Nadal with updated RA?

RoarTT

Semi-Pro
The latest sample racket from Pro Stock tennis specs RA at 72. No matter if that is strung or unstrung spec, i guess it’s likely he changed. All previous reports of RA for his racket has been 65.

 

McLovin

Legend
The latest sample racket from Pro Stock tennis specs RA at 72. No matter if that is strung or unstrung spec, i guess it’s likely he changed. All previous reports of RA for his racket has been 65.

I can't see where it says the specs are measured & verified by Pro Stock tennis. How do we know these aren't simply copy & pasted from manufacturer specs?

For example, perusing the site shows an 'New Old Stock' PureAero Drive Original (the one Rafa actually uses). Stiffness? 72.
 

J B

Semi-Pro
and he uses 15g... No wonder his knees hurt, every swing is so hard it goes to his knees..
 

Jonesy

Hall of Fame
I dont mind the stiffer frames. Ive always found RA and its relation to TE to be a myth generated by players with terrible form and no self awareness.
Been hitting with babolats my entire life, using extreme grips on both sides, with high tensions, and never felt anything. I think you might be right.
 

Dolgopolov85

G.O.A.T.
I dont mind the stiffer frames. Ive always found RA and its relation to TE to be a myth generated by players with terrible form and no self awareness.
It's less the stiffness and more the hollow beam and flimsy construction of Bab racquets. Not good for absorbing a heavy ball and you don't have margin to hit even slightly off center. I mean, even Fed occasionally shanks or frames shots so don't tell me it's about technique. You cannot compare it with the experience of pros because they add weight and make the racquets a lot more stable than they would be in stock form. Don't think Nadal is playing the APD you get/used to get off the shelf.
 

blablavla

G.O.A.T.
It's less the stiffness and more the hollow beam and flimsy construction of Bab racquets. Not good for absorbing a heavy ball and you don't have margin to hit even slightly off center. I mean, even Fed occasionally shanks or frames shots so don't tell me it's about technique. You cannot compare it with the experience of pros because they add weight and make the racquets a lot more stable than they would be in stock form. Don't think Nadal is playing the APD you get/used to get off the shelf.
According to Babolat, Nadal first played with 300g frame, just like you would be getting from the shelf.
Then he added some weight, and some years later he added more weight.
The total added weight was like 15-17g?
 

Dolgopolov85

G.O.A.T.
According to Babolat, Nadal first played with 300g frame, just like you would be getting from the shelf.
Then he added some weight, and some years later he added more weight.
The total added weight was like 15-17g?
But we don't know that the RA was 72 then. The Babolat representative once admitted on TTW that they restrung pro stock racquets a few times to get the stiffness down. So even if Babolat mentions the specs as 72 for Nadal, we don't know what the RA of the actual racquet he plays with is, because they may simply be mentioning the RA of the racquet as of manufacture. Some folks who got their hands on Nadal's racquets said it was a good deal more flexible than the APD you get off the shelf. I will add here that the APD is at least somewhat palatable but the PD really does feel like a tin rod moulded into the shape of a racquet.
 

Bender

G.O.A.T.
I dont mind the stiffer frames. Ive always found RA and its relation to TE to be a myth generated by players with terrible form and no self awareness.
Been hitting with babolats my entire life, using extreme grips on both sides, with high tensions, and never felt anything. I think you might be right.
That's always been my suspicion as well.

Every time I hear someone whinging about stiff frames causing tennis elbow and the user posts videos of themselves hitting (never at the same time or in the same thread of course), it's some guy who arms a 1HBH in a pale attempt to channel their inner Roger Federer with terrible technique all around. Closest I've had to tennis elbow was bicep pains...while using a Pro Staff 90 no less, and I found through video it was because I was making contact too low on serves causing me to arm the serve over at high pace.

