Racket for 70 yr old 3.5/4.0 Player

socallefty

Legend
Anything from 97-115 sq inches, weight between 10.5 to 12 ozs, stiffness less than 70. String with soft strings.

The fitter you are, the heavier and smaller racquet you can play with.
 

slipgrip93

Semi-Pro
Just an example suggestion. A steam 100 blx. Much more blx than regular graphite composition in the 2012-14 models. About 310 swingweight. 16x20 with a 1/4 inch extension. Also has a unique supportive and flexy feel throat section.

(badosa steam 100 racquet thread here)

There's also the wilson prostaff six one 95 blx, (not the non-prostaff six one), at full BLX, probably the lightest in the prostaff line ever made by wilson and the last(!) of the oldschool, nostalgic 17.5 mm box beam frames made about a year before the next wilson racquets then all went thicker curved beam, around the time Fed defected to his new RF97. ( tw prostaff six one 95 , video review ).
 
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Jonesy

Legend
Look at this video, it is a good tip for you:


Since 70 is the new 50 i would go with a pure drive team like Anna. Easy power, easy weight. Nick would probaly recommend string with a kirschbaum super smash orange at 45lbs so you can have both control and power at the same time. That is what everyone wants.
 

heftylefty

Hall of Fame
Although I am not at 70...yet (12 years away) I have the opportunity to play against a national rank 72 year old in singles and double. He uses the Gamma RZR Bubba 137. I am amazed by the control he has with all his shots.

I think you string setup will be very important too. Good Luck.
 

PBODY99

Legend
@heftylefty
I used the 137 Big Bubba for 2 seasons when the box beam Blue model was 1st released. The swing weight is quite high even on the current ones so that puts some players off. If you can adapt & shorten up your strokes, it is a nice frame for him to consider.
I currently see a couple of 55 players who use the Bubba 117, which is also a good choice,.Easier to move around.
I admit my ported leanings
 

SinneGOAT

Hall of Fame
Wow only 1 person has said soft strings o_O Racquet matters, strings matter more. Soft strings like head velocity or Tecnifibre nrg or x-one will be great for your arm and will give power if you can’t accelerate quickly with the racquet.
 

mhkeuns

Hall of Fame
I play against a near 70 year old 3.5 player who settled on the 2012 version of the Pure Drive with synthetic gut mains at 58lbs and 53lbs poly crosses. He doesn’t hit with a lot of spin but is super consistent from the baseline hitting deep shots with the racket and string combination. He didn’t like the Clash 100 because it didn’t give him the connection or the control.
 

jimmy8

Rookie
Please don't use Babolat, they're too stiff. Don't watch that video from Intuitive Tennis, it's completely wrong. Don't use poly strings, they're too stiff. The other people on this forum are trying to send you to the hospital, not cool. Please buy a flexible racket that has a flex rating in the 50's. Please use multifilament strings or natural gut. Please use open string pattern like 16x19 or 16x18. Rackets: Wilson Clash - one of my friends who is retired and older uses the 108 version, Prince Phantom 100P, almost any Pro Kennex racket. Please replace strings often (4-6 weeks, more often if possible) to keep them elastic and not notched, this will help your arm stay healthier.
 

esgee48

G.O.A.T.
Over 70 and using PK 7G with POSG 16 at 46#. You should demo the 20 or 30 depending on how much power you need.
 
I play and string racquet for a 76 years old player.
He loves to play in pure drive 107, the frame is light, he have a really good racket head speed with it, he plays very very well.
He plays with rpm blast, he never have elbow / shoulder issue
( he never stop praticing tennis and bike )
 

BumElbow

Semi-Pro
I am in my mid 60's and am a fan of the Head Graphene 360 Extreme. It is 100 sq. inches, plays stable in hand and has a stiff head and a flexy shaft for comfort. I find that I get easy topspin and depth of shot with it even with my traditional Eastern grips and my moderate swing speed. And, it's being sold at a bargain price right now so getting a pair is very affordable! The 360+ version is more headlight and stiffer which is not to my liking. The only questionable issue with the Graphene 360 Extreme is the paint color - neon yellow. Just bear in mind that the color is not functional! I string mine with 16 gauge syngut; mis-hits can feel harsh with a poly string even as low as 50 lbs.
 

movdqa

Talk Tennis Guru
Most of the older players I hit with (70-85) use the Pure Drive or Pure Aero. one of my regular hitting partners uses a Gamma 95, probably from the 1990s. Everyone seems to manage with their arms.
 

