Has modern Racquets made us lazy?

Sander001

Hall of Fame
Well, everyone has access to a gun, too (especially in the U.S. as we all know). But does that mean guns should be allowed in a knife fight? Should brass knuckles be allowed in boxing bouts? Should Tasers be allowed in fencing duels? In sports, just because the technology is available does not mean it should be allowed. Look at MLB baseball banning aluminum bats. If anything goes, then you'd have motorized bikes entering the Tour De France, Olympic swimmers wearing flippers on their feet, laser guides used in shooting competitions, snowmobiles entering cross-country skiing races, etc.


I think you may have just smashed the record for most straw man arguments in a single post. I'll alert the media, somebody call Guinness.
 

Power Player

Talk Tennis Guru
The modern game is much faster, longer and requires better fitness than classic tennis. The annoying troll lamenting modern tennis is an old guy who can't run side to side and probably hates life when a point goes past a 5 ball rally.

All you have to do is load up a tennis match from the 80s and then switch to a modern match and the huge increase in speed and fitness required is obvious. It's easy to cling to 65 inch wood frames when you are fat, out of shape and don't want to run. That's hard. It takes hard work and mental stamina.
 

Sander001

Hall of Fame
I've been playing with a Pure Drive 2015 for the last 4 months, and what a pleasure. An amazing frame, great all-round, and very comfortable. And so easy to play with. So, yesterday, I decided to play with my orig Max 200G. I played 3 sets of doubles. Both are strung with Ashaway Crossfire 2 16g, the PD @ 56lbs, and the Max at 60lbs.

Long story very short. I had to move my feet (oh the horror!), prepare early, pick my targets and concentrate to play with the Max 200G. I know that I have to do these things, otherwise, I'd look a right plonker playing with that frame. Not quite the same with the PD. I can get away with poor technique, lazy feet, hardly any preparation with the PD. Hell, I can just use an open stance and slap the ball, the racquet does the rest.

I play a 1HBH, SW grip forehand, and generally hit the ball as hard as I can. The accuracy and feel of the Max200G is unmatched in my opinion. Save for a lower trajectory over the net on my groundies, and less kick on my 2nd serve - the Max200G blows the PD out of the water in terms of feel, power, accuracy, consistency and stability.

But, I will play with the PD more than the Max200G. I only break out the Max200G about 2-3 times a month. Why? Because playing with the PD is easier. Its much simpler. Just add topspin. I wish it wasn't so. I play much better quality tennis with the Max200G than with the PD2015. Unfortunately, I only have 1 Max 200G, so I'd like to keep it alive for as long as possible.
If you played against better players, you'd get more exercise with the PD because otherwise you'd have shorter rallies and get blown off the court with the Max200.
 
If a forum post validates your preferred specs then you are doing it wrong. Experience will show you what you should be using more than anything here. It's easy to play with heavy frames at a low level because the ball is not coming at you with serious pace on a regular basis.

Again, if your swing is all over the place with lighter frames, you are doing something wrong. I'd get with a coach and figure out what the issue is.

You don't need to use light frames. But you shouldn't struggle this dramatically when you do.
Yeah, but I like to also understand why stuff works, not just go blindly by my gut feelings. The poster helped me understand why I have always preferred heavy racquets. Actually, my swing going all over the place with light racquets is a slow evolutional process. Like I said, my immediate feelings when switching to lighter racquets have always been like "wow it's so easy". But in the long run, my swing has always been ruined.

Sure, a GOOD and motivated coach would be great. But I've had enough of bad coaches who just put us to drills without even trying to help us with our problems. A coach who just feeds you balls and says obvious stuff like "move your feet" is bunch of wasted time and money. No more, ever, thanks!
 

Power Player

Talk Tennis Guru
Yeah, but I like to also understand why stuff works, not just go blindly by my gut feelings. The poster helped me understand why I have always preferred heavy racquets. Actually, my swing going all over the place with light racquets is a slow evolutional process. Like I said, my immediate feelings when switching to lighter racquets have always been like "wow it's so easy". But in the long run, my swing has always been ruined.

