Thursday, August 17, 2017

Bats. Try Before You Buy!

Now available at our store, our demo program includes bats!
Just stop by our Dale Mabry store and the same demo program that has helped tennis, racquetball and pickleball players find the right equipment for their games, comes to baseball and softball.
Under the program, you pay a fee that allows you to take a bat for up to a week. You can hit it and find out if it is a good fit for your swing. Not the right one, bring it back and try another. If needed, another and another, all for the one time fee.
Once you find the one you like, the demo fee is subtracted from the purchase price of the bat.
Our demo program takes the guess work out of selecting a bat. When you buy, you'll know it is the right one for you.
We're adding new models all the time, so if we don't have the DeMarini or Louisville Slugger bat your looking for, let us know and we'll give you an idea when they'll be in.
For more information on the program, give us a call at 813-961-8844

Monday, August 7, 2017

New Wilson Ultras

Coming 8.15.17 to MP Tennis & Sports, the new Wilson Ultra line of rackets. 
There is going to be four models coming in August, with two more coming in November.
Coming in August are:

  • Ultra 100 CV - a new and improved version of the popular Ultra 100, now with Countervail which reduces arm fatigue and returns more energy back to the ball.
  • Ultra 100L - A lighter version of the Ultra 100 CV, gives the same feel and power for players who need the benefits of less weight.
  • Ultra 100UL - An even lighter version at just over 9 ounces, it's designed for players who want the control/power combination of a 100sq" head with the ease of swing from a light frame.
  • Ultra Tour - It's a heavier version with a slightly smaller, 97sq" head size, giving players with bigger swings added control and feel.

All four will be available to demo at our Dale Mabry store so you'll be able to find the version that best fits your game.

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Arm Pain? It Could Be Your String.

Here at our MP Tennis & Sports store, we have seen an increase in people coming in and needing to change from poly strings.  The most often heard reason is arm issues. For many players, a full bed of poly string is just too stiff, even when strung at a low tension.
When using a full bed of poly, you have to hit hard enough to make the string give at impact. The more a string gives, the more it does two things. One, it absorbs the impact, making it easier on the arm. The other thing is that the more a string gives, the more energy it will return to the ball (think trampoline).
The main reasons people choose a poly in the first place is control and durability. Poly strings will, for most people, last longer (won't break), but will, over time, lose tension. Once the string has lost enough tension, the performance will decrease, making them even harder to generate power and spin.
For some, the control aspect is about not hitting the ball long. Many players don't hit the ball long as often with poly strings but sacrifice power and depth to do so. When the power goes down, you have to swing harder, which adds to the potential of arm trouble.
So, you've been using poly but it is hurting your arm. Now what?
There are several options.
1. Try a hybrid of poly and a softer string. This will add performance without sacrificing much durability. For most, polys on the mains and the softer string in the crosses will ease the arm issues while still giving a stiffer feel (for those who like that feel).
2. A "synthetic gut" string is a middle ground string that doesn't last like the polys but offers less spring than the softer multifilament strings.
3. For those with real arm issues, a multifilament string will offer more power and shock absorption.  Both things will stress off the arm and give a more comfortable feel. You will also find less of a need to have to "kill the ball", by letting the strings do some of the work and stress from your arm.
4. For those who feel they need a poly, there are some newer, slightly softer poly strings. While not as easy on the arm as the other options, it will be an improvement over most poly strings.

If you are feeling the impact of every shot in your arm, stop by our Dale Mabry store and we can give you some options to have you playing more comfortable, and hopefully, better tennis.

Saturday, July 15, 2017

New Head Extreme Rackets at MP Tennis & Sports

Now available at MP Tennis & Sports at our Dale Mabry Store is Head's new Graphene Touch Extreme rackets. There are two rackets in the new Extreme series, the MP and the Lite. Both feature the same Graphene Touch technology which gives players a great feeling racket with the perfect combination of power and comfort. They also have Head's '360 Spin Grommets' that allow the the strings added ability to move for greater power and snap back for increased spin potential.
Head has given the new Extremes a more conventional head shape. In past versions, the head shape was very round, which some players found difficult to get used to. The new, oval shape is more common and gives the Extremes a more conventional look and feel.
The MP version has enough weight for the big hitters and plenty of spin potential and is a great choice for aggressive base line hitters.
The Lite is, like it's name says, a lighter option for players who want the performance but need less weight for more racket speed and maneuverability.
In the short time they have been out, the feedback on the new Extremes has been very positive. People who have tried the demos have like the power/control mix and have commented about the very solid feel.
If you'd like to try them, stop by our Dale Mabry store and start our demo program. You can call us at 813-961-8844 if you have any questions.

