I think you’ll agree with me that finding a suitable tennis racket is always a difficult process.
Made even more so when you’re looking for a junior racket.
Fortunately, you’ve come to the right place.
Whilst it’s been some time since I’ve played as a junior, we’ve done our research, spoke to our peers, and have compiled a list of the 10 best junior tennis racquets.
We’ve also put together a short buyers guide towards the end of the article. This will walk you through everything you need to know when buying a junior tennis racket.
What is a Junior Racket?
What’s the first thought that crosses your mind when you walk into a store, or when you’re busy shopping for rackets online, and then you come across a racket that looks like a miniature racket?
You’d think, it must be a racket designed for kids, right? And that’s because it is. The best kids’ rackets don’t exactly look like adult rackets. Yes, they might share the same features and design, but the size matters a lot. The length of the frame will be way smaller and the racket will feel light.
We’re really tempted to jump right in and go straight to the best junior tennis rackets, but we have to first say this about size:
Size is a factor that you’ve got to take into account when choosing a kid’s racket. A typical adult racket will fall in the 27 -27.5 inch range while a junior racket falls below that.
Your child’s age and size will determine the length of the racket they require. Below is a table demonstrating these sizes.
Best Junior Tennis Rackets
Ok, now that’s out of the way, let’s take a look at some great tennis rackets for kids,
1. Head IG Speed Kids Tennis Racquet (23"-26") -
That IG speed Kids model is a beginner’s racket, and it’s available in 23 to 26 inches. Compared to other rackets, this model will register a better performance on the court, but that shouldn’t come as a surprise, seeing as it’s been designed by a brand that has dominated the market for eons.
The frame weighs 7.6oz, it has a 95inch head size, and a head light balance advantage. In other words, we’re talking about a racket that reduces vibrations and enhances stability whenever the player is hitting the ball.
Are you hoping to get your kid a racket will serve your child’s needs until he/she outgrows it? Well, it won’t let you down. IG Speed Kids tennis racket has been constructed using fiberglass, and that makes it one of the strongest rackets out there. Seriously though, no kid will be able to bend this racket even if they try.
2. Wilson US Open Junior Tennis Racket (19"-25") -
By now, you obviously know that Wilson is a top three brand in the industry. Consumers trust their products because they prioritize quality over quantity. They’re also one of the older brands in the world of tennis, and that says a lot.
One other thing that you’ll realize is that most tennis rackets that are manufactured for the junior pros, are made of aluminium. And the Wilson US Open Junior Tennis Racket is no different. Aluminium is the best choice due to its properties—you end up getting a lightweight racket that’s also sturdy enough to withstand anything you throw at it.
Wilson US Open Junior Tennis Racket comes in four sizes:
- 19 inches
- 21 inches
- 23 inches
- 25 inches
As always, be sure to measure your child’s height and find the right size racket using our table above.
This particular racket comes with a Wilson Advantage racket bag, which you can get in black, navy or pink designs. This is always a nice addition, as your kids can turn up to training looking and feeling like pros.
All in all, you couldn’t ask for a better racket for the next generation of tennis players to learn on. It’s affordable, looks great and feels exactly how a junior tennis racket should.
3. Head Speed Kids Tennis Racquet (25")
A lot of the features that you’ll find in this racket are similar to those found in the Tour Pro model line of rackets. It’s hailed as one of the best tennis racquets for kids, seeing as it features technologies that even an adult would appreciate.
The Head Speed Kids Tennis Racket has an aluminum o-beam construction, and that’s the type of material that you’d typically go for if you want a racket to be light but still have that solid feel.
The balance of a racket is just as important as any other factor that you take into consideration. Head knows this and has implemented a headlight design into this racket. This kind of balance enhances its stability and minimizes shock and vibrations.
What about the racket size? The brand understands that tennis is not a game played with one-size-fits-all equipment. So once they were done with the blueprint of what needs to go where, they went ahead and manufactured it in different sizes. Your Head Speed Kid racket won’t just come in one, two, or three sizes.