Sure, a GOOD and motivated coach would be great. But I've had enough of bad coaches who just put us to drills without even trying to help us with our problems. A coach who just feeds you balls and says obvious stuff like "move your feet" is bunch of wasted time and money. No more, ever, thanks!
You don't know what you prefer yet. Play at a higher level against a big hitter and your perceptive will most likely change again. That is what I am saying. It takes a lot of play time to figure out what works for your game. There are no short cuts or secret formulas that can accelerate that.

It should not be that tough to find a good coach. Get a guy who competes in college or open level/Satellites. He will want the steady income and will teach you what you request.
 

stingstang

Professional
I love hitting with the classics (I have a PT600, MW200G, a few PS85's) but competitively I'm at least a level higher with my Extreme Pro's w/poly. I can hit much harder, ball kicks up way more, defense easier, passes better etc etc.

In the pro game maybe they should have put rules on the strings when they slowed the courts down, agree with BP on that.
 
I think the main point of the Thread Starter is whether modern rackets tend to compensate for the lack of shot preparation like early take back, hitting in front, etc. which is difficult to neglect when using control oriented traditional frames in order to come up with a decent shot.

But I agree with most sentiments here to use whatever stick helps you enjoy the game and have fun.
Well, speaking specifically of the Pure Drive, hitting well out in front and taking the ball early is the only way I tame this beast. Otherwise it has so much power that if I hit a forehand without proper form, it simply flies out of the court. But the moment I hone in on the crosscourt hit early with an SW grip, it becomes uber reliable. It is more likely that those who use an Eastern grip and have a slightly later point of contact would dislike the PD because the feel can be pretty jarring when you are late on your shot (and here, late is relative to the ideal contact point for SW). Whereas it's beautiful when you catch it early.
 

NTRPolice

Hall of Fame
Everything I do with a modern racket is the same that i'd do with a wooden racket. The only difference is the ball that comes off the strings. Isnt this like saying "the 2HBH makes us lazy?" It isnt so. I play a 1HBH because I like it, because when I put two hands on the racket my hands want to "fight" for control over the face. Has nothing to do with being lazy. In fact, I probably work "harder" with a modern racket because im compelled to swing harder and impart more spin. When I play with a wood racket im just trying to make solid contact and not frame the ball outside of the fence.
 

Soul_Evisceration

Hall of Fame
It's not a question of being lazy but winning matches in position you might never have a chance to begin with a Midsize racquet. I love my 90's but I know deep down inside I can win matches vs 4.5 players if I play well with a Midplus racquet that I would not stand a chance with my Mid racquets.
 

coolschreiber

Hall of Fame
I think its a myth that modern racquets are easier to play with. To hit a consistent heavy ball one cannot get away with lazy footwork. True you may get the ball in deeper than your mid but if a shot is not properly executed, it will still be a weak ball that a good opponent will exploit.
 
I think its a myth that modern racquets are easier to play with. To hit a consistent heavy ball one cannot get away with lazy footwork. True you may get the ball in deeper than your mid but if a shot is not properly executed, it will still be a weak ball that a good opponent will exploit.
I agree with this... I find that I have greater ease ending points faster with a mid... I think on days that IM at my peak I probably play better with a mid. I just paint lines, hit aces and bash winners with more ease with an 85-90 frames. Problem is when Im not putting 78% of my first serves in my second becomes far more important and the rallies go 5 strokes more... that is where the 95-100 shines. On a good day Ima ballstriker but on an average day I play both defensively and offensively in equal amounts. Basically the deciding factor is how little or much I suck at tennis on a given day.

The Modern Game doesn't make people lazy. It makes tennis more efficient.
Modern tennis isnt more efficient... it just has less variety and longer rallies and is a tad more side to side physicality with less emphasis on serving. Nothing is more effiecint than serve dominated tennis (also pretty boring). I like both.
 
Now, an honest question: What is modern and what is not? I mean, pro players still play with as heavy racquets as ever, but for rec players the change from 12+oz classics into modern 11oz tweeners was huge. Stock PD definitely is "rec-modern", i.e easier to swing from bad position etc, but what about the racquets that pros use? Are they actually that "modern" in truth?
 