Of course there'll always be someone with great technique who still get arm issues but I have a feeling those may be attributed to injuries caused by poor technique earlier on in their tennis development that just keeps coming back. Rarely do you see people playing high level tennis who have received proper training from the beginning get arm issues caused directly by a stiff racquet...it's always something else like a particularly awkward shot during a point or a technical deficiency that's never been addressed fully finally rearing its ugly head.
It's less the stiffness and more the hollow beam and flimsy construction of Bab racquets. Not good for absorbing a heavy ball and you don't have margin to hit even slightly off center. I mean, even Fed occasionally shanks or frames shots so don't tell me it's about technique. You cannot compare it with the experience of pros because they add weight and make the racquets a lot more stable than they would be in stock form. Don't think Nadal is playing the APD you get/used to get off the shelf.
But the RF97A also fits your description, and I thought Roger's one is not foam filled either unless I'm mistaken? That one comes hand in hand with arm pains if TTW is anything to go by.
But we don't know that the RA was 72 then. The Babolat representative once admitted on TTW that they restrung pro stock racquets a few times to get the stiffness down. So even if Babolat mentions the specs as 72 for Nadal, we don't know what the RA of the actual racquet he plays with is, because they may simply be mentioning the RA of the racquet as of manufacture. Some folks who got their hands on Nadal's racquets said it was a good deal more flexible than the APD you get off the shelf. I will add here that the APD is at least somewhat palatable but the PD really does feel like a tin rod moulded into the shape of a racquet.
I think the current PD is actually quite nice. Not as plush as the Strike but having used a leaded version of the PD a few times and having used the RF97A for a while, they're not actually all that different. Both just don't feel great.
 

Dolgopolov85

G.O.A.T.
That's always been my suspicion as well.

Every time I hear someone whinging about stiff frames causing tennis elbow and the user posts videos of themselves hitting (never at the same time or in the same thread of course), it's some guy who arms a 1HBH in a pale attempt to channel their inner Roger Federer with terrible technique all around. Closest I've had to tennis elbow was bicep pains...while using a Pro Staff 90 no less, and I found through video it was because I was making contact too low on serves causing me to arm the serve over at high pace.

Of course there'll always be someone with great technique who still get arm issues but I have a feeling those may be attributed to injuries caused by poor technique earlier on in their tennis development that just keeps coming back. Rarely do you see people playing high level tennis who have received proper training from the beginning get arm issues caused directly by a stiff racquet...it's always something else like a particularly awkward shot during a point or a technical deficiency that's never been addressed fully finally rearing its ugly head.

But the RF97A also fits your description, and I thought Roger's one is not foam filled either unless I'm mistaken? That one comes hand in hand with arm pains if TTW is anything to go by.

I think the current PD is actually quite nice. Not as plush as the Strike but having used a leaded version of the PD a few times and having used the RF97A for a while, they're not actually all that different. Both just don't feel great.
I haven't actually played with a RF97 (this isn't Federer vs Nadal, lol) but I would wager the thinner beam helps a lot. I will allow that the new PD could be more comfortable because there is a general trend back towards comfort for all the lofty claims above blaming the technique of those who seek comfort in racquets. The one I played with was a 2012 French Open edition and it was a nightmare. Shocks straight up the arm even if I didn't completely mishit but just missed the sweetspot by a couple of inches (at the most). Understand: not rattling or vibration but shocks. I don't care who found it a dream to play with but my experience was totally different and I will put it out there, so too bad if it offends Babolat lovers. But I have played with the new Radicals and never experienced anything like what I did with the Pure Drive, not even close. Nor with the Six One 95 which is supposed to be a stiff racquet.
 

blablavla

G.O.A.T.
But we don't know that the RA was 72 then. The Babolat representative once admitted on TTW that they restrung pro stock racquets a few times to get the stiffness down. So even if Babolat mentions the specs as 72 for Nadal, we don't know what the RA of the actual racquet he plays with is, because they may simply be mentioning the RA of the racquet as of manufacture. Some folks who got their hands on Nadal's racquets said it was a good deal more flexible than the APD you get off the shelf. I will add here that the APD is at least somewhat palatable but the PD really does feel like a tin rod moulded into the shape of a racquet.
that's the point.
Babolat also mentioned this is one of the customization video, where they talk about what kind of customization they do for the pro players. They confirmed it there that for some players they string the frame multiple times to make it softer.

The Aero Pro / Pure Aero wasn't released with RA as high as 72.
The highest declared RA to my memory was like 69, for Pure Aero 2016 edition, with the previous versions being softer.

