Swing Weight Ego (And Modern Tennis)

Hi all, I'm an out of shape 40 year old returning to the sport I played on and off in my youth. I started up with an old fischer Pro No.1 modded up to a beefy weight, but as it's grommets fell apart, I decided to try out some current racquets. I ended up getting an ezone 98 at 305g, and while I liked it, ended up going back to older frames from the mid to late 90s like the head radical twintube, part of the reason being that I felt if I was taking my tennis seriously, I should be using a "serious player's racquet". But I'm also trying to adopt a more modern forehand, with short backswing and big torso rotation. I recently listened to Tennisnerd's podcast episode on racquet customization, and learned that most college level players play at stock weight with modern frames. Since they're all better than me, it seems I'm just letting my ideology get in the way of what's truly best fir my game and development. Am I bonkers, or do any of you experience this?

Edited: Got the Ezone 98 at 305.
 
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snr

Semi-Pro
Work on your technique first. The Ezone 98 Tour is a great stick in its own right.. so I don't even feel comfortable saying "great stick to start with'. It's an all around stick some may like it stock some may like it modded.

if you're coming back, I'd focus on getting some of the more modern technique down such as the low to high, some WW etc. and see what you like.

Don't worry about equipment yet..especially as you've chosen a decent place to start.

The reason the college players play stock weight is that it gives them a lot of RHS. However, do keep in mind the type of ball they play against as well as their superior movement. They also may be used to their sticks from growing up etc. A lot of the touring pros will be using heavier sticks for example, but not all. It's not a requirement more preference for game style. Anyway rambled a bit but I'd say your focus now should be technique first, and let that dictate what equipment you like.
 

mad dog1

G.O.A.T.
Hi all, I'm an out of shape 40 year old returning to the sport I played on and off in my youth. I started up with an old fischer Pro No.1 modded up to a beefy weight, but as it's grommets fell apart, I decided to try out some current racquets. I ended up getting an ezone tour at 305g, and while I liked it, ended up going back to older frames from the mid to late 90s like the head radical twintube, part of the reason being that I felt if I was taking my tennis seriously, I should be using a "serious player's racquet". But I'm also trying to adopt a more modern forehand, with short backswing and big torso rotation. I recently listened to Tennisnerd's podcast episode on racquet customization, and learned that most college level players play at stock weight with modern frames. Since they're all better than me, it seems I'm just letting my ideology get in the way of what's truly best fir my game and development. Am I bonkers, or do any of you experience this?
I have grommet sets for the Fischer Pro No. 1 98” 16/20 pattern.
 

beltsman

Legend
Hi all, I'm an out of shape 40 year old returning to the sport I played on and off in my youth. I started up with an old fischer Pro No.1 modded up to a beefy weight, but as it's grommets fell apart, I decided to try out some current racquets. I ended up getting an ezone tour at 305g, and while I liked it, ended up going back to older frames from the mid to late 90s like the head radical twintube, part of the reason being that I felt if I was taking my tennis seriously, I should be using a "serious player's racquet". But I'm also trying to adopt a more modern forehand, with short backswing and big torso rotation. I recently listened to Tennisnerd's podcast episode on racquet customization, and learned that most college level players play at stock weight with modern frames. Since they're all better than me, it seems I'm just letting my ideology get in the way of what's truly best fir my game and development. Am I bonkers, or do any of you experience this?
Completely depends on your game. Trends in the modern ATP game don't necessarily reflect amateur level. Yes, most players imitate pros, but they do so very poorly. A 4.0 in 1975 or 85 or 95 would do just fine, maybe even better, in 2021.
 
I do worry about handling heavy balls with a light racquet, but that may be due to off-center shots with my poor technique. And yeah, although I'm practicing hard, I've certainly caught the racket bug and started buying up plenty older classics and new sticks (vcore pros and radical 360s) alike. It must be some form of delusion to be weighting up racquets to close to pro player specs, when I clearly struggle to win matches with light racquets!
 
Work on your technique first. The Ezone 98 Tour is a great stick in its own right.. so I don't even feel comfortable saying "great stick to start with'. It's an all around stick some may like it stock some may like it modded.

if you're coming back, I'd focus on getting some of the more modern technique down such as the low to high, some WW etc. and see what you like.

Don't worry about equipment yet..especially as you've chosen a decent place to start.

