Why don't we do like the pros?

DonDiego

Hall of Fame
#1
90% of them have been playing with the same racquet for the past ten years.
(I'm totally making this number up, but 90% of members on this board agree with me -- I'm also making this number up.)

Here's the contradiction: we're victim of marketing, and we look up to our favourite player, or to any other "in vogue" criteria, to pick a new racquet, and we rarely stick to it. Why do we think the new stuff is the right fit for us, when almost all the pros are sticking to the same stick for years?

Why don't we say to ourselves: "I'm gonna do like (insert favourite player's name here) and stick to my beloved (insert name of a racquet here), just like him/her?
 
#7
The thing is we don't always know what the players are using and when they change. I remember one Yonex contracted player who used to get a batch of black racquets with codes each year, and he would test them and then submit his choice. Yonex would then paint them up to look like one of the retail frames they wanted to market.
 
#10
90% of them have been playing with the same racquet for the past ten years.
(I'm totally making this number up, but 90% of members on this board agree with me -- I'm also making this number up.)

Here's the contradiction: we're victim of marketing, and we look up to our favourite player, or to any other "in vogue" criteria, to pick a new racquet, and we rarely stick to it. Why do we think the new stuff is the right fit for us, when almost all the pros are sticking to the same stick for years?

Why don't we say to ourselves: "I'm gonna do like (insert favourite player's name here) and stick to my beloved (insert name of a racquet here), just like him/her?
Because unlike pros, we have not trained for 5+ hours a day, every day from the age of 5, to hit a tennis ball as perfectly as possible.

Sent from my SM-N950U using Tapatalk
 

Imago

Hall of Fame
#12
How do you know what feels good without trying many different racquets?
I string for others and usually test all new stuff against the wall or on the court. As far as Prestige is concerned, I buy all new iterations as soon as available, with 40% discount. Usually 10 serves suffice to know if the racket feels good or harsh. Very sensitive elbow. Should patent it.
 

dman72

Hall of Fame
#13
I was a raquetholic for a a few years after first finding this site. I bought a lot of frames but even so, 95% of my matches in he last 11 years, I've played with the same 3 NXG OS frames which are now 15 years old. I think it's time to finally change to something newer and stick with it (just ordered 4 demos), but 10 years is a pretty long run.

Bottom line is I agree with the OP. Changing racquets every other month doesn't help anyone's game. Changing string types often probably doesn't either. Knowing what your frame and strings will do in any situation and having confidence in the result as opposed to the distraction of not knowing, is better than whatever minor uptick in performance you may or may not get from a new frame.
 
#14
I string for others and usually test all new stuff against the wall or on the court. As far as Prestige is concerned, I buy all new iterations as soon as available, with 40% discount. Usually 10 serves suffice to know if the racket feels good or harsh. Very sensitive elbow. Should patent it.
Oh, you're a lucky one. Can test others' racquets.
 
#15
I string for others and usually test all new stuff against the wall or on the court. As far as Prestige is concerned, I buy all new iterations as soon as available, with 40% discount. Usually 10 serves suffice to know if the racket feels good or harsh. Very sensitive elbow. Should patent it.
How could you get so big discount for the new racquets?
 
#20
Rec players probably should mimic pros infrequently since the game they play is not at all similar to the game most rec players play.

Nonetheless, I agree with the OP that changing racquets frequently has little point. Most people do it to try to "buy a game". It's cheaper to get a new racquet than get a tennis coach. Sadly it doesn't work from what I've seen, but then again neither does coaching for most rec players. The only thing that makes people better is countless hours of practice.

As for why I've gone through 6 different racquets in the last 2 years: Tennis Elbow. I'd have happily played with a PD+ if it hadn't wrecked my elbow. I then had to work my way through different less stiff setups until I finally found one that didn't hurt my arm. So certainly the search for comfort in an older arm is a valid reason to change racquets.

Of course I did also buy a POG 107 for nostalgia purposes, because 1) I have expendable income and 2) it was a racquet i wanted as a college student but couldn't justify the cost in those days. And I actually really enjoy using it as a singles racket on clay.
 
