The abundance of tennis racquets available on the market can be daunting to navigate. However, Tennis Warehouse has compiled valuable insights from playtesters to aid in selecting the optimal gear to suit individual needs. Through reviewing a diverse selection of racquets, they have categorized the top choices for players of different levels and styles.
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Best tennis racquets for beginners
For those who are embarking on their tennis journey, it’s recommended to opt for a racquet that is lightweight and comfortable, as it can facilitate the learning process. Below are three racquets that would be most suitable for beginners.
All-around value for beginners: Head Titanium Ti.S6
The Head Titanium Ti.S6 is considered ideal for beginners due to its pre-installed strings that make it ready for immediate play. Its exceptional power and spin capabilities, combined with impressive maneuverability without sacrificing stability or comfort, make it a standout choice. With its large head size, this racquet is forgiving for players who are starting to learn the game, while experienced players can take advantage of the larger sweetspot to create more spin on the ball.
Comfort & power for beginners: Prince O3 Legacy 120
The Prince O3 Legacy 120 stands out with its luxurious hitting experience. The racquet provides a generous margin of error for beginners, ensuring that comfort and performance are maintained even when contact is less than ideal. Additionally, the racquet features Prince’s renowned O3 Technology, which significantly reduces vibration for an unparalleled playing experience. If you’re searching for a stick that offers exceptional comfort and effortless power, look no further than the O3 Legacy 120.
More control for beginners: Babolat Boost Drive
The reason why Babolat Boost Drive stands out as the best is due to its exceptional maneuverability, making it effortless to point and shoot the ball, and therefore, an ideal option for beginners. Although it may not possess the same level of power as the first two oversized racquets, it still delivers enough easy power to satisfy beginners. Moreover, it provides excellent control, which can significantly boost confidence levels. The racquet’s maneuverability is also noteworthy, enabling effective racquet positioning and swings. Finally, the fact that it comes pre-strung for under $100 makes it an unbeatable choice for those just starting out in tennis.
Best tennis racquets for intermediate players
If you’re an intermediate player, you are able to rally with moderate power and consistency. Therefore, choosing a racquet that complements your developing style is essential, whether it’s grinding out long points from the baseline or hitting forehand winners while on the run. Here are the racquets that intermediate players should consider across the most significant categories.
Best power & spin for intermediate players: Babolat Pure Aero, Babolat Pure Drive, & Yonex VCORE 100
The Babolat Pure Aero racquet is considered the best option due to its design being tailored towards the modern game’s dynamic and angular mechanics. It caters to players who prefer spin-heavy shots that drop hard and explode off the court. The racquet’s speedy performance during contact will be particularly attractive to these players. Although weighted for intermediate players, the Pure Aero is suitable for all levels of play, making it an excellent choice for both dedicated beginners and seasoned veterans who prioritize speed and spin.
WTA players using Babolat Pure Aero are Grand Slam finalists Danielle Collins and Leylah Fernandez.
The Babolat Pure Drive stands out with its 20-year reputation as one of the most versatile and popular racquets ever created. Like the Pure Aero, it boasts an easy learning curve for players who want to swing big and generate pace and spin on the ball. Although it has spawned a host of imitations, the Pure Drive is still the uncontested leader in the lightweight power frame category.
Professionals playing with Babolat Pure Drive include Karolina Pliskova, Sofia Kenin, Garbine Muguruza, and Fabio Fognini.
Although the previous generation of this racquet was great in itself, the 2023 update of the Yonex VCORE 100 makes it even better and several playtesters said that this is their favorite version so far. This racquet delivers exceptional power and spin exactly when you need them. Additionally, it offers an enlarged sweetspot compared to its predecessors, making it an even more attractive option for players seeking an optimized hitting experience.
Stars endorsing the Yonex VCORE 100 include Elena Rybakina, Caroline Garcia, and Donna Vekic.
Best control & feel for intermediate players: Prince ATS Textreme Tour 100 290, Wilson Blade 98 16×19 v8, & Head Speed MP 2022
The Prince ATS Textreme Tour 100 290 is the lightest racquet in the Prince Tour family. It offers a blend of power, control, and feel in an easy-to-use package. Despite being lightweight, the racquet feels stable at contact and performs well from all areas of the court. Although it is an excellent option for intermediate players, playtesters discovered that this racquet is also suitable for customization as players become stronger and improve their game.
The Wilson Blade 16×19 v8 is a top choice for players looking to hit spin-heavy shots with full swings. Its latest update in late 2021 has further improved its power while maintaining its exceptional feel. With a 16×19 string pattern, this racquet offers a spin-friendly playing experience and easy maneuverability. The Blade 98 is highly recommended for players who want to attack the ball with confidence.
