Volkl Power Bridge 10 Light Tennis Racquet Review

May 17th, 2011 by Mark Pinckney

filed in Tennis Product Reviews, Tennis Racquet Reviews

Dunlop Biomimetic 300 Tour

 

The Power Bridge series of racquets is Volkl’s try at recapturing the share of the ‘players’ frame market that they used to have back in the day. The flagship Power Bridge 10 has a 93 square inch head, as does this light version. The Light weighs 10.9 ounces strung compared to the 12.1 heft of the regular model. Both frames are the standard 27 inches and have the fairly full 18 mains with 20 crosses string pattern.

Can you say old school or almost old school? This frame is fairly stiff and for sure reminds one of the old 90-95 square head racquets made by Prince and Wilson and Volkl before the materials became super light. Remember the old Volkl Tour 10 models and the Pro Staff 85 used by Pete Sampras? This racquet feels the same way when you start to hit with it. It has nice heft and balance and it is relatively easy to accelerate the racquet quickly on ground strokes and serves. Warming up and even rallying the racquet feels solid and playable.

The questions come when you really start to hit out, with regard to hard approach or passing shots, or moving forward and volleying well struck balls. I don’t know if it is because of the relative lightness, but the frame feels less solid when you really start to go after the ball. It isn’t that it vibrates, as much as it feels like it might start to any second.

For sure on volleys and ground strokes that you really swing at, if you don’t center the ball exactly in the middle, the feel is different. I think that this frame has a very small margin of error with regard to the sweet spot, in terms of players that really hit the ball hard. It is a fairly easy frame to spin the ball with, and the thin beam and balance make it the ideal frame to attack. If it weren’t for the fact that you have to be so precise to acquire the good solid feel of contact.

String choices and a good string dampener might mitigate some of the feel issues. But I worry about a frame that feels so different, when I take a really big cut at the ball. I think on those shots you have to have total faith in the feel and reaction of your racquet.

I do think that the Volkl Power Bridge 10 Light would be an excellent transitional frame for juniors, especially juniors who are small and light. I also think that 3.5-4.0 NTRP level club players would find this frame useful, in terms of generating power while still having a fair amount of control. I think that higher level players should avoid this frame, especially if they hit the ball flat or even semi-flat. In any case players should make sure that the racquet feels firm on hard hit balls before going to this frame.