How to Choose a Tennis Racket for Beginners

Tennis camp for kidsFor many years, tennis has been a game geared toward adults. Children in the past had to play on the same sized courts with the same tennis balls and rackets as adults, making the game very challenging and risking more injury. However, recently there has been a growing awareness and interest in summer camps, organizations, and brands, to make the sport more kid-friendly. There are now racket sizes for kids that make the game easier to play and more suitable for different age groups. What are the best tennis rackets for beginners? Here are some important things to know to make sure your child is equipped appropriately and has a great time at tennis summer camp.

What Size Tennis Racket Should I Buy?

Although every child is unique regardless of age, there are some basic principles that help match each child to the appropriate racket. How long should a kids’ tennis racket be? The average racket length for a child four years or younger is 19 inches. Kids aged four to five should have a 21-inch racket; children aged six to eight should have a 23-inch racket; children aged nine to 10 should have a 25-inch racket; and for kids aged 10 and up, a 26-inch racket would be best.

How Long Should Kids’ Rackets Be?

To test the length of a racket in regards to the size of your child, have your child stand straight and tall. Then place the racket you have chosen next to their side with the head resting on the ground and the other end pointing upward. Next, have your child place their palm on the cap of the racket handle as if they were resting their hand on a cane. Your child’s arm should be comfortably extended and resting on the cap of the racket. If they have to bend their arm to rest on the cap, or if their palm does not reach the cap, then you should try a different size racket.

What Grip Size Is Best for Kids?

Most rackets manufactured for kids have a four-inch grip size or close; however, some brands offer slight variations. In some cases, the grip may be too large or too small for your child, so speaking to the instructor or taking the racket to a local tennis shop to discuss adjustments will help your child get a comfortable feel during their games. Why does grip matter? It improves the comfort when playing tennis, and can prevent wrist or arm injury from prolonged use of a grip that is either too small or large. If the racket frequently slips from your child’s hand or if they are squeezing too hard to keep it in place, the grip size should be adjusted.

What Is the Weight of a Kid-Friendly Racket?

There are many factors to consider when choosing a racket based on its weight. The swing weight refers to how heavy it feels when swinging, and the “head heaviness” or “lightness” refers to specific manufactured qualities that make it stable and balanced in the hand. This factor of weight also affects the vibration that passes into the player’s wrist and arm when hitting the ball. Be sure to ask a professional instructor or visit a local tennis store to find out what weight is best for your child, as these factors vary from child to child.

Let Bayview Village Tennis Camp Advise Your Racket Purchase

Tennis camp for kids should be an adventure you and your child are excited for, but to make the experience enjoyable, your child should be adequately prepared for the sport. Choosing the right racket will make a huge difference on your child’s comfort and success during tennis games.
If you need advice on choosing the right racket for your child, the instructors at Bayview Village Tennis Camp can help you. We advise parents on important things they should know before bringing their kids to camp. Our team includes Tennis Canada-certified instructors who work to teach kids not only how to have fun, but also how to play smart and safe. For more information about the junior and advanced summer tennis programs, call us at (905) 889-7293 or e-mail pnielsen889@rogers.com.

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Peter Nielsen

Peter Nielsen

Peter Nielsen, a certified O.T.A Level III coach, has successfully worked with juniors at all levels of the game, from grass roots to the international level. A National Senior Champion himself, Peter was employed as a National Coach by Tennis Canada, as the Head Coach of the Central Region High Performance Program. Peter currently ranks 321st in the world for Men 50 and over.