The Modern Game doesn't make people lazy. It makes tennis more efficient.
Now, an honest question: What is modern and what is not? I mean, pro players still play with as heavy racquets as ever, but for rec players the change from 12+oz classics into modern 11oz tweeners was huge. Stock PD definitely is "rec-modern", i.e easier to swing from bad position etc, but what about the racquets that pros use? Are they actually that "modern" in truth?
Or maybe the assumption of what is "modern" just needs reevaluation... Murray and Djoker play with flexy 95's and are two of the best returners the game has ever seen. The fact that Head isnt making anything remotely similar to what they swing on court means younger players won develop the same kind of return-centric game. That's a shame. Most of the big returners I know seek out frames near 60RA or below. Head doesnt have any options for me.
 

BreakPoint

Bionic Poster
This actually is a technique issue and has nothing to do with the racquet. You can not generate the spin to control the power without arming the ball. May be an issue with your footwork and balance.
Hmmm....so you're saying that arming the ball is the proper technique?
 

BreakPoint

Bionic Poster
If a forum post validates your preferred specs then you are doing it wrong. Experience will show you what you should be using more than anything here. It's easy to play with heavy frames at a low level because the ball is not coming at you with serious pace on a regular basis.

Again, if your swing is all over the place with lighter frames, you are doing something wrong. I'd get with a coach and figure out what the issue is.

You don't need to use light frames. But you shouldn't struggle this dramatically when you do.
Hmmm...but don't higher level players (such as pros) also use heavier frames even though the ball is coming at them "with serious pace on a regular basis"?

I think the fact that the ball is coming at you with serious pace on a regular basis is the reason WHY you want to use a heavier racquet. That's why the pros use them. You need a heavier racquet to counter the greater momentum of a faster ball. When I play against someone who doesn't hit the ball very hard, I have no problem using a lighter racquet. But when I go up against someone who hits the ball hard, I need to switch to a heavier racquet in order to defend against those faster balls without feeling like he's knocking the racquet out of my hand.
 

BreakPoint

Bionic Poster
The Modern Game doesn't make people lazy. It makes tennis more efficient.
What do you mean by "efficient tennis"?

Nadal's game looks anything but "efficient". Compare that to McEnroe's game, which looks extremely efficient. He can win a point in two short strokes while it takes Nadal 20 massive strokes to win a point.
 

smalahove

Hall of Fame
Ok, today I played a wooden racket for the first time in over 30 years (at least).

My playing partner and myself were handed two very old wood frames from a club employee, who dared us, a bit tongue in cheek.
I was a little reluctant as both frame seemed minuscule. 65 sq in or less. The leather grips were old, and of the "hard", shiny leather type. And the frames weighed as much as you would expect.

Boy was I wrong. I was amazed of how great the feel was, but more importantly how great they swung. We were quickly able to play just as deep as before, and producing great shots. The launch angle were significantly higher than my 16x19 TT95, but everything felt spot on.

For recreational tennis, were you want to enjoy a rally with your hitting partner, this is pretty much as good as it gets, feel wise.
One thing I instantly noticed, was that I didn't put the pedal to metal as I (most) often do with my TT95 or all modern frames. Prob. the weight, the SW and the small headsize, just makes me focus on swinging solid and smooth.

But for competitive play against 4.5+ ripping it? Well, if you have super skills reading the game and super movement, many players would be amazed of how easy it is to underestimate these old frames. There, I said it :)
 

BreakPoint

Bionic Poster
Ok, today I played a wooden racket for the first time in over 30 years (at least).

My playing partner and myself were handed two very old wood frames from a club employee, who dared us, a bit tongue in cheek.
I was a little reluctant as both frame seemed minuscule. 65 sq in or less. The leather grips were old, and of the "hard", shiny leather type. And the frames weighed as much as you would expect.

Boy was I wrong. I was amazed of how great the feel was, but more importantly how great they swung. We were quickly able to play just as deep as before, and producing great shots. The launch angle were significantly higher than my 16x19 TT95, but everything felt spot on.

