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Choose your racket

 

How to choose the right beach tennis racquet


This following text offers basic advice on choosing the right beach tennis racquet


A general description of the two basic concepts:

Racquets for aggressive play

The following features are important for high ball speed and offensive play

  • hard materials
  • racquet weight in head
  • smaller sweet spot
  • relatively heavy racquet


Racquets for ball control and defensive play

The following features are important for ball control and defensive play

  • soft materials
  • racquet weight in handle
  • larger sweet spot
  • relatively light racquet


Racquet length

The maximum racquet length allowed by ITF rules is 50 cm. In general, longer racquets provide greater leverage on the serve – greater impact and a longer reach. On the other hand, shorter racquets are easier to manoeuvre, especially for women and children.

Racquet width

Racquet width is also regulated by ITF rules. All of the racquets offered in our shop conform to these regulations. We recommend racquets with an average width: players should have the feeling they are holding something substantial but easily controllable. It is also essential for rims to be rounded, as square rims are loud and difficult to play (however, racquet shape is a matter of personal preference).

Racquet balance point

Head heavy racquets generate greater ball speed, though at the expense of manoeuvrability. On the other hand, head light racquets are easier to control but produce lower ball speed.

In general it holds true that head heavy racquets = greater ball speed, whereas head light racquets = easier manoeuvrability.

Sweet spot

SweetspotThe sweet spot is the part of the impact surface that provides optimal control and power. The sweet spot is essentially elliptical in shape. The sweet spot is located in the upper half of the racquet (best seen in the worn area where the colour has changed).

Stroke strength is connected to the surface of the racquet head. A large head offers greater stroke force, a larger striking surface and more forgiveness with miss-hits. On the other hand, a smaller racquet head provides greater ball control.

Typically, the more advanced a player is, the smaller racquet head they use (unlike beginners, better players usually don’t have trouble reaching the ball; precision takes precedence over power)

Beach tennis racquet construction

The most important factor is the material from which the racquet is made. The qualities of the racquet such as flexibility, weight, sweet spot, etc. depend most on the inner and outer materials utilized.

The outer material of the racquet is usually graphite, Kevlar, fibreglass and various alloys such as graphite and titanium or Kevlar.

The inner material, typically hardened foam, is just as important as the outer material, if not more so, especially for flexibility and stroke strength.

Racquet surface

Currently available on the market are racquets with small grains and a smooth finish. A coarse surface is better for greater control and rotation, which is mainly used when serving.

Racquet flexibility

Racquet flexibility depends mainly on the fill of the racquet head. This material has a determinative character (naturally along with the surface material) for racquet strength and elasticity. Racquets with greater flexibility typically give the ball more energy on impact (the racquets are more powerful, though at the expense of ball control, since the ball remains in contact with the racquet longer). On the other hand, stiffer racquets absorb the energy from contact with the ball. A defensive style of play is easier with a stiffer racquet.

Sweet spot

The sweet spot is the part of the impact surface that provides optimal control and power. The sweet spot is essentially elliptical in shape. The sweet spot is located in the upper half of the racquet (best seen in the worn area where the colour has changed). Stroke strength is connected to the surface of the racquet head. A large head offers greater stroke force, a larger striking surface and more forgiveness with miss-hits. On the other hand, a smaller racquet head provides greater ball control. Typically, the more advanced a player is, the smaller racquet head they use (unlike beginners, better players usually don’t have trouble reaching the ball; precision takes precedence over power)

Racquet weight

Racquet weight, usually in the range of 320-340 (360) grams, is an extremely important factor.   Racquet weight has a substantial impact on the feel of play. Heavier racquets are generally more stable, stiffer, more powerful and transfer less vibration to the player’s hand.  Lighter racquets are easier to control and enable players to swing harder and to prepare for the shot quicker. Lighter racquets are not always better. This characteristic is highly individual for each player. Racquet qualities depend a great deal on the combination of weight and balance. Heavier racquets are for harder and precise strokes; light racquets are more comfortable and better suited for a defensive style of play.

Recreational players typically choose lighter racquets for better comfort and a more enjoyable game.

On the other hand, more advanced players tend to use medium weight and heavy racquets.