How to Choose Tennis Strings

The stringing of the tennis racket is a fundamental choice for every player and must be configured as the right balance between

  • architecture
  • strain
  • calibre

The stringing varies according to the tennis player’s skills and play: let’s see in detail how to choose the stringing of the racquet.

How to choose a racquet string: playability and durability

Some players prefer a firm and decisive stringbed, while others prefer a softer and more comfortable stringing. In terms of playability, the right string is one that quickly recovers its position after impact with the ball. But it’s quite complex to have a racquet that combines elasticity with great durability.

A stronger and more calibre plate lasts unchanged for more hours of play, but it’s less elastic. The caliber of the strings varies between 1 and 1.5 millimeters: the thinner the strings, the better the impact of the racquet’s rotational movement on the ball.

Materials

In terms of materials, strings made of natural gut cost more but have a better performance in terms of playability, according to many tennis players. They are usually preferred by those with arm problems, too; they are usually intertwined with vertically arranged synthetic strings on string beds.

Natural gut therefore has a positive impact on the player who is looking for a more playable feel to the exchanges due to its great elasticity. A synthetic gut or nylon string, however, is preferred by about 98% of professionals, as it provides a satisfactory balance between durability and control.

Polyester is suitable for professionals and those who tend to break the strings often, while it is not recommended for beginners and those with arm problems. The most durable material over time is the keylar, which features very taut strings at the expense of comfort.

Tension

The string tension should be set according to the characteristics and preferences of the player. Less tension decreases control over the ball but increases the speed of the shot. A powerful player will tend to choose high tension.

Thin strings are usually braided at low tension; with high tension we will have more control; if you are looking for more resistance, it is better to aim for a higher caliber.

Density

The texture (pattern) of the stringbed affects the impact between the racquet and the ball. An open (thin) stringbed generates more speed and spin but has a low life span.

A thicker pattern makes the strings last longer, offers more control but does not generate any speed benefits.

  • less tension > more power
  • more voltage > more control
  • wide weave > more power and more spin
  • elastic rope > less durable over time
  • Time to change or stretch the ropes

According to some tennis players who play their favourite sport several times a week, the ropes should be checked every 16 hours of play. According to others, as a general rule for those who play with less regularity, the ropes should be changed at least as many times a year as the number of times a week you play, so

  • if I play tennis once a week > change ropes once a year
  • if I play twice a week > twice a year
  • and obviously every time you notice a drop in tension and performance, or you break one of the strings themselves.

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