For recreational tennis, were you want to enjoy a rally with your hitting partner, this is pretty much as good as it gets, feel wise.
One thing I instantly noticed, was that I didn't put the pedal to metal as I (most) often do with my TT95 or all modern frames. Prob. the weight, the SW and the small headsize, just makes me focus on swinging solid and smooth.

But for competitive play against 4.5+ ripping it? Well, if you have super skills reading the game and super movement, many players would be amazed of how easy it is to underestimate these old frames. There, I said it :)
This is exactly why I started this thread:

http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/index.php?threads/you-dont-need-a-big-powerful-light-open-pattern-racquet-strung-with-poly.544935/

The weight really helps you to hit the ball well. You can swing slowly and still get tons of plow-through. And even heavy topspin is possible, as proven by the likes of Borg and Vilas.

:)
 

MAZ1

Rookie
I just couldn't resist to chime in regarding modern racquets and lazy play.

I cannot be the only one who has faced guys with 95S's or even worse 99S or 100S Steams that just sit at the baseline and flick their wrists all day.
These guys make zero attempt to develop their game othrewise and are completely content on putting loopy topspin lobs into the corners using the minimal effort that these racquets require.

We have a bunch of these guys, probably the most boring tennis I've ever played. I am completely convinced that these modern racquets are solely responsible for this type of player.
 

Seth

Hall of Fame
What do you mean by "efficient tennis"?

Nadal's game looks anything but "efficient". Compare that to McEnroe's game, which looks extremely efficient. He can win a point in two short strokes while it takes Nadal 20 massive strokes to win a point.
Efficiency is in the eye of the beholder.
 

joohan

Hall of Fame
Ok, today I played a wooden racket for the first time in over 30 years (at least).

My playing partner and myself were handed two very old wood frames from a club employee, who dared us, a bit tongue in cheek.
I was a little reluctant as both frame seemed minuscule. 65 sq in or less. The leather grips were old, and of the "hard", shiny leather type. And the frames weighed as much as you would expect.

Boy was I wrong. I was amazed of how great the feel was, but more importantly how great they swung. We were quickly able to play just as deep as before, and producing great shots. The launch angle were significantly higher than my 16x19 TT95, but everything felt spot on.

For recreational tennis, were you want to enjoy a rally with your hitting partner, this is pretty much as good as it gets, feel wise.
One thing I instantly noticed, was that I didn't put the pedal to metal as I (most) often do with my TT95 or all modern frames. Prob. the weight, the SW and the small headsize, just makes me focus on swinging solid and smooth.

But for competitive play against 4.5+ ripping it? Well, if you have super skills reading the game and super movement, many players would be amazed of how easy it is to underestimate these old frames. There, I said it :)
Are woodies harder to play than, say, a PS85? I'd like to buy a mid or a woodie to serve me as my technique coach and the are mint conidition wooden frames on the auction sites regularly.
 

BreakPoint

Bionic Poster
I just couldn't resist to chime in regarding modern racquets and lazy play.

I cannot be the only one who has faced guys with 95S's or even worse 99S or 100S Steams that just sit at the baseline and flick their wrists all day.
These guys make zero attempt to develop their game othrewise and are completely content on putting loopy topspin lobs into the corners using the minimal effort that these racquets require.

We have a bunch of these guys, probably the most boring tennis I've ever played. I am completely convinced that these modern racquets are solely responsible for this type of player.
If we went back to wood racquets, we would be rid of these types of lazy players (and I use the word "players" loosely), as you can't just stand there and flick your wrist all day with a small heavy wood racquet.
 

BreakPoint

Bionic Poster
Efficiency is in the eye of the beholder.
"Efficiency" is usually defined as the amount of energy spent to perform a task. By that definition, modern tennis is anything but "efficient". Old school, classic tennis was MUCH more "efficient".
 

Seth

Hall of Fame
"Efficiency" is usually defined as the amount of energy spent to perform a task. By that definition, modern tennis is anything but "efficient". Old school, classic tennis was MUCH more "efficient".
Their bodies are more efficient playing The Modern Game.
 

smalahove

Hall of Fame
Are woodies harder to play than, say, a PS85? I'd like to buy a mid or a woodie to serve me as my technique coach and the are mint conidition wooden frames on the auction sites regularly.
Unf. I've never tried the PS85, but compared to all the mids I've tried 90/93, I'd say that the wood frame I played, which even was severly warped, felt much more plush, and with more feel. Now, I guess this frame was strung with some kind of gut, and I've never played a mid with a full bed of gut, but still ...

