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Old 02-05-2013, 05:16 AM   #6
Hall Of Fame
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Baseline
Posts: 3,588

I see this all of the time, especially in team practice.

Typically it's a fellow rec player who had their frame strung last year or maybe only when they purchased their frame a few years ago (yes, some players never have their frame restrung!)

Pro tells them to how to take a full swing. Being rec players, we don't have a pro's form. So the ball goes long or all over the place.

The rec player then ends up going one of three ways:

1. QUIT IN FRUSTRATION: I nearly did this when I first started playing a couple of years ago. I bought the lightest, most powerful noob frame I could fine and was told by a tennis shop guy to get it strung with a powerful, thin multi that soon went all springy in the Atlanta heat. I couldn't figure out why the ball didn't go where I was trying to aim or why it seemed to hit the back fence with even a slow stroke, forget a full stroke like teaching pros told me to do. It was a wild rocket launcher.

2. ADOPT BADMINTON STROKE: this is the most common result, especially for the ladies. The frame is so powerful they adapt their stroke to the frame's performance. They never develop proper form because the frame PUNISHES the trial and error of stroke development with terrible shots. Sure, a player with great form can take a powerful frame and keep their shots in. But we noob rec players don't have perfect form so that extra power is tough to control. This also results in lots of TE since poor form can be as bad as stiff frames and strings for your arm. Guys who stick with these frames tend to simply spend their rec career hitting wildly, pleased with the few spectacular, powerful shots that actually land in (my wife and her friends constantly complain about these guys in mixed doubles).

3. CHANGE: this is really hard for the average rec player because the vast, vast majority never come to a place like TT for advice or have access to someone who cares about their hardware choice. I'm a tech geek and love tennis tech and can enjoy the interaction between form and function (I was also an industrial design major in college so enjoy problem solving too). It was easy and natural for me to change but that process was time consuming and expensive (I enjoyed it anyway but most people have no interest in this stuff...we TT members are the exception to the rule).

One local big box authority on sports store actually told its tennis staff to NOT spend time figuring out what frame fits a player best. Just make the sale as quick as possible and then restock the shelves. And one of their tennis dept. employees asked me what the numbers (eg 17g) meant on string packages...and he was advising new players on frame and string choice.
Only on Talk Tennis can you find people who believe
that 10 feet of lead tape has no effect on a frame...
TimothyO is offline   Reply With Quote