Question of the Day: Playing in the Cold
TENNIS.com gear editor Justin diFeliciantonio and his technical advisers answer your equipment questions each day. Click here to send in a question of your own.
I’m a 3.5 player who loves to play ball—even when it gets cold in the wintertime. (I live in Pennsylvania, and can’t afford regular indoor play.) As long as I wear warm clothing and string at looser tensions, it’s not so bad. The only thing is, when the temperature drops to the 30s, my hands get really cold, and it becomes difficult to feel the grip. Is there anything that can help keep my hands warm and still allow me to feel the grip? I’ve tried wearing regular gloves, but it really kills the feel.—Barry T.
You’re not the only one, Barry, who can’t play well with gloves on. I’ve heard many tennis players execrate gloves for the simple reason that they obstruct the feel of the grip’s bevels (i.e., edges) against your hand(s). Of course, a grip’s tactile sensations inflect what a player thinks about a racquet; they’re also critical to making quick, accurate grip changes.
So what’s the solution? The only hand-warming, non-interfering tennis product I’m familiar with is the Tourna Hot Glove Mitt (MSRP: $9.95). Made from 100 percent breathable fleece, the Mitt fits over both hand and grip, warming a duke without robbing you of feel. The only catch: Judging by the item’s design, it’s only suitable for players with single-handed games.
Readers, what’s your solution to cold hands?