Vibration dampeners are an important piece of accessory for some players, while many don’t really care about them. In this piece we will look at some of the best dampeners available in the market if you are a beginner or an intermediate player.
Roger Federer and Serena Williams aren’t much of users of a dampener, while Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic are part of the group that endorses the dampeners, also know as shock absorbers.
It’s a device that reduces the vibration produced in the strings when the ball strikes a racket. To read more about what is a tennis racket dampener and the pros and cons associated with them, click here.
A racket without a dampener would make a “ping” sound, when the ball strikes a string bed. But a racket with a dampener reduces the vibration and hence cuts the noise. Now what you hear is a dull sound or a thud.
So a vibration dampener is not a piece of equipment that’s mandatory to use, instead it’s a personal choice whether to use the dampeners or not.
The primary function of the dampener is to reduce the vibration. If a player prefers the high-pitched “ping,” that player can continue playing without the dampener, while someone who likes a dull sound may add a dampener on the racket.
But are vibration dampeners just used to reduce noise or do they serve other purposes? It’s a debatable topic and needs more study to reach a conclusion.
When they were first introduced by Rene Lacoste in 1964, they were done to prevent the shock of the racket from reaching the arms and the elbow and thus prevent injuries.
But over time, it was found that string dampeners don’t play a role in preventing injuries.
However manufacturers still market these products as ones that can enhance the overall feel of the racket, increase comfort and reduce shock or pain in the arm. Whether a dampener can actually achieve these is a matter of debate and more studies can actually settle the debate for good.
There are a lot of players who start using string dampeners from a very young age.
The reasons why most of them are asked to opt for these rubber and silicon devices are to prevent injuries, improve the look and feel and also some may say, “to give better control” as vibrations that travel from the racket to the hand can make the racket move in hand and hence a player can lose control.
While these points maybe true, they haven’t been proven scientifically.
Different Types of Dampeners and Where are They Placed?
There are usually two types of vibration dampeners:
- Button Dampener
- Worm Dampener
The button dampener is of the size of a button. It is the most common type of dampener used. It is small in size and thus the chances of the dampener interfering with the shot is much less.
The worm dampener is an elongated dampener that stretches across many strings. It is highly effective in reducing sound, but these dampeners could actually interfere when a shot is played.
According to the ITF, vibration damping devices can be placed on the strings of a racket, but these devices may only be placed outside the pattern of the crossed strings.
They can be placed on the bottom, right, left or top of the racket, but is most commonly placed right at the bottom of the cross strings near the throat of the racket.
So we now know what are vibration dampeners and the role that these dampeners play in reducing vibration on the strings. They cut the ping sound to a low pitch sound when the ball strikes the racket.
But we have also seen that manufactures market it differently and a lot of players also believe in other benefits of dampeners, even if there is no scientific evidence to back those beliefs.
Here we take a look at the 11 best vibration dampeners for beginner and intermediate players. One fun fact about dampeners is that they come in different colors and symbolize a range of objects from emojis to flowers and animals to logos of top brands and more.
So it can add some fun element into the racket.
- Tourna Vibrex Dampeners
- Wilson Emoti-Fun Dampeners
- Outus Tennis Racket Vibration Dampener
- Gamma Sports Zoo Damps Vibration Dampener
- BusyBee Tennis Vibration Dampener
- Wilson Profeel Tennis Vibration Dampener
- Bablot Custom Feel Dampener
- Head Djokovic Dampener
- Babolat Vibrakill Comfort Dampener
- Gamma Shockbuster II
- HEAD Smartsorb Tennis Dampener
Tourna Vibrex Dampeners
The Tourna Vibrex Dampeners come in different styles. One is shaped like a flower, the other sports Neon color, making the racket look more vibrant. There are also spider, sponge and whistling styles. While the latter is the most expensive, the rest come in affordable range.
- The company claims to use premium, which is very effective in ending string vibration and shock absorption
- Neon colors add a bit of fun element.
While there aren’t many cons, but there is a bit of an issue with its grip
Wilson Emoti-Fun Dampners
These come in three types, namely the Emoti-Fun Eye Roll/ Crying Laughing Dampener; the Emoti-Fun Sunglasses/ Tongue Out dampener and the Emot-Fun Winking Tongue Out/ Star Eyes Dampeners.
