What would produce a heavy ball a heavy racquet or a light racquet?

Discussion in 'Racquets' started by Dimitrov, Jul 24, 2011.

  1. Dimitrov

    Dimitrov Rookie

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    Say for instance if you were using the blx six one tour vs aero pro drive and you had the same racquet head speed with the windsheild wiper motion and a western grip? And tell me why.
     
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  2. vincent_tennis

    vincent_tennis Professional

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    Technique.
     
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  3. 14OuncesStrung

    14OuncesStrung Rookie

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    A heavy racquet.
     
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  4. larry10s

    larry10s Hall of Fame

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    i think you would agree all pros in the top 100 hit a heavy ball
    yet the range of weights of their racquets varies
    its the indian not the arrow
    its the players technique not the racquet
     
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  5. meowmix

    meowmix Hall of Fame

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    Technique. I'm sure that somebody (with better knowledge of physics than me) will chime in about the physics of the thing. Honestly... it doesn't matter. If you can't hit a heavy ball with your current racket, you can't hit a heavy ball with any racket.
     
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  6. tata

    tata Professional

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    Hmm but most of us are nowhere near the top 100. So i'm leaning to racquet weight. I used to swing a exo3 graphite with a swingweight of 334 or so. My hitting partners had a harder time returning/controlling my balls than they do now after toning down to the exo3 tour. The thing was just too heavy to whip for someone of my size (though rewarding on full swings)
     
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  7. dgoran

    dgoran Hall of Fame

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    Swingweight...
     
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  8. Steve Huff

    Steve Huff Legend

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    The 2 guys of the ones I play tennis with that hit the heaviest balls use: 1) Prince EXO 3 Ignite w/PSGD 16 at around 60#, and 3) Wilson Triad Hammer 4.0 OS w/Luxilon ALU Power Rough 16L @ 59#. I'm guessing it's in their swing technique, although the guy with the Ignite hits much flatter strokes. His ball can almost knock your racket out of your hand if you aren't prepared.
     
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  9. Gasolina

    Gasolina Professional

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    My stock RQiS XL couldn't create that heavy shot. Put 6 grams to the 3&9 and bingo!

    And when I mean heavy, I don't mean just normal topspin. The heavy topspin shots are the ones that go deep, dive down at a sharp angle, and kicks up.
     
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  10. asifallasleep

    asifallasleep Professional

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    Wilson PS88 is so heavy and has a huge sweet spot that it's almost impossible not to hit a heavy ball every time. With good technique you'll be blasting the ball as if out of a canon. This is also the one racquet you can't choke with. The weight demands that you swing. So if you're ever in a situation when you tense up and normally would dink the ball back, forget about it with this stick. Because of the weight you can't even dink the ball. Even a dink has some pace, lol. It has been discontinued but they still can be found by members selling them on here.
     
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  11. fuzz nation

    fuzz nation Legend

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    That's a tricky issue in itself, though. Your "graphite" is much more stiff than you "tour", so it's going to have inherently more pop at contact than the softer alternative. While your tour might not put the same zip on the ball from the same swing, it might actually give you a substantially greater measure of control with your shots and allow you to swing bigger without putting half your strokes into the fence.

    What I'm getting at is that a stiffer frame might seem to have more power, but a softer racquet may allow you to play with more power, depending on the racquets in the comparison. I suppose that's why we demo.

    I usually feel as though I need "enough" heft in my gear to really work the ball well and produce a heavy sort of shot. I've got a pair of mids that are especially heavy (13.4 oz.) and also quite soft and dead. So heavy that I really need to be in top form to use them well, but when I am, they seem to have the greatest potential to crank out super-heavy shots.

    My go-to racquets are almost an ounce lighter than those tree branches, but they make enough weight of shot for me when I swing them right - back we go to the argument behind technique. No arguing with good mechanics, but I've also made efforts to get along with a few lighter racquets and compared with my regular gear, the lighter stuff seems to have a governor on the peak of its output. Even if I swing harder, there doesn't seem to be any more juice available. That's just me and again, that's why we demo.
     
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  12. movdqa

    movdqa Legend

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    If you look at the top three players (they hit heavy balls), they have high swingweights (355 and up) even though the static weights of their racquets varies quite a bit.

    There are lots of pros with swingweights that are quite a bit lower in the 300-330 range and I think that just about everyone here would be happy to have their games.
     
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  13. TennisCJC

    TennisCJC Legend

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    SW Determines Heaviness

    My opinion is the blx 6.1 t would produce the heavier ball as it has a slightly hi-er SW. I think SW is the most critical factor in producing a heavy ball (lots of speed and spin). This assumes the swing speed is roughly the same with both rackets. ATP players seem to be consistently over 350 g in SW and WTA players are consistently over 330+ and frequently over 350+ too.

