Originally Posted by Power Player
According to RPNY, swing weight is the most important spec in a racquet in today's game.
Many people advocate using the highest SW possible. This makes sense. The question is really - how high can you go?
The next question is - how good is your technique? Or more like - how loose is your arm? I feel like the only way to use a higher SW racquet is with a loose arm. You have to commit to this style of hitting, but it is how the best players hit. If anyone has gotten this going, they will feel it - the louder, richer crack of the ball and the effortless power you get from using your core and keeping your arms as relaxed as possible.
Once you get to that point the final challenge is what weight is ideal for keeping your contact point consistent. By that I mean, what weight helps you make contact without flopping your wrist and losing your contact point?
I think if that gets dialed in, you may find your ideal SW is higher than you think. Or maybe not. I am still messing with it. It is safe to say that at 331, I feel I can go higher. So I plan to hop it up to ~345 and see if I can handle that.
The best way to figure this stuff out so far for me is to have 2 identical racquets and a go to string setup. Use the same string and tension and keep one racquet stock and the other as your experiment.
The goal for me is to get a SW that helps me stay in control on my swing, but also does not tire me out over the match. Sometimes with lighter sticks it can be tempting to over-swing in pressure situations.
If anyone has done this, feel free to chime in.
My main point is that I believe most racquet makers know rec players arm the ball too much and therefore keep the SWs around 330 or less. It also is not a must, so many players with good technique simply may prefer a lower SW.
This is all an experiment for me. What I am looking for is a heavier SW to keep my swing more relaxed and also to pull my racquet even deeper when I drop the racquet on serve.
I have played specced out sticks with pro level SWs, and there was a lot of things I really liked about the racquets set up that way. I believe a more realistic weight for me is probably around 345/345 for weight/SW, but even that could be too heavy or too light. I will need to experiment over some time and see how it goes.
Hey PP, interesting experiment! I was actually on the verge of starting a similar experiment in the other direction, towards lower swing weight. For the past three years I have been playing with my 4D200 Tours with SW probably in the high 340s. I totally understand what you're saying about being able to play with a totally relaxed swing using your core and a loose arm. It's a magical feeling, especially at the end of a session with my coach as we play some points and I'm completely in the zone. However... when I play a singles match, which I don't do very often these days, I tend to get tight and my swing is liable to break down. This is, of course, primarily me, but I would like to rule out the possibility that my current rackets are limiting me, so I would like to try out something slightly more forgiving with a slightly lower SW. I'm trying to get my hands on a Donnay Gold 99 which I could easily lead up to SW between 320 and mid 340s. In the mean time, I will be following your experiment with great interest...