Why grip size matters:
While enjoying the blistering forehands of your coach and favorite players, most of the time the credit is usually given to the high-tech frame design of the rackets but the crucial role played by the correct and the best grip size for tennis racquet is usually overlooked. In this article, we will learn the art of how to choose a grip size for a tennis racquet.
An oversize grip will lead to strain on your arm muscles and may give you a tennis elbow, a too-small grip will lead to twisting of the racket in your hand. Twist in your arm will either lead to poor shots or additional stress in your arm.
Now you would be thinking if grip size is so important for safe and perfect tennis then the selection process to identify the grip size will be equally complex. That’s the surprise, grip size selection is the easiest part of the tennis game.
Let’s measure the grip size:
In this section we will learn how to tell what grip size to use for a tennis racquet and its importance:
- Don’t use a racquet with a significantly smaller grip as it causes you to use more force to squeeze the handle. This can affect your hand, forearm, and elbow, leading to fatigue and eventually tendonitis
- Don’t use a racquet with a significantly larger grip as it restricts your wrist’s motions, makes changing grips harder, and requires more strength to use
- The best grip size is one that is just large enough to play comfortably with and allows for a full range of motion
There are basically two ways to measure your tennis racquet grip size: either through the index finger test or the ruler test, although you will need to have a tennis racquet on hand for the index finger test.
Technique 1: Index Finger test
Let’s assume you already have the racket and after reading this article you want to check your grip size. Hold your racket in the eastern forehand grip style and you should be able to fit the index finger of your non-hitting hand in the space between your ring finger and palm. If there is space between your finger and palm then the grip is too big. If there is no gap to feet your finger then you are running the show with a small grip.
Once we have found the snug fit, try the finger test a few more times just to make sure. This is known as the scientific approach, which requires more than one test to confirm accurate results. Once you’ve found a racquet with a good fit, take a moment to take a deep breath. Smell that? That’s the smell of victory.
Technique 2: Ruler test
We need few things in this technique, playing hand and the ruler. Take a look at your dominant hand, and you’ll notice you have a few lines across your palm. You’ll see two larger lines in the middle of your palm, one on top and one on the bottom, running horizontally from one side to side. Grab your ruler and line it up vertically with your ring finger so that the bottom of the ruler lines up with the top horizontal line in your palm and measure to the top of your ring finger.
Tennis Racquet Sizes
Usually, the measurement falls anywhere between 4 inches and 4 3/4 inches. Within that range, there are seven available grip sizes, which start at 4 inches or a size zero and increase by 1/8 inch for each size up to 4 3/4 inches for a size six. Depending on where you live, you may find the sizing of the racquet grip expressed differently, so to make your life easy, we have provided a chart below:
Theoretically correct grip but still not comfortable:
We have observed that most of the player’s grip sizes fall between the standard sizes and If that’s you, we would encourage you to go for the smaller size because it’s easier to increase your grip’s size than it is to decrease it.
The addition of an overgrip will increase the size of your grip by 1/16 of an inch but apart from swapping out the base grip that came with the racquet or removing it altogether, it is difficult and, in some cases, not possible to drop the size of a grip.
Last but not least theoretical study can point you towards the correct direction but the real test is on the court, the actual playing experience is the real selection procedure. So, we highly recommend players try a few different tennis racquets with varying grip sizes before making a decision and buying a tennis racquet.
In a perfect world, once you’ve settled on a specific model tennis racquet, you’d try the same racquet with multiple-size grips. Of course, hitting with a few different types of racquets with varying grip sizes is better than nothing if that’s all you have at your disposal.
It helps you to improve your game by playing with something that feels comfortable and doesn’t hold you back. You only need to go through the process once and with the finalization of the right grip size as an adult, you have the right size for all future racquet purchases.
As a parent, you don’t need to worry too much about grip sizes for your kids until they transition to full-size 27-inch tennis racquets where there is a greater variety of grip sizes. You’ll also likely need to remeasure for the appropriate grip size as they grow.
Now we have discussed in-depth the selection of a tennis racket grip size and we hope it will help you to play more comfortably and confidently, we are always available on the site if you have any questions on this topic.