Recap: 2009 CSRA State Doubles in Fresno, CA

September 29th, 2009 by Kyle

Let me start this off by thanking John Ellis, Larry Steiner (pres. CSRA), Michelle Stone, Jesse Serna, Steve Cook, Sierra Sport and Racquet Club, two random girls in Halloween costumes, the sponsors who make this event possible and of course the many others who helped out and made sure everyone had a good time.  Chris Crowther & Tim Doyle from E-Force made the trip up to the 2009 CSRA State Doubles Championships and ended up victorious against John Ellis and Jose Rojas to take the State Doubles Open title.  There was plenty of food and beer all day long which made the craziness of all day racquetball a little more enjoyable.  Ben did well with his new partner Geoff Arnold paying a lot more attention to his serves and focusing on shots a little more.  My little brother Casey and his partner Kody Fudenna went on to win the C doubles bracket and as a result are moving up to the B division in the future.

As for myself and Jon Berezay, what can I say…. I was excited to have Jon on my team for two reasons: 1) I know what he is capable of and when he’s hitting good, he doesn’t miss, 2) He is a very calming influence on me when in the heat of battle.  He knew exactly what to say when I was getting frustrated and carried me many times throughout the tournament.  We eventually ended up losing in the A consolation bracket but ended up winning our 24-/25+ age division by beating the team that won A doubles.  It was a big victory for us after losing the first game but coming back to win 11-9 in tiebreak.  After a long weekend of playing, my body felt worn out, my mind was exhausted and I was ready to get home.  Without the help of Jesse Serna (John Ellis’ trainer and friend), I would not have been feeling as well as I did on Sunday.  Thanks to his expertise and magic touch, Jesse was able to keep me loose and actually able to move through the end of the tournament.  Winning that last championship match was the one thing that could have rejuvenated me and sent me home smiling the whole way.  My folks, grandma and sister in law drove over to watch my brother and I play but on Sunday everyone left early except for my dad who stuck around until late Sunday afternoon to watch my last match and was really happy to get a win for him.  He just had rotator cuff surgery on his shoulder and was forced to watch all of our matches from the sidelines (which I know was very difficult for him).

Overall, the tournament was a great success and love the big family that California Racquetball is.  I look forward to working with the CSRA on growing the California State Championships into the grand events I know they could and should be.  Maybe next year we’ll try to entice Rocky Carson and Jason Mannino to show up and represent California Racquetball.  We’ll see if they have what it takes to take away the championship from Chris and Tim……..

-Kyle

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Racquetball bags; where style meets function meets $$

August 26th, 2009 by Ben

So, in my opinion, we just received the best racquetball bags ever made into stock. Now, I can’t say for sure that there wasn’t a better bag made 20, or even 10 years ago, but I am going to continue under the assumption that materials, manufacturing processes and style in sports have all improved over time, and are currently at their best.

With that said, I would like to tell a brief story, purely for your entertainment. This story takes place around the time of the WOR Nationals in July of this year. Being a large retailer, we have the privilege of seeing a lot of the product early, and this was the case with Gearbox in early summer. Yes, this post is about Gearbox Bags. The Gearbox crew, a very fun and genuine group of guys,  came to do videos and clinics. When they left, they left their new bags with us for website imaging. Excited about a great product, and in need of a new bag, I decided to use their new Club Bag at the WOR Outdoor Nationals. I stuffed as much equipment as humanly possible into it (10 racquets on the sides and still a main compartment for shoes, apparel, balls etc) and freely threw it around as I traveled about the courts watching matches and warming up for my own. I soon found out, however, from none other than #3 IRT Tour player Alvaro Beltran, that I was using 1 of 3 bags in existence. Not even Alvaro had this bag yet but here I was, a C level player, rocking it proudly… Needless to say I didn’t hear the end of it all weekend.

As a result of my misplaced assumption, I have had plenty of time to beat on this impressive bag and test it to the fullest. Gearbox did not hold back with the features on this bag, there is a reason it is higher priced than all the others. The Gearbox Club Bag features extra thick nylon, reinforced zippers and pockets, an abundance of useable space and, in my opinion, is the best looking racquetball bag on the market. gbbagcb-thumbThe Gearbox Back Pack is just as stylish, has lighter weight nylon (though still durable), lots of pockets and extra padding on the back for comfort. Their back pack could easily double as a school pack and still have enough space for your racquetball gear – I’m thinking 2 racquets, 2 books, 1 binder, gloves, eyewear, pens/pencils and so on – you get the picture.gbbagbp-thumb

Basically, if you want the best bag out there, and you’re willing to spend a little more – Go Gearbox! I hope this was helpful as well as entertaining, as always, feel free to call us at Racquetball Warehouse anytime with questions or comments.

- Ben , 800 824 1101

Posted in Product Reviews | 251 Comments »

SS & XS grip sizes, what to use & how to choose…..

August 18th, 2009 by Kyle

Let me start this post with an interesting background story I heard recently.  Have you ever wondered who the moron is that came up with the super-small (SS) & extra-small (XS) grip sizes for racquetball racquets?  I was told that when racquetball began, racquets were available with large and medium grips which were originally modeled after tennis grips.  After a while, racquetball manufacturers ditched the large grip because it was too big and far less popular.  The medium grip size stayed and a small grip size was added.  Well as you can imagine, the medium grip size was soon too big for players and the Extra Small (XS) was added along with the small grip.  Finally, the small grip was too big and less popular so the Super Small (SS) grip size was added. This is how we have come to the current SS and XS grip sizes today.

And when you finally figure out which grip size is best for you, you then realize that sizing between manufacturers differs.  Some manufacturers have the SS grip as 3 5/8″ and others have it as 3 11/16″.  Ektelon & ProKennex grips are rectangular while Gearbox, Head, Wilson & E-Force all have smaller, rounder grips.  So what are you to make of all this nonsense?  First off, let me start off by giving you a general rule of thumb to decide which grip size is best for you and the logic behind it.  If you fall in the size small-large glove category, you generally will use a SS racquet grip size. If you wear a large-extra large glove, you should consider using the XS racquet grip size.  If you’re wondering why I mention the large glove size twice, it’s because large glove users are kind of on the bubble and should use what feels most comfortable.  I found a great article from Bell Racquet Sports that explains grip sizing perfectly:

Racquetball racquets are typically available in two grip sizes:

Size:               Sometimes Called:

3-5/8                Super Small*
3-7/8                Extra Small or 3-15/16″

*For the 2010 season, Ektelon has added a Super Small Rounded (SSR) grip size. It
is still the smaller grip size, but with a more rounded feel in the hand.

When you hold a racquetball racquet, you want your fingertips to wrap around the grip and be touching your palm.
Remember:
The SMALLEST grip size you can comfortably hold will facilitate the best racquetball wrist snap!

Wrist snap is absolutely necessary to achieve optimum power in your swing and will help you tremendously in your matches.  Another tip to get the best wrist snap is to hold your pinky finger off the end of the handle.  You’ll see baseball players do this when batting sometimes to give their wrists a little extra range as well.  Doing this in combination with a small grip, will generate maximum power.  Of course technique is obviously the main factor but these grip tips will definitely help your game.

-Kyle

Posted in Product Reviews | 162 Comments »