You’ll be able to access four different sizes, which include:
4. Gamma Sports Junior Tennis Racquet (19"-25")
It’s not easy to forget about the Gamma Sports Junior Tennis Racquet when talking about the best junior racket models.
Gamma are a well-known name in the tennis industry and are my go-to brand when it comes to overgrips.
They offer their junior racquet in 19”, 21”, 23” and 25” size options. This variation of size makes the racket usable for most children under the age of 12, depending on their height of course.
If you want your child to feel what it’s like to play with a high-quality racket, then this is a great option. It’s built to a great standard but a very reputable brand and is sure to make a fantastic asset for your children to learn and develop in the game of tennis.
The Gamma Sports Junior Tennis Racquet is also a light model, making it easier for your child to make their shots whilst focusing on technique.
5. Babolat Nadal Junior (26")
The Babolat Nadal Junior tennis racket drew its inspiration from one of the tennis greats. A true legend in the field – Rafael Nadal.
Rackets that come in large head sizes are particularly ideal for kids still learning the game, since they have a large sweet spot that reduces the number of unforced errors made around the court. The Babolat Nadal Junior also has a bigger head size, and that’s a definite plus
The Nadal Junior racket makes use of an aluminium frame, which in turn results in a very lightweight racket. This is ofcourse incredibly important in a junior racket, as children will often lack the endurance needed to use a heavier racket for an extended period of time.
Of course, one of the stand out features of this racket is the design. Bold, clean and modern, and easily one of the best looking on our list.
Another great aspect of this particular racket is the range of sizes it’s available in. We’ve listed the available sizes down below, which you can cross reference with our table above to find the right size for your child.
6. Wilson Federer Junior Tennis Racket (21")
Kids don’t usually have that physical strength needed to generate power when hitting shots. So when you’re going for a racket, it’s wise to invest in one that can help generate a little power for them – like the Wilson Federer Junior Tennis Racket.
It has an open string pattern, and if you know anything about this pattern, you know it will help to offer some additional power and spin. By the way, an open-string-pattern generally means that the racket will have more space between each string.
The Wilson Federer Junior Tennis Racket also has an arc technology, and this feature guarantees your child’s racket is not only well balanced but also very stable. This also helps to dampen vibrations from impact with the ball, which in turn minimizes the chances of sustaining an injury such as tennis elbow.
What’s more, this particular racket has a head size of 106sq.in, which can be classed as oversized, so expect a large sweet spot as well. Simply put, mis-hitting shots or making unforced errors on the court will be much less common.
7. Wilson Youth/ Junior Burn Tennis Racket (19" & 21")
Up next we’ve got the Wilson Youth Junior Racket, a great option for any junior with a bit of experience under their belt and are looking to progress further in their training.
One down size to this racket is the size and color limitations. The racket itself is available in the following size options:
As I’ve previously mentioned, use our size chart from the beginning of this article to find the right size for your child. That said, these sizes typically fit children around the ages of 4-6, depending on how tall your child is.
Another downside is the lack of color variation, however that’s pretty common in kids rackets, but if you’re children like pink, you’ve found yourself a great option.
As usual, the Wilson Youth racket features an oversized head; an important feature when learning the ropes of tennis and may be prone to making unforced errors. This head size will provide a bit of forgiveness, allowing you to play through your miss-hits.
All in all, a great racket sure to aid any budding young tennis player develop their skill.
8. Wilson Serena Williams Girls Racket
It’s all over social media—this tennis maestro has one of the cutest kids in the world. And seeing as she’s signed under this brand, we all knew the manufacturing process of a new Wilson kid’s tennis racket was afoot. And we were right!
Wilson and Serena Williams gave us the Wilson Serena Williams Girls Racket. It’s easy on the control, aerodynamic, lightweight, and one of the top options for kids who’re just starting out.
This racket has a bigger head size (oversized), and provides a larger than usual sweet spot. In fact, that feature was specifically designed in that fashion because kids who’ll be using this racket will be so young.