I'm not so sure a wood frame is the way to go when it comes to technique training for the modern game though. But it's def an eye opening experience for those who want to end points as fast as possible (like me).

As I wrote above, I think the weight+sw+headsize, makes you focus on clean contact and smooth swings, which makes you realize that just as in golf, clean contact with somewhat slower speed makes for a heavier ball than great(er) speed with less than stellar contact. This feels second nature when playing a small head size racket (i.e. you acknowledge this instinctively).
 

BreakPoint

Bionic Poster
Their bodies are more efficient playing The Modern Game.
I'd much rather expend much less energy to win a point than expend a ton of energy to win the same point. That's why I play a classic game and not the modern game. :)
 

joohan

Hall of Fame
Unf. I've never tried the PS85, but compared to all the mids I've tried 90/93, I'd say that the wood frame I played, which even was severly warped, felt much more plush, and with more feel. Now, I guess this frame was strung with some kind of gut, and I've never played a mid with a full bed of gut, but still ...

I'm not so sure a wood frame is the way to go when it comes to technique training for the modern game though. But it's def an eye opening experience for those who want to end points as fast as possible (like me).

As I wrote above, I think the weight+sw+headsize, makes you focus on clean contact and smooth swings, which makes you realize that just as in golf, clean contact with somewhat slower speed makes for a heavier ball than great(er) speed with less than stellar contact. This feels second nature when playing a small head size racket (i.e. you acknowledge this instinctively).
Thank you for your reply. I don't think I need that much modern-game training to be honest. I have very fast swings and as a former (almost national level) table-tennis player I have no problem with racquet head speed, wrist lag and spin/angle production. I'm looking for a frame that will punish any hesitation, bad legs movement, half-hearted hip/core/shoulder rotation and an un-proper follow through.

I used a TW reissue PS85 for some six months and a Dunlop 4D 100 for a year and a half in the past and I miss a classical/mid frame in my bag ever since I've traded them away. After seeing TWs videoreview of a wooden Snauwaert, particularly Andys comments about correcting a quirk in his game using it, it got me thinking that could also be the way.
 

LeeD

Bionic Poster
I"m one of the old guys who can't run side to side for 5 strokes.
Unfortunately, I allow my opponent's to use modern rackets! So I gotta change something in my favor. How about.....mini court tennis! Low skidded slices, hitting the feet, hitting into the body, and playing athletics rather than groundpounding repetitious baseline tennis? Force the superior groundpounder to slice angles, to defend body shots, to lunge forward then run back to retrieve preplanned lobs, basically disrupt his desire to hang just behind the baseline and use his superior groundstrokes to run ME side to side.
Of course, I can name dozens of player's I play against who have no trouble against my strategy, but then again, maybe another dozen or so DO have trouble with low skidded slices, short angles, deliberate dropshots, and teasing lobs.
 

Minion

Hall of Fame
Everybody is different, and everybody values different things in life. I'm not a pro tennis player. I play tennis because I love the game, and I enjoy it. And nothing gives me more satisfaction than playing a decent game of tennis with my Max200G. Whether I play against weaker, or stronger players, it doesn't matter to me. I have good technique and good timing, and I can play just as well with my Max than with my PD. I'm not out to prove any kind of point whatsoever when I play with the Max - it just helps me personally, to keep on my toes, as it were:)

I'm a habitual person by nature, so for me, it is easy to get used to the forgiveness, ease of use, free power, spin etc.. of the PD, and to develop some lazy habits. That is why I break out my Max every now and then, because for me personally, I have to put in much more effort to get the same results. And it is worth it. But then, when I put in that same effort with the PD, bloody hell, what a beast!

