The key variables of any squash racket are weight, material, balance and shape and size of the head. These properties are a real nightmare for beginners and even the intermediate players don`t fully understand them.
But there is no reason to be scared – I will explain everything you should know about the squash racket variables so let`s start right away.
First, the good news is that you don`t have to understand every characteristic of a racquet to buy the right one. There is no sense in counting every gram of weight or every square cm of head size if you don`t play at a top level. Basic understanding of the variables is completely enough.
This one is really easy. The weight of squash raquets is distributed from about 120 grams to more than 200. Lighter rackets are usually more expensive as it requires higher quality materials.
Heavy racquets (180 gram and more) are great choice for beginners. The weight works for you when you strike the ball and you can concentrate just on controlling it. The disadvantage is that you can never achieve such control as with a lighter racket.
Medium-weight racquets (140 – 180 gram) are better suited for experienced players. Why? Because it is more difficult to hit the ball hard, a player must combine his own strength with the right control of the ball to achieve the right power – which can be really difficult for players who are still learning the sport. They are also more expensive.
Light racquets (120 – 140 gram) – for very experienced players.
So my advice is – if you are starting with squash, go for a cheaper, heavier racquet and upgrade to more expensive, lighter one after you get some experience and skill.
The most used materials are:
Aluminium – the cheapest squash rackets are often made of aluminium. They are heavy (around 200 gram) but also very durable and difficult to damage. Their disadvantage are vibrations that are generated when hitting the ball.
Graphite composits – titanium and carbon are often added to the graphite base. These racquets are lighter and better for playing – but when used badly they can break.
Or – the distribution of weight. We distinguish raquets that are
- head heavy – they weight lies more towards the head and the racket feels heavy in your hand, it`s easier to deliver powerful strokes.
- head light – more towards the handle so better control of the ball.
- evenly balanced
The best way the find out if the balance is optimal for you is to try it out – when it feels unnatural in your hand, reject it. Note that this is really a matter of personal preference, some people like head heavy raquets, some others prefer evenly balanced…
Shape and size of the head
Larger heads (500 sq cm) give you a bigger sweet spot so it`s easier to hit the ball with them and they also offer more power.
Smaller heads offer you more control.
I hope this overview has helped you understand what the key variables of squash racket mean and how to use them when selecting the right equipment. If you have any questions, just throw me a comment