The tennis racket – the crown jewel of your tennis equipment and your partner in your eternal quest for improvements. We lift our tennis rackets aloft when we win and we throw them to the floor when we’re frustrated (although we’re immediately repentant and sorry to have treated our friend in such a manner.) It’s what helps us create magic, and enjoy the sport that we love.

Seriously though, your tennis racket is a particularly important piece of equipment because it has a say in your performance, but most importantly, it’s your first line of defense against injuries.

There are all kinds of different rackets out there, each aimed at different styles of player and different standards of player. There’s weight to consider, string pattern, balance, swingweight, length, grip size, and myriad other things to take into consideration.

To put it bluntly, picking out your ideal tennis racket can be a minefield. You’ve seen Roger Federer on TV and you love his tennis, so why not get Roger Federer’s racket, it’s got to be good right? Unfortunately, it’s not that easy. If you go out and buy the Fed’s racket you’re likely to come home with something you can barely swing, and unfortunately, this is a mistake many people make when it comes to tennis rackets.

At TheTennisBros.com we want to make everything to do with tennis rackets easy. Walking into a tennis shop and choosing a tennis racket can be a daunting prospect, so we want to arm you with the information you need to make a good choice of racket before you even walk into a shop.

To do this, we’ve personally reviewed hundreds of tennis rackets to give you the inside track on each one. However, we wanted to go a step further and put as much information in one place as we could, so here we are writing The TennisBros.com Big Guide to Tennis Rackets.

Here, we will break down all the rackets by brand and highlight the major racket ranges each brand has, letting you know what types of players each one is designed for.

We want your experience choosing a tennis racket to be a positive one, so if you have any thoughts to add then let us know in the comments.

Over the course of our racket guide, we’re going to talk in detail about the following brands.

 

  • Babolat
  • Wilson
  • Head
  • Yonex
  • Prince
  • Tecnifibre
  • Volkl
  • Dunlop
  • Pro Kennex
  • Mantis
  • Karakal

 

Today, in part one, we’re going to talk about Babolat, Wilson, Head, and Yonex.

 

Babolat Tennis Rackets

 

Hailing from Lyon, France, Babolat is one of the biggest tennis racket companies in the world. Repped by superstar Spaniard, Rafael Nadal, these rackets are commonplace in any tennis club around the world, but it’s not just Rafa who is sporting Babolat sticks.

 

Tour Pros include:

 

  • Rafael Nadal
  • Dominic Thiem
  • Felix Auger Aliassime
  • Fabio Fognini
  • Jo-Wilfried Tsonga
  • Garbine Muguruza
  • Caroline Wozniacki
  • Karolina Pliskova

 

Babolat is known for its modern player’s rackets which encourage big, fast swings and plenty of topspin (think Rafael Nadal). While there are three main racket lines, each line has a variety of rackets aimed to suit different players.

 

Babolat Racket Ranges

 

Babolat has three main racket ranges that are designed to give players different characteristics. The three ranges are Pure Aero, Pure Drive, and Pure Strike, and each one is likely to suit a slightly different style of player.

 

Pure Aero

 

These are the famous rackets repped by Rafael Nadal and in many ways, the characteristics that these rackets suit are those that Nadal portrays.

Pure Aeros are perfectly designed for speed, spin, and power in that order. Players who love to use massive racket head speed to play with heavy topspin will love this stick and they may find it helps them get that extra little bit out of their game.

Like all of the Babolat rackets, the Pure Aeros have a number of subcategories that we will talk you through in a minute.

 

Pure Drive

 

Players who are looking for big power will feel right at home with these rackets. The Pure Drives were some of the early leaders in the development of the modern rackets, and it seemed like all the big hitters were using these rackets back in the early 2000s (iconically, Andy Roddick and his massive serve).

Just like the Aeros, the Pure Drives are extremely maneuverable, allowing players to generate good racket head speed and maximize their shots.

A variety of different options within this range mean that Pure Drives can cater for all players, from the most beginner of beginner players all the way up to the pro tour.

 

Pure Strike 

 

With the Pure Aero and the Pure Drive rackets, Babolat has catered to the power and spin lovers, so it’s only right that they make a racket for the control lovers out there.

Boy did they do a good job! The Pure Strike still has a modern feel to it, but it offers a great blend of control, feel, power, and spin. Its sleek, flexible beam cuts through the air nicely, making it the ideal tool to swing big with.

While Babolat has the King of Clay repping the Pure Aero, they also have the Crown Prince of Clay in Dominic Thiem using the Pure Strike.

