Does the 90 sq. in. head size have a place in the modern game?

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All I'm saying is if you are even moderately fit and are used to playing with mids you can play at a very high level recreationally with them as well not just a lowly 3.5. Bigger rackets helped raise your game but others improve just fine with mids.
I am against the notion that bigger rackets are easier to play with. At even moderately higher levels, its actually harder I find. I need more energy to keep up the racket head speed to control and place the ball through topspin. Pros are fit enough to wield bigger headsized rackets. They have the fitness to keep up the racket head speeds over 3 sets and still paint lines, ofcourse with the added benefit of forgiveness :).
And others would be more fatigued my the demands of a smaller and heavier racquet and tire less with a bigger one. Not everyone is the same.

Bigger racquets, unless we are talking OS monsters, help more people get better and to a higher degree than they would without them. Some people don't like this, but it has always been the case with technology. Give more people access to better stuff and more people improve.

The way to prove to me that you are good at tennis is to win, not to brag about ability to use specific gear.
 

BreakPoint

Bionic Poster
And others would be more fatigued my the demands of a smaller and heavier racquet and tire less with a bigger one. Not everyone is the same.

Bigger racquets, unless we are talking OS monsters, help more people get better and to a higher degree than they would without them. Some people don't like this, but it has always been the case with technology. Give more people access to better stuff and more people improve.

The way to prove to me that you are good at tennis is to win, not to brag about ability to use specific gear.
1. At the recreational level, it's not all about winning. None of us depend on winning matches to put food on the table. At the recreational level, it's about the enjoyment of the game. :)

2. If you're getting tired it's not the fault of the racquet. It's the player's lack of conditioning. I mean, Borg would swing a 15 oz. racquet for 5 straight hours at the highest level of the game without ever complaining that his racquet was too heavy. :shock:
 
BreakPoint, here's a quote.

Me not responding doesn't mean you've won the argument, it means you've lost the audience.

Your agenda is known. Once you've spammed yourself into every thread you hang around too long and your words get diluted. It becomes background noise.
 
BreakPoint, here's a quote.

Me not responding doesn't mean you've won the argument, it means you've lost the audience.

Your agenda is known. Once you've spammed yourself into every thread you hang around too long and your words get diluted. It becomes background noise.
The key to handling online debates (and debates in general) successfully isn't to try to beat the other guy. It isn't like a tennis match. The key is to win the audience. Make them think you've won, and it doesn't matter what the other guy thinks. For example:

I've been playing tennis for so long that there's nothing left to learn and nothing left to improve. :( The only way for me to play better is if I had 20-year-old legs transplanted onto my body. :)
I just played a guy who's top 20 in the country for 50s and over for the first time in a few months. He's a computer rated 5.0 player. Since the last time, his backhand has gotten way better. He told me he's been working on it very hard because he always feels he can improve something. It's hard to argue with his results.
 

Bender

G.O.A.T.
In terms of power, the PS 90 lets you hit anywhere between and including 0 and 100.

With the APDGT I used to use, I felt it was somewhere in the range of 40 to 100.

There will always be people who can do well or do best with a smaller racquet. It's a shame that the manufacturers are leaving that crowd behind.
 

Bender

G.O.A.T.
I am agree with what most people said and would also like to add this.



When you see someone blasting forehands and backhands at the baseline with their Babolat, do you ever think "What would they be like with a Pro Staff 90?".



I think the 90 head size really shows you what your technique is truly like and forces you to correct your mistakes, it essentially carves you down to your tennis core. Which is why most people shank with a 90 head size, because all these other racquets are too forgiving and let you get away with sloppy technique. Hope I'm not offending anyone who uses a Babolat, but just want to speak my mind.

I think this is a misconception.

There are plenty of people who don't shank with a 90 and still have terrible technique. If you don't swing hard or have much racquet head acceleration, framing would be a rarity.

One thing I will agree with is that you can't arm a 90 sq in racquet for extended periods like you can with a PD or a PD Lite. But that has more to do with racquet mass than the head size. My old APD GT weighs only 10 g less than my PS90, which helped me stop arming my groundstrokes.
 

