Beginner, taking lessons and improving - looking to upgrade my racquet - down a rabbit hole, would appreciate some help.

Hi

I'd like a bit of advice, please, I'm down the rabbit hole and I need a bit of help.

I'm looking to upgrade my racquet, from a Head MXG3 (with a grip size that's too small), strung with Head Hawk strings.

I'm playing three times a week and taking a weekly lesson, too.

I've started to get a bit of pain towards my elbow and I think it's because of the small grip size, so I'm looking to change the racquet and strings.

I live on an island and choice is difficult, so I'll likely import something in from tennis-warehouse.

I was initially looking at the Babolat PureDrive, then got a bit lost on strings.

Any advice would be great.

Thank you.
 

Rosstour

Legend
Thank you, any recommendation on strings? I want some that are ideal for beginner/intermediate but also durable and last a while? Thanks again.
The one I like the best is Volkl Cyclone Tour, but I'm not a beginner and you have to string it low.

That racquet with those strings will give you a lot of power and spin and comfy ball pocketing if you don't string too high.

I suggested the Warrior because it's often mentioned as a more arm friendly alternative to the really stiff Babolats. But has some similar characteristics.
 
The one I like the best is Volkl Cyclone Tour, but I'm not a beginner and you have to string it low.

That racquet with those strings will give you a lot of power and spin and comfy ball pocketing if you don't string too high.

I suggested the Warrior because it's often mentioned as a more arm friendly alternative to the really stiff Babolats. But has some similar characteristics.
Do you use the warrior? I've just read a few reviews and it looks great, more suited for women and juniors though? I'm a 6ft 185lbs male, is it still suitable? I don't know if my arm pain is because I'm gripping my current racquet tightly, or because I'm playing more, or because I'm susceptible. I go to the gym three times and week and lift heavy, also.

What tension would you recommend with maybe the Prince Premier Control or Tecnifibre Triax?

Thank you.
 

Seth

Legend
Do you use the warrior? I've just read a few reviews and it looks great, more suited for women and juniors though? I'm a 6ft 185lbs male, is it still suitable? I don't know if my arm pain is because I'm gripping my current racquet tightly, or because I'm playing more, or because I'm susceptible. I go to the gym three times and week and lift heavy, also.

What tension would you recommend with maybe the Prince Premier Control or Tecnifibre Triax?

Thank you.
I used the Textreme Warrior 100 for a while before moving to the Beast 98. It's essentially Prince's Pure Drive, with one less cross string (16x18 instead of 16x19). I'm 33, 6'5" 225lbs so I certainly wouldn't be considered a woman or a junior. A too-small grip size is definitely a problem. Find the right grip size and string with something that isn't poly.
 
I used the Textreme Warrior 100 for a while before moving to the Beast 98. It's essentially Prince's Pure Drive, with one less cross string (16x18 instead of 16x19). I'm 33, 6'5" 225lbs so I certainly wouldn't be considered a woman or a junior. A too-small grip size is definitely a problem. Find the right grip size and string with something that isn't poly.
Haha, OK, thanks.
The grip size of the MXG is 4-3/8 inches with an over-grip and my hand nearly closes, I've tried to measure and I think I'm a 4-1/2, so will go for that.
I think everyone here has sold me on the Warrior 100.
 

abhi_trip

Rookie
Thank you very much. Any recommendation on tension for any of those strings?
Start with the either 55 pounds or the mid point of the specified tension range of your racket. Pick whichever is lower. I also use the beast 100 as one of my main rackets. The beast is an upgrade to the Warrior 100 btw. It's a more headlight, more comfortable, and a more controllable pure-drive. You'll really like it.
 

Lorenn

Professional
I've started to get a bit of pain towards my elbow and I think it's because of the small grip size, so I'm looking to change the racquet and strings.
You might be holding the racquet too firmly...Warrior 100 is a good starting racquet. String I would start with 55 pounds, With one of the thread listed multi-filaments or synthetic gut. Then if you feel you need more pop you reduce the weight on your next restring. If you feel you need more control you go up. If you have trouble with your current racquet hitting it deeply in the court you might want to start lower than 55.
 