This Wilson Blade 16×19 v8 is the racquet of Simona Halep, Paula Badosa, Emma Raducanu, Alex de Minaur, and others.
The Head Speed MP 2022 offers improved maneuverability compared to its predecessor, without compromising on the power, control, and feel that the Speed series is renowned for. The playtesters were thoroughly impressed by this latest release of the Speed MP. One of them even made the switch, while a couple of others claimed it to be their favorite version so far.
WTA stars who endorse this racquet include US Open champions Bianca Andreescu and Sloane Stephens.
Best arm-friendly racquets for intermediate players: Yonex EZONE 100 & Wilson Clash 100 v2
Choosing between the EZONE 100 and EZONE 98 was a tough decision, but ultimately, we went with the EZONE 100 for its slightly more forgiving and powerful nature, while still maintaining an arm-friendly design. However, strong intermediate players seeking a touch more control and a slightly heavier racquet will find it with the EZONE 98.
Belinda Bencic and Sorana Cirstea play with the Yonex Ezone 100 on the Hologic WTA Tour. Casper Ruud is the ATP star endorsing this racquet.
If you’re in search of a racquet with a flexible feel and abundant power, look no further than the Wilson Clash 100 v2. This frame is designed to make hitting deep shots feel effortless while prioritizing comfort. Tennis Warehouse’s playtesters noted that this second version of the racquet feels more stable than its predecessor.
Best tennis racquets for advanced players
As an advanced player with extensive experience playing competitive matches, you need a racquet that complements your strengths and provides enough mass to drive the ball powerfully through the court or redirect higher levels of pace. Here are the top racquets to consider in the most important categories.
Best power & spin for advanced players: Babolat Pure Aero Plus
The Pure Aero line is renowned for its exceptional power and spin, which is why it has earned a spot on this list twice. The Babolat Pure Aero Plus takes these attributes to the next level by enhancing the power and monster spin of the Pure Aero. With added length, this racquet makes your biggest serves and groundstrokes even more destructive. Our playtesters highly recommend stringing this racquet with a favorite co-poly string, enabling them to make their most substantial cuts while achieving greater control through massive spin.
Best control & feel for advanced players: Head Prestige Pro 2021, Yonex VCORE PRO 97D 320, & Tecnifibre TF40 315 (16×19)
In 2021, Head released the new Prestige Pro, which has quickly become a favorite among playtesters. Its specifications prioritize control, but it can also provide a significant amount of power in capable hands. Its pinpoint accuracy makes it the clear choice for those seeking a racquet that excels in control and feel.
The recent update of the Yonex VCORE PRO 97D maintains the focus on precision with its dense 18×20 string pattern and 97-square-inch head size. Even with just a 1 mm increase in beam width, there is a slight boost in put-away power. Fans of previous versions of this racquet need not be concerned, as the control has not been compromised.
The Tecnifibre TF40 line impresses with its exceptional feel and ball pocketing, and the latest update is no exception. With the introduction of a new string pattern option to the heaviest 315-gram racquet, the Tecnifibre TF40 315 (16×19) offers increased spin potential while retaining its signature smooth and solid feel upon contact. This racquet feels both stable and swift through the air, giving experienced ball strikers a versatile tool to work with.
Best arm-friendly racquets for advanced players: Prince Phantom 97P, Head Gravity Pro, & Volkl C10 Pro 2022
The entire Phantom line focuses on a smooth feel and accuracy, and the Prince Phantom 97P is no exception. While it embodies the characteristics of a classic control racquet, it also caters to modern players with its quick swing and spin capabilities. This racquet is an ideal choice for players who seek a blend of traditional and contemporary features.
The Head Gravity Pro boasts a thin beam and low flex construction, delivering exceptional feel. Its 100-square-inch head size provides a generous sweetspot, and the rounder shape enables greater access to spin compared to other 18×20 string patterns. With its perfect balance of comfort, control, and feel, the Gravity Pro is an excellent option for players seeking a modern classic racquet.
ATP players Alexander Zverev and Andrey Rublev use this racquet.
Volkl’s C10 Pro has been a mainstay in their line for 25 years for good reason. Despite the new look for 2022, the racquet’s timeless design remains unchanged. It exudes classic feel and offers a silky smooth response. Advanced players looking for precision, touch, and the ability to generate power and spin will still find it in this Volkl classic.
We believe that our guide has provided valuable insights into the top tennis racquets available on the market today. By highlighting each racquet’s unique features and benefits, we aimed to help you make an informed decision that aligns with your playing style and preferences. Whether you’re a beginner, intermediate, or an advanced player, we hope that our guide has aided you in choosing the perfect tennis racquet that will help you elevate your game.