Volkl V Feel 9 Racket Review
The Volkl V Feel 9 is a real players racket. It is a play test that I was very much looking forward to, as this stick really fits my specs down to the ground.
It is a weighty racket that is stiff, yet offers a good level of comfort.
It delivers a good amount of punch from the slightly larger 100sq in head compared to the previous version, whilst the head light balance makes it reasonably maneuverable for such a solid feeling racket.
The 71 stiffness rating means there is virtually no loss of energy transfer between the racket and the ball, meaning the ball will really ping off the strings.
Again, the head light balance and medium swing weight made it easy to swing the racket quickly through the ball, so hitting big with this racket came naturally.
Volkl has stuck with the tried and tested Super G grommet system which increases the rebound effect from the string bed, again helping with energy transfer.
The Volkl V Feel 9 was a stable racket to hit with also.
That high level of stiffness makes the racket feel rock solid on contact, so you can have confidence that the racket will plow through the ball with force.
On the flip side, this wasn’t the most delicate racket I’ve ever played with. Although this is to be expected given the stiffness rating.
At times I felt it was not quite as precise as I would have liked, but the brute force with which you can strike the ball means that even if you hit to bigger targets, you can still hit through your opponent.
If you have a fast swing and want to maximize the power you are able to generate, whilst creating a lot of spin, this would be a great choice for you.
Overall, the Volkl Feel 9 was a well dampened, but firm racket that is ideal for a player looking for power from their stick.
It is not necessarily optimised for touch and feel shots, but it is incredibly solid and one of the stiffest rackets on the market today.
So, if you like the feel of a rock solid racket that will allow you to redirect fast oncoming balls with ease, the V Feel 9 is definitely worth considering.
7.5out of 10
Volkl have worked hard with the V Feel range of rackets to make them more power friendly, whilst adding extra dampening so the rackets are more accessible to a wider range of players.
Naturally, using a racket with a 71 stiffness rating would not be the most arm friendly choice out there, but the new V-Cell helps by improving responsiveness and comfort.
Volkl have also engineered VTex silicone into the butt cap of the racket, which adds 25% more shock absorption to the grip over the previous model.
This means that, despite the significant increase in stiffness, you won’t feel as many vibrations through your arm.
I can certainly vouch for this, as I was expecting a very shaky playing experience from the V Feel 9. However, it was a lot better dampened than I thought it would be.
The racket really rewarded big hitting, the ball seemed to shoot through the court with ease, which is something I was not used to.
The open 16×19 string pattern also meant I could trust the ball to dip inside the baseline, even when I ramped up my racket head speed.
I was able to produce a heavy ball off the ground, particularly on my forehand side.
This pushed my opponent way back behind the baseline and meant I could step in and finish the points with a crushing, flattened out, attacking ball.
The V Feel 9 was a surprisingly spin friendly racket, a trait that also helped with controlling the immense power.
The racket was great at keeping the ball deep consistently, which gave me a lot of confidence on the court.
That being said, whilst it did reward faster swings, the Volkl V Feel 9 could be a bit lackluster on bunted or slower shots.
I felt I could still push the ball deep when I wanted to, but the lack of feel meant it was difficult to modulate my inputs.
So I sometimes found myself second guessing how hard to hit a defensive shot in particular, as the ball had a tendency to fly on me.
6.5out of 10
The stiff nature of the Volkl V Feel 9 made it incredibly solid to volley with.
If you are the type of player that likes to attack their volleys and move into the net aggressively, then this is a good choice for you.
Again, even though this was a well dampened racket, the stiffness did make it a little difficult to know exactly how much power to add to my volleys.
This wasn’t a problem when I was on top of the net putting away a ball with pace, but when I was approaching the net and trying to hit a low volley deep in the court for example, the racket did feel a bit numb.
Where I really struggled with the Volkl V Feel 9 was with touch chots around the net.
The stiff, powerful nature of the racket made it difficult to take pace out of the ball and I found the ball did pop up more than I would have liked when I was trying to hit stop volleys.
This is pretty much unavoidable with this sort of racket. Despite the good dampening, it was not a great racket for carving out angles volleys, which I like to do around the net.
8out of 10
Serving with the Volkl V Feel 9 is when the racket really came into its own.
The additional power I was able to generate with the racket meant I could step into the court with ease after my serve and more often than not attack with my forehand straight away.
This again inspired confidence in my game and helped me feel like John Isner on court!
However, it did take me a bit of time to get dialed in in terms of feel with the racket.
7.5out of 10
I really enjoyed returning with this racket as it did a lot of the work for me!
It felt rock solid on blocked returns, meaning I could stick the racket in the way of the oncoming ball and it would be pushed back deep almost every time.
This also helped when I was caught out of position and needed to generate a deep return with little to no backswing.
The racket really flatters you when returning, as the larger sweet spot means that even if your timing is a bit off, you can still produce a solid, deep ball.
The only thing I would say about the racket is that it again did take a bit of time to feel dialled in. playing with such a stiff frame felt great, but is not something I am so used to.
Therefore, make sure to really warm up well and get used to the racket for a while before expecting to play your best tennis, if you take this racket for a spin.
7.5out of 10
All in all, I really enjoyed playing with the Volkl V Feel 9. It offered a lot of easy power and great access to dipping spin, which gave me a lot of confidence to play aggressively.
The racket stood out on serves and returns, whilst I also felt I could hit a heavier ball on my forehand than I was used to.
If you are a player looking to get as much punch out of your game as possible, then you should definitely play test this racket.
It may not be the most touch friendly racket out there, but it is well dampened and will do a lot of the heavy lifting for you when it comes to adding power to your game!
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