Saturday, July 8, 2017

Beating the Heat on the Court

Not sure about where you're at, but here in Tampa, it is HOT!
Playing tennis in Tampa this time of year creates several issues for those willing to take on the heat.
One of the biggest problems is worn out grips. When you are sweating buckets, your hands and grip are going to get wet. If you are using a worn out grip, it's even worse. Here at MP Tennis & Sports, we often see rackets that have broken after slipping out of someone's hand and sent slamming into the court. A new grip or overgrip will help this problem quite a bit. For those who sweat a lot, something like a tacky-towel or grip enhancement gel can increase your ability to keep the racket from slipping.
Another problem is what to do with your racket when not on the court. Just about the worse thing you can do is leave it in your car all day. I won't go into how hot it can get in a car, in Florida, in summer, but it is very hot. 
The heat can damage your frame and cause your string to lose tension prematurely. Both things will reduce the performance and how well you play. Keep your racket inside whenever possible, or at the very least, have them in a bag with a thermal protective pocket for the rackets. 
Doing these things will help increase your racket's life span and have you playing better tennis.
Come into MP Tennis & Sports and we can help you select the right grips and even put them on while you wait. Stop by our store at 14845 N. Dale Mabry Hwy in Tampa and we'd be happy to help.

Friday, July 7, 2017

Big Things Coming to MP Tennis...& Sports!

Since 1998, MP Tennis served the Tampa tennis community with equipment from the top brands in the sport and professional service to help our customers select the right things for them. We take pride in helping people play better tennis, and though our league, The MP Tennis Ladder, more tennis.
Over the years we have applied the same formula of service and selection to racquetball and pickleball. 
Now, in late summer 2017, we will be adding new sports to our store. Baseball and softball.
We will offer brands like Wilson, Louisville Slugger, DeMarini and EvoShield and will offer the same level of service to help players pick the best product for them.
Check out our website at for updates on when the new bats, gloves and more will be available.
We are still MP Tennis, only now it's, 
MP Tennis & Sports.

Friday, June 2, 2017

A "softer" Poly Option

So you break strings pretty quick, but still want something that is fairly easy on the arm? There are some options for you now days.
First of all, poly strings have become popular due to its durability, but for many, it comes with a cost. Poly strings are generally very stiff, which creates a tight, unforgiving feel to the string bed. While some players do hit with enough power to make poly strings give, most players do not. This inability to make the string give enough at impact creates more shock to the arm.
A possible answer for players who like the durability of poly, but not the extra shock is a new breed of polys designed to be “softer” and easier on the arm (note - most non-polys will be softer than the softest poly).
Here are a few of this new breed of poly strings that offer a better feel and extra pop.
  • Luxilon Element - The Element is different in construction than most polys. Rather than being a solid core, it has what Luxilon calls “multi-mono”, which is several strands forming the core of the string. This gives Element more elasticity which increases ball-pocketing, power and gives it a better, less shocking feel.
  • Luxilon 4G Soft -  This is a softer version of their 4G strings, which hold tension better than the average poly string. It still has great control, but is a more arm-friendly option than the standard 4G strings.
  • Babolat RPM Team - The RPM Team has the same exterior features of RPM Blast, but the core of the string is made differently to add flexibility. This allows for more give at impact, which absorbs the shock better and is easier on the arm, without sacrificing durability.

One thing to keep in mind with poly strings. While the do break less often, they generally do not hold tension as well as other string construction. If you get to the one-year mark on a set of poly, chances are, the performance has diminished, robbing you of power and feel. It is still a good idea to change your strings as many times in a year as you play in a week.

Come in and we can help you choose the string and tension that will best fit your game.  

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

New Rackets from Head

Coming in May, Head has two new racket that promise power, without sacrificing control. The MXG rackets have a unique throat design that adds stability for powerful, under control shots.
The MXG will come in two models, the MXG-3 and MXG-5. The MXG-3 has a 100sq" head size and the MXG-5 has a 105sq" head size for added power and a larger sweet spot.
They will be available 5.5.17.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Tennis Balls....What's the Difference?

You only need two things to play tennis once you get to the courts. A racket and tennis balls. There is a lot of attention paid to the rackets, but how do you know if you're using the right tennis balls?

The first thing to ask is what kind of court are you going to be playing on. For most of us, there are two potential options, hard court or clay court. While there are other things to consider such as playing in high altitude, we're going to focus on the two most likely answers.

Tennis balls come in regular duty and extra duty. This refers to the amount of felt on the balls. For playing on a hard court, the extra duty, with its additional felt, will hold up better on the harder, abrasive court surface. On clay courts, the regular duty works best due to less felt on the ball that can pick up clay during play, causing the balls to feel heavier. On watered clay courts, you may notice it even more. Also, with less felt, the regular duty will tend to "get fuzzy" less than the extra duty.
Both types are available in most types of balls such as Wilson US Open balls or Pro Penn Marathon balls.

When selecting tennis balls, you do get what you pay for. There are some low cost balls available at grocery stores, drug stores and non-sporting goods big-box stores. Often, these balls will lose their bounce faster than the higher end balls. The biggest thing to look for is if the ball is USTA approved. Any ball that is will feature this information on the can. The fact that the balls are approved for tournament use lets you know that they will hold up better than the non-approved ones.

As for which type/brand to use, that is something you will have to figure out for yourself. If you get a can or USTA approved balls, for use on the courts you play on, you should find they perform well. That said, ask any tennis player and he/she will have a brand and type they prefer. Try some different balls and see what you think. Like everything else in tennis, it's all individual.

One last thing about tennis balls.
There is a myth about balls that says the number on the ball means something.
The only thing the numbers are for is to make it easier to know your tennis balls from others. If you have a can of #1's and the people on the next court are using #2's, you know whose are whose.