The reason the college players play stock weight is that it gives them a lot of RHS. However, do keep in mind the type of ball they play against as well as their superior movement. They also may be used to their sticks from growing up etc. A lot of the touring pros will be using heavier sticks for example, but not all. It's not a requirement more preference for game style. Anyway rambled a bit but I'd say your focus now should be technique first, and let that dictate what equipment you like.
I haven't tried the tour yet, currently only have the 305.
 

socallefty

Hall of Fame
Am I bonkers, or do any of you experience this?
Yes, you are bonkers. Play with the racquet that you play well with and win more with. Why play worse with a racquet that has heavier specs than is optimal for your game - do you feel good after you play badly or after a loss? There are good and bad players playing with every racquet spec you can think of and a particular racquet is not going to magically improve your game or winning %. However, constant practice outside of match play will improve your game.
 

polksio

Semi-Pro
Stop with the stock meme. Stock means jack, there are stock radicals with 345 sw, stock pro staffs with 340 sw and they are more likely than you think because 3 grams errors lead to 10sw deviations and everything is chinese made except Yonex
There's not honor in playing with a stock frame and no shame in modifying. If more swingweight makes you win, either demo 30 frames and get lost in the racket rabbit hole one or buy 5 grams of lead tape. Which one do you think tennisnerd wants you to do?
Colleges generally have agreements with local shops that let their players try whatever they want in the shop and they settle to something "they like". In player terms something that when they hit the incoming ball with (from another college player that also uses something that "he likes") is sends it back. If they demo something with 310sw they'll just say "they dont like it" "too unstable" until the randomness puts 340 in their hands and "they like it" and wow look at that, they play with a stock frame.
 
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At my club there are many players way better than me and no one plays with modified racquets. There are practically no places where you can demo so the sticks they play with are just bought without trying. The racquets vary from Babolat, Head, Wilson, Dunlop.. Light, heavy, pretty much everything. So my advice is not to get caught up in the racquet/string rabbit hole. Just pick one, play with it long enough so it becomes your own and practice a lot so you become better.
 
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tonylg

Hall of Fame
I can pretty much play with anything that can be strung, but certain racquet properties help different parts of my game, as can a few grams here and there. But once I decide on something and optimise it, I try not to the think about it any more.
 

socallefty

Hall of Fame
I certainly would not look at a player’s racquet and feel overconfident before a match because it is light - that would be a sure recipe for disaster. Unless you look very carefully and closeup, you can’t tell if someone has added lead tape anyway.
 

tonylg

Hall of Fame
I certainly would not look at a player’s racquet and feel overconfident before a match because it is light - that would be a sure recipe for disaster. Unless you look very carefully and closeup, you can’t tell if someone has added lead tape anyway.
Definitely not.
 

Wheelz

Semi-Pro
It's quite possible you prefer the feel of swinging a heavier racquet and mostly like the contact with the ball. Like some prefer the lighter ones. I don't agree lower then pro should use less weight. True you won't see the weight of a pro ball but you'll also won't have to react as quick to its speed. You'll have more time to setup and crush the ball if you like the heavier racquet. I prefer how it forces me to use my legs and swing better. You can have a modern forehand with a heavier racquet, for sure.
 
Really appreciate all the replies to my thread. I currently have a rather slow RHS, a forehand that tends to have a big back swing, and a super abbreviated backhand. At least those are the bad habits I'm trying to un-train. I've been working on my strokes against a wall with the Head Radical Pro from 2019, a very light and easy to swing racquet, as well as a 372 lb beast that I got from ****. It seems that I get more done trying to correct my swing if I start off with the heavy log, and when I move back to the lighter "main" racquet, my RHS seems to be naturally higher. This really showed me that the heavy racquets which felt wonderfully solid, aren't really what I'm capable of swinging, if when I go down in weight, something suddenly "unlocks" in my strokes. The Ezones seem to be a nice compromise, as they seem pretty head heavy, and thus more solid at impact, but have enough lightness to swing faster with. Hoping the good feelings continue when my used Ezone tour comes in soon.
 

Dartagnan64

G.O.A.T.
I'm an out of shape 40 year old returning to the sport
But I'm also trying to adopt a more modern forehand, with short backswing and big torso rotation.
Just be careful. The modern swing may not age well. When I look at the 50+ year old crew of top players at our club, none of them are swinging like Nadal. You'll see a lot more Agassi type strokes. You need more leg and core fitness for the modern game and that may not be easily achieved as a weekend warrior.