And just like many other junior rackets, it comes pre-strung, and with an open string pattern. So kids who’re being taught how to spin won’t find it hard grasping that technique.
You’ll be able to pick up this racket in the following sizes:
- 21 inches
- 23 inches
- 25 inches
9. Babolat Pure Drive 26” Junior Tennis Racket
A lot of the kids who prefer using Babolat do so because they’ve grown up seeing Rafael Nadal dominate the sport over the years. And even though he’s still in his prime, we think he has already earned his spot in the Hall of Fame for the Most Outstanding Sports Personalities in any field.
The Pure Drive 26” Junior tennis racket is one that imitates Nadal’s racket. The design itself appeals to any type of playing style, and it guarantees power and great control. It’s safe to assume that this racket has delivered as expected, seeing as it always makes kids look good around the court.
The woofer and cortex system are the two technologies that have been used in the construction of this particular model. The former allows maximum control with your strokes, whereas the latter makes it easier to direct shots to those squeeze spaces on the court.
Confidence is important when we’re talking about the mental strength of a player and the Pure Drive racket knows that.
We forgot to mention, this racket is ideal for kids between the ages of 8 and 12 years old, depending on their height.
The racket’s pricing is the one thing that a lot of the parents have complained about. It’s pricier in comparison to other models.
The good news is, you’ll be getting value for your money as the racket is not only durable, but also classified among the top quality rackets that the market currently offers.
10. Street Tennis Club Kids Racket (17"-21")
You know how brands like Babolat, Wilson, and Head are mostly associated with rackets used by tennis pros? Well, this brand is famous for manufacturing the best kids’ tennis rackets in the industry. And just recently, they released the Tennis Club Racket for Kids.
Before we did too much into this particular racket, it’s worth talking about the sizes it’s available in.
The racket comes in three different sizes, 17, 19 and 21. While not as wide a range as some other racket on our list, there’s still a good amount of options for kids under the age of 9. That said, if your child is over the age of 9, there’s a good chance that this racket will be too small for them.
Aluminum seems to be the top pick when it comes down to materials used in the construction of kid’s rackets, and for good reason. It’s lightweight and can stand up to the natural wear and tear it’ll encounter on the court.
How to Choose the Right Tennis Racket for Your Kids
Now that we’ve looked at some great options, we’re going to go over some of the main aspects to consider when looking to buy a new racket for your child.
Finding The Right Racket Length
The moment you hold a racket, it automatically functions as a lever. So your arm and shoulder will act as those crucial points that move the lever.
Let’s assume for a quick second that you’re the type of person who thinks frugally especially when it comes to spending. Because you don’t want your kid to outgrow the racket after a month or two, you decide to invest in a bigger racket. Now, there’s nothing wrong with investing while thinking about what the future holds. The problem is not thinking about how that investment is going to serve you.
Your child won’t be able to properly hold the racket, as it will put too much pressure on his/her shoulder, elbow, and wrist. This will not only effect their ability to play, but can always cause repetitive strain injuries going into the future.
We also have to talk about the hand-eye coordination aspect of the sport. This aspect is more or less a technique that they’ll eventually have to learn. But with a longer racket, mastering this simple technique will feel like a chore. And we all know kids and chores are two words that shouldn’t be used in the same statement..
Wielding a longer racket is no walk in the park. Making accurate shots and generating enough power while taking those shots will be difficult, and the opponent will exploit that weakness.
Nobody likes to lose. And when your kid loses, their confidence level will drop and eventually, they’ll lose interest in the sport.
We’ve seen parents look at rackets and think, “It’s just an inch! What difference is it gonna make?” Well, you’ll be surprised. And the same applies to parents who invest in smaller rackets. The only thing that you’ll be accomplishing is depriving your child that extra punch that they need to register a brilliant ace.
To summarise: length is extremely important and can have a direct effect on your childs ability to learn and play tennis.
Measuring a Junior Tennis Racket
The length of any tennis racket is its measurement from the frame’s top edge to the butt cap found at the handle. And this is how you confirm the measurement:
- Ask your kid to stand up. Their back has to be straight and not hunched.
