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How to choose the best grip for your racquet?
The grip of your racquet is your connection to controlling the movement and power of your racquet.
Without a proper grip, you may struggle to hold your racquet, slip during a shot, or even drop the racquet.
Finding the best racquetball grip for your racquet can help improve your game and prevent strain from affecting your wrist or elbow during a game.
The best grip will fit properly with your grip size and feel comfortable with your swing.
Why change grips?
When a grip becomes worn down or damaged, it may seem like a hassle to replace it.
But playing a racquetball match without a good grip can cause you to miss shots or hit them inaccurately.
Poor grips can also affect your arm and wrist during swings, as the change in sizing and weight disrupt the motion of your swing.
For those who play regularly throughout the week, consider changing every two weeks or every month.
People who play less regularly may not need to replace their grips as often but should remember that even if the racquet is not in use, the grip can be worn down.
Another way to see if your grip is at the end of its life is to monitor color fading, more frequent slips during games, fraying, and lack of control.
How to choose right grip size
It is important to find grips used specifically for racquetball, as other racquet grip types will be sized differently in both their length and their grip sizes.
There are usually just two size options commonly used for racquetball racquet grips.
The smaller grip options allow for quick wrist action, which can help create powerful shots.
These grip sizes are lighter in weight which can help relieve some of the usual pain players with sore wrist experience.
Most people use smaller grip sizes.
Yet as a smaller size, there is less surface area for your palm to rest. This can cause a lack of control as the racquet can more easily twist in your hand.
Larger grip sizes increase their surface area. Your palm will have a larger area of contact increasing control.
The feel of the grip will also improve. You will not need to hold the grip so tightly as well which can assist players with sore elbows.
It will take more force to create powerful, quicker shots though.
In order to choose the best size option, consider looking for a size similar to your glove size.
Feel free to experiment with different options in order to find the option you are most comfortable with.
Test out a grip by slowly swinging the racquet and getting a feel of the grip and your hand.
A player’s ring finger should make some slight contact with their palm.
You can also measure your hand in order to find your grip size.
Opening your hand and extending your fingers, use a ruler to measure from the lateral crease of your hand up to the top of your index finger.
The measurement will align with your grip size.
Different brand sizes
All racquets list their grip sizes, but many brands say they use either a small or large grip size, not every brand uses the same measurements for the two sizes.
Gearbox and E-Force racquets will come with either small, 3 5/8 inches, or large, 3 15/16 inches, grip sizes.
Ektelon racquet has three sizes with a super small 3 5/8-inch size, a super small rounded size of 3 5/8 inches, and a large 3 7/8-inch grip.
Head, Wilson and Pro-Kennex racquets all have both small and large grip sizes set at 3 5/8 inches and 3 7/8 inches.
There are two grip styles for you to choose from as well, wrap and rubber grips.
Wraps act a material your wind around your racquet’s handle.
Rubber grips slip on and stay connected to the handle with an adhesive like glue or double-sided tape.
Wrap grip types are commonly used in E-Force, Head, and Gearbox racquets.
Rubber grips are featured on Ektelon, Wilson, and Pro Kennex racquetball racquet.
Wrap grip types
Wrap grips act as a tape that must be wrapped around your racquet handle.
Made of synthetic leather, the grip works well to absorb moisture, increasing your hold and reducing slips.
These grips also offer a natural cushion to comfort your hand.
There is limited tackiness to the rubber though, making for a shorter lifespan than rubber grips.
Wrap grips break down into four different types: smooth, perforated, contoured, and tackified.
Smooth wrap grips are the thinnest sized grips available. This allows you an extreme feel to the racquet handle.
However, there is less traction to these wraps which can cause slippage as the wrap wears down. The durability of the wrap is also low.
Perforated wraps have a focus on absorption and ventilation. This increase in both features helps evaporate and reduce moisture to prevent slippage.
This grip type is much thicker in size though, which can make it hard to grip for smaller hand sizes and can add weight.
The ridges of contoured wraps add a texture to your grip to increase the secure hold you have on the racquet.
But like the perforated wraps, this is a thick grip.
Tackified wrap grips create the greatest hold for your hand to the racquet handle.
This increased grip is due to the tackified coating.
This extreme hold can make it difficult to quickly switch or adjust your grip such as from your forehand to your backhand.
Rubber grip types
As mentioned, rubber grips are tube shaped, simply slipping over the handle of racquet and held in place with glue or another adhesive type.
These grips are a good option as they increase the overall strength of your hold and increase the tackiness of a grip.
Rubber material does not absorb moisture very well which can cause slipping to affect your hold.
Rubber is also a thicker material which can increase the size of the grip.
Like wrap grips, rubber grips also come in different types: smooth, extruded, and recessed tread.
Smooth rubber grips have a high tackiness to them but still act as a thinner rubber.
These two traits do make the grip the most likely to cause slippage when damp of the rubber grip types. They also have low durability.
Extruded tread features the strong hold and are extremely durable. These two features make it a great choice for many players.
The extruded tread grip does have an increased thickness, making it the thickness grip of the rubber types.
The final rubber grip type is the recessed tread grip which has a strong, secure grip without thickening in size.
The grip can slip when damp though since rubber grips do not have strong absorption.
