Here at TheTennisBros.com, we tend to shy away from “Best Racket” lists because we find them a bit arbitrary. There are so many good rackets out there and different players will find they gel better with different rackets. That’s why we’ve set up our custom fitting service, so we can give people a personalized suggestion, however, we thought we’d also give the intermediate players out there a little extra advice.
So, what we thought we would do is give you some advice on what we think you should be looking for in an intermediate tennis racket, and then point you towards some of our favorite rackets.
Without further ado, here’s our “sort of” list of best tennis rackets for intermediate players.
What Should You Be Looking For?
With your beginner racket you wanted something that made it easy to learn the basics and get the ball back over to the other side of the court. With your intermediate racket though, you want something that gives you a little bit more performance to try and get the most out of the strokes you’ve already developed.
There should still be a big focus on playability though, and you need a racket that’s going to help you to continue to improve your strokes.
So, it’s really a balancing act of easy playability and performance. Like any racket, this is going to depend greatly on your standard of play, style of play, age, and fitness levels, so it’s all about finding the racket that suits you.
Weight is one of the first things you want to consider when you’re looking at getting a new racket. Lighter rackets are easier to maneuver, but as your swings improve, you’re going to find you can get more power, spin, and control from a heavier racket.
How heavy you go will depend on your strength, stamina, and ability, but for most intermediate players, it’s likely they to fall somewhere between 285g and 305g. There are lots of great rackets in this category that blend modern comfort with great performance and that’s exactly what you want from an intermediate racket.
You’ve also got to remember that you’re only going to get better (hopefully), so you need a racket with plenty of performance.
When you’re a beginner you want a racket that makes it nice and easy to hit the middle of the strings, offers good comfort, and easy power, and a large head size is good for this. However, as you become more comfortable in your swings, you’re going to get a little bit more concise, and this means you can go for a smaller head size.
The benefit of this is precision and control. The smaller head size just gives you that bit more control over the ball, giving you a lot more possibilities.
The majority of rackets in this category are going to be 98sq inch or 100 sq inch, but there are also good options up to around 104 sq inches. Again, this is very much a personal decision based on what you feel comfortable with, but as you improve your game the benefits of the really big heads tend to diminish.
100 sq inches is probably the most common head size you see, so it’s worth starting there and seeing how you gel with it.
The balance of your racket is something slightly more technical, so you probably don’t need to read too much into this.
In general, the more headlight the racket is, the easier it is to maneuver, but all rackets are engineered to provide a good balance of maneuverability and performance anyway. Again, it’s more about finding the racket that feels right, and the balance will only play a small part in this.
Power vs Control
I always find this is an important point with any new racket. You obviously want to hit with power, but to get good power, you’ve got to have an element of control from your racket. The better your strokes get, and the more power you produce naturally, the more you want a racket with control so you can unleash all that power into the court.
So, you might find you’re drawn to a racket because it’s really powerful, but it’s not necessarily the best option for you. You’ve got to evaluate how good you are at generating power and find a racket that’s going to allow you to get the most out of it.
TennisBros.com’s Best Tennis Rackets for Intermediate Players
It can be a bit messy trying to break rackets down into categories and saying one is better than another because it’s a very personal opinion. However, we’ve tried to put some of our favorite intermediate rackets into categories such as power, control, and spin, and as always you can click the links for our in-depth analysis on each racket.
Our Favorite Intermediate Rackets for Power
You’re probably going to see this racket in just about every list you look at because it’s so well known for power. This racket never seems to go out of fashion, and that’s because it’s got a lot to offer.
It’s easy to maneuver, gives you lots of easy power, and plenty of access to spin and there’s a lot of players out there looking for all three of these. There’s always a tradeoff in tennis, and you sacrifice in feel and control a little bit to get that power, but if that’s what you’re game is missing, then this is a great racket.
For players who aren’t as comfortable creating power and spin just yet, this is a good way to give you the extra boost you need.
First off, who doesn’t want to play with a racket named the Beast? Asides from a great name, the Beast 100 also gives you great access to power and spin.
It’s a comfortable racket that has surprisingly good touch considering the power at its disposal, and it’s very popular with intermediate players.
This stick has a lot of power so it’s not one for players who crave a bit more control, but, for that injection of immediate power, this is one to take a look at.
This is a racket we really enjoyed, and gives a great power boost, plenty of spin, and still doesn’t skimp too much on control. We find many of Yonex’s rackets to be very maneuverable and this one is no different.
Out of the three rackets in this category, we’d probably go with this one, but again, it’s going to be a personal decision. It’s also nice to pretend like your Australian maverick Nick Kyrgios who reps the Ezone and crush balls all around the court.
Our Favorite Intermediate Rackets for Spin
One thing you can always rely on from Volkl is good comfort and feel, and with the V-Feel 8, you also get great access to spin. We found this stick was really a spin machine and it allowed us to get lots of revolutions on the ball and put our opponents under pressure.
If you struggle with your topspin, then it can be very beneficial to get a racket that focuses on spin and that’s what you get with the V-Feel 8.
It’s maneuverable, comfortable, and has tons of spin potential.
If you’re looking for maneuverability and speed in abundance, then look no further than the VCore 98.
We loved this stick, and it certainly gives you the ability to whip up the back of the ball and get it spinning through the air. Developing your spin is an important part of improving your game and the Yonex VCore 98 gives you a helping hand with this.
Our Favorite All Round Intermediate Rackets
The Clash range was recently introduced with the goal of making a more comfortable racket and the Clash 100 certainly achieves that. This stick has a little bit of everything, combining good performance with easy playability and wonderful comfort.
You’ve got plenty of power with the Clash, but you feel like you’re still in control, and when you need to hit those delicate shots, you’ve got all the feel you need.
If you’re looking for a strong intermediate racket, then this is one you’ve got to take a look at.
This is another racket that’s wonderfully well balanced and offers a good combination of power, control, and spin. How you choose to use it is up to you, but with the Radical MP, you’ve got all the tools you need to play some good tennis.
It’s easy to maneuver which makes it easy to keep improving your game, but it’s also got the kind of performance levels you need in the here and now.
If you’re looking for a racket around the 290g mark that does everything, then look no further than the Prince Phantom 100x.
We absolutely love the Phantom range, and it’s hard to beat for its wonderfully buttery feel. That’s not the only thing that’s good about this racket though, and you’re sure to find lots of qualities you like.
One of our favorite all round rackets in this weight category.
Our Favorite Intermediate Rackets for Control
This racket is such a good racket, and it would certainly appear on a list of the best rackets for advanced players as well. It’s good at everything, but it has a great emphasis on control and really allows you to swing hard at the ball, knowing you’ve got the ability to tame it into court.
It’s a great feeling when you can put the ball exactly where you want and that’s the kind of control this stick gives you.
At 305g, this racket is a very manageable weight, easy to swing, but yet, it gives brilliant performance.
Many of the same things we said about the Pure Strike can be said about the Blade. It’s a great all round racket that will work as well for intermediate players as it does advanced players. It’s got wonderful feel and control, and is a great racket to play with.
If you’re someone who seeks control from their racket, then it’s one that you’ve got to take a look at.
There’s not really such a thing as a best racket, but there is a best racket for you. This means you’ve got to think about your game, and decide the qualities you want from a racket.
There are a number of factors that are going to decide this, including the weight of the racket, head size, balance, string pattern, your fitness levels, your tennis ability, and your style of play.
We’ve listed some of our favorite intermediate rackets, so it’s about matching those rackets up with the characteristics you need.
If you’re stuck and need some pointers then we’re always here to help!
Article by: Will