- Each pack includes two dampeners with two different emoticons. These are sure to attract kids.
- They are said to improve feel and reduce string vibrations.
Outus Tennis Racket Vibration Dampener
Kids beginning their tennis lessons will love these tennis racket dampeners, as they come in 13 different shapes and designs, featuring attractive animal patterns or sun and diagram of the universe pattern. You can choose the styles you like to match different tennis rackets, and make your rackets more vivid.
- This is said to be made of good quality silicone, which is reliable, and doesn’t get broken easily.
- Can be a good gift, particularly for kids.
The ability to dampen the vibration is lesser compared to other brands in the market.
Gamma Sports Zoo Damps Vibration Dampeners
These are wild animal vibration dampeners, which come in pack of 2. Kids under 8 will be drawn to these attractive dampeners which are available in following combos: Monkey/Elephant, Turtle/Lion, Panda/Giraffe, Koala/Zebra, Hippo/Tiger and Eagle/Gator
- They are pretty, cute and colorful
- Can be a nice gift for beginner kids
- They are not very effective shock absorbers
BusyBee Tennis Vibration Dampener
They come in a pack of six, styled as American Flags, smiley, flower, sun and yin yang.
These are ideal for beginner kids, who will be drawn to the design and colors. The flags may even have the benefit of instilling patriotism in kids.
- Made of silicone material, they are environment friendly and lightweight.
- These are effective dampeners
- Ideal gift for kids.
These are slightly costlier than the other dampeners.
Wilson Profeel Tennis Vibration Dampener
So far we have been focusing on dampeners that are well suited for beginner kids. Now we turn our attention to dampeners that are ideal for intermediate players.
It is one of Wilson’s most popular dampeners, and is known to effectively absorb shock and vibrations to improve feel upon ball contact with the string bed. This comes in a pack of two and features Wilson’s W logo.
These reduce string vibrations effectively
These can come off quickly and so have a bit of fitting issue.
Bablot Custom Feel Dampener
This is a customizable dampener, which allows players to choose the level of vibration dampening that they want in their racket.
It has a plug or a piece of rubber in the middle, which can be pulled out if the player needs lesser dampening. While they can keep it plugged in if they feel the need for extra dampening.
- Effective Dampener
- These are comparatively expensive
- While players at the beginner or intermediate level may not spend so much, but those who are on the verge of moving from the intermediate to the senior level may want to get their accessories sorted before they reach the next level and Bablot Cutom Feel could provide a long term solution for their dampener issue.
Head Djokovic Dampener
The Djokovic dampener consists of silicon and rubber material, which reduces the string’s vibrations. The company claims that the dampener enhances comfort, and protects the arm. Used by Novak Djokovic himself, the dampener is exclusively available in white and features Djokovic’s black logo.
- Great absorption
Babolat Vibrakill Comfort Dampener
These fall in the worm dampener category. Unlike the button dampener they make contact with more strings, and so the Vibrakill offers maximum vibration absorption.
- Maximum vibration absorption.
- They are inexpensive
- It can pop off from time to time.
Gamma Shockbuster II
The Shockbuster is Gamma’s original “worm”-shaped vibration dampener. The updated design now features patented no-leak Zorbicon gel that reacts to vibration with equal force, more effectively protecting against a wider range of vibration than standard silicone-filled worm dampeners.
- Provides extra vibration dampening
They are not too secured and at times they do come off while playing.
Head Smartsorb Tennis Dampener
Made of rubber, the taper-shaped smartsorb is a worm dampener, which provides maximum string dampening.
Available in five colors, it reduces string noise considerably and the company claims it provides arm protection.
- The rubber elastomer compound provides maximum string dampening
- It is cheaper than Babolat’s Vibrakill Comfort Dampener
- They fit well
- Durability is an issue
Final Words on Best Tennis Vibration Dampeners
Dampeners come in colorful and attractive styles. Beginners and intermediate players may not want to splurge a lot on this piece of accessory, so they look for ones that are inexpensive, can last long, fit well and also provide effective shock absorption.
While the button dampeners are more commonly used, the worm dampeners are long and make contact with more strings, therefore they are more effective shock absorbers. Kids love the colorful and designer dampeners that can make their rackets more vibrant.