That is what I love about the PD. It is such a versatile racquet for me. You can play with it like a granny, or you can play your best tennis with it:)
 

smalahove

Hall of Fame
Thank you for your reply. I don't think I need that much modern-game training to be honest. I have very fast swings and as a former (almost national level) table-tennis player I have no problem with racquet head speed, wrist lag and spin/angle production. I'm looking for a frame that will punish any hesitation, bad legs movement, half-hearted hip/core/shoulder rotation and an un-proper follow through.

I used a TW reissue PS85 for some six months and a Dunlop 4D 100 for a year and a half in the past and I miss a classical/mid frame in my bag ever since I've traded them away. After seeing TWs videoreview of a wooden Snauwaert, particularly Andys comments about correcting a quirk in his game using it, it got me thinking that could also be the way.
You should def try a wood racket then :)
I mean, holding such a tiny headsize frame with a narrow center beam (?) instead of the modern V-shaped one, is pretty daunting. However, playing good tennis with it feels very empowering, in lack of a better word. I don't get a similar feel (at all) when I pull out my 30 yr old Prince Graphite Pro 90's (93 sq inch). Actually, they feel almost contemporary.

And yes, the wood frame rewards good footwork and athleticism, and reveals flaws. I'll def be looking for one in my dad's storage rooms :)
 
You don't know what you prefer yet. Play at a higher level against a big hitter and your perceptive will most likely change again. That is what I am saying. It takes a lot of play time to figure out what works for your game. There are no short cuts or secret formulas that can accelerate that.

It should not be that tough to find a good coach. Get a guy who competes in college or open level/Satellites. He will want the steady income and will teach you what you request.
Yeah, I think you're right on young guys being better and more motivated coaches in general. Old experienced coaching pros tend to be too arrogant in forcing their own magic recipes, instead of really solving the personal problems of a player. I've had two young coaches, and liked them both!

As for racquet preferences, I'll go by my gut feelings and past experiences as from now on. I've always preferred handle weighting and some mild weighting around the whole racquet head. Now I did just that, by switching to IG Extreme Pro with leather grip and 15g weight in handle and a layer of head tape around the whole external of racquet head. Static mass is 375g, SW around 335 and balance more than 10 HL.

Surprise surprise, I was playing much better than in a long while. And strangely enough, I was also hitting vicious spin, something that "should be harder" with heavy racquet. Maybe it's that aggressive handle weighting? I feel that allows me to loosen the wrist and allow the racquet to lag naturally. If the balance is more head heavy I feel it forces me to hold racquet more firmly, probably decreasing racquet head speed.

The final deciding factor on my decision: I was also able to hit real topspin on serve, about the first time ever in my life! No more hesitations, no more switching back to light racquets. That's just ain't my thing.
 

Power Player

Talk Tennis Guru
Thank you for your reply. I don't think I need that much modern-game training to be honest. I have very fast swings and as a former (almost national level) table-tennis player I have no problem with racquet head speed, wrist lag and spin/angle production. I'm looking for a frame that will punish any hesitation, bad legs movement, half-hearted hip/core/shoulder rotation and an un-proper follow through.

I used a TW reissue PS85 for some six months and a Dunlop 4D 100 for a year and a half in the past and I miss a classical/mid frame in my bag ever since I've traded them away. After seeing TWs videoreview of a wooden Snauwaert, particularly Andys comments about correcting a quirk in his game using it, it got me thinking that could also be the way.
Thats awesome, pretty cool to play at such a high level, I know it is very tough. I play TT but not at that level. There really is not a huge similarity between the two swings though. TT is very abbreviated. The only thing that I find to translate is TT will teach you how to swing with your body. Of course it will also not translate at all to the backhand side since a TT backhand is hit facing forward and not turned to the side.

Really the best way to punish bad movement is to play good players. Pay a d1 player for lessons or matchplay and most likely they will be using a modern frame and having no issues. The problem with old school frames is they also can teach bad habits that you will have to change to win at lower levels. I speak from experience. I used old school frames for years - Dunlop 200, Tecnifibre 315 are two of my all time favorites along with the Pro Staff 95.

