factor headsize on higher level

Discussion in 'Racquets' started by martin, Jul 22, 2011.

  1. martin

    martin Banned

    May 6, 2004
    Many TW members use a racket with a smaller headsize as many pro players. I'm just wondering why they prefer a smaller headsize.
    My theory is that on a lower level a smaller headsize could work better because of the lower pace and the improved maneuverability of the smaller headsize but on a higher level the ball travels so fast you need a bigger headsize and bigger sweetspot to prevent shanks.

    What do you guys think??
  2. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

    Dec 28, 2008
    East side of San Francisco Bay
    At any level, there is a loss in precision and swingspeed as you go bigger.
    Of course, that is balanced out by less mishits.
    As you swing faster, and get better, precision and swingspeed is important.
    Bigger OS rackets have the problem of lack of precision unless the racket is strung at extremely high tensions. For example, my PrinceOSTT's are strung at 72, play well, but strings break constantly and the frame is always stressed.
    My 500 Dunlops are strung lower mid 50's, hardly shift with W grip and hard hits, and precise as I can be.
    Smaller rackets, like my 200's, at 95 sqs., seem to need a more linear swing, flatter ball, faster ball, but I can't maintain posture to hit consistently enough at my level (low 4.0), hence full W grip and more margin for error.
    As anyone gets better, playing at higher levels, THEY see the ball better, hit more precise, and don't need the slow swinging, imprecise OS rackets...unless they CHOOSE to play with them, which is fine.
  3. Fuji

    Fuji Legend

    Aug 30, 2010
    I use a Prestige mid (90 inch head), and I play with a lot of 4.5-5.0 players, and I just think that the 90 gives me a ton of stability off the baseline. I used to use a Pure Drive for a short time, and that thing was so ridiculously unstable at the baseline if you caught anything less then perfect, it was brutal!

    Plus, It's just so much comfier to swing, for me it doesn't feel bulky at all!

  4. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

    Feb 18, 2004
    It's because we're even better than the pros. ;)

    Just kidding......

    Your assessment is correct, IMHO.
  5. Limpinhitter

    Limpinhitter G.O.A.T.

    Jun 10, 2010
    Smaller head size = more control. Of course there are other ways to gain control, like tighter string job and denser string pattern. Then there's the player frame snob factor . . . :lol:
  6. quest01

    quest01 Hall of Fame

    Jan 22, 2006
    From comparing my blx 90's and APDGT's, its easier to play from the baseline with the APDGT in terms of baseline consistency, spin, and power. Players who use mids typically play an all court game, its no where near as easy playing a baseline game with the blx 90. If you don't play an all court game with a mid size racquet you will just get laughed at, it would be a huge detriment to ones game to play strictly from the baseline with a mid. It's a lot easier playing with a 100 square inch racquet compared to a 90 square inch racquet, its a big difference.
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2011
  7. HiroProtagonist

    HiroProtagonist Professional

    Jul 23, 2010
    This is the best summary I've seen and mirrors my own opinion except perhaps the part about 95" racquets requiring a more linear swing, as most pros and, aspiring pros are using a 95" and an overwhelming majority of them use either a SW or W FH grip and are obviously quite successful in doing so.

    I myself have a eastern FH grip so cant really comment from personal experience, just my thoughts.
  8. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

    Dec 28, 2008
    East side of San Francisco Bay
    Lucky for me, I'm not a pro tennis player, so my needs are a step or 4 BEHIND that of the top pros.
    A 95 is small, a 90 only for hit and giggles, a 98-102 has nice balance, and a 115 should be used only as a snowshoe..... FOR ME, blind, old, injured.
  9. Power Player

    Power Player Talk Tennis Guru

    Sep 2, 2008
    On my iPhone
    Midsize racquets are exceptionally fun to play with. a lot of TW members are hardcore tennis players and play a lot...I went midsize for a while and really really loved it. It was just tough for me to hit my backhand as well as I need to on a competitive level, but there is a real beauty to a midsize racquet that you can't get with larger sticks.
  10. vincent_tennis

    vincent_tennis Professional

    May 6, 2007
    Aussie (612)
    Second that, and it makes it more challenging unlike using a PDC -_-
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2011
  11. JGads

    JGads Hall of Fame

    Feb 18, 2010
    I'm primarily a baseliner (though I do like to come in after a short ball) and conventional wisdom has led me to go away from midsize frames. Then I demo a bunch and always end up realizing that I play my best tennis with the mids. Simple as that. Control trumps power, for me, because I bring my own power and a big frame often gives me too much of it to where I'm overhitting. In a way, mids give me more power because I stop fearing hitting long and then open up and play more aggressively, which leads to better tennis, rather than holding back for fear of hitting the fence.