#23
Pros make a living out of tennis, they have to stick with the tool that best allow them to win, it's work.

We on the other hand practice tennis as a hobby and we enjoy every aspect of it, from posting here to watch and play the sport, we have fun indulging in our passion and the variety of frames available makes it easy to spend time and resources just trying out new frames and setups.

It's just another way to enjoy tennis, pros play tennis because it's their job we play because it's our passion.
 

Imago

Hall of Fame
#24
so, what racquets do you like most?
Out of the new Prestige Touch - Mid. Otherwise PT57A, esp. A-2 in the S.E.2 version of Ti.Fire. This is the greatest racket ever made.

As for the PT57 replicas - the best one on the market is Donnay Xenecore Penta 97 (but I never had the chance to try Redondo).
 
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#25
not me, found what i like and grooved on it... i win more when grooved...

most players are finding their game... so they look at sticks...

I'm curious about sticks in the same way that Ivan Lendl was in that I would like to have a sense of how opponent"s rackets hit the ball and how certain movements are more or less encouraged by certain sticks
 
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#26
Out of the new Prestige Touch - Mid. Otherwise PT57A, esp. A-2 in the S.E.2 version of Ti.Fire. This is the greatest racket ever made.

As for the PT57 replicas - the best one on the market is Donnay Xenecore Penta 97 (but I never had the chance to try Redondo).
Did not try pro stocks. All Donnay Pro One 97 - Tricore-Penta are just great to me.
 
#28
Great thread, great question. For my part, I think (hope & pray) I've at least narrowed it down to a particular frame company and type: Volkl 10-series.
 

nvr2old

Professional
#29
I have had an epiphany lately regarding my racquetolism, specifically I picked up 3 Head YouTek IG Prestiges and 3 Babolat Pure Storm GT's NOS and they are as good or better than all my other 35 frames. So much so that I am liquidating my others to stick with these.
 
#30
Because unlike pros, we have not trained for 5+ hours a day, every day from the age of 5, to hit a tennis ball as perfectly as possible.
Very true.

I’d add - to many it’s a hobby; pick up a new racket, see if you can tweak it to work for you. I doubt too many sane people really think the racket is going to improve their game dramatically. And with the internet it’s easy to sell rackets and get a decent amount back.
 
#31
I have played competitively with ported Prince 110's 27.5", since their release;from the Citron {paint job of the O3 Blue} to the current Textreme Premier 110. Not much difference in them, except the O3_Ozone frames fatigue rather quickly. Skipped the EXO version as the Speeport Gold worked so well. I still have 12 frames, four are new old stock.
Phantom 100 & 100P are just too low powered for this senior player, but are fine or feeding.
I would rather try to buy knees and ankles that didn't hurt.:cool:
 

sredna42

Professional
#32
Man! Is there anything your NOT making up?! Im now very suspicious of this thread and any claims made therein......
OK Zoolander. If that is your real name....

Srs though, I'm forming the conclusion that fussing over racquets and finding excuses to buy new ones just inhibited the development of my technique.
It made me laugh also when I looked at the pro stock website, that the babolat pure drives they have on there all seem to be RA62 or so, not the RA70 or whatever of the retail version.

I wish I had just stuck with the tec315ltd right from the beginning, and wasted no thought on gear but focused all my thought on technique and finding feeling for shots instead. I'd be better at tennis and would have a hell of alot of money in my account too.
 
#34
The thing is we don't always know what the players are using and when they change. I remember one Yonex contracted player who used to get a batch of black racquets with codes each year, and he would test them and then submit his choice. Yonex would then paint them up to look like one of the retail frames they wanted to market.
Yep this is how they do it my friends . At least Babolat does for players and Wilson too . I’m sponsored by Wilson and even though I’m a lowly staff advisory we still get first hand knowledge how the process works . And that’s exactly how it’s done in some cases
 
#35
90% of them have been playing with the same racquet for the past ten years.
(I'm totally making this number up, but 90% of members on this board agree with me -- I'm also making this number up.)

