FB Poly vs. Hybrid - Evaluating String Bed Stiffness


Hall of Fame
A friend of mine is a solid 4.5 1,2 singles USTA player that hits with a Volkl V1 Classic racquet.

Last fall was the last time I saw him play and he was using Luxilon Element. Sometime over the winter he switched to 4G at 52 lbs and developed arm issues and had taken some time off. He reached out to me yesterday and wanted me to restring one of his racquets with a hybrid to see if that helps him. He reviewed what I had on hand and requested that I restring his racquet with Prince Premier Control 16/Tourna BHS 17 which we figured he would get about 6-8 hours out of before needing a restring.

We decided to start with the same tension and I restrung his racquet last night and it came out nicely. However, I can tell that he is going to want more tension the next time.

Which got me thinking at what point are we just replacing stiffness in the string-bed from the material (4G) with stiffness in the string-bed from tension (Hybrid) which could lead him right back to his arm issue. I wouldn't suggest this but then why not just lower the tension with a full bed of a slightly softer poly?

How does one know they are not heading back down the same path just with different strings in the racquet?


It’s best to take the average stiffness value of the 2 stiffness ratings of the 2 strings. My hybrid is kirschbaum syngut multifilament 16g / proline 2 18g (162/183) . Average = 173-178. How do I know this is accurate? Because my standard is prince syngut with duraflex 178 rating which I used to play when a junior. And my game is now getting better consistently as an adult player in my 40s. I’m seeing many different shots possible in a hybrid as I remember as a junior player .

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Hall of Fame
Thank you. He hit with the setup I restrung for him this morning. He said it was fine during warmup but the ball flew on him during play so he parked it which is what I figured would happen.

He said it is not over pocketing the ball so based on that I was thinking of leaving the crosses the same and going up to 58 in the mains and let him try again.


i hated 4g when i first tried it,, my opinion has changed now, 4g is a good string,, but you have to find the correct tension for your raket and yourself,
for me it meant going down to the 40ish-lb range
even a couple lbs lower than what i like the poly at..

to go back to your original post
i would look into the swing balance of the raket first, 2,3,4 pts balance change would make my arm take notice..
i demo alot of rakets, all weights and all kinds of strings,,
but i make sure to balance the demo.raket to my preference..


Hall of Fame
Thank you. My son plays with 4G so I string a lot of racquets with it. I tried to get my son to switch to something softer, even to Hyper G, and he had none of it saying they were too mushy.

My friend's sticks by the way are really nice actually which he has customized with Tungsten in the hoop and neck. They look/feel great to me. He is my age (mid 50's) so I just don't think 4G is a good idea.

Anyway, let's see what my friend thinks of PPC/TBBS 58/52 as he hits with it tomorrow morning. I will keep you posted!