More and more pros are going for hybrid strings because of their awesome qualities. They can provide the best of both worlds from the natural and polyester sides. They are relatively cheaper than natural strings and can have the benefit of the playability of natural strings while providing the control of polyester strings. But with all the different brands trying to sell you their next best hybrid string it is very easy to get confused. So, I have done a bit of research and trial and error to find the best hybrid strings for adding spin and power to your groundstrokes.
If you are just here get a short answer and be on your way then I would recommend the Wilson Champions Choice Duo Tennis String(Natural). You can check the current pricing on Amazon by clicking the link here. I personally use this one and it provides a great blend of power and spin for my all around, counter punching game. It is available in 16 and 16L gauges and I usually experiment with them both. But most of the time I use the 16L variant as it is more suited to my top spins and flat backhands.
What Are Tennis Racket Strings Made Of
So, tennis strings are made of all different kinds of materials and I have written a long post detailing all about strings. It includes almost everything you want to know about strings and it also has pros and cons for different strings. You can go through the article by clicking the link Here .
Any feedback, comments and criticism are appreciated. Here I am going to talk only about Hybrids, as they are probably my favorite of all the different strings as they are affordable and provide almost the same traits as natural and polyester strings.
What Strings Are Designed For Spin and Power
Spin and power are pretty synonymous terms in tennis as the strings used for the most spin also generate the most power as they dig deep into the ball and can generate more potential energy. It comes down to the player whether they whip the ball extremely hard like Rafael Nadal or hit it like a hammer like Thomas Berdych.
There are a few intricacies which you have to keep in mind when selecting the strings that might benefit the most. It involves looking at the gauges, the string tensions you ultimately set for your rackets/racquets, the string pattern of your racket and whether it is designed for power or for control? And finally the material of the hybrid strings. I’ll try and be thorough so as to end any confusion regarding the selection of your favorite hybrid strings and give some of my own recommendations in the end so if you are still confused after reading this you can pick up one of those and experiment with different companies and gauge levels.
I am going to give a high-level overview of gauges in this post as I have discussed them at length in my What Are Tennis Racket Strings Made Of post. So if you need a refresher on gauge levels and how they affect the play of the racket then you can have a peek there.
Long story short gauges start from 15 and end at 19 with “L” increments in between and the bigger the number is the more increase in play ability and power there is in your ground strokes. This happens because when the string is of lower thickness the ball stays with the string bed longer and depending on the player it generates more power or more spin. If you are confused as to which gauge to choose for hybrid strings you will generally have an easier time staying in the median range of about 16 to 17 while 16 and 16L being the most popular among pro players and intermediates alike.
16 and 16L provide a great sweet spot for power, topspin, and control. You can always experiment going 1 or 0.5 increments up or down but for most of the tennis playing population, this range is pretty awesome and worthwhile. I personally tried playing 15 polyester and that were the most painful days of my tennis career, I had to summon the power of Zeus in my ground strokes and even then it didn’t feel that powerful.
Generally, this is a very personal choice as some players prefer higher tensions for more control and some prefer lower tensions for more power. Most rackets being produced these days have a string tension floor and a threshold of 50lbs-60lbs and for an adequate amount of spin and power, I would recommend keeping it in the median of that range i.e. 54 lbs-55lbs. I personally use this as well as Rafael Nadal and he has a great mix of extreme spin and power in his shots.
You can experiment with different tensions as tension is a very little factor when it comes to hitting the ball with power and spin and it is more to do with how fast you move the racket through the air.
String Pattern Of the Racquet/Racket
This is way more important than string tension as it directly affects the sweet spot of the racquet. 18×20 string pattern racquets are notorious for having a lower sweet spot and thus having more control but sacrificing the power and spin of the racquet.
16×19 are generally designed with spin and power in mind, players like Rafael Nadal and Jack Sock employ great spin and power to their shots with this string pattern.
So, if you have a racquet/racket that is not designed for heavy hitting then I would not recommend hybrid strings for you until you change your racket to a more spin friendly one. You can try either the Babolat Pure Drive Series or the Babolat Aero Series from Amazon to check whether you prefer the freedom of the 16×19 pattern or you prefer the control of your existing 18×20 racket.
I’ll recommend two of my favorite hybrid strings because that’s what I have tested with the most and like the most. You can get whatever seems the coolest to you as I love them equally and you can’t go wrong picking any one of these.
Wilson Champions Choice Duo Tennis String, Natural
As you have probably seen above, I love this string. You can find them on Amazon (here) for a pretty affordable price but if you prefer a little more spin than you can check out the other one I am gonna recommend
Babolat Combo Pack RPM Blast 17 Plus VS 16 Tennis String
This is a great mix of a thicker string with a thinner one and it provides great comfort and some extra spin to the ball when needed. Nadal has used this on and off and prefers this one for his French Open endeavors.
You can find them Amazon pretty much all the time. For current pricing and availability, you can click here