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Old 07-04-2006, 09:27 AM   #13
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 182

DD, I like the FAQ idea. Good work.

However, I would exercise caution in referring people to Racquet Research. Wilmot McCutchen used to be a member of the boards. Even though he is very knowledgeable about theoretical physics, his formulas did not hold up to scrutiny because they failed to adequately take into account frame behavior, human physiology, and racquet technology. He ended up leaving the boards because he was shown to be wrong on many significant points. I believe he realized the shortcomings of his data because he never updated his site again after that.

So, I would recommend a HUGE disclaimer if you're going to refer people to his site. Some of the frames he has listed in his top third have proven to be some of the worst arm eaters out there while some of the frames in his bottom half are consistently recommended by knowledgeable people, even on these boards, as being very arm safe. This just shows how badly off the mark some of his concepts are. His ideas about shoulder safety in particular are not based on any solid understanding of how the joint functions.

Mr. McCutchen seems proud of the fact that his data contains no human element. To quote his site, "No vague sales puffery, condescending jocularity, or subjective playtest results." Anyone familiar with the field knows that there has not been enough research done yet to be able to make anything more than generalizations about arm safety. Until much more is known about causative factors and how they relate to individual physiology, anecdotal evidence will have to be, by default, the best source for information about wrist, elbow, and shoulder safety.

My recommendation is to not refer people to the site for anything more than a reference guide to some of the physics formulas involved in tennis. His arm safety data is very inconsistent and thus unreliable.
J D is offline   Reply With Quote