If you´re looking for a new squash racket, the large selection can be overwhelming and the numerous specific features don´t make choosing any easier unless you understand exactly what they stand for. The weight of the racket is a good starting point. In this article I´ll explain how it´s closely linked to the playing characteristics of the racket.
Over time most players, as they get more experience and their technique improves, start to prefer light rackets. Rackets of 120, 125 and 130 grams are very popular, but there are some even lighter ones on the market. Especially one of the big brands, Karakal, has succeeded in developing ultra-light rackets. For example, the Karakal SN-90FF weighs only 90 grams and the Karakal S-100FF a 100 grams. But what are the advantages of such light squash rackets?
A big advantage of a light racket is that it allows you to generate a lot of racket acceleration with a short swing. This means that your backswing doesn´t need to be long in order to hit the ball hard. Instead, you can generate enough power with a short, powerful movement. If you want to hit hard with a heavier racket you need more time for your racket preparation, because your backswing needs to be long.
In addition, a short swing makes it harder for your opponent to predict which shot you are going to play. With the same short backswing you can hit basically any shot: a long drive, a lob, a drop... You can give your opponent a hard time by making your game difficult to “read”. A light racket allows you to disguise your intentions; on the contrary, it´s not easy to play a drop shot with a long backswing, as is the case with a heavier racket. You have to slow down the movement just before hitting the ball and to control this movement properly, and this requires years of practice.
Moreover, a light racket makes it possible to react faster because you have less weight to move through the air. A lighter racket is generally more agile. However, in addition to the weight, the balance also influences the maneuverability of the racket. That´s why a lighter racket isn´t automatically easier to maneuver than a heavier model. In general, a light racket is an excellent choice for players who like to play the ball early. With a light racket you can easily attack the ball and choose whether to hit to the back court with a short swing or an offensive shot to the front. With a heavier racket, it takes more time to get prepared for your shot, and this limits your options.
So, if you´re looking for a very agile racket which allows you to hit the ball hard with a short swing, then try a light racket. Also, you´ll be happy to notice that your opponent struggles to read your game.
Bear in mind that by the weight of the racket we mean the weight of the frame. The total weight of the racket including strings, the grip and the bumper isn´t usually mentioned in the product description. On our website, however, we give two weights for the Harrow squash rackets: the weight of the frame only and the weight including all the accessories. This is simply because Harrow is one of the few brands who mentions the total weight of their rackets. Knowing both weights you may find it easier to compare these rackets with each other and with the rest of the brands.
Finally, a heavier racket also has its benefits. In the next blog text we´ll talk about them, so stay tuned!