Every aspiring tennis player wants to find an impeccable racquet that is of tremendous benefit to their performance. However, the vast array of racquets available makes them feel confused and bewildered.
That’s why in this detailed post, we will help you weigh the pros and cons of graphite vs carbon fiber tennis racquet – the most reliable versions on the market. So, continue reading to find out your all-time favorite option!
Overview Of Graphite And Carbon Fiber
This naturally occurring mineral is an oldie but goodie. It is exceptionally soft, so it cannot retain its integrity when exposed to light pressure. But this material is surprisingly resistant to heat. These unique properties give it a wide range of uses in metallurgy and manufacturing. It has been deployed in producing sports gear for over 3 decades.
This stellar material comprises threads of carbon braided to form a kind of mat that can be molded with pressure and heat. This synthetic version of crystalline carbon is undoubtedly every engineer’s dream because it possesses both weightlessness and sturdiness.
Before the invention of carbon fiber, these two properties were thought to be mutually exclusive. Therefore, although it was incorporated into sporting gears later than graphite, it is no less popular.
The words graphite and carbon fiber are used interchangeably among laypeople, but they are, in fact, dissimilar. Generally speaking, graphite refers to a single carbon molecule.
Meanwhile, its successor is a polymer that has undergone a chemical process to generate an atomic carbon structure. Since it consists of many carbon yarns woven together, its strength and resistance to high impact are multiplied. Compared to steel, carbon fiber is stiffer yet more lightweight and elastic, which accounts for the prevalence of this phenomenal material.
Graphite Vs Carbon Fiber Tennis Racquet: 3 Main Differences
When it comes to tennis racquets, graphite is often used in its pure, unrefined form.
But carbon fiber is more stable than its predecessor, meaning that it does not react to other elements when mixed. Thanks to this distinctive property, manufacturers can feel free to adjust the proportion of this material, which, in turn, enables them to adjust the stiffness at different points on the racquets’ frames.
For this reason, when purchasing a racquet composed of carbon fiber, players can select the ones that weigh and feel to their liking. This results in pleasant sensations when playing and more accurate control over how hard they hit the ball.
Strength and weightlessness
However, this does not necessarily mean that graphite tennis racquets always increase athletes’ odds of winning. This stiff material isn’t lightweight in the least, so newcomers often wrestle with their heavy racquets. Such heavy tennis racquets also exhaust casual players sooner, and in worst-case scenarios, they might even inflict unwanted injuries on athletes’ arms.
On the other hand, as an upgrade from granite, carbon fiber enjoys an improved “strength to weight” ratio. In other words, it is powerful considering its lightness in weight.
Due to its unsurpassed toughness, tennis racquets made from carbon fiber lose less energy to vibrations when they contact the ball. As a result, both inept and proficient players can handle these racquets with ease.
Another plus point of this material is that it allows the overall weight to be distributed evenly over the racquet. Therefore, players can swing strenuously without damaging their racquets’ frames. What’s more, upon contact with a tennis ball, these racquets increase the speed at which the ball travels through the air.
One of graphite’s notable attributes is its long lifespan. This is because it is immune to erratic shifts in temperature and humidity. Therefore, tennis racquets made from this material are exceptionally hard-wearing.
However, carbon fiber’s resilience is even more remarkable than that. This material can withstand harsh external elements (such as blazing sunlight or blustery winds) and tremendous force from tennis balls. So, these racquets do not tend to wear out even when you use them frequently.
Watch this video to learn why this cutting-edge material is adopted in the manufacture of tennis racquets: Carbon Fiber in Tennis Rackets
Are wooden tennis rackets still used?
Although tennis racquets were initially made of wood, wooden ones went out of fashion in the early 80s, and until now, their uses are restricted in a handful of local contests.
The reason why they fell out of favor lies in their numerous shortcomings. First, it is heavy (weighing at least 400g) yet still provides insufficient power. This forces players to swing extra hard, which is physically exhausting.
Second, its hitting surface is small, making it easy for players to mishit the ball.
What is the best material for a tennis racquet?
Since each material has its own merits and demerits, there is no one-size-fits-all approach, and it is each player’s job to do thorough market research to find out the optimal racquet for themselves.
It is apparent that in this head-to-head battle between graphite vs carbon fiber tennis racquet, the latter is the outright winner. We hope this top-notch equipment can boost your confidence and help you step up your game!