    Federer and Nadal both add lead to increase SW over 350+ grams to these rackets.
     
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  14. Boricua

    Boricua Hall of Fame

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    Depends also on each persons strength, stamina and technique. If the racket is too heavy some persons wont be able to generate racket speed and move the racket fast. Thus, the shots wont have pace or land short. Also, technique could be affected in a negative way by trying too hard to move the racket.
     
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  15. BobFL

    BobFL Hall of Fame

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    Light racquet cannot create heavy ball. Nobody beats physics.
     
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  16. Fuji

    Fuji Legend

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    Last night I decided to bust out my PSC6.1 that's leaded to 14.0oz and I served 18 Aces. During all my service games in 3 sets I only had to do more then a put away volley once....

    It had my opponent laughing at how heavy my shots were! When you have a stick that heavy with even moderate technique and placement, you'll more then likely get a winner.

    -Fuji
     
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  17. goran_ace

    goran_ace Hall of Fame

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    if you play so well with it then why don't you use that leaded up PSC 6.1 as your regular racket?
     
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  18. CDestroyer

    CDestroyer Professional

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    Heavy swingweight = Heavy ball
     
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  19. goran_ace

    goran_ace Hall of Fame

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    there. fixed it.
     
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  20. meowmix

    meowmix Hall of Fame

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    Nobody can beat physics... but you're forgetting about the second half of the equation- velocity. If you can swing a lighter racket much faster... mass is negated.
     
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  21. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Racket weight is important.
    Racket swingweight is important.
    Racket aerodynamics is important.
    Ability of the player to swing fast enough to hit a ball his opponent doesn't like is the main factor of all.
    Why swing slower with a lighter racket?
    Why not hit the ball where your opponent doesn't like it?
    Heck, why not hit the FIRST ball where your opponent doesn't like it, so you don't have to fetch like a retrieving dog?
     
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  22. Fuji

    Fuji Legend

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    No real backup to it! I've only got one PSC6.1 and they are hard to come by in my grip size.

    I love playing with it though, last night I just busted it out for giggles, and it worked incredibly well. If I could find another one it would be without a doubt my main racket.

    -Fuji
     
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  23. BobFL

    BobFL Hall of Fame

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    To a degree - yes. However, after a certain point it doesn't matter how fast you swing because the incoming ball carries so much torque/speed that the racquet speed of a light racquet cannot offset it.
     
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  24. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    My problem comes when I use a heavier racket, but then I don't swing as fast, and I can't swing as LONG.
    So a lighter racket is one cure, or a younger body.
    At 62 heading for the vanishing point, a younger body only exists in my g/f's body, so reality says lighter racket, hit more aggressively, don't fetch like a dog for a hard hitter.
     
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  25. dozu

    dozu Banned

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    simple physics - heavy racket heavy ball... the limit is how heavy a racket you can swing for 2 hours without getting tired.

    now, if Date Krumm can swing the 13.5 oz war club, all you sissys should be able to swing at least 12 ?
     
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  26. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    And if an old NatalieCoughlan can swim as fast as the top younger women, can YOU do the same?
     
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  27. dozu

    dozu Banned

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    good question Lee, how is the dry wall going?
     
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  28. vincent_tennis

    vincent_tennis Professional

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    (1/2)mv^2
    10 characters.
     
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  29. rjw

    rjw Professional

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    3a month ago when I started my comeback, I was swinging a 10 oz stick, now I'm swinging an 11.3 oz stick, but not near as fast.....I hope to build the speed back up and move on from there....my stokes are old schol, but a can hit an occasional heavy ball....so there's hope
     
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  30. Gasolina

    Gasolina Professional

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    To be fair, kimiko's shot is one of the flattest and one of the slowest swings out there, so her club really suits her game.

    I can't imagine doing a windshield wiper forehand for 2+ hours in a 13 ouncer. My shoulder would just rip apart from the recoil.
     
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  31. vincent_tennis

    vincent_tennis Professional

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    Recoil should be neglect-able if you;re swinging it at a relatively fast speed.
     
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  32. KenC

    KenC Professional

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    If you want to hit a heavy ball, you have to be able to put your whole body in the shot. So, 75kg on average plus the weight of the racquet hitting the ball and you can see that the weight of the racquet is not much of a factor. Heavy feeling balls are hit with the body.
     
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  33. UCSF2012

    UCSF2012 Hall of Fame

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    Go demo rackets
     
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  34. BobFL

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    There is only one 'tiny' problem - she doesn't swing.
     