BreakPoint

Bionic Poster
BreakPoint, here's a quote.

Me not responding doesn't mean you've won the argument, it means you've lost the audience.

Your agenda is known. Once you've spammed yourself into every thread you hang around too long and your words get diluted. It becomes background noise.
I have no idea what you're getting at. I'm just trying to provide a very valid counterpoint. I mean if you can't bench press 200lbs, do you blame the barbell or do you blame yourself for not being strong enough or for being out of shape?

And, no, winning isn't everything. It's that mentality that robs the fun and enjoyment out of recreational tennis. I'd rather enjoy hitting the ball and lose than not enjoy hitting the ball and win. But that's just me. :)
 

morten

Hall of Fame
The irony is that if Fed were still using his 90, I think he'd be playing pretty much the same as he is with his 97, in terms of wins and losses. He'd still be beating and losing to the guys that he does with the bigger more modern frames.

I grew up on mids so I actually play better with my K90 irregardless of the level of my competition and I'm a 5.0 player.

So the notion that bigger more modern sticks are easier to play with and are better frames is not necessarily true. Depends on the individual.
Very true...
 

HRB

Hall of Fame
it's simple math..if less than 5% of pro's are using it then obviously it has no place in the PRO modern game.

However, in anything below Pro, you can pretty much get away with using what you are comfortable with rather than what the pace and speed of the PRO game demands.

Simply put, there are many guys in the 4.0-5.0 range I can beat with my Graphite Edge when I'm "on", however there are many I sure as hell better have the forgiving bigger sweet spot of my 95-98's on hand.
 

Murph

New User
Pro Staff 90

Just posting some of my thoughts on the Pro Staff 90 after 3 sets.

This racquets heft deals nicely with serve returns and heavy balls. And it's one of the best racquets to hit a forehand with, if you have the footwork. But if you are not on time on anything, it's shanksgiving.

It's hard to be consistent with this racquet and if you're having an off day, you may as well go home because there is pretty much no leniency what so ever.

There have been days when I've played some really good tennis for one set and then the next set, I play absolutely horribly it's almost comical.

It can get tiring after 3 sets and when bordering on the 3rd set when everyone's footwork starts to get sloppy, it can cost you the match. You have to have some real stamina to maintain a decent standard over 3 sets.

---------------------------------------------

Regarding Federer and his new 97 inch racquet. He has been a lot more consistent and has been winning more tournaments ( didn't drop a set in Dubai). Sure he doesn't produce as many jaw dropping shots as he used to, but the overall consistency more than makes up for it.

---------------------------------------------

Overall, it's what racquet you feel the most confident with in your hand and you feel relaxed playing with.

Thanks for everyone replies so far and there have been some interesting responses.
 

Sander001

Hall of Fame
Murph, that's a great New York name. You don't get Murph in like a Nebraska or places like that. You know what you get in Nebraska? You get corn and despair. And just long pockets of windy days. Wind, despair, probably Monsanto crops- anyway sorry for digressing, back to the tennis chatter.
 

Murph

New User
Murph, that's a great New York name. You don't get Murph in like a Nebraska or places like that. You know what you get in Nebraska? You get corn and despair. And just long pockets of windy days. Wind, despair, probably Monsanto crops- anyway sorry for digressing, back to the tennis chatter.

I'm from Australia...
 

RFGOAT1992

Semi-Pro
For Pro's: only if you are extremely talented like Federer then No matter what you use it wont affect your game at all. a few years back i heard some atp players were saying how they are baffled that he can play so well with that ancient tech

For Rec's: it doesn't matter as long as you have fun and have an all court game. a 90's is not suited to long baseline rally's no matter how easy it looks When Federer does it. using a 90's requires a a tennis player not a marathon runner
 

Bendex

Professional
I am agree with what most people said and would also like to add this.

When you see someone blasting forehands and backhands at the baseline with their Babolat, do you ever think "What would they be like with a Pro Staff 90?".

