Best Budget Friendly Entry-level Tennis Rackets

So you want to take your tennis game to the next level, but you’re not sure what are the best entry-level tennis rackets. Choosing the right tennis racket is important because it can have a huge effect on your performance.

It’s important to choose a racket that suits your level of physical strength. There are many other factors to consider too, such as racket size, weight, skill level, grip size, string and tension, and your budget, to name a few.

Chances are you’re not yet ready to dish out money professional rackets yet. We spent hours researching the UK market and narrowed down our choices to a list of the best entry-level tennis rackets for beginners. Not only are these are budget-friendly with many under £100 but also great to start your game with.

Without further delay, let’s start.

5 Best Budget Friendly Entry-level Tennis Rackets

Here are our favourite tennis racquets for beginners:

Head Radical 27 – Lightweight, Great for People with Less Physical Strength

HEAD Radical 27 2023
  • Aluminium for power and durability
  • DampPlus technology for improved vibration dampening
  • weight: 270g

Head tennis is known for making great quality rackets and this Head Radical 27 Tennis Racket is no different.

This aluminium 27-inch tennis racket is best suited for a beginner or recreational adult. It offers plenty of power, control and durability to fit your needs. Head Radical 27 Tennis Racket offers Head’s best balance of power and control. Head is saying the Head Radical 27 Tennis Racket is their most successful racket to date.

The Head Radical 27 Tennis Racket has a weight of around 280g (unstrung) which makes it a good choice for powerful smashes or slice shots at the net, but not so well suited for volleys because of its slightly head heavy feel. This moderate weight and slightly larger head size of the racket, which is 27 inches, is perfect for those who want to bring their game to a higher level.

With longer strings and an enlarged sweet spot, the Head Radical 27 Tennis Racket helps improve accuracy on even off-centre hits.

This sounds really good on paper but does it translate into real-world usage? The answer is yes!

It’s endorsed by Andy Murray, and it has the same cosmetics as his favourite racket. Novak Djokovic also uses one of the HEAD rackets.

You can find more HEAD rackets in the following article>>>


Wilson Hyper Hammer 5.3 – Budget-friendly, Effortless to Play With

Wilson Hyper Hammer 5.3 Strung Tennis Racket (Black/White, 4 1/4)
  • Wilson Hyper Hammer 5.3 Adult Recreational Tennis Racket - Grip Size 2 - 4 1/4",...
  • Power frame for players with short, compact swings
  • Hammer Technology creates a larger sweet spot for more power and forgiveness

This racket is specifically designed to accommodate beginner and intermediate players. They help in providing both power and control to players that have not learned that technique yet. Along with this, the racket offers a larger sweet spot than most conventional rackets, giving the racket a more forgiving feature to shots that are off-target.

Moreover, Wilson is a well-known brand among tennis stars: Stefanos Tsitsipas claims to play with Wilson Blade 98 V8 and Roger Federer with Wilson Pro Staff 97UL v14

The use of the oversized head and frame design also aids in giving shots extra power. It is a head-heavy racket that helps dominant players achieve greater power.

The grip size is 106 to 108 mm which is the average size for most players. However, if this does not fit you well, an overgrip can always be added. These are very cheap and readily available, both online and at sports stores. Constructed to be a lightweight racket, it helps create a fast swing-speed effortlessly.


HEAD Ti S6 Titanium Tennis Racket –  Best Seller! Delivers Extra Power

Looking for something with a bit more power? The HEAD Ti S6 tennis is a great choice for beginners and intermediate players. While this racket is in the mid-range budget area, it’s perfect for beginners that want to invest in a solid racket.

The Head TI S6 is black, made from graphite and titanium, and has a 742 square cm head size. The large head size offers great control and less room for blunders.

While the racket is a little heavier than usual, the added weight enhances the power. The grip is very firm too, so there’s no need to worry about the racket slipping or twisting in your hands. One thing to keep in mind is this racket is not suitable for young children.

The bottom line: Once you get used to this racket, it can dramatically improve your tennis performance. Recommended for intermediates and beginners alike.