The Yonex string at 25/25kg tension is another point where I become suspicious whether this is Nadal frame or not.
Babolat claims that Nadal plays with RPM Blast.
And as far as I can remember, at a different tension.
 

Bender

G.O.A.T.
I haven't actually played with a RF97 (this isn't Federer vs Nadal, lol) but I would wager the thinner beam helps a lot. I will allow that the new PD could be more comfortable because there is a general trend back towards comfort for all the lofty claims above blaming the technique of those who seek comfort in racquets. The one I played with was a 2012 French Open edition and it was a nightmare. Shocks straight up the arm even if I didn't completely mishit but just missed the sweetspot by a couple of inches (at the most). Understand: not rattling or vibration but shocks. I don't care who found it a dream to play with but my experience was totally different and I will put it out there, so too bad if it offends Babolat lovers. But I have played with the new Radicals and never experienced anything like what I did with the Pure Drive, not even close. Nor with the Six One 95 which is supposed to be a stiff racquet.
I just assumed you were talking about the RF97A because you mentioned Federer, and his racquet's well-associated with arm injuries. I should've read your post a bit better but I don't really consider it a digression.

I didn't like the 2012 or 2015 versions of the Pure Drive much either. I'm sure there are loads of people who liked those, particularly the 2012 one, but they just weren't for me. I much preferred the APDs of that generation.

Not particularly offended by your thoughts on the Pure Drives, since that's your experience and your opinions--I harbour similar sentiments with the majority of Head racquets: light, tinny, unstable, impotent, etc. I haven't enjoyed a single Head racquet except for the Prestige Tour 600 (or at least that's what I think it's called...the 93 sq in red one with the grommets going all the way to the throat) but that was because I was using the PS90 at the time and the PT600 was basically the same thing except with a tighter 18x20 pattern, which I don't like.

Actually the box beamed PS95 would've been somewhat similar with a full bed of stiff polys without customisation...I have a 2014 version with a full bed of ALU that played like a tinny, low SW version of the Pure Drive at impact until I added copious amounts of lead, and even then it was a surprisingly stiff-feeling frame--more so than the 3rd gen Pure Strike 16x19 I currently use now.
 

Dolgopolov85

G.O.A.T.
I just assumed you were talking about the RF97A because you mentioned Federer, and his racquet's well-associated with arm injuries. I should've read your post a bit better but I don't really consider it a digression.

I didn't like the 2012 or 2015 versions of the Pure Drive much either. I'm sure there are loads of people who liked those, particularly the 2012 one, but they just weren't for me. I much preferred the APDs of that generation.

Not particularly offended by your thoughts on the Pure Drives, since that's your experience and your opinions--I harbour similar sentiments with the majority of Head racquets: light, tinny, unstable, impotent, etc. I haven't enjoyed a single Head racquet except for the Prestige Tour 600 (or at least that's what I think it's called...the 93 sq in red one with the grommets going all the way to the throat) but that was because I was using the PS90 at the time and the PT600 was basically the same thing except with a tighter 18x20 pattern, which I don't like.

Actually the box beamed PS95 would've been somewhat similar with a full bed of stiff polys without customisation...I have a 2014 version with a full bed of ALU that played like a tinny, low SW version of the Pure Drive at impact until I added copious amounts of lead, and even then it was a surprisingly stiff-feeling frame--more so than the 3rd gen Pure Strike 16x19 I currently use now.
I only mentioned Federer because of the shank city jokes (US Open 2015 final) and I also remember in the USO 2011 match against Nole, Fed hit a winner and Nole pointed to the frame while applauding the shot to say that it came off the frame. Just to make the point that it is unsustainable to expect no shanking at all when even pros shank once in a while. Actually I see a lot of players play this sort of zero takeback game with Babolats and never have problems so what sort of technique may or may not cause problems with those racquets is itself complicated. Likewise, what sort of racquet would be comfortable is also very individual and I just want posters like Bukowski to understand and acknowledge that. I actually don't like racquets that are too plush, sponge like if you will. I like some firmness and feedback from the racquet, some might consider THAT stiff, if anything. Just don't want shocks in the arm and such from the racquet. I am awaiting a Wilson 6.1 95L and will most likely weigh up the handle once it arrives. If it is solid and stiff, I don't mind that.
 

ron schaap

Hall of Fame
The Yonex string at 25/25kg tension is another point where I become suspicious whether this is Nadal frame or not.
Babolat claims that Nadal plays with RPM Blast.
And as far as I can remember, at a different tension.
No he dont. He uses 25kg during his whole career. Thats common knowledge. You should string a racquet like a apd a lot of times to make it doubtfully a little less stiff so i dont think thats realistic. Wby dont you folks accept that some pros play with a stiff set up? Nadal probably doesnt like wet noodles.
 

