Spaghetti strung racquets banned - Yet polyester strings allowed....?

Discussion in 'Racquets' started by mikeespinmusic, Feb 13, 2013.

  1. mikeespinmusic

    mikeespinmusic Rookie

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    #1
  2. corners

    corners Legend

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    #2
  3. Venetian

    Venetian Professional

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    From the article:

    "Last April, Cross and his co-author, Crawford Lindsey, published their study showing that copoly strings generate 20 percent more spin than nylon strings, and 11 percent more than natural gut. Such differences help explain how a contemporary powerhouse like Rafael Nadal can hit with twice as much spin as Andre Agassi did."

    An 11% increase in spin explains how he can hit with 100% more spin than Agassi? Huh?
     
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  4. Venetian

    Venetian Professional

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    Whenever I see articles like this, I watch videos like this... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZbmaEtZeno8

    ...and I just don't see the difference between that and today's players. I mean, the grips and technique differences are obvious; but the power and level of spin looks exactly the same to me as if Federer and Djoker were battling it out.

    I'll concede that there is a difference and that I've felt it myself with poly, but I don't think it's anywhere near as extreme as it's made out to be. 11% is still something, and it can make a big difference at the top levels of the game, but it's not "twice as much". I bet if Nadal strung up a full bed of gut pretty tight he would hit close to the same amount of spin. Actually, if my math is correct, I'd say he would get around 89% of his normal amount of spin. :)

    I also have a personal pet peeve regarding old timers like McEnroe claiming that "It's those new poly strings all the kids are using now!" every time a player like Nadal hits a good shot. Yeah Mac, I'm sure his choice of grip, technique, non-wood era racquet, and fitness level/strength had nothing to do with it.
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2013
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  5. corners

    corners Legend

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    Help explain. Not the whole story. Grips, technique, training...
     
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  6. Venetian

    Venetian Professional

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    Yeah I guess you're right, they did say "help".
     
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  7. Rabbit

    Rabbit G.O.A.T.

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    In the now infamous "Hit for Haiti", Roger Federer explained it. At one point, Agassi was just drilling balls at Federer at the net. Federer fended them off and Agassi said something, I don't remember what. Federer's reply was "Nobody hits that hard anymore, it's all about spin now"
     
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  8. TennisCJC

    TennisCJC Legend

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    You make several good points and If Nadal played with a wood racket and gut strung at 75 lbs, he would still hit a lot of spin.

    But, we have to accept that between polyester strings, 'tweener style rackets being used at the pro level, and slower courts; the technology has changed the game.

    My opinion is the courts and technology have given just a bit too much advantage to the groundstroker. I prefer to see some limits on racket and string technology and prefer courts that are slightly faster. I think even men's clay needs to be sped up a bit. Hard courts and grass obviously need to be sped up. Maybe restrict open string patterns at the pro level like the 99s.
     
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  9. Rabbit

    Rabbit G.O.A.T.

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    I understand and agree fully with you, but the sad fact is it ain't gonna happen. The ship has sailed and the powers that be in tennis abdicated any responsibility for preventing changes to the nature of the game long ago. The only restrictions that they are enforcing is head size and stringbed attachments.
     
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  10. realplayer

    realplayer Semi-Pro

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    I'm for a ban as it is better to prevent injuries and I want to see some serve and volley again.
    Poly ruins the game.
     
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  11. ChicagoJack

    ChicagoJack Hall of Fame

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    I just wish they'd do something about all the screeching that is happening on the Women's Tour. I have not watched a women's match in very long time. It's absolutely killing off that side of the sport.
     
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2013
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  12. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

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    Agreed. It makes no sense to ban spaghetti strings but not also ban poly strings. Both serve the purpose to increase spin on the ball. And spaghetti strings were never dangerous to your health, either. Heck, poly strings should be banned just because they cause injuries alone.
     
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  13. Buford T Justice

    Buford T Justice Semi-Pro

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    Same here. Try going to a match in person.....its ridiculous.

    The gal who registered highest on the db scale (Larcher De Brito, I think?)actually played in local tournament near where I live a few years ago and I recorded her playing a point and messaged that as a voicenote to a tennis buddy along with a simple statement. "Is this a recording of a tennis match, or a recording of a porn flick?". He laughed, but it was that bad.

