Smaller grips leading to wrist pain?

SlvrDragon50

Semi-Pro
Whenever I play with a racquet 4 3/8, I find that I always get some ulnar sided wrist pain on the forehand side. I built up my RF97 to 4 1/2, and the pain seemed to have gone away. I suspect if I do the same with my Yonex VC98+, it too will go away, but it may be related to the extended length too.

What confuses me is that everyone here seems to be going smaller and smaller with their grips, but I'm also 99% sure they have larger hands than me (I wear like a size 8 or 9 small/medium glove). How are you guys not destroying your wrists? Is it a difference of an eastern vs SW/W grip? Difference in technique with a smaller grip?
 

DustinW

Professional
I also get elbow pain from smaller grips.

Smaller grips are definitely all the rage right now, but I honestly think you should play with the largest grip that you can handle. I'm not saying go crazy, but use the largest grip that still allows you to play your style of game. It will help your volley game and can also help keep injuries away.
 

Louis33

New User
Everyone’s hand and wrist are different so it really comes down to what works best for you and your technique. Smaller grips encourage more wrist movement in the swing, so perhaps your wrist lacks the flexibility to swing this way, and your body is letting you know with the pain. No right or wrong just what works best for you.
 

Shroud

G.O.A.T.
I also get elbow pain from smaller grips.

Smaller grips are definitely all the rage right now, but I honestly think you should play with the largest grip that you can handle. I'm not saying go crazy, but use the largest grip that still allows you to play your style of game. It will help your volley game and can also help keep injuries away.
I just upped my handle a bit from 5 1/4 to 5 1/2. Its amazing how much I like the larger handle. I string super tight and the handle helps.
 

SlvrDragon50

Semi-Pro
Yea I definitely felt the ability to hit with a looser grip with the smaller grip and felt the wrist lag come into play. It was atrociously humid when I was playing though so I was worried about letting the racquet out of my hands. I think it just doesn't work with my body since I have weak wrists from snowboarding and spraining them.
 

emhtennis

New User
Same issue. I have to play with 4 1/2 or I will develop pain. For me, it comes from gripping tighter on smaller grips. Tighter grip means over-used gripping muscles means arm pain. I suppose if you can train yourself to still keep a relaxed grip on smaller sizes it wouldn't matter, but I've tried and always go back to 4 1/2.

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Shaolin

G.O.A.T.
I also get elbow pain from smaller grips.

Smaller grips are definitely all the rage right now, but I honestly think you should play with the largest grip that you can handle. I'm not saying go crazy, but use the largest grip that still allows you to play your style of game. It will help your volley game and can also help keep injuries away.
This is BS. I use a 1/4 (size 2) grip with an overgrip when I "should" use larger than a 5/8 according to the traditional finger test. I play s&v and volleys are just as good with a small grip and they are with a big grip. Also I have no wrist pain.

Louis33 said it best above. There is no right or wrong way.
 
A smaller grip has to be constantly gripped much more tightly than a larger one. Not surprising they cause more hand, wrist, forearm, elbow trauma.
Use the heaviest racquet and largest grip you can comfortably accommodate.
 

jmacdaununder2

Hall of Fame
Same issue. I have to play with 4 1/2 or I will develop pain. For me, it comes from gripping tighter on smaller grips. Tighter grip means over-used gripping muscles means arm pain. I suppose if you can train yourself to still keep a relaxed grip on smaller sizes it wouldn't matter, but I've tried and always go back to 4 1/2.

Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk
A smaller grip has to be constantly gripped much more tightly than a larger one. Not surprising they cause more hand, wrist, forearm, elbow trauma.
Use the heaviest racquet and largest grip you can comfortably accommodate.
This has always been my experience, and is the traditional wisdom; I get as much topspin as I can produce with 4 1/2 plus an over grip. Comments about Nadal using 4 1/4 - which seem to have partly catalyzed this modern movement down in size - should be tempered by the fact that he uses an over grip, and by the amount of tape he has on his fingers. To each their own, of course.
 

fuzz nation

G.O.A.T.
Yea I definitely felt the ability to hit with a looser grip with the smaller grip and felt the wrist lag come into play. It was atrociously humid when I was playing though so I was worried about letting the racquet out of my hands. I think it just doesn't work with my body since I have weak wrists from snowboarding and spraining them.
I don't care for smaller grips myself - just my personal normal after growing up playing serve and volley tennis and doing lots of business up around the net. A larger grip gives me much more confidence up front where I want to have a lot of control of the racquet face. Volleying well usually includes employing a firm degree of grip pressure, but a small grip (4 3/8" or less) will usually trick me into squeezing too hard when attacking the ball and looking to volley with authority.

I can get away with a smaller grip size around the baseline, but I can't grip the handle with lighter pressure back there if I don't have much of a flare at the bottom of the handle - at the butt cap. Even a larger grip size will feel like it can get away from me if I swing too hard without that bump to keep the handle from wanting to slide through my fingers. That will also trick me into gripping too hard.

You don't need to build up the flare at the bottom of your handle too much - Richard Gasquet has what looks like a small door knob on the end of his racquets. But if there's a comfortable amount of flare there, I find that any racquet will swing fast for me using rather light grip pressure. That means lighter grip pressure for strokes, but also for serves and overheads. I think this is a big deal because the serve seems to really demand lighter grip pressure if we want to get the racquet going rather fast over the top. Too much tension will kill the loose, fluid arm and wrist that we need through contact to hit those shots well.

When I put a replacement grip on my own racquet, I might put a second layer over the butt cap before I start spiraling up the handle to get that extra bump that I want to feel down there. I might also use an old overgrip to create a little extra buildup there - just a layer or two, tape it into place, and then apply a full overgrip over the whole grip.
 
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