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  35. goran_ace

    goran_ace Hall of Fame

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    in theory, sure, but a tennis ball doesn't weigh all that much (~2 oz.) and it loses a lot of momentum in the air and after the bounce. a 5.0 player playing with a 9 oz. racket won't be bothered much a by 3.5 playing with a 13 oz racket swinging as hard as he can.
     
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2011
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  36. 2Hare

    2Hare Semi-Pro

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    No, Federer's racket's swingweight is only about 340. blx 6.1 tour has heavy static weight, but its swingweight is not especially high compared to many other racquets.

    IMO heavy balls are produced by stiff racquets for optimal energy transfer. Swingweight should be just heavy enough to allow maximum head speed. Heavy balls require fast swings. Because heavy racquet with low head speed will not hit heavy balls, just flatter balls.
     
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  37. dozu

    dozu Banned

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    if a 5.0 with a 9 plays a 5.0 with a 13, my money is on the 13.
     
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  38. Avadia

    Avadia Rookie

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    This statement sums it up for me. If players of equal strength, ability levels and good technique match up against each other, and one has a much higher swingweight racket than the other, the guy with the higher swingweight is going to be hitting the heavier ball, and he probably has a serious advantage over the other guy. When you control for different variables, I think you find that it really is swingweight that determines the heaviness of the ball. Strings, technique, etc. can all help or hurt, but the swingweight of the racket is the ultimate determinant.

    Not to say that hitting a heavy ball is all there is to tennis. But when you get up to 4.0 and above, it sure does help.
     
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  39. dozu

    dozu Banned

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    yes and no -

    techniques being equal, a 200 lb del potro is gonna hit harder than a 150 lb davydenko.

    but, it's still the racket/string that impacts the ball... think of an extreme case - delpo swings with 1oz racket, vs davy swinging a 12oz racket, who hits heavier?

    there you go.
     
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  40. KenC

    KenC Professional

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    Rather extreme case, no? Here's another one. Take a 6yo girl and give here a leaded up KPS88. Get ready for some really heavy balls because it is the racquet, not the person, that produces the heavy ball, right?

    Think what you want, I routinely play with people hitting really heavy balls with all sorts of racquets from unmodified Pure Drives through leaded up BLX90s. What all have in common is the ability to step into their shots and really drive the ball. Good technique can produce a heavier ball with a lighter racquet than bad technique can with a heavier racquet.
     
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  41. 0d1n

    0d1n Hall of Fame

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    You are obviously right. Also...if top 2-300 ATP pros are not limited by their stock radicals or pure drives I don't buy the 3.5-ers who need pro staff 88's or leaded up prestige mids to counter the "heavy balls" coming from their aunt Marie or uncle Bob's racquet.
    I can understand preference for that feel...hell I prefer it as well, but that has nothing to do with how heavy the ball is. Nadal uses one of the lighter racquets on the tour and I expect his forehand to be one of the heavier to return.
    I only wish I could hit balls as heavy as some of the ATP Pro players I've seen and really good 18 and under juniors I've seen or played who play with 300-ish grams (unstrung) racquets.
     
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  42. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

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    There are limitations. Mass is never negated.

    For example, take a wiffle ball bat. No matter how fast you can swing it, you're not going to hit a home run out of AT&T Park off of a 90mph fastball.

    Likewise, if you use a 4 oz. racquet you're not going to hit heavy balls no matter how fast you can swing it. The incoming ball would push back your racquet too much.
     
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  43. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

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    Not true. You can swing a heavy racquet and a light racquet at the same slow speed and you'll find that the heavy racquet will produce more spin.
     
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  44. fuzz nation

    fuzz nation Legend

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    Have to agree with this, only after several years of trial and error with different gear.

    No, heavier racquets are not more appropriate for tennis players in general. Everyone has a comfort zone that works best for them and from the variety of threads we see around here, that can take some time and effort to figure out.

    A local high school champion from a few years back could hit some of the heaviest shots I've seen in that "peer group" and he used those light 'n lively black/yellow Hyper Hammers (I think). Phenomenal technique that made his racquet choice appear to be pretty much irrelevant. Another champ used the nCode Tour 90 and had every shot in the book, including outstanding all-court skills.

    Sure, there can be more potential to either "work" or simply direct the ball when swinging something at it that brings more inertia to the collision. Every player just needs to have gear that's "comfortably swing-able", but that needs to go along with solid technique. Sorry, I know - master of the obvious strikes again!!!
     
