Babolat Viper Air 2022 → Read our Test, Reviews & Opinions

Babolat Viper Air 2022

We at Elitepadel.se like the Babolat Viper Air which helps you to a good spin with the help of the structure of the racket’s surface. The obvious strength of the racquet, however, is its lightness to quickly handle the racquet in front of nets or around glass walls.

We have tested the Babolat Viper Air ourselves and I, who publish the article, play with the racket permanently. Read our rating and review below and watch the video as Micke at Elitepadel tests the racket.

We have tested the racket!

Micke at Elitepadel has tested the racket. In this video you can see us test play and review the racket.

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Babolat Viper Air characteristics

The first impression of the Viper Air is that the design stands out, it looks exciting and quite different. The racket head has a unique shape and the design is slim. The color choice and matte finish are also an eye-catcher. The fact that Babolat has chosen the concept of three different rackets for different types of offensive play feels very timely, the padel is constantly evolving and it feels like a good move. 

Of the three models in the Viper series, Air is the softer one to offer more feel and power, a great option for the player who wants to vary and develop their game and is looking for a versatile racket. We’d also like to give a plus on the edge for the long grip, which will be appreciated by any player who uses a double-handed backhand.

It is a very light racket that is very easy to maneuver, a great choice for the offensive player who focuses on speed. It performs at its best when playing volleys, made for fast volley duels and quick movements. Bandejas also works really well thanks to the drop shape and grooved outer layer, which provides a really good grip and puts a good spin on the ball. 

It has a medium-sized sweetspot that is placed quite high. Like previous Babolat models, it has been designed with HPS-Technology – thanks to the drilled holes being adapted to the shape of the racket and its sweetspot, the grip is better and the impact greater.

The Viper Air is nowhere near as powerful as the classic Viper Carbon, here it’s all about speed and explosiveness. This model, which has a clear offensive focus, actually performs above expectations when it comes to defense as well. However, it requires a relatively good technique, which is why we only recommend it to skilled players and players at an advanced level.

Plus / Minus
Summary of our review
  • Offers extra fast online gaming
  • Good controllability for fast and offensive play
  • Longer grip for possible two-handed operation
  • Lacks leverage in smashes
Specifications
Information about the racket
  • Brand: Babolat
  • Shape: Hybrid/Drop shape
  • Balance: Medium - 255 mm
  • Game type: Offensive
  • Game performance level: Advanced
  • Weight: 355 g (+/-10)

Lightweight racket for speed and control at the front of the net

It is a very light racket that is very easy to maneuver, a good choice for the offensive player who focuses on speed. It comes into its own when playing volleyball, made for fast volley duels and quick movements. 

Bandejas also works really well thanks to the drop shape and grooved outer layer, which provides a really good grip and puts a good spin on the ball. The racquet has a medium-sized sweetspot that is set quite high.

Like previous Babolat models, it has been designed with HPS-Technology – thanks to the drilled holes being adapted to the shape of the racket and its sweetspot, the grip is better and the impact greater.

The Babolat Viper Air is nowhere near as powerful as the classic Viper Carbon, this is all about speed and quickness. This model, which has a clear offensive focus, actually performs above expectations when it comes to defense as well. 

However, it requires a relatively good technique, which is why we only recommend it to skilled exercisers and players at an advanced level.

Photo of Babolat Viper Air and the rackets 16k carbon fiber
Photo of Babolat Viper Air and the rackets 16k carbon fiber

Material

What should you consider when choosing a racket? Without a doubt, the material is an important factor to keep in mind, and the options you have to choose from are usually EVA foam or FOAM. FOAM is designed to absorb vibrations as efficiently as possible and provide a softer feel, which tends to be appreciated by injury-prone players, but the most common option is EVA. EVA comes in different densities, which means it can be adapted to almost any type of racket.

The Viper Air has a core developed by Babolat’s newly developed X-EVA Technology in three different layers that together provide the perfect effect. The two outer layers are stiffer, to provide maximum power in the hard strokes, while the inner layer is slightly softer to increase comfort and margin of error in looser strokes.

As this is classed as a hard racket, a vibration dampening system, the Vibrasorb System, has been included, integrated just above the handle in the neck of the racket. The effect of this is to reduce vibration in every stroke, thereby reducing the risk of elbow and wrist injury and providing a more comfortable ball feel. A really light racket like this puts less strain on your joints than heavier versions, making it a good option if you have problems with, for example, tennis elbow.

Padel racket surfaces are usually made of either carbon fiber or fiberglass. Fiberglass is a softer material and less durable, while carbon fiber is harder and more lasting. The surface layer of the Viper Air consists of 16k woven carbon, 100% carbon fiber, resulting in awesome explosiveness and a controlled touch that surprises many. In addition, the surface itself is grooved with a sandpaper-like finish that Babolat calls 3D Spin+, which is made to provide maximum grip and spin on the ball – perfect for putting more pressure on your opponent.

Balance

The Babolat Viper Air has a balance that we measured up to 255mm, which classifies it as a medium center of gravity. This means that it works very well for volleys and overhead shots, a stable control that allows you to have good precision in your game. If it’s power in your strokes you’re after, there are other variants that will give you considerably more power, the medium balance, and lightweight feel means some power is lost.

