Racquet tech part 1 of 3: What technologies are you selling?
Have you and your staff ever wished you had a list of all the major racquet technologies, all in one place? Well, with the help of material from the U.S. Racquet Stringers Association, here it is.
This is the first part of an alphabetical compilation of information taken directly from industry product and marketing catalogs and technical manuals. The claims made come directly from the manufacturers, not from RSI or the USRSA, and no endorsement of any product or claim is intended. We’ll run the rest of the manufacturers’ technologies in the next few issues, and here on our website.
- Aero Modular Technology — New frame concept with high-modulus graphite, varying beam profiles at 3 strategic locations offering power and control, while increasing head speed. Thinner cross-section at tip to increase power. Standard cross-section at side of head to improve stability. Wide cross-section at throat to increase control and allow a faster swing.
- Carbon Xtrem — Layers of carbon braided on 3 different angles are placed on the head of the racquet for optimized hitting performance.
- Cortex System — Throat system designed to filter out vibrations that interfere with feel, in order to enhance the feel of the ball.
- Elliptic Geometry — Optimal cross-section shape designed to offer best resistance to torsion. Makes frame 20% stiffer for more power.
- GT (Graphite Tungsten) — Improves racquet performance, based on the concentration of Tungsten fibers at various strategic parts of the frame. A greater concentration of Tungsten in the head of the racquet strengthens the frame to reduce torque for greater precision (26% more precision compared to the previous Pure Drive).
- Side Drivers — Babolat’s exclusive dual structure construction connects the yoke and the head in the racquet’s key zones. Longer arms extend the yoke farther up each side of the racquet. These arms — or Side Drivers — create a stiffer construction and distribute maximum power from the base of the yoke to the middle of the head. Advanced precision comes from the connection of the Side Drivers to the racquet head at 3 o’clock and 9 o’clock, which results in less torque (or twisting) at ball impact.
- Smart Grip — First-ever truly ergonomic racquet handle perfectly shaped for your hand. The entire palm of the hand is in contact with the grip. As of 2009, Smart Grips are adjustable and removable.
- Woofer — Grommet system that permits all the strings to work together to their full potential when strings contact the ball, thanks to piston and pulley functions. It is designed to deliver 10% more power, enlarge the sweetspot, enable 25% more contact between the ball and the strings, and absorb the shock and vibration from ball impact.
- Zylon Matrix — A material with incomparable stiffness (50% stiffer than standard carbon) is placed in key areas of the racquet. Used in head of frame to reinforce torsion, making the frame more stable and more comfortable. Used in the throat to increase stiffness for more power.
- Attiva — A racquet concept gender-focused for the ambitious serious female tennis player. Attiva features 3 properties: optimized weight and balance, rounder and softer grip anatomy, and Sensor Plus Handle System.
- DeltaCore — Delta-shaped arrangement of the individual molecules, finely meshed network, enhanced tube structure resistance in all three dimensions, less expenditure of energy and more power, increased stability and enhanced shock absorption. Tube structure is more compact and solid. The DeltaCore material can be processed very finely and used throughout the frame.
- Double Rail — Two braces consisting of two rails (Double Rails) span the curved inside of the frame. Strings can oscillate freely between the Double Rails. This special geometry significantly strengthens the racquet head at 3 and 9 o’clock. Double Rails offer greater resistance to torsion on off-center hits and make the frame more comfortable while absorbing vibration better in the head area. Double Rails provide optimized mass distribution with the same overall weight.
- DNX — A unique material structure featuring high-strength micro-tube construction that is 25 times stronger than regular carbon fibers. It is integrated in strategic areas to add strength to the frame.
- Dynamic PCP (Power Control Pattern) — Provides a dense string pattern in the racquet’s sweetspot and ensures that power is controllable. Balls hit outside the sweetspot maintain optimal power thanks to the more open string bed.
- Sensor Plus Shaft Dampening — Cutting-edge shock and vibration-absorbing element (made of high-grade vibration-inhibiting EVA material) is fitted into the shaft of the racquet. This is where it absorbs a majority of the harmful vibrations before it even reaches the handle.
- Speed Grommet — Grommets shaped like “8” allow greater string movement for an increased sweetspot. This results in more power, especially on off-center hits.
- 4D (4D Braiding) — Braiding four differently angled layers of graphite into a single layer achieves the strength and stability of a traditional 4-layer construction (producing 33% more control) while still retaining the softness of a one-layer construction (generating 33% more feel).
- Aerogel — The world’s lightest solid has a strength up to 4,000 times its own weight. Delivers an unmatched strength-to-weight ratio for enhanced stiffness and increased power.
- ISIS (Impact Shock Isolation System) — Dampens frame shock and vibration through a decoupling handle.
- Vibrocore — Made up of a thermal-plastic resin with a silicon core inserted into the throat of the racquet. The racquet is actually cut in half and re-constructed with the Vibrocore System dramatically reducing shock at ball impact.
- Aero Beam — Aerodynamic frame shape reduces air resistance and allows easier maneuverability. Also gives the perfect amount of flex in the head to store power for maximum ball speed.
- Integrated Stability System (ISS) — Incorporates extra weight positioned at 3 and 9 o’clock to reduce torque for maximum stability, energy transfer and control.
- Power Step — Larger rectangular cross-section for greater power and torsional stiffness that steps down an aerodynamic cross-section to reduce aerodynamic drag.
- AirCarbon — A material developed for the aircraft industry. It has 50% higher strength properties than conventional fibers and results in a racquet design with maximum resistance to twisting with minimum weight.
- Cap Grip — Uses thermoplastic materials to absorb vibrations.
- Direct Energy System (DES) — Dual-tube construction in the shaft enables maximum torsional stiffness and revolutionary weight distribution.
- Fischer Stability System — Utilizes metal platelets at 3 and 9 o’clock that give the frame increased weight, and stability on both sides of the head. It is designed to improve control of ball direction on off-center hits.
- Frequency Tuning (FT) — Racquets feature a Precious Metal Matrix that is applied to the entire surface of the racquet in precise amounts and locations to optimize the weight distribution of the frame. This optimization is designed to make the various vibration frequencies of the racquet “tune” with one another. Frequency Tuning (FT) racquets provide greater power with less shock as well as greater feel and more control.
- FTi — Frequency Tuning frames that also utilize titanium.
- Grip Dual System (GDS) — As the name would imply, the grip is made of two parts. GDS is designed to reduce impact shock and eliminate torsional vibration from off-center hits.
- Magnetic Speed — Technology utilizing magnets at 3 & 9 o’clock. The magnets are equally polarized so that as the sides of the frame move toward each other during impact with the ball, the magnets repel each other causing the frame to return to original shape more quickly. This quick return to original shape causes the ball to be returned with greater power.
- Trapezoidal Profile — A special box-shaped racquet profile designed to reduce arm strain.
- Twin Tec — Twin-tube construction in the shaft prevents vibrations reaching the grip area and offers maximum arm protection.
- Vacuum Technic — A manufacturing technique designed to remove any air pockets from the layers of graphite. This results in a frame that is homogeneous and stress-free.
- Vibra Stop — The Vibra Stop’s design allows it to dampen vibrations, give players an excellent grip, and it’s even washable.