Can someone clarify effects of string tension once and for all?

I used to hear low string tension = trampoline = less control and less power. Then I heard trampoline means more power.

I also heard high tension = less control b/c the ball is on the strings for less time. And it launches the ball since the strings are so tight.

Basically, I have heard all permutations.

Can someone clarify the effect of string tension on:
1) Power
2) Control

Thanks!
 

anubis

Hall of Fame
http://www.tennis-warehouse.com/LC/BasicFacts.html

Lower string tensions generate more power (providing string movement does not occur).
Higher string tensions generate more ball control (for experienced players).
A longer string (or string plane area) produces more power.
Decreased string density (fewer strings) generates more power.
Thinner string generates more power.*
More elastic strings generate more power. (Generally, what will produce more power will also absorb more shock load at impact.)
Softer strings, or strings with a softer coating, tend to vibrate less.
Thinner strings tend to produce more spin.
Increased string density (more strings) generates more control.
The more elastic the string, the more tension loss in the racquet after the string job.**
* Although Wilson's research for their Sweetspot string disputes this statement.
**Pre-stretching aligns (stretches) the polymer chains in the string and "sets" the string, which reduces tension loss, albeit slightly. Generally, the more pre-stretching (prior to stringing) the less tension loss after stringing.
 
I recall back in the 1980s, pre-strung rackets were TIGHT.
You could not even MOVE the strings (like how you need to adjust lower tension strings once in a while)

Are you saying this was lower power / more control ?
 

Vlad_C

Semi-Pro
Lower string tension will produce more power.
Higher string tension will give a good player more control.

This assumes well developed consistent strokes, with a fast swing.
When I first started playing, I tried high tension, and it did not work well for me at the time. I found I could get better directional control on groundstrokes by using a softer string at medium tension, which gave me more ball pocketing. As my game improved, I switched to a different string at a higher tension, and I found I can get better results with this setup.
 

Jay_The_Nomad

Professional
From what I understand, strings are finicky.

The general rule is basically what the above posters have said: lower tension more power less control and higher tension less power more control.

That being said, there is an optimum tension range in which strings have the most power (this will depend on the racquet string pattern and racquet head size) and this optimum range is usually the manufacturer's recommended range. If you go too far below this optimum range you will actually start to lose power (if you go to far above the optimum range, you will either crack the frame or snap the string).


I used to hear low string tension = trampoline = less control and less power. Then I heard trampoline means more power.

I also heard high tension = less control b/c the ball is on the strings for less time. And it launches the ball since the strings are so tight.

Basically, I have heard all permutations.

Can someone clarify the effect of string tension on:
1) Power
2) Control

Thanks!
 
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