Tennis Racquet Balance Explained

There are three kinds of balance: Head Heavy (HH), Head Light (HL), and Evenly Balanced Racquets. Each of these variety has varying effects on your performance. In this article we will explain how each of these differ from one another and what are the benefits you as a player will get. First, let’s understand what they mean. Imagine you are trying to balance a racquet (of a standard length of 27 inches) horizontally at the very centre of the length (at 13.5”). If the weight is distributed evenly, and the centre of mass lies at this centre point, the racquet is termed evenly balanced (or simply ‘Balanced’). Similarly, if the more weight is concentrated near the hoop (Head), it is said to be Heady Heavy and in the same fashion, if the handle is heavy compared to head, that is Head Light. Now that we have understood the Balance of a racquet, let’s discuss how it affects your performance. But before that, please note that the head being heavy or light is not directly related to the weight of the whole stick. For example, a racquet can be heavy, and at the same time have a light head. Head Heavy Having head heavy will increase the power of your shot by a noticeable degree with the same given effort. In a way, the ball is impacting against more mass, thus a strong return is possible. Increased Torsional stability. The head weight being heavy, when ball comes in contact with the stick, there is less torsional movement. The stick is not going to twist or turn as much meaning more torsional stability. You also get a good amount of control as a by product of torsional stability. Increased control will improve your performance marginally. Head Light If you wish to swing your racquet really fast, then you will be better off playing with a light head. It is easy to swing it fast given its low mass in the head. Light head implies heavier handle. Handle in such stick’s tend to absorb a good amount of shock. This will reduce the overall shock on the player’s arms. Players with arm problems can benefit from light heads while still enjoying the game. Light heads are quite stable. Having a heavy handle makes it easy to carry and swing the racket in all directions without exhaustive effort. Balanced It provides a good mix of benefits from the two types mentioned above. An evenly balanced stick has weight distributed evenly. That implies that it can produce good amount of power. And for the same reason, it can also prevent vibrations and shock quite effectively. Although it cannot be as good as HH in terms of producing powerful shots, (and as effective as HL in terms of shock absorption), players who wish to have a medium requirement of both these benefits will be suited best with Balanced Racquets. Now that you have understood Balance, you will be able to make a better decision when buying a new racquet.

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