How to attach wrap grip
Before starting to attach either a wrap or rubber grip, make sure to remove the previous grip and any residue left over from the racquet handle.
For a wrap grip, begin by unpeeling the non-square end of the wrap. Place this section at the end of the handle, at the butt cap, at a downward facing angle.
For those you are right-handed, wrap the grip in a counterclockwise motion, while left handed players should wrap in a clockwise direction.
This is to make sure the grooves of the grip align with your fingers while playing.
Pull tight on the wrapping as you wrap the grip, being mindful of wrinkles as these can affect the feel of the grip.
It is important to overlay the wrap as you go as well, about 1/8 of an inch, to create the needed grooves for your fingers to grip.
Do not overdo it with overlapping though as this will prevent the grip from being smooth.
Too little overlap will leave gaps exposing your handle underneath the grip.
As you reach the end of the handle, cut the excess wrap away, in a line perpendicular angle to the handle.
Apply the finishing tape over the wrappings end to secure the grip.
How to attach rubber grip
For a rubber grip it is important to make sure you loosen the new grip up a bit to make sure it will be able to easily slip over the handle’s end.
Too stiff grips fresh from their package may struggle to fit over the handle or rip if you force them too hard.
Apply the adhesive, usually a type of glue, by either brushing the material on to the bare handle or using a tubed glue to cover the interior of the grip.
You will probably not need to use the entire glue bottle for the task.
Carefully work the rubber grip over the handle, twisting it into the proper position.
Make sure to remove all excess glue from the racquet to make sure it does not dry onto the surface.
Best racquetball grip
There are a number of racquetball grip options that could potentially work well for use with your racquetball game. It’s important to always consult a medical professional before using any new product.
The following grips may give you a good place from which to begin your search.
E-Force Vapor Wrap Black OverGrip
The E-Force Vapor grip is a wrap type. The grip is colored black to go with all types of racquet colors.
As a wrap grip, the grip has a strong focus on its ability to be absorbent and reduces slippage from occurring without the loss of a firm grip.
The grip is made of synthetic materials, which supports its ability to absorb moisture and helps it be a durable grip.
The main focus for the E-Force Vapor wrap is its features to vent air and create breathability of the grip.
This helps lessen moisture and keeps the grip dry for a longer period.
This helps you play your best and stay in greater control of the racquet longer.
The Vapor grip offers a secure hold between your hand and the racquet’s handle with a strong feel.
The wrap is constructed to offer vibration dampening abilities with the use of urethane rubber materials.
As a wrap styled grip, there is natural cushioning provided by the material. This material is also absorbent to prevent slippage and twisting from occurring.
- Wrap grips are thinner in size
- Wrap grips are made to be extremely moisture absorbent to prevent your grip from faltering
- Natural cushioning can make the grip more comfortable
- The Vapor wrap contains rubber material to extend durability
- Wrap grips do not last as long as rubber grips
View at Amazon for more information on how this grip could work for you.
Head Tacki-Mac Serrated MT Racquetball Grip
The Head grip is a Tacki-Mac rubber grip. The grip can either be black or white in color for you to pick from.
The rubber material of the grip is Kraton rubber, a polymers or synthetic type of rubber.
The material has many similar properties of natural rubber materials, including its traction and flexibility.
It is also possessing nearly the same durability as natural rubber.
As a rubber grip, the grip will be thicker than a wrap but the secure hold between your hand and the racquet will be increased. The durability will also be increased.
The traction of the grip is increased through the use of a raised serrated pattern.
This makes the grip one of Head’s most ultimate non-slipping grips in their collection.
This pattern allows your fingertips to amply hold the racquet handle, partnered with the high traction of the rubber material.
The rubber Tacki-Mac MT is designed to slide onto the racquet’s end, needing only an adhesive substance in order to stay in place.
The adhesive is included with the purchase of the grip. This makes it easy to add to any racquetball racquet.
View at Amazon for more information on how this grip could work for you.
- Rubber grips are more durable and have a longer lifespan
- The Kraton material utilizes the functions of both rubber and synthetic materials like polymers
- Thicker size
Ektelon Vision II Grip
The Ektelon grip is a rubber slip on tube styled grip designed to be simply added to a racquet handle with ease.
The rubber grip comes in three monotone color options of black, smoke which is a light gray, and white.
As a rubber grip, the thickness of the grip will be increased compared to wrap grips. A rubber grip is also made to be much more durable and will hold longer than other grip types.
Since the grip is designed to slip over the racquet’s handle, the inclusion of either glue or tape to hold the grip in place will be necessary.
The Vision II grip is made to provide extreme comfort, though rubber grips are not naturally padded like wrap grips.
The hold of a rubber grip is also high in traction due to the nature of the material. This grip has been made to further support control. Having more control can help you complete shots more accurately.
The grip also supports a smooth and tacky feel to increase the feel. The grip is 1.5 millimeters thick on top and the base is 1.5 millimeters as well.
View at Amazon for more information on how this grip might work for your game.
- Rubber grips have more grip and traction
- Prevents the racquet from slipping and twisting in your hand
- Rubber grips are thicker in size, especially with the padding added
Featured image credit: DepositPhotos.com @lisafx