I think the 90 head size really shows you what your technique is truly like and forces you to correct your mistakes, it essentially carves you down to your tennis core. Which is why most people shank with a 90 head size, because all these other racquets are too forgiving and let you get away with sloppy technique. Hope I'm not offending anyone who uses a Babolat, but just want to speak my mind.
Everyone would be using stiff rackets if they were truly a big advantage. There is definitely a trade off... The APD type rackets don't give you the same feel and control. The sweet spot may be big, but it isn't as rewarding.
 

TennisManiac

Hall of Fame
I want to get some opinions as to whether these 90 sq. in. still have a place in the modern game.
Simply put.... NO

I played four generations of Wilson's Pro Staff Tour 90's and I can tell you that my opponents were hitting heavier balls with just as much spin and precision as I was with much less effort. And they never had the shoulder problems like I did. The Tour 90's are cool to play with if you play for sh*ts and giggles at the park imagining that you're Pete Sampras, Stephen Edberg or Roger Federer. But if you're a serious competitor playing leagues and tournaments, the 90's have absolutely no place on the court these days. I don't care who you are.
 
Simply put.... NO

I played four generations of Wilson's Pro Staff Tour 90's and I can tell you that my opponents were hitting heavier balls with just as much spin and precision as I was with much less effort. And they never had the shoulder problems like I did. The Tour 90's are cool to play with if you play for sh*ts and giggles at the park imagining that you're Pete Sampras, Stephen Edberg or Roger Federer. But if you're a serious competitor playing leagues and tournaments, the 90's have absolutely no place on the court these days. I don't care who you are.
What if you're actually a good player with good technique and fitness, used Mids all their lives so it's really the norm, and are accustomed to winning matches with these Mids?
 

JoelDali

Talk Tennis Guru
Some of the top 4.0s at my country club still use 90s. I think they still have a firm place on the NTRP USTA Rec Tour.
 

mtommer

Hall of Fame
it's simple math..if less than 5% of pro's are using it then obviously it has no place in the PRO modern game.
I will only say that all it says is that it's not in the modern game by and large, not that there isn't a place for it.


At any rate, people assume that Roger "needed" to move to the '97 just because he did so. Yet, that's just faulty logic. What does make more sense, and is probably more likely true, is that once Babolat sales soared due to the early successes of Nadal and Roddick, every manufacturer was envious and sought to copy that success. As the larger racquets became more and more mainstream, due to the popularity of the afore mentioned pros and subsequent sponsorship of more pros, the mids haven't proven to be inferior regarding performance capability, but simply less popular. The success of Fed and Sampras prove otherwise. I use these two not because their names get levied about here so often as "proof" but rather Sampras played during a time when multiple pros have claimed that the game was faster back then and Fed continued to have success as the game became slower. In other words, faster or slower, mids can handle the pro level game just fine.

Getting Fed to use a '97 simply marries Wilson's Pro Staff brand recognition with consumer popularity thereby helping to ensure the brand's sales success for decades to come. Fed simply legitimizes the changes in the "hearts" of the purists while grabbing the attention of ignorant (I say that not as an insult) coaches who predominantly influence years of juniors as they come up through the ranks. I say ignorant because, having worked the junior scene for awhile now, I can't tell you how many times I overhear words to the effect of "emulate, emulate, emulate" as THE reasons needed to achieve success.

Academy kids are great examples of this and it's amazing how many of them plateau to the college level at best. Nadal isn't where he is because of his strokes, it's because of his tenacity, something that is largely undertaught (again, just from my own limited experience) as the crucial factor for success as opposed to "stroke production". Fed is the same way. Nole, finally, appears to have embraced this and success has followed whereas before he treated losing as defeat and acted like a clown. Ferrer is another great example.

I daresay that the fact that Fed has continued to be as successful with the '97 only serves to subtly prove that head size is largely irrelevant. I fully expect that 95 will be extinct eventually too, in favor of 100. This says nothing about the prowess of 95 racquets to "compete" on tour. It says everything about hype and popularity. Basically, all the reasons many here say aren't good reasons to buy racquets, are EXACTLY the reasons most people buy racquets, including juniors. Why do you think paintjobs are so prevalent?
 
