Racquets with lower swingweight?

Discussion in 'Racquets' started by Veens, Jul 5, 2013.

  1. Veens

    Veens Rookie

    Feb 11, 2012
    Hi, i'd like to know how is a lower swingweight racquet different to higher swingweight and where does the lower one help us in? and give examples of racquets. Just a question by a fellow friend. thanks
  2. anubis

    anubis Hall of Fame

    Mar 2, 2012
    Lower swingweight makes it easier to swing, easier to move around on court. It has the potential to tire you out less than a higher swingweight frame. It's also more frequently head light too.

    So to answer your question, it helps in that it makes it easier for you to last longer -- stamina-wise. But on the flip side, you'll have to work harder to get any power out of it. Swingweight is the center of power with a racquet. Mass makes the ball go faster and farther. Without enough mass in the hoop, you have to make up the difference with a faster swingspeed.

    If you search on the TW racquet finder site for all racquets with a swingweight of 301 or less, that is considered to be "low".
  3. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

    Dec 28, 2008
    East side of San Francisco Bay
    Always difficult to find the BALANCE of low SW to high SW for our individual needs.
    On the surface, you'd think a small person would use a lighter racket, and heavier for bigger people, but too many opposite examples to draw any conclusions besides "personal preference and preference at that point in the player's evolution".
    As a skinny, old, weak person, I've used rackets with SW's from 305 up to 355, and at that time, they were the right racket for me.
  4. TimothyO

    TimothyO Hall of Fame

    Oct 5, 2010
    Part of the answer is that SW is relative and part is that SW can be seen as an absolute.

    SW as Absolute Value:
    No matter your skill level and that of your opponent the laws of physics require a ball to move at a given velocity in order to make it from one baseline to the next. And those laws demand that the frame provide some minimum mass at impace to send the ball back to the ther baseline at a controllable pace and arc ofer the net. You can't play tennis with a cardboard frame. Nor do you need a steel 2x4. This brings us to SW as relative value. As others suggest that minimum SW is somewhere south of 300 to be useful as a tool to smack a ball from one baseline to another.

    SW as Relative Value:
    This is what really matters!

    If your opponents are softly tapping serves and groundstrokes in relatively high arcs over the net and ball is sitting up nice and soft after the bounce you can use a sub-300 SW frame just fine. If you're facing 100mph serves and heavy topspin forehands you'll have a hard time maintaining control under those impacts. Even a high SW pro frame like Djoker's recoils under impact. While watching Djoker v Del Potro today I was struck by how much Djoker's frame recoiled when volleying a DP forehand at net. They showed it in slow motion and the recoil was huge.

    A few pros use SW below 330 but it seems that the vast majority START around 330 and go to the mid and upper 300s (eg Nadal is around 350).

    Now, that being said, I've noticed that even if playing dink tennis for giggles with some lower level friends a SW of 300 and below loses some accuracy even against dink shots. It's just not as pleasant for me. I start feeling comfortable around 320 and a little above. As I approach 330 I'm just not good enough to handle the extra power under extreme pressure. My ideal is 320 to 325 or so. Which means I'm especially challenged when blocking back huge serves from friends who played in HS/college and are 6' 5"! I just block back and hope, but there are pros who use such "low" SW frames and win (Schiavone is down around there iirc).

    And others have suggetsed that for arm health you want the heaviest frame with the highest SW you can wield to absorb the blows. My wife switched to a heavier frame as she moved up the mixed doubles ranks and faced harder male serves. Then she added lead tape to the head and a much heavier grip!

    In addition to SW you should consider static weight. SW is NOT true measure of how hard it is to swing a frame. You can have two frames with the same SW and different static weights but the heavier frame will be harder to swing. The best way to think of SW is that it represents frame power while static weight is a bigger factor in RHS. If your power/SW is to high relative to your static weight/RHS speed you can't generate enough topspin to control the ball. Even "flat" hitters use some spin to keep the ball in the court if they're hitting with significant pace.

    So in picking a frame based on SW you need to ask yourself:

    - what's my level? Will I face dink shots, 100mph serves, or something in between?

    - what can my body and technique tolerate? You'd be surprised at what our bodies can and can't tolerate. My 11 year old plays with SW 318 and static weight 332g and hits relatively flat but hard. I'm just a few points higher. But my 13 year old plays with SW 322 and static weight around 320g and he hits full western with tremendous topsin that challenges adults. As I get above 340g my RHS suffers and my shoulder tells me to stop. So I stick to SW 320-325 and a static weight around 334-337.
  5. SteveI

    SteveI Legend

    Feb 19, 2004
    Tim O,

    Wonderful explanation.. nailed it.

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