Choice of grip is a bit of a controversial issue among TheTennisBros.com. Some of us swear by the Wilson Pro Overgrip and others are devout Tourna grip users. We might make it seem like those are the only two grips on the market sometimes, but there are so many options in this department.
Everyone has a slightly different preference when it comes to grips. Some people like to get as close to the handle as possible, some like to bulk the grip out. Some want comfort, some want grip. We’ve all got different games and we’ve all got different hands, so it is important to find the grip that suits you.
That brings us to today’s review!
Kirschbaum isn’t the biggest name in the world, but they produce some high-quality strings and a couple of grips, one of which I got to try today. Kirschbaum is a family company out of Germany that specializes in high-end strings and helped pioneer the use of polyester in strings.
Their Touch It Overgrip looks and feels similar to the Wilson Pro Overgrip (something that’s always a good sign) but is a little bit thinner. At 0.5mm thick, this grip is going to allow you to get super close to the handle, adding to the feel of the racket.
Picking the grip up, it has a nice level of tac – not too sticky, but not too smooth and it does feel brilliant. You can really feel the contours of the handle with this grip, so if that’s something that you look for then you’ll love this grip.
The all-important question still remained though, how would the Kirschbaum stand up to the sweat test? You can’t really tell what a grip is like until you’ve put it through a sweaty game of tennis. When the pressure is high, and your hand is slick, can you still hold on to your racket?
Many a time, I’ve loved the feel of a grip when I’m just warming up, but when things start to get a bit more intense, it just becomes impossible to hold on to. I was hoping this wouldn’t be the case as I took the Kirschbaum out for a quick set.
Comfort – 9/10
My first impressions of the Kirschbaum were really positive. It feels great in your hand, with a good balance between tack and softness. It is very similar to the Wilson Pro Overgrip in this aspect. I slightly prefer the Wilson because it’s slightly thicker which gives you an extra bit of padding and shock absorption. If you prefer the thinner style grip though, then this could be what you’re looking for.
For me, the white overgrip is the only choice you could possibly make (I’m boring), but like the Wilson grips, you can get a selection of color choices. From green through to orange, yellow, and pink, you can have your grip reflect your personality perfectly, and you’ll know at least your hand is going to be comfortable (even if your doubles partner isn’t so comfortable with your color selection).
I’ve given the Kirschbaum Touch It Overgrip a 9 out of 10 for comfort. It’s not quite the 11/10 I gave the Wilson, but it’s one of the most comfortable out there.
Absorbent – 7.5/10
This is perhaps the area where many people will have problems with this grip. It’s not bad at absorbing moisture, but for the Tourna users out there, the Kirschbaum might not cut the mustard.
This overgrip is so thin that I found eventually the moisture soaked through and at this point it lost a lot of its tack. I wasn’t particularly worried about the racket flying out of my hand on a serve, but I did feel like it was twisting in my hand a bit on forehands.
The Wilson Pro Overgrip is a little bit more absorbent than the Kirschbaum and I think this is mainly because of its thickness. Obviously, if you’re someone who has a lot of problems holding onto their grip, then looking at something like the Tourna might be a better option for you.
I still think this is an excellent grip, and it doesn’t do a bad job at absorbing sweat. It’s just there are a couple of grips out there that are better at it. For it its thinness, the Kirschbaum is very effective at what it does, and if sweaty hands aren’t a problem for you then this is certainly a good option.
I gave the Kirschbaum a 7.5 out of 10 for absorption. It’s somewhere around the middle of the road, but considering how thin it is, it does a good job.
Thinness – 9/10
Every time I get to this point in a grip review, I regret the fact that I got way too carried away with the Wilson Pro Overgrip review and gave it a 10 for thinness. We’re a little bit competitive over grips and I just wanted to show what a good grip the Wilson is (Tom gave the Tourna a 5 for comfort which is equally crazy).
The problem is, when you get a grip like the Kirschbaum Touch It Overgrip, which is thinner than the Wilson, it’s a bit hard to come up with a score. The Kirschbaum is quite thin compared to the Wilson and deserves a true score of 9 out of 10.
Some people love the sensation of a thin grip, but for me, there is such thing as too thin. You get to feel very connected with this grip, but at the same time, you do pick up a few more vibrations than with a thicker grip. If you like that feeling, then this is an absolutely brilliant grip in all aspects.
I personally like something a bit thicker, but still appreciated the feel of the Kirschbaum. It’s very deserving of its 9.5 out of 10.
Overall – 8/10
If I was to switch my overgrip, this would be one I looked at. I would probably use two overgrips just to give me a little extra cushioning, but other than that, I think this grip plays great. The one area where is could do a little bit better is absorption. However, it’s not a deal breaker.
I’d say I’m a 5 on the Andy Roddick sweat scale and I didn’t have any real problems with the Kirschbaum overgrip. If I was more of a 7 on the scale, then I do think I would be looking at something a bit more absorbent.
If your hand has got the sticking power for this grip though, you are going to enjoy great comfort, good longevity and one of the thinnest grips out there. Nothing beats a pristine white overgrip, apart from a super comfortable pristine white overgrip, and that’s what you get with the Kirschbaum.
I gave this grip and an overall score of 8 out of 10. It did extremely well in most of the categories but was just brought down by absorbency. This is one of the most important aspects of a grip though, so I’ve had to bring the score down to an 8. Still, an excellent score and a very good grip that’s well worth a try.
Review by: Will