Dolgopolov85

G.O.A.T.
No he dont. He uses 25kg during his whole career. Thats common knowledge. You should string a racquet like a apd a lot of times to make it doubtfully a little less stiff so i dont think thats realistic. Wby dont you folks accept that some pros play with a stiff set up? Nadal probably doesnt like wet noodles.
He never said Nadal is playing with a less stiff STRING set up. About the racquet itself, we have Babolat admitting they do this for pro stock when questioned why pro stock is more plush than the retail version. When racquet companies tell the truth about themselves, believe them. There are those reportedly playing with extremely stiff strings AND racquet (Dustin Brown) but Nadal's racquets play more flex than the racquet by the same name sold in the market.
 

haqq777

Legend
and I thought Roger's one is not foam filled either unless I'm mistaken?
Foam filled. Sawed my RF97A after it broke and posted pics on here somewhere a while back. This was also verified by @Anton and @Faris on different occasions.

I agree with what you are saying overall. I basically grew up with Babolats. Played with Pure Drives and APD all through H.S and competitively in college (Div II). Never have I had arm issues with any iterations of APD or PD stock or weighted up. Granted they are not for everyone but preferences vary and what suits me and works for me might not for the next person. Currently rotating half a dozen APD 2013 and I regularly hit with local college team kids.
 

J B

Semi-Pro
Been hitting with babolats my entire life, using extreme grips on both sides, with high tensions, and never felt anything. I think you might be right.
You are right BTW. I have been working on my weight transfer on shots, found that when I am not focused mishits can really hurt. It has forced me to focus and I am hitting way better when i am planted as well as the jump and transfer.
 

Dolgopolov85

G.O.A.T.
You are right BTW. I have been working on my weight transfer on shots, found that when I am not focused mishits can really hurt. It has forced me to focus and I am hitting way better when i am planted as well as the jump and transfer.
But mishits shouldn't hurt, that's the point. If I even framed a ball off my Tour G, nothing would happen (to my arm, but the ball will just drop close-by whereas with a Bab it might still reach the baseline). Nor with my friend's Prince Textreme. I could list dozens of racquets that wouldn't punish you the way a PD does for mishitting.

I had the same experience, that playing with a PD forced me to focus even more out of a compulsion to save my elbow. But that's not a healthy way to learn focus imo.
 

ron schaap

Hall of Fame
He never said Nadal is playing with a less stiff STRING set up. About the racquet itself, we have Babolat admitting they do this for pro stock when questioned why pro stock is more plush than the retail version. When racquet companies tell the truth about themselves, believe them. There are those reportedly playing with extremely stiff strings AND racquet (Dustin Brown) but Nadal's racquets play more flex than the racquet by the same name sold in the market.
If many restringings benefit the flex of his racquets, why does he gets new racquets from Babolat like his competitors? Then playing as long as he can with old frames would be much better.
 

Dolgopolov85

G.O.A.T.
If many restringings benefit the flex of his racquets, why does he gets new racquets from Babolat like his competitors? Then playing as long as he can with old frames would be much better.
You'd have to ask Babolat that, but this was the reason the Babolat official gave for the Nadal racquets playing differently from the retail version. More likely Babolat too (like other manufacturers) simply make a custom racquet for Nadal and he then endorses a paintjob. This shouldn't surprise anyone.
 

blablavla

G.O.A.T.
You'd have to ask Babolat that, but this was the reason the Babolat official gave for the Nadal racquets playing differently from the retail version. More likely Babolat too (like other manufacturers) simply make a custom racquet for Nadal and he then endorses a paintjob. This shouldn't surprise anyone.
yes, but Babolat tries to induce the opinion that he plays with a stock APD.
OK, by now it is not a stock APD anymore, as you can't buy it, but they claim or better said by the information published, they try to induce the opinion that he plays with an APD that was available to the general public at the time.
Which is then modified by adding 17g of weight and an overgrip.
 

