Just like the human body the tennis racquet has many named parts. In fact many of the parts of the tennis racquet are named after human body parts. Throughout the various courses on this site we will make mention of various parts of the racquet so it is important to know them.
The Racquet Frame
The frame of the racquet is the outside of the racquet minus the strings.
The frame of the racquet can be made of various materials.
Most racquets are made from a high modulus graphite and/or carbon fiber. This makes the frame lighter which makes the racquet more powerful as a lighter racquet can be swung faster.
Graphite also increases the stiffness of the racquet which gives greater racquet head stability. Graphite and carbon fiber racquets allow for the frame shape to be more aerodynamic. This also helps to increase the speed of the racquet through the air as the racquet will have less drag. A good example of a frame modification of racquets today vs old racquets is the throat of the racquet. New racquets all have the throat open whereas almost all old frames have the throat solid.
One way to counteract warping was to put the racquet into a bracket.
Frames vary in many ways, using the right frame for your type of game is a very important factor. Some frames vary in thickness. Generally the thinner the racquet the less power it has, the thicker the racquet the more power it has. Other factors influencing racquets are frame stability, how much power it can generate, the size of the the sweet spot (the power zone of the racquet), how much it will vibrate and how much control the racquet has. Racquets will also be weighted differently. Racquet frames can distribute the weight across the racquet differently from frame to frame thus changing the balance. Some racquets are heavier at the top some are uniformly heavy and still others are heavier in the handle.
For a more thorough explanation of the racquet frame click here.
The Racquet Head
The racquet head is the round part at the top of the racquet.
Head size is the area of the hitting plane inside the head of the racquet and is measured in square inches or centimeters squared. Power is directly related to head size. A larger head offers a larger hitting area, more power, and a larger sweet spot while providing more forgiveness on off-center shots. Smaller head sizes offer more control and less power. Head size is a personal preference.
Head shape can vary from racquet to racquet. The most common shapes are Elliptical,
Elliptical is the most common head shape. Tear-drop shaped racquets have the longest main string length, when compared to other head shapes of the same surface area. Longer main strings length increase power. Additionally, a tear-drop shape racquet has the widest point of the hoop closer to the 12 o’clock position which moves the sweet spot higher in the hoop. Square head shapes are designed to have the center 4 to 6 main strings the same length and the center 4 – 6 cross strings the same length. This centers the sweet spot and increases the overall size. An elliptical shaped racquet…
The Racquet Throat
The throat of the racquet
The Racquet Handle
The racquet handle is the part of the racquet that the hands are placed on. Most racquet handles are octagon shaped with 8 bevels.
The Butt of the Racquet
The Leading Edge
The Trailing Edge