Babolat Pure Drive Tennis Racquet Review (10th Gen) – Best-selling and Versatile

Babolat Pure Drive Tennis Racquet - Strung with 16g White Babolat Syn Gut at Mid-Range Tension (4 1/2" Grip)
  • READY FOR THE COURT: Your new Babolat Pure Drive Tennis Racquet comes strung with...
  • POWER: You want power, stop looking around. Whatever your skill level is, power is...
  • EXPLOSIVITY: You wish you had an extra pop when things get tough, here comes...

The Babolat Pure Drive, acclaimed worldwide, is an epitome of excellence in tennis racket engineering, making it ideal for beginners. It boasts unparalleled versatility, suiting players from all skill levels and catering to diverse playing styles.

What sets this racket apart is its capacity to deliver exceptional power without demanding extreme swing efforts, attributed to its aerodynamic frame and efficient string pattern. The added spin potential is augmented by its unique FSI technology, and the integration of graphite and tungsten assures players of consistent feel and reduced vibrations.

This blend of power, feel, and technology, all maintained consistently across various iterations, positions the Babolat Pure Drive as an ideal choice for newcomers eager to elevate their game.


HEAD Junior Radical Tennis Racket – Ultra-lightweight Feature Perfect for Younger Players

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This HEAD tennis racket is specifically designed to accommodate younger players participating in Tennis. Because of this, they understand the challenges of children playing tennis and put specific designs into place to help reduce these challenges. An example of this is the use of a Damp+ insert, which isolates the impact of a shot for fewer vibrations to be felt. In doing this, less strain is put on the young children’s wrists.

The racket is ultra-lightweight, therefore, accommodating the increase in swing-speed while being gentle on the player’s arms and shoulders. The overall design of the racket is lighter and easier to handle than the grown-up rackets.

The 16/19 string pattern aids in making the racket as dynamic as possible. The racket is also decently priced, and let’s face it, why would you want to spend a fortune on a racket that your child will outgrow in no time when you can get something of this quality.


What is My Tennis Grip Size?

One of the most important factors of tennis rackets is the grip size. If the tennis racket’s grip is too small, you’ll be more likely to lose control. Likewise, if it’s too large, you won’t feel comfortable, and you’ll spend more energy on each stroke. Not to worry, figuring out what size is best for you is easy.

To start, find a ruler or measuring tape. Next, place one end of the ruler on the tip of your ring finger and measure down to your hand’s bottom lateral crease (the area across from your thumb’s second joint, a bit below the centre of your palm). The distance from the tip of your ring finger to that area is your grip-size, usually measured in inches.

In Europe, the measurements are based on a scale from one to six and measured in millimetres. Size zero in Europe would be 4” and six would be 4” ¾ inches. These are the most common grip sizes, and it’s very easy to find a suitable racket that fits your hand size.

How to find your tennis racket grip size infographic

General Rules For Entry-level Tennis Rackets

In this section, you’ll learn what you should have in mind when choosing a tennis racket for beginners:

Tennis Racket Weight

While you might assume a light racket is best, that’s not necessarily the case. Lightweight rackets are great for beginners and people that don’t have much physical strength. The downside is you have to swing them harder to deliver more power.

On the other hand, if the racket is too heavy it will be too difficult to use, and you’ll run out of energy much quicker. You also risk overshooting the swing which can cause just as many problems.

The trick is to find a weight that matches your level of physical strength. I recommend a middle ground, a racket that’s heavy enough to deliver power, but light enough for control. You might have to test out a few rackets to find your ideal weight.

tennis racket weight

Tennis Racket Head Size

When we are talking about the head size, we are talking about the size of the head of the racket where the strings are. It will generally range from 80 SQ IN to 130 SQ IN. Normally, the larger the head size, the larger the sweet spot.

The sweet spot is the area where you get the most power and comfort from the racket. Usually, the head size is in proportion to the level you are at as a tennis player. Rackets with an oversized head (105 SQ IN or larger) are perfect for beginners whereas, mid-plus heads (95 SQ IN to 104 SQ IN) are great for intermediate players. However, this is sometimes not the case so emphasis should be placed on ‘usually’.


String Pattern

Within the racket head, strings are arranged in what is called a string pattern. There are a variety of string patterns by the most common ones are 16 X 19 and 18 X 20. The 16 and the 18 respectively are the number of main strings. Those are the strings that run from the top of the head to the bottom.

