For every sport or activity, I knew I needed the right gear, and my dive into tennis was no exception. The most important gear to me was the racquet, and while I wasn’t going to break the bank getting an expensive racquet I was going to try and get one that would last a while.
Different types of racquets
I went to my local sporting goods store and soon discovered two types of tennis racquets. One made of aluminium and the other made from graphite. The aluminium frames of the first racquets were strung already, and most had been used by veteran players.
They were about 30 dollars and I was told they would last a couple years, while also being durable enough for a fun day on the court. Graphite tennis racquets, on the other hand, are for those who want to commit to the game.
They are expensive, powerful, and can last for a very long time if taken care of. These are the racquets the pros use, and people told me buying a graphite racquet is like committing to being the best tennis player you can be.
Another piece of gear
I had my racquet, standard issue tennis balls, and I was ready to get started, only to have someone stop me as I was about to leave. They asked the oddest question, but they were a veteran tennis player so I answered it anyway.
“What about your shoes?”
I answered that I planned on using my running shoes, they were good enough to stand up to darting back and forth on the court, or so I thought. I was then told that I couldn’t use running shoes if I planned to play tennis for a long period of time because they wouldn’t be bastions of support for long.
The benefits of tennis shoes
Running shoes are designed to consistently run in one direction, and as anyone who’s watched tennis knows, the players often shift directions and run back and forth throughout the entire match. If you try to play a long game of tennis in running shoes then everything becomes far more dangerous.
Tennis shoes are designed to support your foot and body as you go back and forth across the field, and they are about as expensive as a good racquet. It’s advised to buy the tennis shoes at the store, that way you can try them on and speak to an expert about how good they are for the level of playing you’ll be doing.
If I hadn’t known about the benefits of running shoes beforehand, the sixty dollars I had spent for them could have turned into thousands of dollars for medical bills and lost wages due to an injury.
Now that I have my racquet, shoes, balls, and a court to go too, I just need to get good at the game! Does the right equipment help you improve your skills any better? Even if you don’t have any skills?