    I think some of these gals also make the noise on purpose when their opponent is hitting the ball.

    Now, I think tennis is already too "hoidee toidee" already (with all this hush hush hush, dont move in the stands when Im serving stuff), but some of the noises surely seem intended to distract.

    Of course, in many other sports, ability to work in a distracting environment is part of the game, and part of ones ability. I also play baseball, and can say with 1000% certainty that hitting a baseball well (with a bat weighing ~31-32 ounces and a barrel only ~2.5" diameter) is an order of magnitude harder than hitting a tennis ball (with a 10-12 ounce racquet with a 90-100 sq inch head) never mind the fact that one also has to watch out for getting hit with a very hard ball in the head, yet pros and amateurs alike do it all the time.

    Needless to say, when playing tennis, I never play any lets! If a ball rolling across the court, or a nearby kid making a noise bothers me, thats my own fault!
     
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  14. cluckcluck

    cluckcluck Hall of Fame

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    Too much science. Great post
     
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  15. yonexRx32

    yonexRx32 Rookie

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    It would be hard to ban the string (poly or something else) because manufacturers claim business secret. However, you can control the head size. Make the largest head size on tour 85 sq in. and you'll see a difference, no matter the string.
     
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  16. Venetian

    Venetian Professional

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    Thing is, a lot of players and fans (myself included) enjoy the way the game is played today. It's a solution in search of a problem.
     
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  17. mikeespinmusic

    mikeespinmusic Rookie

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    The common opinion for today's tennis is that its more defensive. It has to be. A player can't just smash through and end the rally point like they did. Which makes a more sense.... the current top 4 to 8 men are still entertaining to watch because they'll go for their shots. But in the lower ranked matches some rallies go on and on (like 70 ball rallies...) way too long because the players are too afraid to do anything... and end up just praying for the other guy to make an error... there's a fine between too short and too long...very hard to call
     
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  18. Venetian

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    The question is, who is complaining about the state of the game today? None of the top pros, challenger players, futures players, up-and-coming juniors, or many other people involved in the sport are crying out for these changes. It's mostly the older generation of recreational players that grew up playing that way that is pining for the return of that style, and a handful of retired professional players. Tennis is never going to change to suit aging recreational and former professional players. It wouldn't change unless the current generation was unhappy with it. And all the young kids I see out playing for fun and competition are having a blast.
     
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  19. pennc94

    pennc94 Semi-Pro

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    I disagree. The TWU analysis shows that spaghetti strings can create more spin, but the increased spin potential from legal weave poly stringing is still much less. In addition, I don't even think any pros will use the 16x15 99s.

    Also, poly strings causing injuries is a statement without proof. Yes they are stiffer than nylon or gut, but how can you make this statement? Where is the proof that someone's injury is caused by the poly string? There are so many factors (technique, racquet, overuse, physiology etc.) that go into an injury I am not sure how you can pinpoint the string as the cause. Kevlar strings are even more stiff - were these string the cause of injuries before poly?

    Should we ban today's shoes because they allow the players to perform better as a result of better traction or lighter weight? What about moisture wicking clothes? Ban clay court or grass court outsoles as well because that's an advantage too. I say let the game evolve. It's OK for the game to change.
     
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  20. mikeespinmusic

    mikeespinmusic Rookie

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    Haha, of course the top pro's aren't going to complain about it. Some are making over 50 million :p - If we're going to compare generations. I'd personally think Lendl and dare I say it Chang would do pretty well in these modern conditions. I do miss how the conditions were seasonal though. These days, US and Aus Open are both plexi cushion, wimbledon is a high bounce grass with titanium internal coated balls to slow it down to similar level to the other two... and clay is still clay. There's not much variation in it for the season, and thats probably why the top 4 or 5 always keep winning.
     
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  21. pennc94

    pennc94 Semi-Pro

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    Agreed. That and the intro of 32 seeds at majors.
     
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  22. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

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    Really? Almost everyone I know who uses poly strings is either out with an arm injury or have to wear a brace on their arm in order to play. Pros are experiencing much more arm and wrist injuries today using poly than in the past before poly. I've gotten tennis elbow twice from using poly or stiff strings. Same racquet, same technique, same everything - the only variable was the strings. Soft strings - no tennis elbow. Switch to poly strings - tennis elbow within days. After 6 months off to heal - come back with soft strings again - no tennis elbow. Of course it's the strings! It's not rocket science.