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sma1001

Hall of Fame
Just got an IG Prestige Mid. I understand it is a real 90 even though listed as a 93 (and certainly looks that way - looks smaller than the Vcore 89!). But i was never a fan of modernity...
 

TennisManiac

Hall of Fame
What if you're actually a good player with good technique and fitness, used Mids all their lives so it's really the norm, and are accustomed to winning matches with these Mids?
I'm a 4.5 who had to appeal a 5.0 rating last year with 13 trophies on my mantle. I won 7 of those trophies with my Tour 90s. I am a good player. And I stand by what I say. The 90s are too hard on the body to compete in today's game.
 

roundiesee

Hall of Fame
Love the 90 to bits, but I have to admit, especially in my "old" age, the 97 is a much more practical bat to use. So with a heavy heart I have had to say goodbye to the tour 90s, :(
 

Lavs

Hall of Fame
Love the 90 to bits, but I have to admit, especially in my "old" age, the 97 is a much more practical bat to use. So with a heavy heart I have had to say goodbye to the tour 90s, :(
I did the same 5 years ago or so..
Still ProStaff Tour 90 (started playing tennis with it in 2002) and iPrestige Mid (switched to it in 2006) are hard to beat. These are true classic frames.
 
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At any rate, people assume that Roger "needed" to move to the '97 just because he did so. Yet, that's just faulty logic. What does make more sense, and is probably more likely true, is that once Babolat sales soared due to the early successes of Nadal and Roddick, every manufacturer was envious and sought to copy that success. As the larger racquets became more and more mainstream, due to the popularity of the afore mentioned pros and subsequent sponsorship of more pros, the mids haven't proven to be inferior regarding performance capability, but simply less popular. The success of Fed and Sampras prove otherwise. I use these two not because their names get levied about here so often as "proof" but rather Sampras played during a time when multiple pros have claimed that the game was faster back then and Fed continued to have success as the game became slower. In other words, faster or slower, mids can handle the pro level game just fine.

Getting Fed to use a '97 simply marries Wilson's Pro Staff brand recognition with consumer popularity thereby helping to ensure the brand's sales success for decades to come. Fed simply legitimizes the changes in the "hearts" of the purists while grabbing the attention of ignorant (I say that not as an insult) coaches who predominantly influence years of juniors as they come up through the ranks. I say ignorant because, having worked the junior scene for awhile now, I can't tell you how many times I overhear words to the effect of "emulate, emulate, emulate" as THE reasons needed to achieve success.
Conspiracy theory.
 

mtommer

Hall of Fame
Conspiracy theory.
Lol, it would be if people actually cared about the headsize of the racquet the played with. Most don't and never will. Heck, all of capitalism is a conspiracy theory then with Steve Jobs being the biggest of them all. Imagine, a product that we don't really need "replacing" small, cheap, capable cell phones...(that we also never really needed anyway.) :)
 
Lol, it would be if people actually cared about the headsize of the racquet the played with. Most don't and never will. Heck, all of capitalism is a conspiracy theory then with Steve Jobs being the biggest of them all. Imagine, a product that we don't really need "replacing" small, cheap, capable cell phones...(that we also never really needed anyway.) :)
Still a conspiracy theory. :)
 
The simple solution is to get a longer 95.

Someone posted in another thread that there were more top-ten players using 100s than there are today. It seems as if racquetsize evolution has us mostly at 95 right now. I used 90s about six years ago and then moved to 95s just because that's where most Pro Stocks are at and I wanted matched sets. I used oversize racquets back in the late 80s and early 90s so I know what those are like. I have a couple of 100s at home as well and, of course, lots of 65 sq in racquets.

My ideal frame would be a 28 inch 95, around 59-60 RA, 13.2 oz, 390 SW. What I have is close enough for now. If I ever feel like going through the process of changing, it would probably be an XL PT57A or a YT, IG or MG Radical MP.
Yep. As much as I've treasured my beloved AK90's the experience over the last year of using 95-100si frames has convinced me it's time to move on. And when I was lucky enough to try one of your XL frames the experience was so positive there is now no going back. I've settled on the YT IG Radical extended to 28" and couldn't be happier. It does EVERYTHING well, and is incredibly comfy to boot. I know the spec sounds crazy, but it works (for me!) Best, BHBH
 
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The simple solution is to get a longer 95.

