The Common Question
One of the common questions that arise when selecting a tennis racquet is, “what is my grip size?” It is a very good question and one that should be determined prior to selecting your tennis racquet. You wouldn’t work out or play tennis in shoes that were too big or too small because if you did you wouldn’t perform at your best and may get injured as a result. The same consideration should be taken when selecting the grip size of your racquet. Having the right sized grip will make your tennis experience more enjoyable and pain free over the long run.
Determining Your Grip Size
Step 1: Hold your racquet in the eastern forehand grip with your index knuckle and heel pad on bevel number three. For detailed information on finding the eastern forehand refer to the grip section of the blog.
Step 2: Place your index finger of your non hitting hand in the space between your palm and index finger.
Step 3: Determine if the grip size is too small, too big, or just right. If there is not enough space between your hitting hand’s ring finger and palm for your non hitting hand’s index finger than the grip is too small. If there is more than enough space for your index finger than the grip is too big. If your index finger fits comfortably, then the grip is just right.
Step 4: Adjust the grip size until you reach the ideal size. You can do this by selecting a racquet with the ideal grip size after doing the finger test or by selecting a slightly smaller sized grip and adding an over grip (adds 1/16 inch) or a heat shrink sleeve (adds 1/8 inch). You can repeat this process until you reach the ideal grip size. *This will increase the weight of the racquet slightly by 7-16 grams however the benefits of having a proper sized grip significantly outweigh the added weight.
Step 1: Using a ruler measure your hand. Do so by raising your dominant hitting hand with your fingers close together as if you were asked to go under oath.
Step 2: Measure from the top of your ring finger to the second horizontal crease in your hand with the ruler. If the measurement comes out to be 4 ½ inches then you would select a 4 ½ inch grip size.
Step 3: If you are in between grip sizes select the one that is smaller rather than larger and add to it as described in option 1, step 4 until you arrive at your ideal grip size.
Why Having the Proper Grip Size is Important
To simply put it, by having the proper grip size you are going to have a more pleasant playing experience and lessen the likely hood of having tennis elbow problems. When the grip is too small it requires more grip strength to keep the racquet from twisting in your hand. Overtime utilizing a grip that is too small increases the risk of getting tennis elbow. When the grip is too big it limits your wrist movement and also requires more grip strength which overtime also increases the risk of tennis elbow.