Whether you want to be the next Naomi Osaka or Novak Djokovic, one thing's for sure, as your skills continue to improve, a suitable racket will be needed to both improve your game and get you to where you want to be.
When you're an intermediate player, you begin to desire more control, power, and spin in your play. this is because these elements will help you play more skillfully and improve your performance greatly. They will also help you get to the advanced player level.
The best tennis racquet for intermediate players offers both great precision and control. With it, you can achieve a solid performance. We created a guide that outlines the features to consider when buying the best tennis racquet for intermediate players and listed our top favorites in the market.
Best Tennis Racquets For Intermediate Players
1. Babolat Pure Aero
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This tennis racket was designed for intermediate players who want to dominate from the baseline. It is Rafael Nadal's racquet of choice. The Babolat Pure Aero has a vibrant yellow and black finish. It has a string bed with a 16 x 19 string pattern and frame design which contributes to applying topspin. This helps ensure that the tennis ball bounces right over your opponent's head.
The Babolat Pure Aero weight is 10.6 ounces making it an ideal racquet for intermediate players. Its frame is 100 square inches for a big-hitting area, and the tennis racquet is designed with aerodynamic technology to cut through the air. This helps you generate more racquet head speed hence spin on the ball.
The Pure Aero incorporates Babolat's Cortex Pure Feel, which aids in preventing injuries by dampening vibrations. This is ideal for people who suffer from tennis elbow. This tennis racquet is also ideal for advanced players who want to begin developing a longer, faster swing and use spin to dominate their matches. Since the recommended string tension is in the low 50's, the Babolat Pure Aero enables you to create a lot of power on your serve.
2. Babolat Pure Strike
- 98in2 headsize and thin 21/23/21 section.
- New sharp control combining exceptional feel and dynamic control.
- Massive spin thanks to the 16X19 string pattern.
- Weighted at 305g for a unique stability on every shot.
- The benchmark for aggressive hard hitters.
What sets the Babolat Pure Strike racquet apart is that it appeals to a wide range of styles and levels of play. The tennis racquet's weight is 11.4 oz, and it has a head size of 98 square inches. The tennis racquet is ideal for tennis players who enjoy attacking the net and are looking for a well-balanced racquet that performs consistently across a wide range of attributes and strokes. The tennis racquet is equipped with a few key technologies:
- Woofer dynamic string system
This frame design allows the strings to move freely, allowing them to work together for a more generous sweet spot. It creates a trampoline-like effect that leads to more power and less shock.
- Hybrid Frame Construction
This is a combination of squares and elliptical shapes in strategic locations within the frame, resulting in a unique blend of control and power that is highly responsive and with great feel and precision.
- FSI Power
Babolat Pure Strike uses the company’s FSI Power technology to increase the spacing between the cross strings. This results in more power, spin, and comfort when hitting the ball.
- C2 Pure Feel
The 3rd generation of the Babolat Pure Strike racquet has a thin rubber material applied to the frame at three and nine o’clock, giving it a softer, more dampened feel.
Due to its weight and size, the tennis racquet is easy to maneuver; hence it's easy to bring it back for groundstrokes and transition it to the net to hit a setup volley. Its string pattern helps produce an amazing spin which is supported by a flexible frame.
3. Wilson Clash 100
The Wilson Brand is a leading manufacturer in the tennis industry and is among the best. They released their Clash series in 2019, and the Wilson Clash 100 quickly became one of the popular and best-selling intermediate-level tennis racquets on the market.
The tennis racquet provides a lower stiffness rating that is easy on a player while maintaining great stability and feel. The Wilson Racquet has a high level of flexibility which is due to the combination of Freeflex and StableSmart technologies.
Freeflex provides an immense level of flexibility in the frame, while StableSmart works with the frame's geometry to keep power and stability. Together, the technologies combine to lower the racquet's stiffness and increase comfort while maintaining a crisp and controlled feel.
The Wilson racquet has a 100 square inch head size which helps it deliver the added power. It weighs 11 ounces hence making the racquet easy to swing and an ideal option for intermediate players. For single players, it won't be hard controlling the ball and moving your opponent around. Simultaneously, double players will find it easy to maneuver with a great feel for your volleys. The 16 x 19 string pattern allows you to develop topspin on your groundstrokes.
4. Yonex EZONE 98
The Yonex EZONE 98 is a versatile tennis racquet and is ideal for both intermediate and advanced players. The tennis racquet delivers a stunningly balanced performance that works well for a wide range of tennis players. It is ideal for all-court play and performs well across the board.
