A torque-driven, 3D computer simulation model of an arm-racquet system was used to investigate the effects of ball impact location and grip tightness on the arm, racquet and ball during one-handed tennis backhand groundstrokes. The stringbed was represented by nine point masses connected to each other and the racquet frame with elastic springs and three torsional spring-dampers between the hand and the racquet were used to represent grip tightness. For each perturbation of nine impact locations and grip tightness, simulations were run for a 50 ms period starting with ball-racquet impact. Simulations showed that during off-centre impacts below the longitudinal axis of the racquet, the wrist was forced to flex up to 16 more with up to six times more wrist extension torque when compared to a centre impact simulation. Perturbing grip tightness had no substantial effect on centre impact simulations. However, for off-centre impacts (below the longitudinal axis of the racquet) a tight grip condition resulted in a substantial decrease in racquet rotation within the hand (less than 2 degrees) and an increase of 6 in wrist flexion angle when compared to the equivalent simulation with a normal grip. In addition there was approximately 20% more wrist extension torque when compared with equivalent off-centre impact simulation with a normal grip. Consequently off-centre impacts below the longitudinal axis of the racquet may be a substantial contributing factor for tennis elbow injuries with a tight grip aggravating the effect due to high eccentric wrist extension torques and forced wrist flexion. (c) 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.