In order to give our algorithm validity, we feel it is necessary to explain the process behind the answers to our tennis racket questions.
An Explanation of Our Tennis Racket Questions
This quiz comprises of nine questions, all of which are vital to determining the perfect racket for you. Below is a copy of all the questions, and the reasons behind why they are so important.
- What is your age?
Your age is a crucial piece of information which needs to be known to determine the best racket for your game. If you are a younger player then you will require a lighter racket, possibly with a shorter racket length. An adult player (in the 18-40 category) will need a full-sized racket. Older players often find over-sized rackets with larger head sizes support them as they age, as this bigger racket helps them to make contact with the ball. Essentially, age decides the size and weight of the racket that is most suited to you.
- What is your price range?
Quite simply, this question is in place to ensure you stay within your budget.
- My speed on the court is?
It goes without saying that a tennis racket will not increase your foot speed or make you quicker. However, if you are fairly slow around the court, a large racket with a big head can be of assistance. With this racket, you will have a greater reach when you stretch to return a ball, and the sweet-spot of the racket will be bigger – therefore your footwork does not need to be quick and precise when you are positioning yourself before a shot. Conversely, if you are fast around the court, a mid-sized racket is an excellent choice, as you will be able to move your feet well and thereby benefit from the control that this type of racket offers.
- How would you describe your physical condition?
This tennis racket question links to the speed question because your fitness will affect your speed on court. Also, if you are not as physically fit as you would like to be, a heavy racket could be harder for you to swing. Particularly this could show in a long match. When you tire, your feet can stop moving, your arm can drop and many people cut their swing short before making contact with the ball. A lighter racket however would not prevent these issues from occurring, but at least minimize the effect. A player in good physical condition would have no problem with a racket of above average heft.
- What characteristics best describe your swing style?
A player with a short/compact swing is in need of a heavy and powerful racket, because they will struggle to develop power from their own racket speed. In contrast, a player with a long/fast swing will gain most improvement from a light racket which they will find more maneuverable and mobile for them to whip and quickly swing through.
- How frequently do you play?
This question determines what style of racket you need, beginner or advanced. Someone who plays more frequently will need a durable racket, most likely with more control and less power. Someone who plays less frequently will want a racket with more power and a larger sweet spot and perhaps a more open string pattern.
- How many years have you been playing tennis?
This allows a slight insight into your tennis ability before the next question. Generally, a player with 10+ years of experience will be better than one with 0-2 years experience, and so the former player may be in need of a more advanced racket. Moreover, anybody new to tennis is advised to use a light racket.
- Tennis players use an official rating system called NTRP for determining their skill level. What is your NTRP level?
Rackets today are designed for players of different abilities. Big and over-sized rackets are made for beginners to ease the process of hitting the ball; intermediates use mid-plus rackets which add power and control to their shots at a time when their game is developing and they will be beginning to obtain these attributes by themselves; and small, mid-size rackets are appropriate for players at the top of the game to hit their shots with maximum precision. Your NTRP level will determine which category of these rackets you will fall into.
- What is your preferred style of play?
Not only are rackets created for players of all characteristics, but also they are put together with different aspects of the game in mind. For instance, many rackets have open string patterns (with more space between strings) so that the racquet can bite the ball to produce spin. Similarly, light rackets are made for net play to allow for quick hands, and heavy, chunky rackets offer more force behind the ball for greater power. As a result, by knowing your style, this racket finder can help you play the game exactly the way you want to.
- What is your weight?
Of all the tennis questions, why would we ask this one? Well, believe it or not, your body weight does play a factor in the racket you choose. Those lighter than 115 or heavier than 220 will need a racket swing weight appropriate for them. If you weighed more than 220, you wouldn’t want a swing weight that is less than 80% of those on the market. So given your answer to this question, we adjusted the algorithm results accordingly.
- Do you have now, or have you had a history of, elbow or arm injuries?
The answer to this question affects the racket flexibility. If you have had a history of arm problems, we would strongly not recommend a stiff racket.
There are certainly more tennis racket questions to be added to our algorithm as time goes on, but for now, we are very pleased with the overwhelming positive responses we have got from beginner to very experienced players alike.