Tenniszine - UK tennis blog.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Babolat Pure Team Storm mini-review

I blogged earlier this year that I was using the Prince O3 Tour racket. Nice racket, arm friendly which is why I started using it, but sadly it gave me a nasty shoulder problem and I had to stop using it. My shoulder eventually healed but the golfers elbow wouldn't go, so I reverted to an older racket of mine the Babolat VS Control which has a softer flex rated at 64RA.


I started looking for a later soft flex racket and play tested the Babolat Pure Storm Team which has similar specs to the VS Control except for the balance. The Pure Storm Team has a more even balance than the VS Control and so you can feel the weight in the head even though it is head light. It feels solid and reassuring and is quite low powered with the emphasis on control. The reviews at tennis warehouse indicated it was arm friendly and sure enough I was amazed to find that after playing with it, despite having golfers elbow, I had no need to ice my arm as usual, and the next day there were no after effects.

On that basis I purchased one. I played with it once in a match and just couldn't get on with it. It's probably the strings as when I played with the demo there was much less power and more control than the one I purchased. Then just to sway my overall view I went home with a slight shoulder pull. Now that may not have been the racket, rather it's probably because I didn't warm up and stretch properly, but being paranoid about shoulder injuries I'm not going to risk it again. So, that's another racket, brand new this time, that's going to go on ebay. A bargain for someone since I'll sell below the retail, even below the 'two matching rackets' discount price.

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8 Comments:

Anonymous Darren said...

Hello. I'm into tennis too and thought I'd share some of my views, particularly with regard to shoulder injuries. Apologies if you already know what I am about to write.

I too have been suffering from shoulder injury and this has been going on for 2-3 years now. What often happens is that to protect an initial injury, the body makes adjustments and starts using the wrong muscles, for example, when serving. This can end up giving you poor muscle balance which can make your shoulder problem doesn't heal.

I have been through physio and still do various exercises when possible which has helped. But the one thing that effects the onset of pain the most is which type of service motion I use - presumably the one that hurts the most puts the most pressure on my shoulder. So you might want to try experimenting with this.

If you do have a long term shoulder injury and a technique you know brings about pain, then switching rackets will not solve your problem. Of course, it may help.

From research on the internet I'd recommend going with a heavier racket, over 300g, but not too heavy for your shoulder to struggle swinging. Also, as I'm sure you are aware, different strings and tensions can make a large difference. Have you experiemented with this, too? I find tensions in the 50-55lbs work well for me and eliminate elbow pain which I've experienced at higher tensions.

Finally, I'm also always experimenting with different rackets and often use eBay. I may be interested in your Pure Storm or other rackets depending on price etc.

Thanks for the intersting read.

8:32 AM  
Blogger TennisNut said...

Thanks for the advice Darren.

I agree that the racket can make a difference to arm and shoulder problems. My arm is nearly OK these days, it's OK enough not to really give me trouble, but sadly I have an ongoing shoulder problem that is also hard to shake off.

I've stopped switching rackets for now, since my game was suffering; but as I can only play competitively once a twice a week because of the shoulder my game suffers that way too from lack of sharpness. So I might look for a softer flex low powered racket when winter comes.

I sold the Pure Storm on ebay, sorry if you missed it. Someone got a bargain, nearly half the retail price!

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