The 19 and the 20 respectively are the number of cross strings. Those are the strings that run side to side. The fewer amount of strings on a racket result in more spin due to the limited surface area touching the ball. The more strings will lead to more control due to there being more surface area touching the ball. Therefore, the more strings, the better it is for a beginner player.

tennis rackets string pattern


The balance of a racket refers to where the weight of the racket is located. If most of the weight is located in the head of the racket, it is considered head heavy and harder to swing. If most of the weight is located in the handle, it is considered headlight and easier to swing. If the racket is perfectly balanced, it is considered even.

Swing Weight

Swing weight is the number that is specific to the racket industry and isn’t referred to anywhere else. Simply put, the higher the swing rate, the harder it is to swing. High swing weight is measured at 330 or above. The lower it is, the easier it is to swing. Low swing weight is measured at 310 and below.

Modern-day rackets are measure between 280 and 350 on the swing weight scale. The advantage of having a low swing weight is more spin and the advantage of having a high swing weight is more power and more stability. If you choose a racket in between, you will get a blend of both.


Like swing weight, stiffness is measured on a scale, in this case, 0 to 100. The majority of rackets fall between a 50 and 80 range. The stiffness is a measure of how stiff a racket is. The stiffer a racket, the more powerful it is. Potentially, you can also feel less comfortable when the racket is very stiff.

Rackets will low stiffness are known to be more controllable. High stiffness is between 69 and above. Whereas, low stiffness is between 60 and below. Medium stiffness is between the two and gives a blend of both advantages of power and controllability.

tennis rackets for beginners

What Makes A Tennis Racket More Expensive or Cheaper?

There are a variety of different factors that play a role in deciding how a tennis racket is priced. We will discuss some of the following factors:


Aiding in making a tennis racket more expensive or cheaper are the materials used in the making of the tennis racket. Expensive rackets are usually made of high-quality components like titanium, graphite, and carbon fibres. Due to the use of these materials, these rackets are seen as more durable, weigh less, and aid in making a more controlled and powerful shot.

Cheaper rackets are made from alloys, which is a combination of metals or from a mixture of metals and non-metals. These are used as they are cheaper than the other components mentioned to make more expensive rackets. It is hard to know exactly what is in these alloys and therefore, the tennis racket tends to be more flexible. Although the flexibility sounds like a sign of quality, it is more likely due to the cheap combination of metals used.


Each brand has its own technology put into the rackets to make them better for the player. However, this technology is created by the use of research and development. Research and development take money to do. Therefore, the best outcomes of this research are found from the more money spent on it.

In saying this, the best technology will then go to the rackets that have had more money spent on research and development, making them more advanced and luxurious for players. These types of technology could be certain materials put in the racket to absorb vibrations. This Is desirable for a player as it can reduce the risk of tennis elbow. Otherwise, a different shaped head size to increase the sweet spot offered on the tennis racket.

tennis racket unstrung

Pre-strung vs. Unstrung

Most tennis rackets are sold pre-strung. These usually do not add to the value of the racket. They are seen as inferior to rackets that are sold as unstrung. Therefore, making them more cost-effective. Unstrung rackets allow the player to sting them to their specific needs, catering to their string tension which is dependent on the type of player they are.

In paying more for this, the player gets the benefit of choosing these specifications. This can aid in creating value to the tennis racket and making it a little more expensive than an ordinary pre-strung racket.


Which One is The Best Tennis Racket For Beginners?

When it comes to choosing an entry-level tennis racket, most beginners will buy any cheap racket to test out.

While you probably do need to test a few rackets to find your ideal style, it helps to focus more on racket quality. We recommend aiming for the mid-range rackets because they’re more durable and stable.

Overall, you shouldn’t stress too much about buying an entry-level tennis racket. Choose the one that suits your immediate needs (grip-size, style, weight, etc) and take it from there.



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About Mark Bailey

I’m Mark Bailey. I’ve been in the racket sports industry for 11 years and counting! You could say I’m a bit of a racket guru. I have experience with tennis, squash, badminton and table tennis at an international level. My blog is all about providing you with tips to improve your game as well as sharing my experiences from different tournaments around the world. In addition to this, when there’s snow on the ground (in winter) I like to take advantage of it by going snowboarding in France! And even when there’s not any snow left… My Labrador Rocky always needs walking!

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