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  45. TennisCJC

    TennisCJC Legend

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    It is well documented that Federer 6.1 T is customized with lead under the bumper and his SW is 350+ grams. There's a blog on TW that has pictures of about a dozen of his rackets at P1 shop with the bumpers off and they all have 2 strips of 1/4 lead tape across the top. Also, another site compared Fed racket to stock retail and the Fed racket has higher static weight and higher SW. Do some research and you can find them. Fed's static weight was 361 g with customization and overgrip - no dampener.
     
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  46. TennisCJC

    TennisCJC Legend

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    Nadal does use a lighter racket but he does customize with lead under the bumper and his final SW is over 350 grams. Carlos Moya used a racket around 10.5-11 oz static weight but it was head heavy and his final SW was around 370 g. Williams sisters use light static weight too but again HH with SW over 350 g.

    The vast majority of ATP pros have a SW over 350 g and WTA pros over 335 g. Many WTA pros are over SW 350 g too.

    Einstein theory of tennis relativity FORCE = MASS * SPEED. In other words, how hard you hit it is the mass of the racket * the swing speed. You want to play with as heavy a racket as you can up to the point that it does not compromises your swing speed and ability to maneuver the racket. I suggest more players are hurting there games with light rackets than with heavy rackets. I'm in my mid 50s and my current racket is 11.8 oz, SW 331 G, and 4 pts HL, my previous racket was 12.5 oz, sw 338, and 8 pts HL. My wife is 5'4" tall, early 50s, and about 115 lbs. Her racket is 11.1 oz, SW 331, and 1 pt HL.

    You don't want a racket that slows your swing significantly and you don't want a racket that you cannot maneuver, but you do want as heavy a racket as you can handle up to these thesholds.

    You can not compensate with swing speed for lack of weight in many situations. Best example: you can not expect to return heavy serves by having a very fast swing speed. Even at lower levels, a good serve has too much pace to expect to rip it with a high swing speed and consistently time it well. The pros frequently return serves with smaller, more compact and slower swing speeds and this means you need some mass to absorb the impact and return the ball with a bit of pace. Volleys and slices also benefit enormously from mass as you have slower swing speed and need stability (more mass). Finally, when you do hit your normal topspin drive, it also benefits from mass as you don't have to swing as recklessly to generate the same pace and spin if you have a bit more mass.

    Granted, rackets should be sized to the player and a 6 yr old child shouldn't play a 12.5 oz racket. But, anyone pass the age of 12 can handle a SW of 320 or more and would probably benefit enormously from playing a heavier racket. My personal minimum racket specs for 3.5+ level and above 10.5 oz or more, SW 320 or more, balance 4 HL or more HL, and flex 58-68.
     
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2011
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  47. thug the bunny

    thug the bunny Professional

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    F = ma is from Newtonian mechanics, not from Einstein and has nothing to do with relativity. Also, 'm' and 'a' are the mass and acceleration of the object being accelerated, not the object causing the accleration.

    However, mass*velocity defines the momentum of an object (p = mv), and if you approximate the hitting of a tennis ball to be an elastic collosion, then momentum must be conserved, so that the m*v of the racquet transfers fully to the m*v of the ball, meaning that, yes, a racquet with more mass will create a faster ball given the same swing speed.
     
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  48. Power Player

    Power Player G.O.A.T.

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    There is no doubt to me after leading up my stick to 12.2 and 360SW that a heavier racquet hits a heavier ball. It is not really even a debate.

    Nadal's stick is polarized so the static weight IS light for a pro, but it still swings in the 355 SW range. That is a lot of punishment on the ball from a guy who gets the most racquet head speed maybe ever.

    Yes, there are young juniors..etc who hit hard with light sticks, but they also expend a ton of energy to do so, and if any of them do go pro, will most likely have their specs adjusted to a heavier SW since just by looking at pro specs you can see the overwhelming majority have done that. Almost every single pro uses a SW at 350 or higher..I believe it actually makes playing tennis easier and is something you discover through modding, which is not anything I ever did as a junior player.
     
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2011
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  49. red rook

    red rook Rookie

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    >>>What would produce a heavy ball a heavy racquet or a light racquet?<<<

    So it seems that its not the weight, but the swingweight that is the most important racquet-induced factor determining heaviness?
     
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  50. Power Player

    Power Player G.O.A.T.

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    It is a major factor. If you can hit a heavy ball with a 320 SW, you will hit a heavier one with a 360SW. This is what most players learn when they get their sticks modded properly.

    Like I said, I am not surprised young juniors use a lighter racquet and hit hard..they have the unlimited energy to swing out all the time. Pros are smart enough to swing out when needed and the high SW allows you to hit at 70-80% and still crush the ball until you force the easy sitter and can swing out.
     
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