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Playing with the proper grip size is important to your enjoyment of the game, and to your physical well-being. The quality of the fit between your hand size and your grip has a lot to do with how well your racquet handles for you. The goal is to get the most hand surface against the grip when holding the handle. Greater hand surface allows you the grip the racquet with less effort.

What’s the down side? Without the right grip size, your tennis racquets will under perform. Worse yet, it could also leave you with arm or wrist problems that are slow to heal. With a too small grip, you will try to compensate for less contact area by squeezing harder than you should.

  • The right size is the best size. To see how to measure your hand for the proper grip size, look at the illustration and picture that appears on this page. On the court, the right grip size will allow you to hold the racquet comfortably without over-squeezing.
  • If you must guess or compromise, lean towards a larger size. Going small increases your risk of tennis elbow. You want to avoid the muscle fatigue that results from having to hang on to the racquet with a death grip. This is a common source of tennis-related muscle ailments in the wrist, forearm and elbow.
  • The grip should feel comfortable.
  • If you plan to use an overgrip or wrap, you may need to get a small racquet grip size. Overwraps and overgrips can increase the overall size of  the racquet handle – sometimes by as much as a full grip size.
  • Grip sizes can be made bigger after you buy a racquet. Usually, it is difficult or impossible to make a grip smaller than it’s original size.

Grip Size Lingo

The five most common grip sizes today are: 4 5/8, 4 , 4 3/8, 4 , and 4 1/8. Alternatively, you may also see these same sizes referred to as L5, L4, L3, L2, and L1 instead. L5 and 4 5/8 are the same size, and so on…

Taking Your Measurements

Measure your grip starting at the tip of the ring finger (third finger) down to the lateral crease of the thumb in the palm of the hand. See our illustration below of a measurement of a hand that would have a 4 grip size.

GripSzie1.gif (12024 bytes)

As the picture above shows, a proper fit will allow a “one finger” spread between the palm and fingertips curling around the handle.



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