There are many types of overgrips out there on the market. They all have different characteristics, but if we’d sum them all up based on the most important features, those would be: moisture absorption, tackiness, durability and thickness. Tennis, and all other racquet sports for that matter, provide players with a wide choice of gear. Ranging from racquets, strings, balls to accessories such as overgrips. Although quite small and easy to neglect, overgrips are a very important part of the gear. Since each tennis player is unique, they all require different overgrips that suit their needs and playing style. To make the choice easier, check out the breakdown below.
If you are the kind of player who has sweaty palms, you have probably experienced issues in keeping that racquet in your hands. This is especially true for those long, exhausting rallies. A racquet that slips and slides all over the place can impact your game on the court, as you won’t be able to get a steady grip. The good news is that you can choose to go for an overgrip that has enhanced moisture absorption. This is usually indicated on the packaging, and some overgrips go even beyond to show moisture absorption rating. You need your overgrip to stay dry. This will help you if you sweat a lot.
Some players are seeking feeling. These players often change their base grip to a leather one as those are known to enhance the feeling. Players that require feeling want to feel each and every vibration of the racquet in contact with the ball. There are overgrips specially designed for those players in mind. Those overgrips are extremely thin so they don’t affect the feeling in any way. Look for labels such as “ultra thin”, “light” and similar on the packaging if you’re looking for the benefits of using an overgrip, without it affecting feeling.
Some players have hands that are prone to blisters. Others train for long hours each day and are bound to create blisters along the way. One way to prevent this is to use thicker overgrips that provide more cushioning. This overgrip will literally save your hands and you’ll be able to focus on your game.
Tennis technique requires a steady and precise grip on the racquet handle, while at the same time it’s not recommended to hold the racquet too tightly. This is a perfect situation to use overgrips that have enhanced tackiness properties. These grips will often have a certain texture on them, allowing for a good grip. Tacky overgrips feel good in our hands and give us sense of stability which is very important for our confidence.
Drop shot and slice are two shots that rely on feeling. Try using a thin overgrip to enhance those shots. Thin overgrip allows you to feel the vibrations as well as bevels of the racquet handle. This allows you to be in control of the ball and feel more connected to it. You’ll be able to more precisely change the grip, which is extremely important when disguising the drop shot and changing grip at the very last moment to surprise your opponent.
The unfortunate truth is that a lot of recreational players suffer from less or more severe elbow issues. Tennis elbow is a well known injury. Players suffering from those issues should consider adding more cushion. Choose overgrips that provide a lot of cushion. Those grips feel more comfortable and they absorb impact and vibrations from hitting the ball, putting less stress on the elbow.
While overgrips need to provide us with good playability, they also need to look good. Overgrips come in a variety of colors and designs. Choosing one that fits your tennis outfit and personality can work wonders for your mental game. You’ll feel better on the court and this translates to confidence that is all important for the winning mindset.
This is one of those less known tricks that you can do with overgrips. Racquet handle comes in standard sizes. But what if you need it just slightly bigger (in between sizes) to fit your hand better? The solution is to wrap one or even more overgrips to get the size just right. Since overgrips come in a variety of thickness, you can surely find the one that makes your racquet handle ideal size.
Players who are looking for durability and comfort should consider thicker grips. They are often textured as well to add more cushioning and bulk. These overgrips will last longer, be less prone to shredding and it just feels so comfortable playing with them. Choose the texture that feels good in your hands and preferably looks cool as well.
Some players are lucky to be one of those players that don’t have sweaty hands. Their choice in overgrips becomes more versatile then, as they can ignore the moisture absorption properties completely and just focus on finding the right amount of traction, comfort and durability. For example, overgrips with high moisture absorption properties are not very durable, in fact they need to be changed very often.
Choosing a right overgrip for your game is important. Not all overgrips are the same and you need to experiment to find the ones that work the best for you. Keep in mind the above tips to narrow down the choice and then just try some overgrips out on the courts. The good news is that you’ll be able to try out a lot of different overgrips in a relatively short amount of time, as changing overgrips is recommended on weekly basis (if not sooner!). Also, sometimes it’s a good idea to have a variety of spare overgrips in your racquet bag. This way, you can quickly wrap a new one that fits your needs on that particular day. For example, if you’re playing a match indoors and the humidity is high, you might want to consider using an overgrip with higher moisture absorption properties. If you’re preparing for a long training session and feel that your hands a worn out, why not wrap an overgrip with enhanced cushioning effect to ease the pain.
Overgrips are essential, affordable and easy to replace. Don’t overlook the importance of overgrips, rather utilize them to your advantage. Choose the right one for your game as tennis is hard enough on it’s own, and you don’t really need additional distractions while playing important matches.