For example a ball hit wide to the FH side is tougher to defend with an old school frame. You can have great footwork and still feel the need to go for a CC winner when you get there due to the low power of the frame. With a modern frame, you will need to relearn the touch required to get there and flick a deep ball back and reset the point or hit a squash shot. The lowest % shot to hit is the a CC or DTL winner, but many guys go for that shot at lower levels and give away tons of free points as a result.

Modern tennis requires superior fitness and the mentality to know when to attack and when not to. The longer you can hang in a rally and get the ball you know you can attack for a winner, the more matches you will win.

Its better to develop touch on a modern frame and drill against better players. I would compare it from going from Mark V to Tenergy. The adjustment will take a long time, which is why so many young players are given fast blades and Tensor rubber to start now instead of all play wood and mark V. Same concept in tennis. the longer you have the modern frame your hand, the better your touch is from all areas of the court.
 

Power Player

Talk Tennis Guru
Yeah, I think you're right on young guys being better and more motivated coaches in general. Old experienced coaching pros tend to be too arrogant in forcing their own magic recipes, instead of really solving the personal problems of a player. I've had two young coaches, and liked them both!

As for racquet preferences, I'll go by my gut feelings and past experiences as from now on. I've always preferred handle weighting and some mild weighting around the whole racquet head. Now I did just that, by switching to IG Extreme Pro with leather grip and 15g weight in handle and a layer of head tape around the whole external of racquet head. Static mass is 375g, SW around 335 and balance more than 10 HL.

Surprise surprise, I was playing much better than in a long while. And strangely enough, I was also hitting vicious spin, something that "should be harder" with heavy racquet. Maybe it's that aggressive handle weighting? I feel that allows me to loosen the wrist and allow the racquet to lag naturally. If the balance is more head heavy I feel it forces me to hold racquet more firmly, probably decreasing racquet head speed.

The final deciding factor on my decision: I was also able to hit real topspin on serve, about the first time ever in my life! No more hesitations, no more switching back to light racquets. That's just ain't my thing.
I use the same frame stock and I can hit all the shots with it that you described without any lead at all. I still believe you have technique issues if you need to lead the Extreme Pro up that much to hit "vicious" spin. There is no need to mod that frame at all, especially at a low level of tennis.

Just go get a coach that hits hard with spin and pace and you will understand what I am saying rather quickly.
 
I use the same frame stock and I can hit all the shots with it that you described without any lead at all. I still believe you have technique issues if you need to lead the Extreme Pro up that much to hit "vicious" spin. There is no need to mod that frame at all, especially at a low level of tennis.

Just go get a coach that hits hard with spin and pace and you will understand what I am saying rather quickly.
Ok, might as well be the fresh strings which allowed the spin. I always tend to keep the same strings in for a too long time and they become trampoline, possibly causing all the hesitations etc. Maybe a cheap stringing machine and restringing often would be the best investment now?
 

joohan

Hall of Fame
Thats awesome, pretty cool to play at such a high level, I know it is very tough. I play TT but not at that level. There really is not a huge similarity between the two swings though. TT is very abbreviated. The only thing that I find to translate is TT will teach you how to swing with your body. Of course it will also not translate at all to the backhand side since a TT backhand is hit facing forward and not turned to the side.

Really the best way to punish bad movement is to play good players. Pay a d1 player for lessons or matchplay and most likely they will be using a modern frame and having no issues. The problem with old school frames is they also can teach bad habits that you will have to change to win at lower levels. I speak from experience. I used old school frames for years - Dunlop 200, Tecnifibre 315 are two of my all time favorites along with the Pro Staff 95.

For example a ball hit wide to the FH side is tougher to defend with an old school frame. You can have great footwork and still feel the need to go for a CC winner when you get there due to the low power of the frame. With a modern frame, you will need to relearn the touch required to get there and flick a deep ball back and reset the point or hit a squash shot. The lowest % shot to hit is the a CC or DTL winner, but many guys go for that shot at lower levels and give away tons of free points as a result.

Modern tennis requires superior fitness and the mentality to know when to attack and when not to. The longer you can hang in a rally and get the ball you know you can attack for a winner, the more matches you will win.

