How Frequent Should You Restring Your Tennis Racket?
Updated: May 13
Most of the time, tennis players ask questions about the various parts of their equipment, such as when they should rest their racket and how often they should rest it.
Although most of them know the answers to these questions, some players keep the same strings on their rackets for several years, only changing them once it breaks. This can cause the racket's strings to wear and tear, eventually affecting their performance.
Even though your racket is the main component of your game, your strings can affect it just as much. If you think of your strings as your car's engine, then you'll have a re-stringing schedule similar to what's used for oil changes.
The old rule of thumb, which was that every player should re-string their racket as often as they play a certain amount of games, is not enough to account for the varying playing styles of players. The average frequency of restringing is around once per week.
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When Should You Restring Your Tennis Racket?
Loss of tension
The tension of your strings will start to lose after you leave the restringing machine. All types of strings will experience this, and it can happen in the first 24 hours. The reduction in tension continues as you start hitting, and if you're a player who uses high tension, you'll have to change them once your accuracy starts to get lower.
The tension of your strings begins to drop when you remove your racket from the stringing machine. This can affect your ability to generate topspin and control your racket. Compared to multifilament strings, poly strings tend to lose more tension faster. They would require more frequent stringing.
Feeling Not Right
The loss of resilience in strings can lead to a dead feeling in your arm, which can be harsh if it's not treated properly. A fresh pair of strings can absorb shock better and provide more comfort, especially if you have arm or elbow issues.
Some of these sensations will be hard to detect if you are a beginner, but as you play more, you'll eventually get better at recognizing them. A loss of control can also occur as your strings wear and tension begins to decrease. If you find it hard to place the ball, hit more unforced errors, or hit long, it's time to rest.
The reduction in the snapback of your main strings can make it harder to generate topspin. This issue can also lead to a feeling of lack of pop. New strings can be resilient and can help return energy to the ball.
Your strings will eventually lose their resilience, which makes it harder to hit with power. New strings will absorb shock better, but they will also start to stretch and provide a dead or stiff feel, which can make playing with them uncomfortable. Over time, this will change the feel of your strings.
Although each player has their own way of describing the changes in their strings, as they get better at recognizing them, they'll eventually become more confident in resting properly.
Having a closer look at your strings can help you identify when it’s time to replace them. Aside from broken ones, there are other visual indicators that can be used to check for a potential issue. One of these is the notch, which can be caused by the friction caused by playing tennis.
You'll notice that there are various notches along the middle of your racket's strings. If you notice that these are getting deeper and more frequent, then it's a good idea to restring them. The friction caused by the rub between the strings can create a lot of issues when you hit the ball.
The grooves in the middle of the racquet's strings are caused by the movement of the strings. Multifilament, natural gut, and kevlar are all made of tiny fibers that eventually wear out. On the other hand, poly strings are made of a single filament, so they won't fray.
It’s a natural part of the wear that these strings endure, but it can also be a good indication of when it’s time to restring. Polyester strings are made with a single solid core, which prevents them from breaking down. On the other hand, synthetic gut strings are made with multiple filaments, which don’t show signs of fading.
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