Start with the either 55 pounds or the mid point of the specified tension range of your racket. Pick whichever is lower. I also use the beast 100 as one of my main rackets. The beast is an upgrade to the Warrior 100 btw. It's a more headlight, more comfortable, and a more controllable pure-drive. You'll really like it.
OK, perfect, thank you. After some cursory reading and everyone's comments on here, it sounds like it's a great option for where I am at the moment. Thank you so much.
 
You might be holding the racquet too firmly...Warrior 100 is a good starting racquet. String I would start with 55 pounds, With one of the thread listed multi-filaments or synthetic gut. Then if you feel you need more pop you reduce the weight on your next restring. If you feel you need more control you go up. If you have trouble with your current racquet hitting it deeply in the court you might want to start lower than 55.
That's what I think I'm doing, I feel like I'm squeezing it because it's a bit small. I don't have any problem with hitting deeply at the moment. I'll start with 55 as others have mentioned and get another set of strings when I purchase, so that I can change things if I need. Thank you.
 

Rosstour

Legend
Do you use the warrior? I've just read a few reviews and it looks great, more suited for women and juniors though? I'm a 6ft 185lbs male, is it still suitable? I don't know if my arm pain is because I'm gripping my current racquet tightly, or because I'm playing more, or because I'm susceptible. I go to the gym three times and week and lift heavy, also.

What tension would you recommend with maybe the Prince Premier Control or Tecnifibre Triax?

Thank you.
The Warrior is a well-balanced tweener racquet so it works for intermediates of any age/gender.

I used it for years and recently switched to a racquet with less power, less spin, and more placement (my game lacks placement).
 

n8dawg6

Legend
there are shinier racquets out there than the TTW100 … racquets with more bling. pretty sure ive never played any better with a different frame though. and i cant remember ever having arm trouble w the TTW100
 

Lorenn

Professional
That's what I think I'm doing, I feel like I'm squeezing it because it's a bit small. I don't have any problem with hitting deeply at the moment. I'll start with 55 as others have mentioned and get another set of strings when I purchase, so that I can change things if I need. Thank you.
I expect you will go up a size now and maybe down in a few years as you change your game. I use a 4 1/2(when I was younger I preferred even larger), but can play with down to a 4 1/4 without any issues. Grip on a racquet is important, most newer players feel a need to hold it with a death grip versus a more relaxed grip. Basically classic tennis larger grips were king, modern tennis with heavily western grips tend to like smaller grips. Just a phase you might have to go through... try to imagine a grip as more of a open ended wrench versus a vise. In general any extra tension versus min needed tends to be problematic.
 

Lorenn

Professional
Well, I'm nearly there, just trying to decide on strings, so I can always hit for you. (even though it'll take a few weeks to get here)
If you get the four strings mentioned you can't really go wrong. both Prince options are nice, Techifibre triax is likely the best but only my a small margin. Then Head Velocity. I would easily play with all of them and be happy.
 

mhkeuns

Hall of Fame
Do you use the warrior? I've just read a few reviews and it looks great, more suited for women and juniors though? I'm a 6ft 185lbs male, is it still suitable? I don't know if my arm pain is because I'm gripping my current racquet tightly, or because I'm playing more, or because I'm susceptible. I go to the gym three times and week and lift heavy, also.

What tension would you recommend with maybe the Prince Premier Control or Tecnifibre Triax?

Thank you.
It is a powerful racket that can be strung with full-poly without much problem.
 

mhkeuns

Hall of Fame
Hi

I'd like a bit of advice, please, I'm down the rabbit hole and I need a bit of help.

I'm looking to upgrade my racquet, from a Head MXG3 (with a grip size that's too small), strung with Head Hawk strings.

I'm playing three times a week and taking a weekly lesson, too.

I've started to get a bit of pain towards my elbow and I think it's because of the small grip size, so I'm looking to change the racquet and strings.