J B

Semi-Pro
But mishits shouldn't hurt, that's the point. If I even framed a ball off my Tour G, nothing would happen (to my arm, but the ball will just drop close-by whereas with a Bab it might still reach the baseline). Nor with my friend's Prince Textreme. I could list dozens of racquets that wouldn't punish you the way a PD does for mishitting.

I had the same experience, that playing with a PD forced me to focus even more out of a compulsion to save my elbow. But that's not a healthy way to learn focus imo.
agree but if you jump into a shot and mishit or frame it and you lagged your arm behind your body... its gonna hurt.
 

J B

Semi-Pro
You'd have to ask Babolat that, but this was the reason the Babolat official gave for the Nadal racquets playing differently from the retail version. More likely Babolat too (like other manufacturers) simply make a custom racquet for Nadal and he then endorses a paintjob. This shouldn't surprise anyone.
they got sued and had to say which racquet he used

 

J B

Semi-Pro
it was on Babolat.com, Inside Info section.
i am pretty sure its the shelf one with the mods... they had to release most of the specs in the lawsuit. They do use the racquets or most do and they are off the shelf with mods.
 

blablavla

G.O.A.T.
i am pretty sure its the shelf one with the mods... they had to release most of the specs in the lawsuit. They do use the racquets or most do and they are off the shelf with mods.
but then the claimed 72 RA racket that trigerred this post can't be the Nadal racket.
Or was the APD so stiff?

to my memory, APD was softer then PA, and the stiffest PA was measured at 69?
 

haqq777

Legend
but then the claimed 72 RA racket that trigerred this post can't be the Nadal racket.
Or was the APD so stiff?

to my memory, APD was softer then PA, and the stiffest PA was measured at 69?
Very good point. APD original was 67 strung RA, as measured by TW. I don't think even with variance and QC issues it would go over or under more than a couple of points RA.
 

Dolgopolov85

G.O.A.T.
but then the claimed 72 RA racket that trigerred this post can't be the Nadal racket.
Or was the APD so stiff?

to my memory, APD was softer then PA, and the stiffest PA was measured at 69?
Yeah, APD used to be 69. It was a more manageable level of stiffness than the Pure Drive. 72 sounds like Nadal is playing a PD under the paint, ha! Something off with that RA number.
 
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Dolgopolov85

G.O.A.T.
agree but if you jump into a shot and mishit or frame it and you lagged your arm behind your body... its gonna hurt.
Well, I released the Wilson 6.1 95 L today. It's light and an 18x20 as well. Didn't hurt at all. Definitely doesn't offer the cushion like feeling I used to get from my Tour G but doesn't hurt. Of course it's not like I am shanking every ball and I have played long enough to ease the choke hold on the grip and swing fast rather than hard. But I used to do all this with the PD and it still hurt. I have often wondered if I was unlucky enough to get a PD that was even stiffer than usual due to a QC issue. But even if it wasn't shock like stiff, it would still flutter while returning hard serves.
 

Nostradamus

Bionic Poster
The latest sample racket from Pro Stock tennis specs RA at 72. No matter if that is strung or unstrung spec, i guess it’s likely he changed. All previous reports of RA for his racket has been 65.

he needs more power from stiffer rackets after taking a beating from novak. that was just emabarrassing.
 

J B

Semi-Pro
Yeah, APD used to be 69. It was a more manageable level of stiffness than the Pure Drive. 72 sounds like Nadal is playing a PD under the paint, ha! Something off with that RA number.
Well there is no proof of that number. So where did that guy get it? or the fact its for sale might say rafa tried a stiff one and didnt like it.
 

J B

Semi-Pro
I just dont see him going that much up in RA... being someone that used X for so long why would he all the sudden be like Yeah lets change something up...
 

Jonesy

Hall of Fame
This number is probably a mistake. But in the end it doesn't make a difference what racket he really uses, the PJ is for promotional purposes, so even if he is using a PD the PJ will not change.
 
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