 

Babolat Subcategories 

 

Within Babolat’s different racket ranges there are certain subcategories that are worth looking at. Here’s a run-through some of the important details of each category.

 

Lite

 

As the name suggests, the Lite rackets offer a slightly lighter option for beginner and intermediate players. Both the Babolat Pure Aero Lite and the Babolat Pure Drive Lite  weigh 270g unstrung, making them extremely easy for beginners to use.

Unfortunately, there is no Lite version of the Pure Strike offered at present.

These rackets are perfect for young players who are still learning their strokes and are worth a look at for beginner adults who are worried about playing with a heavy racket.

 

Team

 

The Babolat Team rackets are ideal for intermediate players who have mastered the basics of their swing but are still working hard on their technique. They are a middle ground between the Lite rackets and the regular version and offer a good compromise between ease of use and performance.

The Team tennis rackets are an excellent stepping stone between the light rackets and the regular versions.

 

Tour 

 

The Tour rackets are slightly heavier than the regular versions and offer a little extra in the way of performance. The extra weight in these rackets will allow players with advanced strokes to maximize their power and spin potential and get the most out of their games.

If you’re going to select a racket with a little bit more weight then you need to know your swings are up to it, otherwise, you might find they hurt your performance rather than help it.

 

Plus

 

The Plus rackets are what’s called extended length rackets. These rackets are slightly longer than the regular size rackets and allow players some extra reach. They can be quite useful for shorter players to maximize their power, but once again, you do need to have some reasonably strong strokes to get the most out of these rackets.

 

VS

 

You will find VS versions of each of the Babolat racket ranges. These are rackets that used to be a part of a different family but have been incorporated into one of the main three racket ranges.

The VS rackets will generally lean slightly more towards control than their none VS siblings.

 

Other Considerations

 

  • Head size – this number will normally be included at the end of the racket name, common examples are 97 and 100. Smaller heads tend to lean towards precision.
  • String Pattern – You will see lots of rackets listed as 16 x 19 or 18 x 20. This refers to the number of strings in the racket. 18 x 20 rackets will be more control-oriented vs easier spin and power from 16 x 19 rackets.

 

 Wilson Tennis Rackets

 

US racket manufacturer, Wilson is a powerhouse of the tennis industry, and has equipped some of the greatest tennis players of all time, including Pete Sampras, Serena Williams, and Roger Federer.

Away from tennis, Wilson is a huge brand in the sporting world, and a Wilson volleyball also plays a great cameo role in the Tom Hanks movie Cast Away. Back to tennis though and Wilson, like its competitors offers a wide range of tennis rackets to suit all levels and styles of player.

These rackets are prevalent on the pro tour and among many others, you will find these players using Wilson rackets.

 

Tour Pros Include:

 

  • Serena Williams
  • Roger Federer
  • Kei Nishikori
  • Elina Svitolina
  • Juan Martin Del Potro
  • Simona Halep
  • Karen Khachanov
  • Stefanos Tsitsipas

 

Whereas Babolat tends to lean the modern toward style of rackets, Wilson offers more of a blend of classic and modern rackets, so you’re sure to find something you like in one of their ranges. Wilson offers five main racket ranges, Pro Staff, Ultra, Blade, Clash, and Burn, and like Babolat each racket family has a number of subcategories.

 

Wilson Racket Ranges

 

Pro Staff

 

The Wilson Pro Staff is arguably the most iconic tennis racket in the world. Not only did Pete Sampras use this stick to win roughly 1,000 Wimbledon titles, but then Roger Federer used it to win absolutely everything.

Just like Nadal espouses the main characteristics of his Babolat Pure Aero, the Pro Staff’s best characteristics are reflected in the game of Roger Federer. The Pro Staff offers feel, precision, and control, all the things you need to play like the great man himself.

These rackets range from intermediate rackets all the way up to the Wilson Pro Staff 97 RF, which has some serious weight to it.

With their small heads, flexible beams, and beefy swingweights, these rackets can be very challenging to play with, so it is worth finding the right Pro Staff for your game if these are characteristics that you like.

Wilson offers a number of subcategories for all of its rackets which allows you to find a racket that fits you when it comes to weight, string pattern, head size, and length.

 

Ultra

 

The Ultra family are a more modern style of rackets that offer users a convenient blend of speed, power, and spin. These rackets are great for beginner players all the way through to advanced players, and are particularly easy to use.