Racket shape

Babolat describes the Viper as a hybrid or drop-shaped racket. The reason why drop-shaped rackets are also referred to as hybrids is that when simply explained, they are a combination of the other two shapes – round and diamond-shaped. Drop-shaped rackets are slightly easier to maneuver than the diamond-shaped ones, but not quite as easy to play with as the round ones. They are made precisely to be a mix of both speed and control. This shape is often suitable for both advanced intermediate and competitive players.

Hard or soft?

The Viper Air is a hard racket that delivers explosive speed in the powerful strokes while being surprisingly forgiving when the hit isn’t quite right. The margin of error is fully acceptable and the controllability is very good for fast attacks. The 16k carbon fiber surface layer makes for hard rebounds and explosive shots, as long as you place good speed on the ball yourself.

Picture from our Youtube channel when we tested the Babolat Viper Air
Picture from our Youtube channel when we tested the Babolat Viper Air

What level of player is the Babolat Viper Air suitable for?

This is a racket for the skilled intermediate player and for advanced-level players. It’s relatively easy to handle thanks to its lightweight feel, but you’ll need good technique and clean hitting if you want to get the most out of this model.

Is the racket best suited for attacking or defensive play?

Like the Viper Technical and Viper Counter model variants, it’s a racket for the offensive style of play, but the Viper Air has a specific style of play in mind – offensive, agile players who want a racket that can easily follow their quick movements. This is an all-round racket that provides a great combo of maximum speed and control for quick movements and volley play, a very interesting option for those who like to approach the net.

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We publish everything from video reviews where we test and compare different products to tips on how to become a better padel player. 

Advantages of the Babolat Viper Air

There are many advantages with this racket including that it is a great racket that stands out from the crowd and combines strength and control in the strokes. It ensures great precision even to strokes that don’t quite find of sweetspot, and the light weight makes it really fun to play a fast-paced and attack-oriented game with.

For being a racket with offense play at its core, it’s fully capable for defensive play as well. We’d also like to give plus points for the longer grip, perfect for players who use a double-handed backhand.

Disadvantages

Many offensive players have the smash as their weapon of choice, and the lighter weight of this racket means that the pressure in the overhead game is not optimal. Unfortunately, this is not the easiest racket to handle defensively.

Advantages of the babolat viper air
Advantages of the Babolat Viper Air

Brief information about the Babolat brand

Founded back in 1875 in Lyon, France, Babolat is perhaps the world’s oldest racket sports-focused brand. Initially, no less than 150 years ago, they produced rackets with strings of natural sinew for both badminton and tennis, but today they have a highly developed product range that has made them the world leader for all types of racket sports equipment such as shoes, balls, clothing, and caps. 

The sport of padel became very popular in Central and South America and Spain just over 20 years ago, and Babolat was ready to make its presence felt in this new and evolving market. In the sport of padel, the brand has long been associated with keywords such as quality, security, and status.

Babolat is an official sponsor of the World Padel Tour (WPT), and their incidentally perhaps most well-known advertising star is the recent Spanish world champion Juan “El Lobo” Lebrón, who has been a loyal user since 2016.

Babolat racketsShapeBalanceGame typePlayer levelWeight
Babolat Viper TechnicalDiamondTop HeavyOffensiveAdvanced 365 g (+/- 10)
Babolat Viper AirHybridNeutralOffensiveAdvanced355 g (+/- 10)
Babolat Viper CounterRoundTop HeavyOffensiveAdvanced365 g (+/- 10)
Babolat Veron TechnicalDiamondTop HeavyOffensiveIntermediate - Advanced365 g (+/- 10)
Babolat Veron AirHybridNeutralOffensiveIntermediate - Advanced355 g (+/-10)
Babolat Veron CounterRoundTop HeavyCounterIntermediate - Advanced365 g (+/- 10)
Babolat DefianceRoundNeutralDefensiveBeginner - Intermediate350 g (+/-10)
Babolat ViperDiamondTop HeavyOffensiveBeginner - Intermediate360 g (+/-10)
Babolat Revenge CarbonHybrid/Drop ShapeNeutralMixedIntermediate - Advanced365 g (+/-10)
Babolat Revenge WDrop ShapeNeutralMixedIntermediate - Advanced350 g (+/-10)
Babolat ContactRoundNeutralMixedBeginner - Intermediate345 g (+/- 10)
Babolat Vertuo CounterRoundNeutralControlBeginner - Intermediate350 g (+/-10)
Babolat Vertuo AirHybrid/Drop ShapeNeutralAllroundBeginner - Intermediate345 g (+/- 10)
Babolat Vertuo TechnicalDiamondTop HeavyOffensiveIntermediate355 g (+/-10)
Click here to read about all Babolat padel rackets.

Babolat Viper Air review and test

Our rating for the Babolat Viper Air is very good. We have tested the racket and would like to highlight its light weight and stiff surface as its best features. The racket’s hard surface gives you good pressure in the strokes, but thanks to the lightweight racket and the neutral balance, there is little pressure missing in the smashes.

Below we collect ratings, reviews and opinions from other paddle sites:

  • Users of the racket have rated the racket 5.0 out of 5.0 on Rocketpadel.com
5/5

The special thing about this racket is its light weight and its rigid surface. On the court, whether you're behind the glass to save a ball or need a little quicker reflexes up front at the net, this is a really nice racket.

- Micke at Elitepadel

Babolat Viper Air

2995
9.5

Omdöme

9.5/10
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