Here's the contradiction: we're victim of marketing, and we look up to our favourite player, or to any other "in vogue" criteria, to pick a new racquet, and we rarely stick to it. Why do we think the new stuff is the right fit for us, when almost all the pros are sticking to the same stick for years?

Why don't we say to ourselves: "I'm gonna do like (insert favourite player's name here) and stick to my beloved (insert name of a racquet here), just like him/her?
The thing you haven’t factored is age. Most pros are below 30. How much of a racquetaholic were you at 18? What about at 24? What about at age 50? Why doesn’t Ivan Lendl still train and use his Addidas? What about Sampras? Why did he switch away from his PS85? Heck I would love to use my 90 throughout the next 10-15 years just like the pros. :cool:
 
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#36
The thing you haven’t factored is age. Most pros are below 30. How much of a racquetaholic were you at 18? What about at 24? What about at age 50? Why doesn’t Ivan Lendl still train and use his Addidas? What about Sampras? Why did he switch away from his PS85? Heck I would love to use my 90 throughout the next 10-15 years just like the pros. :cool:
Yes sir all valid points !
I bet that the pros mentioned here with maybe the exception to Ivan , could care very little about Racket specs and constantly having thoughts about what is gonna make me play better Tennis . But maybe they are racket geeks afterall! I know personally I didn’t know jack about sticks at 18.. my only concern was finding a stringer that would go beyond the frame rec string tension as I was up in the 70’s with synthetic gut back in the 90’s . Not until 2003 did I start my learning obsesssin with rackets . Can’t say for sure now if I play better with my new learned racket info , but can say unequivocally I have more fun hitting . I love flex in frames now , back then .. I would mess around with friends rackets .. and a lot of the times they weren’t “
Players” so they as fitting played with recreation frames lower tiered stuff. Yet even then I did realize a lot of the times I would play awesome with these cheapos.. looking back on it it was due to the higher amount of glass used in the manufacturing of the cheapies a lot of the times .. so I equated flex in rackets as cheap crap , even though my ground strokes seemed to land “ in “ more , but no way I’d be caught dead using a cheapo”.. foolish and dumb . I was way to insecure .. comes with the age territory I guess ..
but if I could go back . I would def use what I currently use as my set up
Would have have been able to use . A nice cheap k Mart
Head club pro or head team pro 1987 -1990 .. with Prince pro blend . Cut off an inch on the handle and I would have been set .. but the only problem I can see using that set up back then , is I know for sure , I would have insisted on stringjng it in the high 60’s or Low 70’s .. and that would have destroyed those rackets after 5 matches or less I’d imagine .. I currently 99 % of the time black out my rackets . I can’t imagine my 18 yr old self doing that as I wanted to show off my rackets paint job and stencil . My main frames at 16 -19 ( junior ranked days ) was the puma Becker super and the Wilson 85 pro staff .
The pro staff would have been fine with a black out PJ. The puns on the other hand would have looked very strange and would have raised to many eyes my way .. but if it would have had a all fire engine red home made pj , I bet some folks would have Thought it was a Russian Volkl Soviet Union euro bad ass racket. Or I could have been beaten up by red necks for using
It, as I played junior tennis in po- dunk Indiana . Close minded town USA
 
#37
A couple things stick out to me, one being re do this for fun and not a career. So while pros have access to all the racquets we do and obviously then some they are more likely to stick to what is working or they are used to. I mean how many pros cant even change handle shapes, or layup, let alone bean thickness and drill pattern. And that is before we factor Del Potro. Secondly we are more likely to look for the answers to our game in a racquet where as a pro is more likely to drill or re work there strokes. This is a simple fact.....where I live there is a challenger that has been here the last 3 years, and it is amazing to watch what they are working on when they practice. Sometimes is is so nuanced that it is hard to even notice. Last year I watched Tommy Paul work on taking the ball early to his backhand for about 20 mins nothing but that. Are we going to do that? At my club at least the answer is no. Most will do a clinic or two with a pro, maybe some live ball, and a private every now and than. Lastly because we can!!!!! Having a new racquet is as close to the first day of school we get as adults. I personally kept with my Pro Staff 95s for 4 years. Mostly because I have gotten so used to it, I had good results and I had even gotten good enough the last few years to fully take advantage of the racquet. But I have been demo'ing racquets as I personally feel I need a bigger racquet, slightly easier power, and something that will help bridge the gap as I move up in rankings (USTA). I may even be going to the darkside as I have fallen in love with the Babolat Pure Drive +.


