Head Airflow 3 with Crossbow

Price: $180
Head Size: 102 sq. in.
Length: 27 in.
Weight: 9.9 oz.
Balance: 1/2 in. head heavy
Flexibility: Stiff
Ideal Swing: Short
NTRP: 3.5–5.0

Sales Pitch: For women with longer, faster swings looking for controllable power in a lightweight frame.

Compare To: Head Airflow 3

How It Tested: With input from Steffi Graf, Head introduced Airflow two years ago. The line of racquets, designed specifi cally for women, had three basic elements: lightweight power, easy handling, and an ergonomic grip tailored to fit a woman’s hand. Those features, and Graf’s participation, continue in the updates. They also feature CrossBow, a suspended bridge at the bottom of the head that moves independently from the rest of the frame. When the ball hits the strings, energy is stored in the bridge and then transferred into the shot (picture a diving board) for added power. The Airfl ow 3 is heftier than its predecessor (and more head heavy), which gives the racquet improved pop and stability. Playtesters enjoyed the racquet’s manageable power on the baseline and responsiveness at net. Even though it’s meant for women, some of the highest compliments came from men. One male 5.0 all-courter summed it up: “It feels like a player’s racquet with the comfort of a recreational racquet.”

Bottom Line: Accomplished junior girls and all-court competitive women who liked the first Airflow 3 will enjoy this latest version.

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