Polyester and You…a Love Story?

Polyester based tennis racquet strings have been around for many years and have proven a reasonable alternative for those needing, or wanting, more “spin” and, of course, durability.  So, prodded by advertising, players gladly parted with their money for the “ultimate” string.

Are you one of those players?  If so what has your experience been? 

But wait!  Is polyester the best possible string for you?  That is for you to decide but let me lead the way toward your decision.  Polyester strings are stiff!  Polyester string typically has elongations of 3% to 5% at sixty (60) pounds.  Compare this to about 10% for other materials.  Polyester string becomes more stiff as the swing speed increases, that is, when the ball is hit harder.  Most other materials do not.  Polyester strings move a lot which can contribute to “spin” but also contributes to notching and breakage.  And the list goes on.

I am not anti polyester by any means but it must be used in the proper application.  We know that most tour professionals use some polyester, either in the main string or the cross string.  So, you say, why shouldn’t I use it too?  Probably because you are not as strong as a professional tennis player, and you probably do not have your racquet strung after nine (9) games, or two (2) hours whichever comes first!

Another serious consideration is how this material is used for junior players.  In a word, no!  Please think about the long term implications of constant, and frequent, impact on the racquet that is transferred to the arm.  A small arm simply can not tolerate this abuse for very long.  At some point this arm is going to speak out and it is going to hurt!

So, be clear about what you expect from your string.  Understand what the string will and will not do.  Understand the proper tension requirements for your string selection.  If you are using polyester please reduce your tension request to fifty (50) pounds or less to start.

Polyester…are you still in love?

Please contact me if you need additional information about most polyester based string, and this includes the popular term “co-poly” string.  I want you to play your best for the longest possible time.

Posted on November 12, 2012, in Good News! and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. This is precisely what I am going through right now with many of my customers.
    This article confirms my beliefs.

  2. I agree with your comments on Poly strings, but I have found that if you provide your customers with all the pros and cons of this string then they can make a good decision based on facts. Also I tend to use MSV poly strings and the recommended tension is 54Ibs (max) and I have found that this seems to be the best tension for most players, Yes adjust lower for anyone with delicate elbows or use a softer hybrid setup. So as with any new advanced equipment use with knowledge .

    • Daveg, I certainly agree with the “knowledge” premiss. I believe it is incumbent upon all racquet technicians to be up to date with string characteristics, not just anecdotal examples that seem to be on what some players are basing their selection.

      I really love Gosen Sidewinder for example but can’t get along with most other “polyester” based string.

  3. Surely I would advise to try Luxilon Element, a non-monofilament string especially developed for juniors.

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