    Today's shoes prevent injuries better than the older shoes did so of course they shouldn't be banned. And shoes do not increase spin on the ball causing people to avoid coming into the net. Poly strings OTOH causes injuries, produces unnatural amounts of spin, and kills variety in the game so they should be banned.
     
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  23. pennc94

    pennc94 Semi-Pro

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    Your evidence is merely anecdotal. What is the rate of arm/wrist injuries today relative to pre-poly? Also, please cite a medical journal or other peer reviewed source that concludes that polyester strings (all else equal) cause injuries. If it is out there, I would love to read it. Also, rec players and pros play tennis differently today. The mechanics are different. The strings are not the only things that have changed.

    Also, your singular experience is insufficient to extrapolate to all tennis players. Sorry. Besides, you are not a machine - you do not play the same way every day even with the same racquet, tension, etc. Perhaps you changed something with mechanics when you tried polys. There are simply too many variables.

    I am not saying poly does not cause injuries, but I do not think it it appropriate to make the blanket assertion that poly does cause injury.

    You are also missing the point I made about the shoes. The point had to do how equipment (stings, shoes, clothing) have changed the game. Aside from the purported adverse health impact poly strings have introduced, you agreed with the claim that poly has killed S&V tennis. It might have, but so what? There many other advances in equipment that have changed the game. You should embrace it because it looks like it is here to stay. Tennis is a great sport, but like all sports it will evolve.
     
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  24. gameboy

    gameboy Hall of Fame

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    Anecdotal evidence are just dumb. I know plenty who use poly and are not injured.

    also, pros would not be using poly so much if it caused so much injuries.
     
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  25. Venetian

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    Yeah I know plenty of people who've used poly for close to a decade with no arm injuries. Tendonitis is genetic. If it's in your genes, you're going to get it and have to live with it. I have Achilles tendonitis and average running about 15 miles a week. Plenty of my friends run twice that and more, and have been running for longer than I have, and yet none of them have Achilles tendonitis. Went to a podiatrist who advised me that because of the way my feet are built, I was just going to get it no matter what at some point.

    If you're prone to tendonitis of the elbow, sure a stiff racquet/stiff strings may aggravate it, but that doesn't mean they CAUSE tendonitis.
     
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2013
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  26. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

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    Are they over 40 years old?

    Pros are forced to use poly because they have to compete with opponents who use poly. If no one on the pro tour used poly, they wouldn't feel they have to use poly, either. But since their opponents use poly, they feel they also have to in order to win. And they'd rather risk injury and win than never win at all. Because even if they're sidelined with an injury, they still get paid by their sponsors, whereas, if they never win in the first place they will never get any sponsorships to begin with.
     
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  27. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

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    Really? Have you gone into the Strings forum and seen how many people complain about being injured by using poly strings? If poly strings don't cause injuries, then why do they have a reputation of causing injuries? Even the strings for the pros such as Roman Prokes and Nate Ferguson acknowledge this fact. You might as well claim that smoking doesn't cause lung cancer because the evidence is all anecdotal.

    No, I don't change my mechanics at all when I used poly. Nothing at all. My mechanics have been the same for almost 40 years and I'm not about to change it for any string. The ONLY variable is the string. I can use two of the same frames, one strung with poly and the other with a multi and during the same hitting session, hitting the ball EXACTLY the same way and feel a twinge in my elbow with the racquets strung with poly and nothing at all with the racquet strung with the multi. IT'S CLEARLY THE STRINGS!!!! Stiff strings put a lot more torsional force on your elbow. Just think of the physics of hitting a tennis ball that is 22-24 inches away from your hand.
     
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  28. Venetian

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    That's just it dude. All of the evidence that smoking causes cancer is NOT anecdotal! It's been studied and researched. Poly on the other hand has not. It IS anecdotal.
     
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  29. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

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    So if someone plays tennis for 30 years and never gets tennis elbow but as soon as they use poly strings they get tennis elbow that means they are prone to tendonitis? Also, why does the tendonitis go away as soon as they stop using poly strings?
     
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  30. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

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    Yet, there are people who smoke their whole lives but never get lung cancer. Does that mean all of the research is wrong and that smoking causing cancer is purely anecdotal? Likewise, just because you know a guy that plays with poly strings with no elbow problems does not mean that poly doesn't cause injuries. It's the same with smoking.
     