Doing things your body doesn't feel natural doing can lead to injury.
 

DustinW

Professional
@Shankmeister-Chubs There is no reason why you can't play at a high level (4.5+) with stock frames in the 295-310g unstrung range. I used to play heavy frames (like 330g unstrung), but over the years I've gravitated to much lighter frames. I feel like I have more control with light frames, because (for me) light frames make it easier to control pace and spin better by varying racket head speed. Plus light frames are way easier to defend with. It will take some time to adjust, so give it some time.
 
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ryushen21

Hall of Fame
Hi all, I'm an out of shape 40 year old returning to the sport I played on and off in my youth. I started up with an old fischer Pro No.1 modded up to a beefy weight, but as it's grommets fell apart, I decided to try out some current racquets. I ended up getting an ezone 98 at 305g, and while I liked it, ended up going back to older frames from the mid to late 90s like the head radical twintube, part of the reason being that I felt if I was taking my tennis seriously, I should be using a "serious player's racquet". But I'm also trying to adopt a more modern forehand, with short backswing and big torso rotation. I recently listened to Tennisnerd's podcast episode on racquet customization, and learned that most college level players play at stock weight with modern frames. Since they're all better than me, it seems I'm just letting my ideology get in the way of what's truly best fir my game and development. Am I bonkers, or do any of you experience this?

Edited: Got the Ezone 98 at 305.
I was long time junkie for heavy frames with big swingweights. I switched to the EZone 100 and have had no issue or regrets. Focus on form first because once that is solid you will have more confidence in your response to bigger hitters.

I'm a 4.0 and I'm playing better tennis now that I've switched than I have in a long time. Just because a racquet is lighter doesn't make it less stable or less capable of hitting a heavy ball.
 

polksio

Semi-Pro
I was long time junkie for heavy frames with big swingweights. I switched to the EZone 100 and have had no issue or regrets. Focus on form first because once that is solid you will have more confidence in your response to bigger hitters.
Happy for you man do whatever feels good to you and lets you win (have fun).

Just because a racquet is lighter doesn't make it less stable or less capable of hitting a heavy ball.
Absolutely, I mean look at Nadal, lightest racket of the big three but he crushes the ball the hardest :sneaky:
 

Anton

Legend
Hi all, I'm an out of shape 40 year old returning to the sport I played on and off in my youth. I started up with an old fischer Pro No.1 modded up to a beefy weight, but as it's grommets fell apart, I decided to try out some current racquets. I ended up getting an ezone 98 at 305g, and while I liked it, ended up going back to older frames from the mid to late 90s like the head radical twintube, part of the reason being that I felt if I was taking my tennis seriously, I should be using a "serious player's racquet". But I'm also trying to adopt a more modern forehand, with short backswing and big torso rotation. I recently listened to Tennisnerd's podcast episode on racquet customization, and learned that most college level players play at stock weight with modern frames. Since they're all better than me, it seems I'm just letting my ideology get in the way of what's truly best fir my game and development. Am I bonkers, or do any of you experience this?

Edited: Got the Ezone 98 at 305.
No worries buddy, Djockovich and Murray are better players than you and those college players, both use "mid to late 90s like the head radical twintube" rackets.

Just use what works for you. And btw that Ezone just may work for you pretty well with some lead if you want to get into a more western, brush-up spin game.
 
Always play with the weight you feel most comfortable with. As you get older and sometimes more comfortable in life (out of shape)... it gets harder to play with heavier frames style frames that we grew up with in the 80/90's. You want some weight in the racquet as it provide feel and helps regulate your swing a bit. If I go too light (could be not enough swing weight and/or static weight... just depends) I find that my swing can get out of control because I grew up swinging lumber and you just get used to feeling you're putting in a certain amount of effort. I try to find racquets that give me enough weight or resistance that it matches the usual rhythm of my swing style. I used to prefer racquets up around the 12oz range, but now I'm down to around 11.7/11.6 as a sweet spot for me.

Figure out what feels good to swing... as you get back into it your opinion might change a bit on stiffness of frame. string pattern, power, etc. but for most of us that have established swings your feel and rhythm don't change that much if ever. You want something that will help keep you in rhythm.
 
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