It all starts with a racquet in tennis. Most tennis players think very fondly of their racquets in the early days as they get older. Junior tennis players need the right piece of equipment to take the game to the next level.
Before it is time to invest in a full-sized racquet for the first time, a smaller option makes sense for players who are not close to fully developed yet. This is where junior tennis racquets come into play. They can still feel and perform at a similar level, but they are a bit easier to control. Below are the 11 best junior racquets on the market right now. Take a look at the list and find out which one is more suitable for you.
1. Wilson Clash Junior
Recommended Age: 9-10
When Wilson first launched their Wilson Clash line, it was marketed towards players just starting now. It makes sense in a lot of ways for younger children to learn how to play the game with one of their junior racquets.
Available in a 25-inch or 26-inch option, it is one of the most comfortable racquets on the market today. It looks a lot like the standard Wilson Clash, and younger players will find it pretty easy to dial-in and start seeing success.
The graphite composition puts it in a higher class than other options out there, which is excellent for those looking to learn the game and advance appropriately. Balance is very solid on this racquet, and that is important to make sure that there are no chances of arm injuries for younger players trying too much.
It might not be able to put the same type of spin on the ball as some of the other models out there, but it has a very open string pattern just the same. It is a great way to learn the modern game, as Wilson put a lot of technology into this.
- Graphite composition and flexibility makes for comfortable play
- Open string pattern teaches the modern game
- Very easy to maneuver
- Only two length options
- String snaps fairly easily
2. Wilson US Open Junior
Recommended Age: 4 or younger
Whether it is shopping online or the local store, Wilson has a racquet that makes a lot of sense for players just starting. The Wilson US Open junior racquet is inexpensive, easy to use, and a balance forgiving as a racquet can be. The 106 in.² head size certainly helps, and so does the fact that it is a very balanced 7.8-ounce racquet.
The pre-strung racquet is meant to use for casual hitting and learning the game in the early stages. It is not going to hold up against a lot of heavy-hitting, but it is such a cheap investment that most people do not expect that. In fact, the racquet can usually be purchased for cheaper than even one re-stringing with a regular racquet, so it is a true throwaway item.
Available in a few different links and even colors, look at this junior racquet as a great way to introduce the sport to someone new. Maybe they will fully embrace it and go with something bigger and better down the road, or they will gravitate towards another sport. With such a small investment, it is worth a gamble.
- Very inexpensive
- Oversized head
- Many sizes and colors
- Limited to casual play only
- Strings break easily
3. Babolat Pure Aero Junior
Recommended Age: 9-10
Rafael Nadal is one of the most popular players in tennis. His racquet is a best seller, and Babolat knows that people of all ages want to emulate him as much as possible.
This Babolat Pure Aero Junior racquet allows younger players to look like a mini-version of their favorite player. It also just happens to be one of the best modern racquets in the game as well. It comes in various lengths so kids can learn the game while playing with solid technology.
It has a very open string pattern so players can learn early on how to create spin and power from different angles. It is very much a player’s racquet, just for smaller children trying to prepare themselves to play once they start to grow.
- Looks just like the standard Pure Aero from Babolat
- Open string pattern allows for great spin and power
- Very comfortable, even on miss hits
- A little lightweight for some advanced youngsters
- Could provide more grip size options
4. Babolat Pure Strike Junior
Recommended Age: 10 years or older
The Babolat Pure Strike has turned into a very popular racquet over the last few years. It makes perfect sense that they eventually launched a junior version of this racquet, and it is showing up more and more at local clubs.
What makes the Pure Strike different from the other lines from Babolat is that it is a much more comfortable racquet for players to play with. It also has a bit more of a closed string pattern, which allows kids to develop a bit more control.
This is still Babolat though, so they are going to allow people to develop spin as well. The racquet plays extremely similar to the real adult version, so it is a great way to introduce a player to one of the most popular frames out there right now. It might not have as much spin or power as some of the other options, but a powerful player can see a lot more control.
- Excellent control
- Very comfortable racquet
- A few size options to get a perfect fit
- Does not have as much power as other Babolat racquets
- Spin opportunity is only average
5. Babolat Nadal Junior Racquet
Recommended Age: 9-11
The Pure Aero might be marketed as Rafael Nadal’s racquet, and it definitely comes closer to his actual specifications. However, it is a bit expensive, which is why they also offer a cheap option with average materials to help introduce the game.
The company still keeps the familiar painting on the racquet, but the material is not the same. These racquets are aluminum, and they do not perform like a higher level racquet. Since it is designed for casual play, it does not make too much of a difference, especially with looking at such a cheap price tag.
There are also a lot of different size options for this racquet, which certainly comes in handy. Some might look at it as simply a marketing ploy, but slapping the Nadal paint on this racquet certainly helps significantly.
- Very inexpensive
- Perfect for sport introduction
- Looks like the real thing
- Tough for players to advance too much without purchasing another racquet
- Strings break more easily
6. Head Graphene 360+ Gravity Junior
Recommended Age: 9-11
Head has one of the most extensive collections for junior players, which makes it a great place to start for those wanting to shop around. The best overall racquet that they offer at this point is the Head Graphene 360+ Junior range. A person can’t really go wrong with the Gravity or Speed version, but the Gravity has a little more advanced tech in it.
Head is very excited that the new technology offers even more stability and power than ever before. Junior tennis players can learn how to not only develop spin with plenty of control, but do so consistently. It feels very much like the main version of the racquet, which is great for those who want to eventually transition to that.