The racquet has an isometric/square-shaped design which helps increase the sweet spot compared to the traditional oval shape. Another unique feature is that with most racquets, their grommets are drilled at an angle that matches the arc of the racquet's head.
However, Yonex uses their Linear Tech Grommet System consisting of many grommet holes drilled straight through to improve the racquet’s power and comfort. The racquet's head also has shockless grommets at the sides and bottom, which help ward off the shock and vibration felt when hitting the ball.
The racquet is made of carbon fiber which helps provide stability and flex for controllable power. The frame consists of rounded corners, which help in delivering better control and spin. It also features a Vibration Dampening in the handle to reduce vibration, thus improving comfort and feel. The racquet comes in 15 models; hence players have a large variety to consider.
5. Babolat Pure Drive
The Babolat Pure Drive can be considered one of the best tennis rackets for intermediate players looking for a lot of power, spin, and feel on their groundstrokes. Its weight is 11.2 ounces which is ideal for the intermediate level.
The Babolat Pure Drive Tennis racquet has a large sweet spot and is designed with Cortex Smooth technology, which dampens vibrations in the frame before reaching your wrist or elbow. Thus, making it very arm-friendly. The Pure Drive 100 square inch head is great, gives players more power, and suits almost everyone.
Its high power level and easy access to topspin make the Pure Drive racquet a great choice for baseline tennis players and big servers. It's also a good choice very for beginners due to its 100 square inch head and weight.
The Pure Drive racquet is equipped with its Pure Feel technology resulting in a thin layer of rubber within the graphite. This increases coverage within the shaft and improves the feel.
Factors To Consider When Buying The Best Tennis Racquet For Intermediate Players
When considering a tennis racket, weight is one of the first things to consider.
A light tennis racquet is easier to maneuver; however, as your swing improves, you will require a heavier racquet as you can get more control, power, and spin.
When it comes to the weight of a racquet and how heavy you go, it all depends on your stamina, ability, and strength. Most intermediate players tend to fall somewhere around 285g and 305g. This category carries a lot of great racquets that blend comfort with excellent performance.
Ideally, you're looking for a tennis racket that carries lots of power that can help you deliver a solid performance. There's the belief that heavier racquets lead to tennis elbow; however, this is far from the case as they actually absorb more vibrations, thus protecting your elbow.
b) Head Size
Beginner players search for racquets that make it easy to hit the middle of the strings, have easy power, large head sizes, and offer good comfort. However, as an intermediate player, you're more comfortable in your swings; thus, you're looking to become more precise; hence you're looking for a smaller head size.
This is where precision and control come in. The smaller the head size, the more control over the ball you have, giving you more possibilities.
Racquets within this category tend to have head sizes of around 98 square inches or 100 square inches. While some go up to 104 square inches. The head size depends on what you're comfortable with; however, the more your ability improves, the smaller it gets.
The balance of your racquet can be considered slightly more technical. However, you need to know that the more head light a racquet is, the easier it is to maneuver. The best tennis racquets are designed to provide a good balance of maneuverability and performance. The aim is to find one that feels right.
d) Power vs. Control
Obviously, the goal in finding the best racquet is to hit with power. However, to achieve this, you have to be able to control your racquet. As you keep improving, in terms of your strokes and you release more power naturally, the more likely you'll want a racquet that you can control, that way, you can unleash all your energy onto the court.
Hence, you'll find yourself drawn to very powerful tennis racquets, but this may not necessarily mean they are ideal for you. It's best to evaluate how good you are at generating power and find a suitable racquet that will allow you to get the most out of it.
e) Type of Strings
Tennis racquets have different types of strings. Some products don't provide the strings in the package; thus, you may need to buy them separately as a tennis player. You'll find different materials, including nylon, hybrid, polyester, and natural gut looking through the market.
Get to know the advantages of each and see which materials suit you best. In case something happens to your strings, replacing them isn't that difficult. There are various ways to go about it. You can go to a pro tennis shop and have them do it for you or change them yourself.
An intermediate player's racquet should provide more spin to their shots. The extra spin is provided by the string pattern and its arrangement on the racket. When you move from intermediate to advanced, you begin to notice that the best tennis players overwhelm you with both spin and power.
Spin control is key in a racquet when you're in the intermediate level. The best tennis racquets produce both great power and spin.
As an intermediate player, your racquet is required to feel more stable in your hand while you're using it. A firm grip is key when your opponent is stronger, as you'll need to remove power from their shots to return the shots effectively. An intermediate-level racket should feel both comfortable and solid.