Someone posted in another thread that there were more top-ten players using 100s than there are today. It seems as if racquetsize evolution has us mostly at 95 right now. I used 90s about six years ago and then moved to 95s just because that's where most Pro Stocks are at and I wanted matched sets. I used oversize racquets back in the late 80s and early 90s so I know what those are like. I have a couple of 100s at home as well and, of course, lots of 65 sq in racquets.

My ideal frame would be a 28 inch 95, around 59-60 RA, 13.2 oz, 390 SW. What I have is close enough for now. If I ever feel like going through the process of changing, it would probably be an XL PT57A or a YT, IG or MG Radical MP.
I'll be happy to send you an extended length MG Radical to try if you like. :) It is customized to my spec (see signature) which is quite close to your own. :) Best, BHBH
 

movdqa

Talk Tennis Guru
Hopefully we can see a video someday to prove that mere mortals can actually play with such a beast.
 

movdqa

Talk Tennis Guru
I'll be happy to send you an extended length MG Radical to try if you like. :) It is customized to my spec (see signature) which is quite close to your own. :) Best, BHBH
That's a generous offer but I do plan to stick with what I have for a while and am doing my best not to yield to temptation for a few years. Once you find something better than what you have, you have to get a bunch of them and I'm not mentally up to that. It's been a very trying year so far with the flood in January and the weather in February. I'm hoping for a breather around May.
 

roundiesee

Hall of Fame
I did the same 5 years ago or so..
Still ProStaff Tour 90 (started playing tennis with it in 2002) and iPrestige Mid (switched to it in 2006) are hard to beat. These are true classic frames.
Which racket are you using Lavs? I am now using the RF97 and so far the results have been positive :)
 

movdqa

Talk Tennis Guru
Yep. As much as I've treasured my beloved AK90's the experience over the last year of using 95-100si frames has convinced me it's time to move on. And when I was lucky enough to try one of your XL frames the experience was so positive there is now no going back. I've settled on the YT IG Radical extended to 28" and couldn't be happier. It does EVERYTHING well, and is incredibly comfy to boot. I know the spec sounds crazy, but it works (for me!) Best, BHBH
I suspect that I could contact Geoff and order a set of four of these at some point if I wanted to. I haven't hit with the YT IG Radical, just the YT, but I'm pretty sure that I'd be fine with Radical or Prestige. The 28" is really tempting. You wouldn't think that 1/2 inch matters all that much in swinging a racquet but that little extra reach on the serve is nice.

I just noticed that TW doesn't carry IG Radical MPs anymore (not much of anything IG anymore). I don't think that I'd like the Graphene products. I imagine that there are still a lot of IGs at various retailers but they won't last forever. However, it looks like Head is willing to continue making the MG version for quite some time.
 
I just noticed that TW doesn't carry IG Radical MPs anymore (not much of anything IG anymore). I don't think that I'd like the Graphene products. I imagine that there are still a lot of IGs at various retailers but they won't last forever. However, it looks like Head is willing to continue making the MG version for quite some time.
TW doesnt carry them because they were discontinued when the next series came out. I think it is sort of an anomaly that two of the Microgel Radicals are still available. Each series supplants the last, Head doesn't intend to offer more than one iteration at a time.
 

JoelDali

Talk Tennis Guru
My backhand advisor said today that 90% of the top tier National 3.5s are using the RF 97.

These numbers don't lie. This Raquet is the real deal.
 

Lavs

Hall of Fame
Which racket are you using Lavs? I am now using the RF97 and so far the results have been positive :)
Babolat APD Original modified to 12.2oz (see my signature).
As I am getting older, all I need is bigger sweetspot. I would not say that AeroPro Drive Original has the same forgiveness as APD2013. It has pretty solid and raw feel but at the same time more vibration when hitting outside of sweetspot. In contrast - APD2013's head is just one big sweetspot :)
 
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I suspect that I could contact Geoff and order a set of four of these at some point if I wanted to. I haven't hit with the YT IG Radical, just the YT, but I'm pretty sure that I'd be fine with Radical or Prestige. The 28" is really tempting. You wouldn't think that 1/2 inch matters all that much in swinging a racquet but that little extra reach on the serve is nice.