Repped on tour by Japanese star, Kei Nishikori, these rackets offer a huge range of options from 95sq inch, control oriented frames, up to a massive 110 sq inch frame. Whatever it is you’re looking for you can find it in the Ultra range.

 

Blade

 

Spearhead by 23-time Grand Slam champion, Serena Williams, is the Wilson Blade family. Offering a tantalizing mix of precision, feel, control, and spin, these rackets are extremely popular the world over.

Slightly less powerful than the Ultra, Burn, or Clash rackets, the Wilson Blades allow for players with full swings to maximize their racket head speed and attack the ball with confidence.

Like the Ultra rackets, there a number of different subcategories within the Blade family that make these rackets attractive for players of all standards.

 

Clash

 

Clash is the newest line of rackets from Wilson, bringing the latest racket technology to the court.

With a focus on comfort and feel, these rackets are designed to be firm when you need them to, allowing you to get control and power, but flex at the right time to help make your tennis experience more comfortable.

As the newest range of rackets, there are sure to be plenty of updates to these sticks in the future, but there are already quite a few variants to look at in this family. Like the Blade and Ultra lines, there’s a racket for everyone in the Clash family.

 

Burn

 

Similar to the Ultra rackets, the Wilson Burn range offer players an explosive mix of speed, spin, and power. Burn rackets are excellent rackets for beginner players, all the way through to advanced players and reward aggressive shot makers.

Compared to the Ultra rackets, Wilson Burn sitcks give players a little bit more spin potential and have a more involved feel. These rackets are great for intermediate players looking to add a little bit more pop and spin to their game.

 

Wilson Subcategories

 

L, UL

 

The L (light) and UL (ultra light) categories can be found across the different racket ranges and offer lighter options for beginner and junior players. The lighter weights make it easier to swing the racket and help simplify the process of developing strokes.

Players who are still developing their strokes will find it easier to produce racket head speed and develop their technique with these rackets.

 

Team

 

The team rackets are designed to bridge the gap between the L rackets and the regular versions. They have very manageable weights, and they are set up to give players a reasonable level of performance whilst still making it easy for them to improve their game.

 

Tour 

 

The Wilson Tour rackets are aimed at more advanced players who are looking for extra performance. These rackets will be heavier, and often have more dense string patterns, allowing for more control.

Advanced players with a lot of experience and well-developed strokes should look to these rackets to try and get the most out of their swings.

 

S

 

The S rackets are Wilson’s Spin Effect rackets. These sticks have a unique string pattern that helps players generate extra spin. If you really struggle for topspin then these rackets can be a real help.

 

Other Considerations

 

  • Head size – this number will normally be included at the end of the racket name, common examples are 97 and 100. Smaller heads tend to lean towards precision.
  • String Pattern – You will see lots of rackets listed as 16 x 19 or 18 x 20. This refers to the number of strings in the racket. 18 x 20 rackets will be more control-oriented vs easier spin and power from 16 x 19 rackets.
  • Countervail – Countervail is Wilson’s dampening technology.

 

Head Tennis Rackets

 

Head is another giant of the tennis racket world, and they’ve equipped some of the legends of the game. Andre Agassi, Andy Murray, and Novak Djokovic are just some of the big names to use this diverse selection of rackets.

Head offers six main racket lines, Radical, Speed, Prestige, Gravity, Extreme, and Instinct, all of which offer something slightly different to their users.

 

Tour pros include:

 

  • Novak Djokovic
  • Andy Murray
  • Ashleigh Barty
  • Alexander Zverev
  • Maria Sharapova
  • Sloane Stephens
  • Richard Gasquet

 

For decades, Head has consistently been producing top quality rackets and they continue to innovate, recently introducing their newest line, Gravity.

 

Head Racket Ranges

 

Radical

 

The Radical rackets are probably best known for the two belligerent scrappers who have carried this stick to Grand Slam titles, Andre Agassi and Andy Murray. The Radicals are modern players rackets that bring great speed and a combination of power, spin, control, and feel, that make them a great middle ground for players.

 

There are lots of different options within this family, so whatever your standard you can find a racket that suits you.

 

Speed

 

The name gives you a bit of a hint here! The speed rackets are designed to help maximize your racket head speed, but they do much more than just that.

Speed rackets are known for excellent control, and lovely feel as well as their obvious speed. The Head Speed sticks are great for players who love to attack the ball with full, aggressive swings and really take control of the point.

With options for beginner players, all the way up to the highest of advanced players, these rackets have been a real hit.

 

Prestige

 

Another of the most iconic rackets of all time, the Head Prestige was the racket of choice of the great Marat Safin. These tennis rackets ooze control, precision, stability, and feel and are ideal for players who naturally generate a ton of power.