Trip

Semi-Pro
@dirtballer - Not sure why no one has even bothered to ask you what setup you're using now (racquet including any obvious customization, plus string and tension), and/or what you like/dislike about (besides lack of spin on serve), but knowing at least a bit of that info will help us make more intelligent suggestions.

Also, aside from the frame, have you tried a soft shaped poly, either as the mains in a hybrid or in a full bed, to help with spin on serve? If not, perhaps give that a shot and see if it gives you enough of the spin you're looking for.
 

dirtballer

Professional
@dirtballer - Not sure why no one has even bothered to ask you what setup you're using now (racquet including any obvious customization, plus string and tension), and/or what you like/dislike about (besides lack of spin on serve), but knowing at least a bit of that info will help us make more intelligent suggestions.

Also, aside from the frame, have you tried a soft shaped poly, either as the mains in a hybrid or in a full bed, to help with spin on serve? If not, perhaps give that a shot and see if it gives you enough of the spin you're looking for.
Racket - For the past 18 years I've used a Head Liquidmetal 4 (same racket and same back-up) - Strings - Full bed Solinco Tour Bite Soft at 50 lbs. The even balance of the LM 4 is great for flat groundstrokes but it makes it harder to generate spin on the serve. I've completely lost my kick serve.
 

Trip

Semi-Pro
Thanks @dirtballer. So you're already using one of the spinniest string setups out there. Got it. Coming from an LM 4 (285g, 27.25", 25mm beam, 335 swing weight), of all the potential close matches that would be the best next step, I would point you to a ProKennex Ki Q+ 20 (link), customized with 3-4g of lead tape at 12 o'clock, to give you a bit more polarity, increase swing weight from ~320 to 330-335 and make the balance closer to even, all of which match where you're at with the LM 4. Additionally, the Ki Q+ 20 is the same length (27.25 inches, a rare find these days), has a very close 24mm beam (versus 25mm), but an even larger 110" head (versus 102" with the LM 4) and the same 16x19 pattern, so you'll get more spin, forgiveness and a bit more trampoline effect for free power, plus ProKennex frames have their arm-protecting weight shift technology, likely very beneficial for any player, let alone someone entering their later playing years. You could of course go with one of any number of the conventional suggestions already thrown at you in this thread, but honestly, I'd take a hard look at the Ki Q+ 20 -- IMHO it's by far a better fit for where you're at.

As for strings, as long as TB Soft doesn't give you issues, I suppose you could keep playing it, but if you need another very spin-friendly option that's easier on your arm, I would look at Dunlop Silk Spin (formerly Hexy Fiber), a shaped multi (hexagonal), which yields great spin, especially for a multi, and either try it full bed, or cross it with a slick, rubber-based poly (ie. IsoSpeed Cream) to tame the power and give better snap back. Compared to Tour Bite Soft, you'll get a more supple, forgiving string bed with a bit longer dwell time, and better tension maintenance to boot.
 
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BumElbow

Semi-Pro
Racket - For the past 18 years I've used a Head Liquidmetal 4 (same racket and same back-up) - Strings - Full bed Solinco Tour Bite Soft at 50 lbs. The even balance of the LM 4 is great for flat groundstrokes but it makes it harder to generate spin on the serve. I've completely lost my kick serve.
Well, all I can say is that you got your money's worth from the LM 4 racquets! I bought a LM 8 and found it to be a board and unplayable - a very unforgiving frame that was unsuited to hitting topspin anything. Just about all racquets now on the market are designed to generate topspin due to their open string patterns and headlight balance. My suggestion is that you select a racquet that is just slightly (2-4 points) head light so that it's not too different from your evenly balanced LM 4 but will allow you to generate more racquet head speed to hit kicker serves and topspin ground strokes. Also, a racquet with even slightly more flex would allow greater dwell time on the strings to hit topspin. I have played with people using the LM 4 and they all hit flat and a lot of that has to do with the racquet. The Artengo TR 500 has similar specs (namely, an even balance, stiff frame and 102 sq. inch head size) to your LM 4 except it's standard 27" length. I have one and hit moderate topspin serves and groundies with no problem. It comes pre-strung with polyester string. Generating topspin is often also a technique issue - what grips are you using that your game is so flat? Do you use a Continental grip? If so, and if you want to hit with spin, then that has to change.
 

socallefty

Legend
I've completely lost my kick serve.
That might be a ‘getting old’ issue rather than an equipment issue. As you lose back flexibility, it gets harder to kick serve using the same ball toss you might have used when younger. You might want to experiment consciously throwing your toss more behind your head to force your back to arch back more. Also, you might be losing racquet head speed (RHS) with age which might make it harder to hit kick serves.