I just noticed that TW doesn't carry IG Radical MPs anymore (not much of anything IG anymore). I don't think that I'd like the Graphene products. I imagine that there are still a lot of IGs at various retailers but they won't last forever. However, it looks like Head is willing to continue making the MG version for quite some time.

Geoff's work is second to none!!! BHBH
 

BreakPoint

Bionic Poster
Sampras with the 85: NTRP 7.0

Nadal with 120sqi: NTRP 6.5
The next time Roddick and his Pure Drive strung with poly had to face a Mid at the US Open was the year following his win (2004) and he promptly lost (to J. Johansson) in the quarters. :oops:
 

JoelDali

Talk Tennis Guru
Tennis with the 85: elegance, precision, athleticism.

Tennis with Pure Drive: sloppy, slow, sludgy.
 

mtommer

Hall of Fame
Anyone who thinks that a 90 cannot compete with modern racquets in the modern game should check out this video, especially the scoreline at the end:

Oh, and the loser won the tournament the following year because he didn't have to face any opponents using a Mid. :shock:
Oh come on now, EVERYBODY knows that the "modern" racquets back in 2003 only gave, like mmaaayybbbeee, a 3% increase. But TODAY'S modern racquet gives, like, a 43.8258% increase. It's like comparing MacIntosh apples to Jonathan apples...no way, nooo......way!!
 
The next time Roddick and his Pure Drive strung with poly had to face a Mid at the US Open was the year following his win (2004) and he promptly lost (to J. Johansson) in the quarters. :oops:
It wasn't a "prompt" loss in any way. Johansson was 2-0 up and then went on to lose that lead. It was up in the air until Johansson got the break in the fifth. And when Johansson gets a break, well then there's nothing 100 men or more could ever do.

I'm a big fan of both players, but to say that it was in any way prompt is a gross overstatement.
 

BreakPoint

Bionic Poster
It wasn't a "prompt" loss in any way. Johansson was 2-0 up and then went on to lose that lead. It was up in the air until Johansson got the break in the fifth. And when Johansson gets a break, well then there's nothing 100 men or more could ever do.

I'm a big fan of both players, but to say that it was in any way prompt is a gross overstatement.
"Prompt" in the sense that it was first player Roddick had to face using a Mid since he lost to Sampras in the quarters two years earlier, i.e., as soon as he had to face another player using a Mid at the US Open, he lost.

He could beat anyone using a big, modern racquet. But as soon as he has to play against someone using an 85 or 90 (e.g., Sampras, Johansson, Federer, etc.) he gets his butt kicked. :)
 

BreakPoint

Bionic Poster
Oh come on now, EVERYBODY knows that the "modern" racquets back in 2003 only gave, like mmaaayybbbeee, a 3% increase. But TODAY'S modern racquet gives, like, a 43.8258% increase. It's like comparing MacIntosh apples to Jonathan apples...no way, nooo......way!!
I know you're only joking, but AFAIK, the Pure Drive today is not much different than the one Roddick used in 2002-2004.
 
"Prompt" in the sense that it was first player Roddick had to face using a Mid since he lost to Sampras in the quarters two years earlier, i.e., as soon as he had to face another player using a Mid at the US Open, he lost.

He could beat anyone using a big, modern racquet. But as soon as he has to play against someone using an 85 or 90 (e.g., Sampras, Johansson, Federer, etc.) he gets his butt kicked. :)
Still the wrong use of the word "prompt" in my eyes and ears.

Saying he gets his butt kicked by Pete isn't exactly correct either as Roddick holds a 2-1 record against him. Buttkicking doesn't really apply to the Johansson match either, it's just that the better player on that day pulled through even if it was damn close. Federer I can agree with, though.

Still, Roddick would've been a damn fine player even with a mid, it was just his personal preference to end up with what worked best for him.
 
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