Maria Sharapova has long been a cherished player in the women’s game. Whether you like her or not, her game has always been respectable, and she is largely known for her use of the HEAD Graphene 360 Instinct MP.
With a new look and new technology, this modern player’s racket offers power, spin, stability, and so much more to its users. That’s why it may be a great choice for someone like Sharapova but also for your daily club player or possibly even beginner.
Let’s get into what this racket can do for you and why Sharapova was such a big ambassador.
Here are our specs for the HEAD Graphene 360 Instinct MP.
Head Size: 100 square Inches
Length: 27 inches
Unstrung Weight: 300 grams
Strung Weight: 320 grams
Balance: 4 points headlight
String Pattern: 16 Mains/19 Crosses
You won’t be able to miss this striking racket because it is bold, almost neon blue will be easy for anyone to spot on the court. But its style isn’t the only thing that got an update. This time around, the new Graphene technology was incorporated to find more of a balance around stability.
While its unstrung weight matches those of many other rackets, it has a little higher swing weight giving off that power feel. Interestingly enough, though, the weight comes from the overall distribution of the racket and the handle rather than stacking it at the top as it is 4 points headlight. This is most likely why the Graphene 360 was introduced because otherwise, it could prove to be an unstable head.
If there is one benefit that we get from such an obvious head light racket is that it is easy to whip around the court. This is obvious because Sharapova always had the classic running down the line pass, likely because of how easy it was to maneuver the racket.
What may be surprising for fans is that the instinct actually has great access to spin. While Sharapova played a predominantly flat game, this racket, in particular, gives up a little of its drive to get more of that spin feel. It does have a powerful shot that can make some people feel like it can be hard to control.
This racket, in general from the baseline, can really accommodate some bigger swings such as Sharapova’s because of the way the ball comes off the racket. Something that is probably loved by a lot of players is that the racket is very comfortable to play with and very forgiving on your body. This is great for any players who may be dealing with chronic injuries like tennis elbow or golfer’s elbow.
Overall, this racket seems to rate really well with players who know how to play and wants some that all-around feel good and can help with a little bit of power. This racket may be too tough for beginners to control and for advanced maybe doesn’t offer enough power in general.
While this racket may be able to help you from the back, you may suffer at the front. This is because the racket is so headlight it may have trouble taking on any incoming ball while at the net. Likely, the instability can cause the volley to have an erratic outcome.
It also doesn’t do very well with touch. Because of how light it is, that means you’ll have to firm up on your grip, which takes away your options to have soft hands. In other words, if you are a doubles player, this is really a baseliners racket and doesn’t fare so well from closer to the net.
With the serve you will definitely get a lot more help from the racket than you did with the volleys. Similar to the baseline you can see that power comes quite easily due to the maneuverability of the racket and spin therefore is also accessible. The only problem is it relies on how whippy your hands are.
If you have a good serve and just need an extra kick in speed and spin, the racket can get the job done. But if you lack the control to get your wrist snap at the right time, you may find that the ball is flying around in the wrong areas more often than you would like.
This is why it can be a great intermediate racket for those looking to make improvements but possible not for those who are just starting to learn the technique and motion of the game.
While we all want to smash the ball like Maria Sharapova, this racket, in particular, is good for a certain player in mind. It doesn’t really work an all-court type of player, so an aggressive baseliner is more the fit. Having a sense of control will help you take advantage of big power swings because sometimes a player can find the racket lacks instability because of how headlight it is.
But the HEAD Graphene technology helps creates stability along with a decent swing weight. This means that players who have quick hands can take full advantage of adding spin to their shots to bring back that element of control they may be looking for.
Those who have a great serve may also appreciate this racket. Its ability to kick the ball in is a major plus. Just make sure that you aren’t a serve and volleyer because you may find the bounce of the strings doesn’t provide that forgiving feel or linger on the strings more than a millimeter of a second.