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  31. Venetian

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    Have you ever been into the Strings forum and seen how many people sing the praises of not having arm injuries? No? Why not I wonder? Could it be because only the people that have been injured bother posting about it?

    Can you imagine this post..."Hey guys, guess what? I don't have tennis elbow. Just thought I would make a post and let everyone know for no reason."

    For every one post made by someone claiming poly gave them tennis elbow, there could be 100 people that use poly and don't have tennis elbow. They just don't bother making a post about it because it's not interesting to post about what doesn't happen.

    Ever go onto Newegg and read 200 negative reviews of a product and think it must be horrible, but then see that 10,000 people have purchased it? 9,800 people were happy with it. It's just that the only people who bothered to post on the internet about it were guys who were mad.
     
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  32. Venetian

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    It is the same thing. I made that pretty clear by stating that you are either susceptible to tendonitis or you aren't. It's not the strings that cause it, it's your genes. The strings just aggravate a condition that you are susceptible to. It would be stupid to ban a product that harms you, but has no effect on me. Let me use what I want, and you use what you want.

    Also it's funny that you bring up smoking, because guess what? It isn't banned! You know the risks and smoke if you feel like it. Just like poly. You may be susceptible to arm injury and not know it. But you're free to take the chance on it if you want. I'm a big fan of freedom and choices, and of not having other busy bodies try to decide what's best for me. Call me crazy I guess.
     
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2013
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  33. Venetian

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    We've now determined that poly does not create the same level of spin as spaghetti strings, and that it does not harm a lot of people that use it. So there's no reason to not allow it. Just don't use it if it bothers you.
     
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  34. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

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    Yet, most places ban smoking in indoor public places and on airplanes even though there are people whose "genes" allow them to inhale dense smoke all day long for their entire lives without causing them any harmful effects. Sorry, but one's awesome genes are not considered when banning a product that is proven to be harmful. Or else we'd still have asbestos, lead paint, and DDT.
     
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  35. Venetian

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    It doesn't for everyone. For you it can be managed with softer string apparently. That's a problem with YOU, not with poly. It doesn't bother me at all. So why should something I like be banned because of an effect it has on you when you use it? Just don't use it if it hurts you, and don't worry about what I use.
     
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  36. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

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    With today's modern 100 sq. in. aerodynamic racquets, poly strings do indeed create as much spin as spaghetti strings did. Don't forget that spaghetti strings back in the 70's were put into 65-75 sq. in. heavy clunky racquets so it was harder to generate massive spin with those frames than with today's "spin monster" frames. So the combination of poly strings installed in today's "spin monster" frames do indeed result in massive amounts of spin comparable to spaghetti strings in 70's era frames.
     
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  37. Venetian

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    Lol, but poly does not emanate it's harmful effects to those around you. It's something that effects you and you alone negatively. Are you just trolling for the lawlz?

    If you string up your racquet with poly, the guy on the other side of the net doesn't get second hand tennis elbow. So use what you want, and don't worry about what I use.
     
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  38. Venetian

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    Again, you're just saying stuff, and have no proof of this. Cite some research that explains this please. Please don't say everyone just knows it.

    Moreover, it was already brought up that poly results in about an 11% increase in spin over other string materials. So 89% of that spin is cause by the racquet. Do you want to ban modern frames too? No need to answer, I imagine you do.

    It seems pretty clear that you just want all modern equipment to be prohibited and the game taken back in time. It just is not going to happen, and most people playing don't want it to anyway. Why not just enjoy tennis the way it is?
     
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  39. Sander001

    Sander001 Hall of Fame

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    Because he can't. He's literally unable to because it causes him injury so he wants to take it away from everybody else.

    [​IMG]
     
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  40. fullpolyserve&volley

    fullpolyserve&volley New User

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    Well if we're all for letting the game evolve - I want to be able to use a spaghetti racquet ! ;)

    I dont think poly changed the game as much as titanium balls and plexi cushion courts though....that killed serve and volley in the big leagues..
     
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  41. fullpolyserve&volley

    fullpolyserve&volley New User

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    This borderlines being offensive to women -- but because of all these changes to conditions you'll never get ladies built like Anna Kournikova or Martina Hingis using finesse as part of their games. It doesn't work now....Today they're all just bohemathly big and tall topspinners grunting and screaming their way to victory...in long drawn out rallies....

