Smart Tips Main Menu

How to Buy a Tennis Racquet

Power or Control?

When buying a racquet, you must decide whether you want one that will provide you with power, control or a blend of the two.

If youíre a beginner, you should play with a racquet thatís light enough so itís easy to swing and powerful enough so it adds pop to your shots. Go with a racquet that:

  • Weighs between 9 and 10 ounces
  • Has an oversize head measuring 107 to 110 square inches (which will give you more power and improve your chances of making solid contact with the ball)
  • Has a beam width (the thickness of the frame) of at least 25 millimeters. A wide beam makes the frame stiff and, therefore, powerful.

If youíre an advanced player and can generate your own juice on the court, itís a different story. Youíre looking for more control, and you can get it with a racquet thatís heavier (over 10.5 ounces) with a smaller head and thinner beam.

If youíre an intermediate player, try a racquet that offers a blend of power and control, falling between the heavy, thin-beamed racquets and the lighter and bigger power sticks. ďFor most levels of play, you need a racquet that isn't too powerful and yet isn't all about control,Ē says Bruce Levine, TENNIS Magazineís racquet adviser, ďbecause power wonít mean a thing if you canít keep the ball in the court, and all the control in the world does you no good if you canít get enough gas on your shots.Ē

Go find a Racquet