Many >65 year olds start using slice for their second serves instead of the kick they used in their youth because of these reasons. I’m only 54, but use a topslice rather than a kick more often now as my 2nd serve because my back is less flexible - of course, I’m a lefty and it is partly tactical to get to the righty BH/body. As my kick gets slower, it is not a good point starter against decent returners as it goes to the righty FH.
 

dirtballer

Professional
That might be a ‘getting old’ issue rather than an equipment issue. As you lose back flexibility, it gets harder to kick serve using the same ball toss you might have used when younger. You might want to experiment consciously throwing your toss more behind your head to force your back to arch back more. Also, you might be losing racquet head speed (RHS) with age which might make it harder to hit kick serves.

Many >65 year olds start using slice for their second serves instead of the kick they used in their youth because of these reasons. I’m only 54, but use a topslice rather than a kick more often now as my 2nd serve because my back is less flexible - of course, I’m a lefty and it is partly tactical to get to the righty BH/body. As my kick gets slower, it is not a good point starter against decent returners as it goes to the righty FH.
You're probably right. Nobody wants to admit that they can't play the same as when they were younger.
 

Trip

Semi-Pro
@movdqa - Amen to that. I find yoga in particular to be indispensable in maintaining and improving flexibility and posture, especially for us men, who tend to have plenty of brute strength, but compromised cores and posterior chains in one way or another.
 

movdqa

Talk Tennis Guru
@movdqa - Amen to that. I find yoga in particular to be indispensable in maintaining and improving flexibility and posture, especially for us men, who tend to have plenty of brute strength, but compromised cores and posterior chains in one way or another.
Yoga hits flexibility, balance and strength (to a degree). I started doing Yoga about about four years ago after falling down the stairs a few times. Starting to do balance poses gives you an indication as to how bad you are at it. I've noticed that women are a lot better at balance then men are - I'm not really sure why that is but maybe they have less degradation in the things that sense it.

I also do chess puzzles daily for some mental exercise.
 

Trip

Semi-Pro
I've noticed that women are a lot better at balance then men are - I'm not really sure why that is but maybe they have less degradation in the things that sense it.
Actually, I think its a combination of the fact that their center of gravity is at their hips, as opposed to ours being in our chests, and that they have inherently higher range of motion and flexibly in that gravitational center than we do (their hips and surrounding soft tissue are optimized -- child birth, etc). That would be why.
 

socallefty

Legend
You're probably right. Nobody wants to admit that they can't play the same as when they were younger.
I started taking weekly lessons with a 30-year old ex-ATP player after I hit 50 in age - trying to retool technique to compensate for physical degradation. So far, I’ve been able to maintain my level against younger guys in singles, but I know that at some point the results will go down. In doubles, I’ve actually improved and the decline looks like it will be slower over time.
 
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stickM

Rookie
I'm approaching my 67th birthday and have been testing rackets that can give me easier power from defensive positions while also not contributing to soreness or injury to my joints and tissues. I've tested a bunch of the latest options on the market including Head Auxetic Speed Pro and MP, the Head Prestige MP-L, the 2022 Yonex EZone 100 and others. All great frames, but I've about narrowed my choices down to the Wilson Blade 104 v8 and the for Europe only MP-L. This Blade 104 has a very comfortable ra of 60 but the slightly oversized 104 sq in head size offers power and forgiveness that makes it almost feel like cheating, and the control is plentiful (Solinco Confidential mains/Lux Element crosses). I think this racket would appeal to a larger audience if folks would just be more open minded to try this slightly larger frame. The MP-L may be my favorite racket to volley with ever as it feels like I can take pace off hard shots that seem to fly off the stringbed of other racquets and redirect them with accurate direction and depth. Both of these are great options for aging players, but the Blade may win out for me for it's outstanding maneuverability and ease of serving with pace and movement. It really has no weakness for me.
 
You can go down in stiffness to 62-65ra and stay with 16x19 or go with a more open pattern 16x18 which prince offers. Try solid core syn guts vs poly. Most non pro players don't generate the RHS to effectively play with poly.
 
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