- Uses Head’s latest racquet technology
- Very comfortable feel for any level player
- The opportunity for spin is excellent
- Grip size limits
- Hard to choose between the Gravity and Speed
7. Head Graphene 360+ Speed Junior
Recommended Age: 9-11
As discussed above, these two racquets are very similar, especially at the junior level. They are so similar that most players will be fine with either, but trying them out might be the best way to decide.
The Speed feels like it is a bit more for an advanced player at this age. The sweet spot is a little smaller, it is a little harder to manuever, and it just seems more unforgiving. However, in the right hands, it is a great racquet to learn the game with, and eventually, graduate to the main model.
Try both out if possible, and decide from there. Most people will be surprised to see the differences.
- Advanced junior racquet
- Solid control
- Power and spin is easy to tap into
- A bit too advanced for some
- Hard to differentiate from the Gravity
Recommended Age: 6-8
Like Babolat, Head has different versions of junior racquets as well. For their cheap option for overall sport introduction, the Speed series works very well. Starting at 21 inches and going all the way to 25 inches, players can find a racquet that fits them perfectly.
Each racquet comes pre-strung and ready to go, and they pack a lot of technology in here for something that is so cheap. The Obeam design helps with stability, and the 95 square inch head size is playable enough for youngsters to get a good feel. It is a very lightweight racquet, so players can learn to control their own strokes instead of fighting against it.
The racquet works well with regular tennis balls, or balls design for younger players. An overall great option for any 6-8 year old trying to take their game to the next level.
- Lightweight option with plenty of sizes
- Obeam technology helps with stability
- String snap pretty easily
- Racquet does not look too much like the standard models
9. Yonex EZONE Junior
Recommended Age: 10 or older
Yonex is known for having a unique racquet head shape that takes even high-quality players a while to get used to. It just makes sense to at least try it out at an early age and see if it plays well. They have developed a very friendly racquet for players just starting now. It might not seem like an option for everyone, but it is worth looking into.
To start with, the very forgiving head size can allow players to find the sweet spot a little easier. Developing consistent strokes early on makes it so much easier to advance as a player. The reason why they use Isometric technology is to increase ball pocketing and shot response, and increase the sweet spot by about 7%.
Yonex packs in a lot of their technology in this racquet, making it a good investment. The fact that it routinely goes on sale also makes it more than most affordable options in this range.
- Very affordable
- Introduces players to the Isometric technology in the head
- Very comfortable
- Takes a while to get used to
- Small head size compared to the competition
10. Dunlop CX Comp Junior
Recommended Age: 4-6
Most junior racquets seem to fall in the category of very beginner, or on the verge of using a standard high-level racquet. For those who are in the middle and want a mixture of both, Dunlop might have a perfect option.
This CX Comp does not have all the same technology in it as the premium options from Dunlop at the adult level, but it is a step up from those cheaper options. The specs allow for a bit more playability, and that is always great in helping with overall advancement. There is only so much tennis players can get out of the very low-end models.
Some overlook Dunlop, but they put together some pretty good racquets that are worth trying now. It comes in a few different sizes, and makes for a nice racquet that is not too expensive, but not the cheapest option out there either.
- Provides a bit of an upgrade compared to entry-level models
- Surprising technology for in an expensive racquet
- Plenty of size choices
- Does a lot of things good, but nothing well
- String pattern is not as open, not allowing for learning the modern game easily
11. Prince Tour 100P Junior
Recommended Age: 7-10
Prince offers a very well-rounded racquet that allows players to focus on growing into their game. Whether a player wants to develop spin, power, feel, or any combination of the three, this racquet does a very good job of teaching exactly that.
It has many the same qualities as the high-level option, but with a little more maneuverability. Losing just a single inch off of the length might not seem like much, but it helps significantly with stroke development.
The open string pattern is perfect for the modern game, and the 100 square inch head size is perfect and redeeming as well. Some junior racquets will go with an oversized look, but players with aspirations to become much better down the road are better off sticking with something more realistic.
Prince designs this line of racquets as options for people who are right on the verge of graduating to a standard size. Do not look to them for too many options for those who are just starting.
- Feels extremely similar to the full-size option
- Allows for different types of game development
- Great maneuverability
- Limited grip sizes
- Only readily available in one size
Once a player gets to a certain age (usually in that 11-12-year-old area), they graduate to full-sized racquets. However, what should a player do before that? This is where junior racquets come into play. This will allow for an easier introduction to the game, as young players have a hard time moving around a standard racquet.
All the racquets mentioned above will be great starting options for all skill levels at that age. Those taking the game more seriously might opt for the more premium models, but there is nothing wrong with the cheaper options for casual play as well.
Here is the full list of the best junior tennis racquets
- Wilson Clash Junior (Age 9-10)
- Wilson US Open Junior (Age 4 or younger)
- Babolat Pure Aero Junior (Age 9-10)
- Babolat Pure Strike Junior (Age 10 or older)
- Babolat Nadal Junior Racquet (Age 9-11)
- Head Graphene 360+ Gravity Junior (Age 9-11)
- Head Graphene 360+ Speed Junior (Age 9-11)
- Head Speed Junior (Age 6-8)
- Yonex EZONE Junior (Age 10 or older)
- Dunlop CX Comp Junior (Age 4-6)
- Prince Tour 100P Junior (Age 7-10)