Tennis is now one of the most popular indoor and outdoor sports, with many players taking it up as a career and millions more for fun. The glamor associated with modern era tennis players such as Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Serena Williams, Maria Sharapova, Venus Williams, and Novak Djokovic among others has made this sport very popular, especially among the youth. As a parent, you should not be surprised if your kid comes asking for a tennis racket and other tennis accessories. This is now a cool sport and many youngsters are taking it up.
The big money associated with the open tournaments has also solidified the place of tennis as a top sport across the globe. For instance, a report in the Mirror UK says the prize money for the 2017 Wimbledon was $2.9million, which Roger Federer and Garbine Muguruza took home. The 2017 U.S open winners Rafael Nadal and Sloane Stephens took home an incredible $3.7m according to a Business Insider Report.
Well, there are many other reasons to play tennis, top among them being health benefits. A game of tennis helps maintain health, fitness, strength and agility and it is ideal for socialization. It increases aerobic capacities, helps in muscle toning and building strength and flexibility, improves reaction times and bone density, lowers body fat, improves metabolic function and heart rate and lowers blood pressure. It is ideal for young players as it helps in bone development.
Choosing the Best Tennis Racquet as a Beginner
Whether you are just getting started in this sport or you are buying a racket for your active kid, it is important to know how to choose the right product. With the increasing interest in the sport, many companies are making tennis racquets and choosing one can be tricky. The quality of racket you choose as a beginner will largely determine your initial experience with the sport.
Some of the factors to consider when buying these products include:
- Material – A large number of beginner racquets are made from aluminum. This is a highly flexible material and it is lightweight, making it ideal for a beginner. It allows you to get the feel of a racquet in different types of games and you can learn more about the rules without having to wear yourself out due to the racquet weight. If you have been playing for some time or you feel like you will advance quickly, a graphite racquet is a better choice.
- Power – The racquet choice gives you the power you get and this is determined by the head size, frame flexibility and string tension. The larger the head of your racquet, the more the power while greater frame flexibility improves shock absorption. The head size is crucial for a beginner as it helps in ball control.
- Racquet length – With a longer racquet, you enjoy more reach and leverage but for a beginner, this can affect maneuverability. A very long racquet reduces flexibility and it is important to choose the length based on your height. For very short beginner players, extra length can go a long way in improving your serve. The idea is to avoid selecting a very long racquet as it becomes virtually impossible to play.
- Weight – This is another major consideration when comparing the best tennis racquet options for beginners. While a lightweight racquet might seem like the best idea, you should remember that much of the shock of collision will be transferred to your arm. This can lead to pain or even injury. The ideal weight for a beginner is between 10 and 11.5 ounces, which is enough to absorb the shock from the ball collision with the racquet.
- Balance – The best racquet should provide good distribution of weight; the debate on whether a good racquet is one with more weight towards the head (head-heavy) or towards the butt (head-light) continues unabated. Head-light racquets offer better maneuverability while head-heavy racquets offer more stability.
- Play-testing – If you can test your racquet before buying, the better for you. Consider whether the racquet feels solid on impact with the ball, whether you are getting annoying sounds or vibrations, whether it feels too heavy on serve and overhead motion, and whether one racquet is more maneuverable than another.
- The brand – Take time to research the name behind the racquet because some companies are renowned for their expertise in making high-quality tennis accessories. Look for a reputable brand with positive reviews and recommendations by professionals.
The Best Tennis Racquet Options for Beginners
As the sport becomes more popular, especially among the youth, sporting brands are bringing in incredible products to the market. It is important to remember tennis racquets differ greatly both in terms of construction and their performance. The following are some of the best racquets for beginners and they should be the yardstick when choosing what to buy:
- Wilson WRT32230U4-Parent – The Wilson Tour Slam Adult Strung is considered the ideal beginner tennis racquet due to its large head, which makes for easier ball control. It is more affordable and flexible, making it ideal for new players who are learning the ropes.
- The Head TiS5 Comfort Zone – If you are looking for the best lightweight beginner racquet, you have the best here. This racquet is recommended if you plan to quickly transition to being an intermediate player. It offers more power, which is what you need as you advance your game level.
- Wilson Energy Extra Large (Wilson WRT32170U) – This racket offers the best value for money among beginner tennis racquets and also delivers great performance. The frame and strings are made from durable materials and the height coupled with the lightweight feel make this the ultimate tennis racquet.
There are other great racquets worth mention including Wilson [K] Zero Strung Performance Value Tennis Racket, Wilson Federer Adult Strung Tennis Racket and Head Liquid metal 4 Tennis Racquet among others. All these rackets are optimized to make it easier for new players to enjoy the game. Take time to find out more about each product and consider their features before buying.