    The more I think about it, the more I believe that mids work for me because my opponent level (have hitting partners ranging from 4.0-5.0) is low enough to where I can get away with it. The shots coming my way are manageable enough. If I played 5.5 to open level players that just rip high spinny shots with reckless abandon then I'd probably be shanking too many balls, which is why I think you don't see the pros using mids anymore themselves, except for Roger.

    I've played everything from 90-105 square inches in my time, and I'm happy to say I'm playing far and away my best tennis right now and it's with a mid.
  12. whomad15

    whomad15 Semi-Pro

    Aug 31, 2010
    My 2h backhand went kaput after I started playing with my mid compared to my OS. My 1h is very nice though.
    I'm odd in the fact that I'll hit with either depending on each shot, getting jammed with a 1hbh is a very unpleasant feeling.
    slightly semi-western FH.

    The control you get from a mid cannot be beat. That being said you still get the best results from hitting in the sweetspot of whatever stick you're playing, be it a 115" or a 70"
  13. Gee

    Gee Hall of Fame

    Apr 24, 2006
    The Netherlands
    Recently I made my decision... I ordered 2 Head Microgel Prestige Mids!

    A few years ago I already demoed the Microgel Prestige Mid. Since then I was always looking for a racquet with that similar feel, connectedness and laser beam precision control. Only with a tad more forgiveness.

    That's why I choosed the TF335 16x20. A great rock solid racquet that has a good control but not that great feel and sense of connectedness of the Head Prestige Mid.

    None of the many demo frames I tried the last few years had that wow factor of the MGPM to me. (I demoed among others Head MG Radical Pro, MG Prestige MP and Pro, Dunlop AG200, AG300, AG300Tour, Babolat PD, Storm, Pro Kennex BA 98, Prince O3 Tour, Rebel EXO3, Vantage 95" VT231, Volkl PB10 Mid and Tecnifibre TF335).

    So I reconsidered my dilemma. If I want that special feel and laser beam control I 'ĺl have to get used to the more demanding mid head size that 'll force me to take that little extra step in order to hit the ball properly.

    As I learned tennis at the wooden racquets era and I achieved a 5.0 level I should be able to play with a midsize. However I must admit that some strokes will always be more demanding than with a midplus like a topspin backhand.

    But it also depends on your playing style and what court surfaces you used to play. I have a typical old school style and I am able to hit different kind of strokes (flat, topspin, slice, kick, twist, or slice serve). I like to come to the net at short balls and to finish with a volley or smash.
    I used to play on artifical grass where the ball bounces stay pretty low and huge topspin strokes don't work very well at this surface.

    From my experiences with switching to another racquet that might take even a period of a year when I am completely adapted to it. So I expect a period of growing pains. (I have been playing tennis for 37 years so you can assume I know what I'm talking about).
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2011
  14. Player#1

    Player#1 Rookie

    Sep 14, 2010
    I prefer to play with standard size 65" racquets because of the feel and the aerodynamics.

    However, if I am playing competitively, I use an oversize.
  15. fuzz nation

    fuzz nation G.O.A.T.

    Oct 20, 2006
    While it's fine for any of use to maybe relish the experience of using a mid, enjoy the challenge of playing well with it, fall in love with its exceptional feel or control, or play with one for some other reason, we're not playing to earn our lunch money.

    The pros need to use the very best performing gear they can get their hands on. A couple of guys get the most confidence, etc. from a mid, but the rest of the killers get the most firepower from racquets with bigger hoops. They can't sweat the aesthetics that factor into our gear choices.

    It's a similar situation for me with wood racquets, minus the condition of my playing for my paycheck. My point is that while those old racquets feel heavenly when I hit a good shot with one, I can't regularly get enough of the performance I need with a wood frame to justify using them, at least in competition. No law against having some fun with them in occasional knock-arounds though, right?
  16. max

    max Hall of Fame

    Jul 14, 2004
    I serve better with a mid, and my serve is important to my game.
  17. Dutchman

    Dutchman Rookie

    Jun 22, 2011
    You have THAT MANY Dunlops? ;)

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