I live on an island and choice is difficult, so I'll likely import something in from tennis-warehouse.

I was initially looking at the Babolat PureDrive, then got a bit lost on strings.

Any advice would be great.

Thank you.
If your arm feels tender, I would not use the Pure Drive immediately. It is on the stiff side that isn’t the best for arms/elbows if you are starting to have some problems. I’d also look into Textreme Tour 100P, Phantom 100 and ProKennex Q+ Tour Pro. You can grow your game with those frames, and they are very soft on your arms.
 
I expect you will go up a size now and maybe down in a few years as you change your game. I use a 4 1/2(when I was younger I preferred even larger), but can play with down to a 4 1/4 without any issues. Grip on a racquet is important, most newer players feel a need to hold it with a death grip versus a more relaxed grip. Basically classic tennis larger grips were king, modern tennis with heavily western grips tend to like smaller grips. Just a phase you might have to go through... try to imagine a grip as more of a open ended wrench versus a vise. In general any extra tension versus min needed tends to be problematic.
This is good to know, thank you.
 
If you get the four strings mentioned you can't really go wrong. both Prince options are nice, Techifibre triax is likely the best but only my a small margin. Then Head Velocity. I would easily play with all of them and be happy.
What gauge would you select for the Techifibre Triax? I was leaning towards 17 1.25mm with the Prince strings, but Technifibre only have 15 1.38, 16 1.33 or 17 1.28? Presumably, the 17 1.28 won't be much of a difference?
 

Lorenn

Professional
What gauge would you select for the Techifibre Triax? I was leaning towards 17 1.25mm with the Prince strings, but Technifibre only have 15 1.38, 16 1.33 or 17 1.28? Presumably, the 17 1.28 won't be much of a difference?
I don't think the difference is material between the strings. 1.25 versus 1.28.
 

Dartagnan64

G.O.A.T.
Why are some people suggesting someone at the beginner/intermediate stage, already experiencing some elbow pain, continue to use poly?

Surely we can do better on this forum with arm friendly intermediate setups.

I like the Prince recommendations although I'm more a fan of their O3 technology for arm health. I think the Clash 100 and Blade 104 should be in the running. I'd also look at a Gravity S form the Head lineup.

And probably some Prince syn gut, gosen sheep micro or technifibre mulitfeel in these rackets at 55 lbs will be great for most beginner/intermediates.

Then as you learn to play with spin you can advance to Triax and Velocity and finally up to poly if you want.

And of course get the right grip size.
 
Why are some people suggesting someone at the beginner/intermediate stage, already experiencing some elbow pain, continue to use poly?

Surely we can do better on this forum with arm friendly intermediate setups.

I like the Prince recommendations although I'm more a fan of their O3 technology for arm health. I think the Clash 100 and Blade 104 should be in the running. I'd also look at a Gravity S form the Head lineup.

And probably some Prince syn gut, gosen sheep micro or technifibre mulitfeel in these rackets at 55 lbs will be great for most beginner/intermediates.

Then as you learn to play with spin you can advance to Triax and Velocity and finally up to poly if you want.

And of course get the right grip size.

I'll take a look at those other racquets you've mentioned, thank you. I do like the price point of the Textreme Warrior though, I must say.

Others have recommended Prince syn gut previously, so I'm happy with those strings.

I agree on the grip size, not only do I believe it's the source of my pain but also a challenge when changing grips.

Thank you.
 

nvr2old

Hall of Fame
They're better

Not 2x better though. IMO
Matter of opinion. My Clash is different not necessarily better IMO, got rid of 5 Babolat racquets (best ones are no longer made as far as I am concerned). Keep coming back to TTW 100 as well as TT tour 100/100p so that says something for me. Everyone is different.
 