While Head has done a good job of modernizing these rackets and making options that are a bit more accessible, these are generally better suited to more experienced players and you have to be confident in your technique to get the most out of these sticks.

 

Gravity

 

The Gravity rackets are the newest addition to Head’s lineup and boy did they do a good job with them. The Gravity rackets are designed to bring modern comfort without having to compromise on performance, and we love them.

These rackets make playing tennis comfortable and effortless, and there is an option for all levels of players. For players who look for control, spin, and comfort, these are great rackets to check out.

 

Extreme

 

The head Extreme rackets are for big swinging, modern players who are looking to add some power and spin to their game. Famously wielded by Frenchman Richard Gasquet, these rackets helps players hit heavy shots that force opponents backwards.

Once again, there are a number of different options within the Extreme family so you will be able to find a weight and setup that suits you.

 

Instinct

 

Repped on tour by Maria Sharapova, the Head Instinct rackets are aimed at beginner and intermediate players, offering a user friendly experience and access to plenty of power and spin.

The Instinct tennis rackets are easy to swing and help make tennis that bit easier for people starting out in the game.

 

Head Subcategories

 

S

 

The S series of rackets offer a more user-friendly option for beginner and intermediate players, with a reduced weight and more open string patterns. The S rackets are there to help out players who are still learning and developing their game.

 

MP

 

The MP rackets are Head’s middle ground rackets. Weight wise, they come in between the Pro and the S rackets and they look to balance performance and usability.

 

Best suited to intermediate and lower level advanced players, these rackets will suit a wide variety of players.

 

Pro

 

The Pro models are geared towards performance. They are heavier, with bigger swingweights, and more closed string patterns.

 

These rackets are aimed at experienced, advanced players who are confident in their strings.

 

Lite

 

Like Babolat and Wilson, Head has a range of lite rackets which are perfect for beginners, and younger players. These rackets are easy to swing, but they are not geared towards performance at a high level.

 

Yonex Tennis Rackets

 

Known for its signature isometric head shapes, Japanese racket company, Yonex is synonymous with quality. Whether you’re an enthusiastic beginner or a seasoned pro, there’s a racket for you in the Yonex range.

 

Famously repped by tour bad boy Nick Kyrgios, you’re sure to see plenty of these rackets at any tennis club you visit.

 

Tour Pros Include:

 

  • Nick Kyrgios
  • Stan Wawrinka
  • Angelique Kerber
  • Belinda Bencic
  • Naomi Osaka
  • Denis Shapovalov

 

With all of Yonex’s performance rackets being designed and made in Japan, they have forged a name for themselves as a producer of the highest quality rackets.

 

Yonex Racket Ranges

 

V Core Pro 

 

The Yonex V Core Pro tennis rackets tick all the boxes for players looking for control, feel, and precision. With weight options from 280g to 330g, there is a V Core Pro racket for control lovers of all levels, and boy are these some good rackets.

 

With multiple Grand Slam champion Stan Wawrinka representing these rackets on tour you’ve got plenty of opportunity to see them playing some pretty tennis, but they can also get you playing some good stuff yourself.

 

These rackets are great performance rackets that offer intermediate, and particularly advanced players all kinds of options.

 

V Core

 

Built to suit the modern player, the V Core rackets offer speed and great access to spin. These tennis rackets might give you huge spin but they don’t skimp on control, giving you the ability to play those heavy shots that will put your opponent on the back foot.

 

With different weights to suit beginner, intermediate, and advanced players, the V Core range is hugely popular and offers something for everyone.

 

Ezone 

 

At the TennisBros.com, we find the Yonex rackets particularly easy to play with, but the Ezone rackets have the easiest playability of them all. You’ll often see these sticks getting smashed to pieces on TV by Nick Kyrgios, but that’s through no fault of these great rackets.

If you’re looking for easy playability, and controlled power, then the Yonex Ezone rackets are well worth looking at. Again, there’s a racket to suit all levels of play and there are plenty of different options to choose from.

 

Yonex Subcategories

 

Yonex is pretty straightforward in the way it lists its rackets. They don’t have any extra subcategories, the rackets are simply listed with the head size and weight.

 

More To Come

 

In part one of the TennisBros.com Tennis Racket Guide we’ve probably talked about the four biggest names on the market. That’s not to say these rackets are any better than some of the smaller names though, so keep an eye out for part two where we will talk about some of the other racket brands.

 

Article by: Will