- Place the racket next to his/her dominant foot. Stand that racket with the handle facing upwards.
- If the kid is comfortably holding the butt cap with all fingers, without having to lean over, you’ve got yourself the perfect racket.
- If he/she is dragging the racket while walking, it’s too big. If it’s hanging way above the ground, it’s too small.
Grip size refers to the circumference of the rackets handle, and it’s often measured in inches. There’s really not much we can say about the grip size of a junior tennis racket seeing as gear-makers usually manufacture a 4-inch grip size for all kids rackets.
But don’t get us wrong. We’re not saying that you’ll never find different variations. Of course, you will. But they’re as rare as a hen’s teeth.
Unlike the length of a racket, you can customize the grip if you realize that it’s too large or too small. Adjusting an oversized grip can be a little bit complicated for a player, so we would advise you to visit a local store that has racket adjusting equipment.
If it’s too small, you can buy an overgrip and add the extra layer – easy!
Have you noticed a lot of the kids’ rackets are named after famous tennis players? There are a couple of reasons as to why brands do that. The first reason is to inspire the kid. They want to remind the kid that they too can be one of the greats if they work hard enough.
The second reason is the marketing strategy. People want to be associated with famous people. And if you have something designed by a legend, that feeling is to die for. Brands know that so they’re taking advantage of that to drive up their sales volume.
Just like adult rackets, we also have cheap and expensive junior rackets. At face value, you won’t understand why they all have different prices. But if you delve deeper, you’ll realize that it’s all about the material and technology used to design the racket. Instead of going for a bigger racket, invest all your energy, time, and money in a good quality racket.
We have two types of rackets. There’s the one-piece and two-piece racket. You can tell whether your kid’s racket is one-piece or two-piece by checking the bridge. At the bridge, a one-piece racket won’t have any plastic insert holding the racket’s strings, but a two-piece will.
Adults usually go for one-piece rackets because they’re often more effective in transferring power from their swing, and into the ball. On top of that, the rackets maintain their head speed and don’t twist in the players’ hand while hitting shots. That’s why these rackets are superior to the two-piece rackets. Most junior rackets are two-piece rackets, hence cheaper in comparison to adult rackets.
The material used during the construction of the frame is also another factor that influences pricing. While adult rackets are mainly constructed using carbon fiber and high-grade graphite, junior rackets are mostly manufactured using aluminum and other cheaper materials.
Popular Brands of Kids Rackets
When Head first came into the scene, a lot of things were changing not just in the world of tennis, but skiing as well. Players started coming up with new techniques of playing the game, and the demand for quality rackets drastically increased. So, tennis racket manufacturers kept on pushing the boundaries of innovation.
Head has, and still is, a major player in the industry. Together with other brands, it has improved the sport by incorporating different kinds of technology when designing the rackets..
No player has been left behind. Not even in the junior levels. All our needs have been catered to, as we’ve seen the brand release rackets in different sizes.
Long before Babolat became a racket manufacturer, they were the producers of the best strings in the market. Every tennis player wanted to buy an unstrung tennis racket because they couldn’t wait to get their hands on those strings.
Their success in the industry made them develop this insatiable hunger for more and that’s when they began producing tennis rackets. And ever since, they’ve contributed significantly to the innovations that have made this sport e
Wilson always seems to have a choice tailor-made for anyone. And if you think that’s a stretch, just walk into any tennis racket selling store in your vicinity, and you’ll right away spot several junior rackets with the Wilson logo on them.
Aside from the fact that this brand rarely rolls the dice when it comes to trying out different innovations, it’s also famously known for offering stable junior and adult tennis rackets. And like several other brands, Wilson is a part of other sporting industries, including golf, basketball, and baseball.
Wrapping Things Up
Well, there we have it folks. Hopefully, we’ve walked you through everything you need to know to choose the best junior racket for your child.
With a bit of luck, will be seeing your child grace the courts of Wimbledon in the coming years!
Thanks for stopping by.