**Disclaimer**
I have not read every response so I am likely regurgitating some of the same points....
 
#42
Its a fallacy to get customers to buy new crap.
Mercedes benz had a crisis in the 80s when their 190 diesels were lasting 1.5 million miles or more before breaking down. The crisis was that nobody was buying new mercedes. People kept their 190 diesels forever and didnt feel like tossing such a reliable little tank. Racquet companies are in a similar pile of ****, because carbon fiber resin lasts forever if you dont abuse the hell out of it. Racquet makers have to convince customers that racquets improve every year like microchips, when in reality they dont. I predict other companies besides wilson are going to be forced to follow wilsons lead with the rf97 and sell the sacred pro stocks. From what ive seen the rf97 has sold well, despite all the “your not good enough hurr durr” loser naysayers. It seems obvious too. There are likely a huge number of players who strongly desire to play with the same exact racquet their idol plays with, even if they play 2% worse than they would with a more intermediate racquet. Most who want to use the pro racquet will probably feel more content with it than intermediate sticks for deep psychological reasons and not want to switch even if they knew they played worse with it. Very important in this regard, is that for those who arent paid or on the verge of being paid to play tennis, HOW GOOD YOU ARE REALLY DOESNT MATTER. If 3 aging players with intermediate racquets play a few percentage points better than the 4th player who uses an rf97, and the 4th player has a very enjoyable feeling of having a real connection with their favorite pro, if this player feels, either realistically or via placebo effect, that their pro racquet lets them play more similarly to their favorite pro, who do you think is having the most fun out on the court? The 3 players who know their racquets are grandma twigs no pro would touch with a ten foot pole? Not likely. If youre not gonna earn a living through tennis, then the winner truly is the player who is having the most fun. All you rf97 naysayers seem to think that it matters or that anybody cares your global ranking is 29,900 as opposed to 30,000. But people literally couldnt care less. They dont make trophy ribbons that go up to 29,900th place for a reason. If head wants to shut people like me up they need to quietly start selling djokers pro stock to some select vendors. Worked better than expected for wilson, and youre gonna have to do it eventually anyway, so just get it over with already.
 
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#44
I fully switch rarely, been playing with same stick for 5 years now, vcore.tour.g
Butttt, I try all new rakets that come out,, I luv trying new rakets,, and yes color is a big selection factor,,,,

but after trying a new raket for a week, I go back to my old rakets and immediatly feel right at home..
having said that,,, anyone know where I can try the new red.rf raket :)

So many rakets!, So little time!..
 
#45
Bottom line
If you don’t pick a stick and stay with it your game will suffer. And the more you change the Moyer game will suffer. I have personally after many years of changing sticks stayed with one stick since last spring. And my game has gotten better in every way because of staying with a stick
 

McLovin

Hall of Fame
#46
I fully switch rarely, been playing with same stick for 5 years now, vcore.tour.g
Butttt, I try all new rakets that come out,, I luv trying new rakets,, and yes color is a big selection factor,,,,

but after trying a new raket for a week, I go back to my old rakets and immediatly feel right at home..
Yeah, that's where I'm at now. I've bought/sold multiple frames over the past few years. Demoed countless others. Yet I keep coming back to my Fischer Black Granite Pro No 1s. I'll likely never sell them.
 
#47
Bottom line
If you don’t pick a stick and stay with it your game will suffer. And the more you change the Moyer game will suffer. I have personally after many years of changing sticks stayed with one stick since last spring. And my game has gotten better in every way because of staying with a stick
100% this, you lose muscle memory, your range/feel, basically anything important in tennis. The better your game, the worse it is.
 

AMGF

Professional
#48
Should I tell him that RF doesn't play with the RF97A?

Edit to add: Well not a store RF97A.
 
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