    But going to the mens side, I think the courts should be sped up a little. Not too much. Just enough to even the score for both baseliners and net players..Is that possible?
     
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  42. Venetian

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    Again though, what's the incentive? The players aren't asking for it. The fans by-and-large aren't asking for it. There has to be some huge outcry for tournament directors/owners to want to alter their surfaces.

    Tournaments are drawing crowds and making money, sponsors are making money, and players are making money. So no one who would push for these changes is unhappy with their current situation.
     
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  43. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

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    Because I was playing tennis back in the 70's when spaghetti strings came out and I still play tennis today in the era of poly strings. How about you? Nobody back then could hit the same massive amounts of spin that today's modern frames and poly strings can generate unless they were using a spaghetti strung racquet.

    That statement makes no sense at all. But at least it gives me an good indication of the intellect I'm dealing with. Where does 89% come from? An 11% increase in spin over other types of strings is not out of 100%. All that means is that if spin produced by other types strings in normalized at a base number of 0 on a scale, then poly string will produce spin equaling 11 on that scale. But that poly number could be any number, even 130%. The racquet is not on this scale so it has nothing to do with the 11%, and is certainly not out of some 100% difference.

    That's the problem. It's hard for people to enjoy tennis when there are products that cause them injury and takes them out of the game. But people feel they have to use poly strings to be able to compete against opponents that do use poly strings. So the choice becomes: 1.) Give up playing tennis altogether, or 2.) Use poly strings and eventually destroy your arm. It's the same reason why cyclists feel they have to dope in order to have any chance of winning. What we need is nuclear disarmament. PED are banned for a reason, and thus poly strings should also be banned. You can't say let everyone use poly strings, just like you can't say let everyone use PEDs, because those who don't want to use them will feel forced to use them in order to be able to compete with those who do use them. And both are dangerous to your long-term health as well as unnaturally altering their respective sports.
     
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  44. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

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    Really? Just go to the Pro Player forum and see how many people hate the current state of the game and are pleading for faster courts. Enough so that the Australian Open did in fact speed up the courts a little this year. And Madrid did speed up the clay last year, so much so that Federer served and volleyed on almost every point against Raonic - on clay, and on 2nd serves, too.

    Go read this years Australian Open men's final thread in the Match Results forum and see how many people thought the grind-fest between Djokovic and Murray was unbearably boring.
     
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  45. Venetian

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    Sorry but if it's not an issue at the professional level, it's not going to be changed. Professionals aren't complaining about poly, most are using it.

    It's also not true that you absolutely have to use poly to be competitive. There was a thread just a few months ago where drakulie stated that Bob Bryan uses a full bed of natural gut. So if the #1 doubles player in the world isn't using poly, surely a 50+ year old rec player doesn't need to. I've been using a full bed of prince syn gut for quite awhile and I don't have any problem being competitive in USTA league play.

    EDIT: Here's the thread for reference http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/archive/index.php/t-437160.html
     
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2013
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  46. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

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    Didn't you read what I wrote? All the pros use poly because they feel they HAVE TO use it in order to be able to compete against opponents that are also using poly. It's the same reason why cyclists feel they HAVE TO dope in order to be able to compete against other cyclists that are doping. Yet, doping is banned in cycling, just like poly should be banned in tennis. You can't compete against semi-automatic assault rifles with a revolver. You have to ban the semi-automatic assault rifles. Players will feel they have to use poly until no one is able to get and use poly.
     
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  47. Venetian

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    BP, just form your own wood league or tournament if that's what you like. There's no need to start calling for a ban of something you don't like, that most other people are fine with. You wouldn't happen to be in politics would you?... Bloomberg? That you brah?
     
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  48. Venetian

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    Didn't you read WHAT I WROTE? All pros do not use poly. I specifically state that Bob Bryan, the #1 doubles player in the entire world!!!, uses a full bed of natural gut.
     
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  49. Venetian

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    Oh crap, you are a politician! Don't tread on me BP.
     
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  50. Venetian

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    Hey I've gotta play some Battlefield 3 and hit the sack. Hopefully some other nightowl can fill in while I'm gone. Night BP!
     
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