Lorenn

Professional
I like the Prince recommendations although I'm more a fan of their O3 technology for arm health. I think the Clash 100 and Blade 104 should be in the running. I'd also look at a Gravity S form the Head lineup.
Hard part is guessing from the post if the racquet and string switch will be enough or if they need level three arm comfort. Miss the older O3 options but they seem mostly gone. If the Beast series was still out...the other racquets I left out mainly due to price. 129 is hard to beat. If you could find 2020 Gravity S it would be a interesting option as it would be close enough in price.
 
Hard part is guessing from the post if the racquet and string switch will be enough or if they need level three arm comfort. Miss the older O3 options but they seem mostly gone. If the Beast series was still out...the other racquets I left out mainly due to price. 129 is hard to beat. If you could find 2020 Gravity S it would be a interesting option as it would be close enough in price.
I've literally just bought the Warrior 100 with some Prince Syn Gut.
I probably won't have it for a few weeks, so I'll report back when I do.
If this racquet works, I'll stick with it for a bit and upgrade when I feel necessary.

Thank you.
 

nvr2old

Hall of Fame
Hard part is guessing from the post if the racquet and string switch will be enough or if they need level three arm comfort. Miss the older O3 options but they seem mostly gone. If the Beast series was still out...the other racquets I left out mainly due to price. 129 is hard to beat. If you could find 2020 Gravity S it would be a interesting option as it would be close enough in price.
Interestingly I also picked up a used Prince Legacy O3 105 recently. Fairly normal beam width (not too wide) and very comfortable stick albeit a bit light w/o lead which I added. Bottom line is there are quite a few options out there.
 

Dartagnan64

G.O.A.T.
I've literally just bought the Warrior 100 with some Prince Syn Gut.
I probably won't have it for a few weeks, so I'll report back when I do.
If this racquet works, I'll stick with it for a bit and upgrade when I feel necessary.

Thank you.
That's a solid beginner/intermediate option that will hold you for quite some time. Kind of like a softer Extreme/Instinct/Burn/Ultra. If you find it's good for your arm then sticking with Prince and advancing to their Tour and Phantom lines may serve your arm well in the future and give you a more controlled response.

I'm really enjoying the Phantom 107G which does a ton of things well while still feeling comfy
 
Since u already bought the Prince, that much of the equation is resolved. While I haven’t played with Prince in years, I understand they are arm friendly. Suggest you stay away from poly - you are already having arm problems and the poly will accentuate your problems. The recommendation that you string at the mid point is a good one and I suspect you will reduce it more later. Since you play so often, you may wish to restring it every month or so. And don’t leave the racquet in your car in the sun. One last point - you mentioned that your hand wraps around the handle pretty much. Since the racquet is a 3/8 and u use an overgrip, unless the OG is very thin, u are playing with a 1/2. The way u describe it, I’ll bet u are a 5/8, which means u should use a thicker OG or another technique to build up the grip.
 

Rosstour

Legend
Good choice man. And for the money you won't regret it.

You may outgrow it as I did in the search for more control--but my advanced 5.0+ buddy is still using it to absolutely murder me on the court.
 

Rosstour

Legend
Matter of opinion. My Clash is different not necessarily better IMO, got rid of 5 Babolat racquets (best ones are no longer made as far as I am concerned). Keep coming back to TTW 100 as well as TT tour 100/100p so that says something for me. Everyone is different.
Clash got me easy power, depth and placement on ground strokes.

It did rob me of some power and spin on the serve compared with the Warrior.

And the Clash doesn't punish low racquet head speed like the Warrior does--so it almost rewards bad habits in a sense.
 
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That's a solid beginner/intermediate option that will hold you for quite some time. Kind of like a softer Extreme/Instinct/Burn/Ultra. If you find it's good for your arm then sticking with Prince and advancing to their Tour and Phantom lines may serve your arm well in the future and give you a more controlled response.

I'm really enjoying the Phantom 107G which does a ton of things well while still feeling comfy
Thanks, man. I'm hoping it does work out, I bought a combo of some Prince syn gut and multifilament strings to play with too, I'll be sure to post back results and hopefully I improve enough to warrant a different racquet in the future. I'm really enjoying the journey so far.
 
