Best tennis racquets for beginners, intermediate and advanced players (2021)

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It is not easy to navigate the overwhelming offer of tennis racquets on the market. To help you pick the best gear for your needs, Tennis Warehouse gathered feedback from playtesters’ firsthand experiences. They reviewed a variety of racquets and classified them into the best choices for players of different levels and styles.

Tennis Warehouse USA and Tennis Warehouse Europe are go-to online stores for tennis equipment. They are affiliate partners of this blog, meaning that we will earn a commission if you purchase something through these links, while there will be absolutely no additional cost to you.

Best tennis racquets for beginners

Those just starting out are advised to look for a light and comfortable racquet. Here is the best equipment for beginners.

All-around value: Head Ti S5 Comfort Zone, $89

Head Titanium Ti.S5 Comfort Zone

The Head Ti S5 Comfort Zone offers the best value for money. It has just the right balance of features, a fast feel and user-friendly level of power. The model is also outstanding for learning and perfecting topspin.

Comfort and power: Prince O3 Legacy 120, $189

Prince O3 Legacy 120

Players looking for a luxurious hitting experience, pure comfort and easy power shouldn’t look any further than the Prince O3 Legacy 120. It gives beginners a large margin of error and produces unmatched vibration dampening.

More control: Babolat Boost Aero, $99

Babolat Boost Aero Yellow

The Babolat Boost Aero is exceptionally maneuverable, so it enables beginners to keep the ball in play and easily learn to play tennis. It lacks the big power of the previous two models, but it offers great control and helps you position the racquet effectively.

Best tennis racquets for intermediate players

Intermediate players need a racquet that complements their developing style, whether it be grinding out long points from the baseline or banging forehand winners from a dead sprint. Tennis Warehouse’s playtesters suggest a few models across different categories.

Power & spin: Babolat Pure Drive 2021, $229 & Babolat Pure Aero, $229

babolat pure drive 2021

The Babolat Pure Drive, a world best-seller in the last 20 years, is the undisputed king when it comes to light power frames. Recommended for players looking to swing big and load the ball with pace and spin. Read full review here.

babolat pure aero

The Babolat Pure Aero is focused on spin and power. This racquet model is weighted for intermediate players, but it is as good for the dedicated beginner and the advanced ball striker who is looking to go on offense. The Aero family has played a large role in creating a class of aggressive baseline tennis that has taken the tennis world by storm. Read full review here.

Honorable mentions in the power and spin racquet category for intermediate players include: Head Graphene 360+ Extreme MP, Yonex VCORE 100, Dunlop FX 500 and Prince Twistpower X100.

Control & feel: Wilson Blade 98 16×19 v7, $219 & Head Radical MP 2021, $239

Wilson Blade 98

Whichever the surface the Wilson Blade 98 16×19 v7 was tested on, the playtesters agreed that this model was perfect for players looking for exceptional control and feel. The Blade 98 is spin-friendly thanks to its easy maneuverability and grippy 16×19 stringbed. Read full review here.

head radical mp 2021

The Head Radical MP 2021 is a well-rounded pick for the intermediate and stronger player. This is a racquet with a long history that got a generous update in the 2021 version. Head increased the static weight and swingweight for the Radical MP, which translated into more stability. Built for control and feel, this racquet doesn’t skimp on power either. Read full review here.

Honorable mentions in the control and feel racquet category for intermediate players include: Babolat Pure Strike 16×19 3rd Gen, Prince Phantom 100G, Tecnifibre TF40 305, Yonex VCORE PRO 100 300.

Arm-friendly: Yonex EZONE 98, $229

yonex ezone 98

The Yonex EZONE 98 is one of the more user-friendly racquets on the market thanks to its ease of maneuverability adaptable to all playing styles, generous access to power, large sweetspot and great feel. It offers impressive comfort for a lighter racquet. Read full review here.

Honorable mentions in the arm-friendly racquet category for intermediate players: Head Graphene 360+ Gravity Tour, Prince Phantom 100X 290, ProKennex Black Ace 300, Wilson Clash 100.

Best racquets for advanced players

Players with great experience need a racquet that complements their strengths, that have enough mass to drive the ball powerfully through the court or redirect higher levels of pace.

Power and spin: Babolat Pure Drive Tour 2021, $229

Babolat Pure Drive Tour 2021

While the standard Pure Drive is recommended as a top pick for power for intermediate level, the Pure Drive Tour 2021 offers all that power plus some additional plow through and stability from the additional weight. In addition to giving you the needed mass to absorb and redirect the pace of a heavy hitting opponent, this racquet’s raw power and spin-friendly targeting make it dangerous in the hands of an aggressive player.

Honorable mentions in the power and spin racquet category for advanced players: Babolat Pure Aero Plus, Wilson Blade SW102 Autograph, Yonex EZONE 98 Tour, and Dunlop SX 300 Tour.

Control and feel: Prince Phantom 93P 18×20, $199 & Yonex VCORE PRO 97HD 18×20, $239

Prince Phantom 93P (18x20)

You can count the number of midsize racquets on the market today on one hand. Prince makes two of them, and one is this updated Phantom 93P 18×20. Everything about this racquet points to control and precision. It’s the best pick for advanced players looking for the undeniable precision of a traditional player’s racquet. Read full review here.

Yonex VCORE PRO 97HD 18x20

The Yonex VCORE PRO 97HD 18×20 combines buttery feel with effortless control. Playtesters loved how this racquet performed everywhere on court. Spin was easy to come by, and precision was nothing less than surgical. At net and on returns, the racquet felt more maneuverable than the weight suggested without giving up any stability. Advanced players with an aggressive game are going to love this racquet because of its precise, control-oriented nature. Read full review here.

Honorable mentions in the control and feel racquet category for advanced players: Wilson Pro Staff RF97 v13, Head Graphene 360+ Speed Pro, Dunlop CX 200 Tour 18×20, and Head Pro Tour 2.0.

Arm-friendly: Head Graphene 360+ Prestige Midplus, $239

The Head Graphene 360+ Prestige Midplus update to a classic racquet line delivers a user-friendly experience with a larger sweetspot and more accessible power. Advanced players will love the control and feel they’ll find on every shot. The silky smooth response is loaded with comfort, making this the perfect option for the player wanting to be connected to the ball while enjoying an arm-friendly feel. Read full review here.

Honorable mentions in the arm-friendly racquet category for advanced players: Volkl C10 Pro, ProKennex Black Ace 315, Prince Phantom 97P, and Yonex VCORE PRO 97HD 18×20.

For more tennis equipment, including strings, shoes, apparel, and fitness tools, visit Tennis Warehouse USA and Tennis Warehouse Europe.


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