Dead strings


New User
What is a dead tennis string if you had to summarise it? And how would you choose to explain it to people?

This is my explanation, let me know if you agree:

The counter intuitive part of dead Tennis strings is that the string bed becomes soft (low tension), but the sensation when hitting the ball is that it feels stiff and hard and that the balls leaves the racket very quickly (because even if it's a soft string bed, it's a non-flexing one).

I say: When it feels like the ball spends little time with your strings, and you have no control, restring.

Same hold true for power: A newly strung string bed can feel a lot softer and more powerful than a dead string bed. That's because elasticity and low tension are NOT the same thing.


For me, I use poly as a cross with gut mains and they always ‘go dead’ first before the tension drops too much for me to notice the loss of control from lower tension. Since the poly loses its elasticity when it ‘goes dead’, what I notice first is the feel getting harsh. Also, when it is dead, I feel like it has much lower power than when fresh while at the same time getting more erratic as swinging harder does not give me controllable power anymore.

Fresh soft polys don’t give me any discomfort and I feel like I can swing big and get controllable power on both groundstrokes and serves. Once the poly is dead, I sometimes feel some elbow discomfort after the match and know it is time to cut it out. Usually, my serve power goes down at the same time and I can’t swing harder to generate more power to compensate for the dead poly and keep my % up. Luckily, I’ve found HyperG and HyperG Soft which don’t go dead within 15 hours and I usually break my gut by then. But, with ALU Power, Cyclone Tour, Tour Bite Soft, Cyclone, RPM Blast etc., they go dead for me within 10-12 hours which is a couple of sessions before I break the gut and so, I sometimes have to cut them out. ALU Power had the shortest lifetime of feeling great for only 4-5 hours in a hybrid and went dead within 6-7 hours.