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Tennis strings are a key to making sure your tennis racquet works well. Not only will tennis strings be the key to understanding and properly completing your shots, your strings can also help benefit your game in other ways.
Depending on which string type you select to play with, your string will offer different features like increased durability, better control over your shots, or greater power to add force and speed to your shots.
Looking at different strings like natural gut vs multifilament strings will allow you to find the best string to fit with your skills.
How strings benefit a tennis racquet
Whichever of the two string options you select, either natural gut or multifilament or even an option outside of these two chooses, you will want to find one with features that fit with your needs.
All of your string’s features depend on what you want from your string. Your skills can match with what the string is able to do in order to allow you to have the best possible playability during a match.
The features of a string can also act as an assisting partner for those skills you need more help with.
This is mostly based on what type of player you are.
Beginners will need something different than those who have been playing professional tennis for an extended period.
These differences in players will also have a separation for people’s skills like their swing speed, where they play on the court, and even what movements they prefer to use on the court in order to win.
The string should help you in areas where you are still learning or improve your skills with extra power or control.
Strings are important because they are how a player scores points. The strings in your tennis racquet will work to control the placement and speed of your shot and allows you to score against your opponent.
Choosing the wrong string for your racquet will not have too big on an impact on your game.
All strings are able to function just fine and work to perform well.
Not having the best string for your racquet will just leave you without any extra help from the string’s features.
Both of these string constructions refer to how the strings are built. This includes just what materials are used within the construction of the string and what kind of affect those materials have on the strings and the player.
It also includes just how the two different string types are created which affects their durability and their ability to provide texture.
Texture on your strings is created through additional coatings on the string’s outer wrap layer or through the texture created by the weaving or braiding of the string’s materials.
Texture allows players to more easily complete topspin which can be beneficial to players and allow them to get the upper hand against their opponent.
Being able to access texture more naturally through your strings will make it easier to perform.
Needing power or control
The main feature strings offer is their ability to produce large amounts of either power or control.
While both of these features are key for a player to play their best match, most tennis equipment from your string to your racquet will not support both.
Some piece of equipment has found a way to balance these two components by leaving them both at moderate levels.
But most string and other tennis equipment will push for one of the features over the other.
Which one you choose will be based on which you need more in order to play better.
Greater power in your string allows you to rely more on your strings to produce higher power.
This works well for players who have slower swing speeds and have not yet mastered producing their own power.
Control is better for those looking to obtain better placement and accuracy within their shots.
This is good for beginners and those needing to have extreme accuracy of their ball’s placement in order to beat their opponents.
When looking at both the multifilament and natural gut string type, both will offer greater power rather than control.
This is used to benefit those players who need the extra power or for those looking for a more forceful shot.
Durability of a string
Another feature you will want to consider with your string is the string’s durability. This is closely related to the constructional design and materials used to create the string.
Both natural gut strings and multifilament strings are designed for durability.
This helps the two strings last longer than other string types and allows them to better manage the shock and impact caused by near constant contact with the tennis ball.
However, natural gut materials are not as durable compared to their synthetic materials used in multifilament strings.
This is due to the natural gut’s soft feel and extreme elasticity and flexibility which needs high levels of maintenance.
Tension and diameter
Another feature to consider when selecting your best string is the thick or thin nature of the string’s diameter.
Though not as closely related to which string type you are going to use, knowing if you want a thinner and more powerful string or a thicker more control based string can help narrow down your choices.
Similarly, knowing what kind of tension you prefer to set your tennis strings too can help as well.
Tensions, especially those designed to be higher and pull the strings tightly, can help you decide just how durable you will need your strings to be.
It will also show just how flexible you will need your strings to be.
Those looking for tensions that provide more control that power may want a similar control based string, rather than one that is extremely flexible like both the natural gut string and the multifilament string.
Natural gut string
Natural gut strings are the first-string types used in order to create tennis strings.
They are made for a material that allows for decent durability, intense flexibility, and extreme power. That material is made with parts of a cow’s intestine.
While originally made with sheep intestine, today’s string relies on the cow’s intestines in order to create the powerful and flexible string type.
This is the main material used to create the string, unlike the multifilament string type which uses multiple materials.
It is common to see professional players relying on this string as it is more expensive and not used as frequently by those who play tennis recreationally.
The string holds tension well, so if a player wants to use higher tensions for their racquet the string will be able to manage it better than the synthetic based multifilament strings.
The braid-like composition of the natural gut string provides players will high levels of elasticity to produce power. This also makes the string much softer for better feel and less stress on players.
Unfortunately, the soft nature of the string partnered with the flexibility makes the durability fall below the strength of multifilament strings.
This is especially true for those players who are more aggressive with their moves and shots who may find this string will break more easily on them than synthetic strings.
This string’s softness also means less natural top spin can be created.
Unlike natural gut strings, multifilament strings require the braided or twisted pieces of different materials and fibers in order to compose the durable and powerful tennis string option.
This string type is often compared with monofilament strings, which are very similar to multifilament strings except they only use one material and offer greater control.
Multifilament string types offer greater power than monofilament string, similar to that of the natural gut. This is partnered with strong levels of comfort and feel.
These features lead to an extremely flexible string which means little control but high amounts of power.
The flexibility also allows for less vibration as the string absorbs this to ensure its good feel and to hold tension well.
The materials used for these strings are synthetic materials.
The most common used is nylon which is used for amateur players due to its low cost. But it can benefit many player types beyond beginners with its wear resistances and elasticity producing power.
Other materials like polyurethane and Kevla are also used for these string types.
Both of these materials are more stiff than other materials and both the most durable material option of multifilament materials and natural gut strings.
These string types also support heavy topspin, unlike the natural gut string.
Natural gut vs multifilament string: Which is right for you?
Strings allow you to better perform when playing tennis by supporting the skills you have already earned and pushing those that you are still enhancing.
Therefore, picking the right string is key to playing your best tennis game.
Both natural gut strings and multifilament strings offer a lot of similar traits with their durability, extreme power, tension holding, and their supportive feel to help players.
But their difference constructions allow small distinctions between the two.
Natural gut strings hold tension much better than the other string option.
They are extremely flexible and offer a soft, comfortable feel which help boost power and strong performance.
The soft nature of the string and its use of a single material make it less durable though and also makes it more difficult for players to produce top spin.
- Holds tension well, even higher tension settings
- Durable, powerful, and flexible
- Extremely soft, comfortable feel of strings and for player
- Does not have as strong a durability as synthetically based strings
- The string’s softness does not allow for natural topspin production
Multifilament string allows for similar features like flexibility and power to the player but not as high as natural gut.
The durability of these strings is much stronger than that of the other string though. This is due to use of different materials, the three most common of which provide the best durability of all other string types.
The braiding of these materials used to create the string also allow for good topspin to occur more naturally for players.
The string does not hold tension as well, as the materials used are stiffer than natural gut.
- Great feel, power, and flexibility
- Greater durability than other string options
- Able to support topspin for player
- Does not hold higher tensions as well