern frames for the last few hits of a warmup.

    No idea if this is good/bad or simply trendy....
     
    #5
  6. dakels

    dakels Rookie

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2005
    Messages:
    359
    #6
  7. dakels

    dakels Rookie

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2005
    Messages:
    359
    I used to subscribe to this methodology. Now I don't agree with it. Changing to a drastically different racquet is not good for your swing. A lot of evidence is showing that changing weight and feel of the tools (racquet, club, bat) changes a person's swing memory, which is a bad thing. While I still keep a small head heavy racquet for teaching (14-14.5oz 85), it is only to demonstrate swing and contact point mechanics, not to actually play with.

    Anyways, what I would recommend is focusing on contact point drills.
     
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2008
    #7
  8. BeHappy

    BeHappy Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2007
    Messages:
    4,789
    If you're going to do this, I have no idea if this is beneficial btw, the sweet spot will be in a different place, so put your woodie over you normal racquet, you will see their sweet spots are in different places.Move the woodie downwards until the centre of it's head is over the cenre of your normal racquets head.Now you will see how much you have to choke up by.
     
    #8
  9. Essential Tennis

    Essential Tennis Rookie

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2008
    Messages:
    248
    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
    I understand the theory behind using a smaller heavier racket for practice, and it's something I would never recommend to anybody. You're having problems making clean contact? Well then you need to learn how to make better contact by increasing your focus and concentration, and following the ball more closely and all the way into your strings. Will an old wooden racket force you to do these things? Possibly. Is it something you have to do anyway no matter what racket you're using? Yes of course, so don't waste your time hitting with a racket you'll never play a match with. Practice with your racket, and learn how to properly watch the ball.

    I wrote an article on how to watch the ball correctly a few weeks ago, view my blog if you'd like to read it.
     
    #9
  10. albino smurf

    albino smurf Professional

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2008
    Messages:
    961
    Location:
    In a cloud of yellow fuzz
    Do top pros ever do that? Doubt it.
     
    #10
  11. albino smurf

    albino smurf Professional

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2008
    Messages:
    961
    Location:
    In a cloud of yellow fuzz
    "Move the woodie downwards until the centre of it's head is over.."

    Sweet spots, choke up[, woodies... naughty, naughty.
     
    #11
  12. tennisplayer1981

    tennisplayer1981 Rookie

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    Messages:
    126
    Don't forget the 8-track.
     
    #12
  13. Bagumbawalla

    Bagumbawalla Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2006
    Messages:
    2,475
    A wooden racket does not make you play better.

    Modern rackets are very forgiving compared to the old wooden things. What a wooden racket does do is punish you for poorly executed strokes.

    If you hit the ball poorly/weakly/off center, then you get a bad vibration and a very poor shot.

    So, if your porblem is not watching the ball, having lazy preparation, not hitting the sweet-spot-- then a wooden racket will let you know when you mess up and give you incentive to hit better.

    Sampras swears by the wood racket.

    I, personally have mixed feelings.
     
    #13
  14. chess9

    chess9 Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2005
    Messages:
    4,274
    Location:
    1.d4

    I agree with Sampras, though I think the effect is not large. EssentialTennis is, erm, ESSENTIALLY correct. :)

    I hit with my woodie about once a week, and usually against a wall. The feeling is entirely different, so you are deconditioning, to a SLIGHT EXTENT (IMHO) your neuromuscular conditioning for your match racquet. But, you must focus intently on hitting the ball, and that IS good.

    Having said all of that, the inability to hit the ball properly, such as shanking, is most likely due to improper footwork, poor unit turn, and/or bad timing. All of those are independent of the racquet being used. Of the aforementioned issues, proper FOOTWORK is missing in almost all my students. (who are old men, btw)

    -Robert
     
    #14
  15. Bagumbawalla

    Bagumbawalla Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2006
    Messages:
    2,475
    I do not know which to prefer,
    The beauty of inflections
    Or the beauty of innuendoes...

    Wood rackets
    Or modern technology.
     
    #15
  16. Frank Silbermann

    Frank Silbermann Professional

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2004
    Messages:
    1,066
    Yes, of course!

    When I took up tennis in 1973, many coaches advised learning with a wooden racket. They said you should start with wood even if you do ultimately switch to a steel or aluminum racket, because with a wooden racket you're more likely to learn to stroke the ball properly. You're more likely to develop bad habits with an ultra-responsive racket that lets you get away with flicking at the ball.
     
    #16
  17. Bungalo Bill

    Bungalo Bill G.O.A.T.

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2004
    Messages:
    11,885
    Some how Frank, I knew you were going to comment in this post.
     
    #17
  18. Tim Tennis

    Tim Tennis Professional

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2004
    Messages:
    1,073
    Location:
    Charleston, TN
    Well I don't play with a wooden racquet but I have one with the press on that I like to swing/work out with. It is neat to swing it for about 5 min., various strokes then pick up my regular racquet, oh baby, it feels so light.

    In fact when I get on the courts I can tell how well I will play by just how light my regular racquet feels. If it feels light I know I am going to play well, but if it feels heavy I know I am going to struggle.
     
    #18
  19. skierpaul

    skierpaul Rookie

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2008
    Messages:
    186
    Location:
    Steamboat, CO
    howabout something just a touch more moderen

    I just got back into playing again back in March after not doing anything for about 10 years. I've been intently taking lessons 2x a week and am already far and beyond where I was as a recreational player in college. Anyhow, I'm using a Head Graphite Edge (81 sq/in) racket for this exact reason. It makes me focus on string/ball contact and its teaching me to stay efficient and to generate my own power. I'll probably keep doing this for a few months and then buy a racket like a Becker 11, but only once I've got game. Even then, I'm planning on still using the H.G.E. for warmups and conditioning and probably some gameplay, why not, it still feels great!

    I considered the woodie thing, but as someone mentioned, the sweetspot is in a very different location. I wanted a racket that was small, but that I could still learn a modern game without too much of a hassle.

    http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=134025
     
    #19

Share This Page