Since u already bought the Prince, that much of the equation is resolved. While I haven’t played with Prince in years, I understand they are arm friendly. Suggest you stay away from poly - you are already having arm problems and the poly will accentuate your problems. The recommendation that you string at the mid point is a good one and I suspect you will reduce it more later. Since you play so often, you may wish to restring it every month or so. And don’t leave the racquet in your car in the sun. One last point - you mentioned that your hand wraps around the handle pretty much. Since the racquet is a 3/8 and u use an overgrip, unless the OG is very thin, u are playing with a 1/2. The way u describe it, I’ll bet u are a 5/8, which means u should use a thicker OG or another technique to build up the grip.
Thanks, mate. I bought a selection of extra strings so that I can restring if and when necessary. I agree with grip size, but I thought it was probably the safer option to go 1/2 and build up with overgrips if needed.

Funny you mention leaving the racquet in the sun, I did that when I first got my MXG3 and wasn't playing frequently, I live in the Caribbean and that grip didn't last long after a few days. It's now in a bag in my AC'd apartment.

I'll definitely post back results when I've got the racquet.

Appreciate the comments.
 

Turbo-87

Legend
Thanks, mate. I bought a selection of extra strings so that I can restring if and when necessary. I agree with grip size, but I thought it was probably the safer option to go 1/2 and build up with overgrips if needed.

Funny you mention leaving the racquet in the sun, I did that when I first got my MXG3 and wasn't playing frequently, I live in the Caribbean and that grip didn't last long after a few days. It's now in a bag in my AC'd apartment.

I'll definitely post back results when I've got the racquet.

Appreciate the comments.
Just be careful in building up the grip with overgrips since you may lose the feel of the bevels.
I played with a Prince Textreme Tour 100T for a while, which is a bit lighter and lower-powered compared to the Warrior. I had Prince Premiere Control 17ga in it and really thought it worked well.
 
Just be careful in building up the grip with overgrips since you may lose the feel of the bevels.
I played with a Prince Textreme Tour 100T for a while, which is a bit lighter and lower-powered compared to the Warrior. I had Prince Premiere Control 17ga in it and really thought it worked well.
Yes, I've considered this. Hopefully, the 1/2 works well.

I bought some Prince Premier Control 17 and also some Prince syn guts, so I can change them around if needed. Thanks, mate.
 

penguin

Professional
Since u already bought the Prince, that much of the equation is resolved. While I haven’t played with Prince in years, I understand they are arm friendly. Suggest you stay away from poly - you are already having arm problems and the poly will accentuate your problems. The recommendation that you string at the mid point is a good one and I suspect you will reduce it more later. Since you play so often, you may wish to restring it every month or so. And don’t leave the racquet in your car in the sun. One last point - you mentioned that your hand wraps around the handle pretty much. Since the racquet is a 3/8 and u use an overgrip, unless the OG is very thin, u are playing with a 1/2. The way u describe it, I’ll bet u are a 5/8, which means u should use a thicker OG or another technique to build up the grip.
He doesn't need to restring with syn gut/ multi strings he has got. They don't lose playability like poly. Perfectly ok to play them until they break. Only reason might be if you try a different tension and don't like it at all, can't break it and eventually give in to shelling out for a restring, or buying a stringing machine and putting all your time into stringing because you are so damn fussy, by which time you probably restring with luxilon poly every 10 hours of play like you are playing for money :)
 
Re stringing frequency, I have two matched Volkl VSence V1 MP racquets. Play 5 or 6 days per week - string them monthly with tech biphase 17 gauge. After one month strings have lost too much tension. I normally stagger the stringing. In any event, found only racquets I can use that do t kill my arm are Volkl and PK. While I understand that the Prince is arm friendly, I KNOW that Volkl and some of the PKs are. Also, believe it or not, I find the Volkl grip shape is perfect for an eastern and a continental grip. I use a 5/8 with thin OG which brings it to a little less than a 3/4.
 
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