Its better to develop touch on a modern frame and drill against better players. I would compare it from going from Mark V to Tenergy. The adjustment will take a long time, which is why so many young players are given fast blades and Tensor rubber to start now instead of all play wood and mark V. Same concept in tennis. the longer you have the modern frame your hand, the better your touch is from all areas of the court.
I've played football(soccer) for almost my entire life at the highest level and if my knees were a bit better, I would have probably ended as a pro. My father was a semi-pro(he was a division player + he had his regular job) so I did not have much choice but did not complain to be honest. I'm a kid born in mid 80's, few years before the Velvet Revolution and raised in a post-communist country. Never played any video games and got my first computer halfway through highschool. Spent most of my time playing every kind of sport we could think of and table-tennis was one of the few we actually had some half-decent gear to play. We've learned by trial and error and thanks to my opposition I got better and better, maybe not acquiring "technically immaculate" strokes but most certainly understanding of the game.

Later, I was some 14-15y old...by some chance I stumbled into a table-tennis school, accompanying my teammate for a trial(he wanted to enroll and start training regularly). We were made to play each other while one of the coaches carefully assessed our games and later he played each of us in a competitive match. Funny thing - they picked me and not my teammate. I was told that my style was very unorthodox, what could be a big advantage against most "classically raised" players provided that I would be willing to re-learn the basics. I gave it a shot and got pretty good at it...

Then, halfway through my university studies, I've picked up tennis. I was able to play right away with much better/experienced players thanks to my talent for ball-sports and thanks to my table-tennis skills. Backhand, as you've pointed out, was a drag but my forehand was decent regarding my total absence of tennis fundamentals. I was hitting junk balls - underspin, squash shots, sidespin, drop shots and lobs + I was able to with spin, arming the ball and despite my arm/elbow were killing me afterwards, it made me happy as I was able to rally and enjoy the fact I am hitting the ball over the net. I was a huge tennis fan for some time already, watching every match I could but always considered tennis to be very costly sport with very limited access to the gear and tennis courts.

Anyway...thanks to my university tennis coaches I've learned proper basics and never looked back. My one handed backhand is almost textbook and technically way better than my forehand where I can still feel some table-tennis influence - old habits die hard. I was attending not only my tennis-classes but tagged along every chance I had and helped coaching total beginners, feeding them slow balls and explaining the technique etc., what forced me to work on my volleys, overheads and overall precision game and as I got better, I was able to play with some very good, division players on a weekly basis.

Results are very good. I have a modern game(fast swings, tons of spin, good return and dependable serve) with a classical touch(backhand slice, exceptional volleys and an eye for a winner) and as a bonus, I can always go to my "ghetto"/Mansour Bahrami tennis repertoire - all kind of junk balls you can think of - that is very effective against regularly trained tennis players. My forehand sidespin-slice jumps almost two feet to the side and takes some getting used to even for players who are few levels better than me...

Since I've recently relocated to a new country and started a new job, my tennis-time as well as choice of opponents is very limited. That's why I'm searching for a tennis coach in form of a tennis racquet that would show me whats what once my technique goes bad - hence the hunt for a mid/wooden frame.

...

I have a feeling I've written a load of cr@p...but since I've spent almost half an hour doing so, I'm going to post it anyway.
 
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Sander001

Hall of Fame
I just couldn't resist to chime in regarding modern racquets and lazy play.

I cannot be the only one who has faced guys with 95S's or even worse 99S or 100S Steams that just sit at the baseline and flick their wrists all day.
These guys make zero attempt to develop their game othrewise and are completely content on putting loopy topspin lobs into the corners using the minimal effort that these racquets require.

We have a bunch of these guys, probably the most boring tennis I've ever played. I am completely convinced that these modern racquets are solely responsible for this type of player.
Yeah I faced them. The pushers are evolving so we need to as well and up our game.
 

pinky42

Rookie
I've hit with both and I'll have to say no. Hitting with, and facing a modern racquet, I find that I have to work harder to get into position in time. I actually get more pace with a wooden racquet because of the mass but it is more tiring over a long period of time. So I wouldn't say either is easier or harder to play with. It's just that there are different positives and negatives with each.
 
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