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## Confused about string tension

Ok I still can't understand how string tension works. Every website says increasing tension decreases power. I only find this true when I go above 24 or 25 lbs of string tension. If I use a racket at 27 lbs it feels harder to hit to the back. However, when I use 20 lbs of string tension it feels as though power decreases...

So does increase of tension increase or decrease power?

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so you have already found your idea tension range. which is >20lbs but <27lbs. so don;t worry too much about other tensions.

In general increasing tension does decrease power. But decreases in power only happens when you have reach your limit ( so it is different for everyone). ie in your case, anything 27 and above, you can't hit back to back easily.

Its like I find it more comfortable playing 25lbs or less.

3. think of it as a bell curve.

as you increase tension, power/repulsion increases, after it reach a maximum point, power/repulsion decreases.

4. Originally Posted by kwun
think of it as a bell curve.

as you increase tension, power/repulsion increases, after it reach a maximum point, power/repulsion decreases.
yep, and we only increase tension to get a better "feel" of the shuttle on the stringbed and improved accuracy of the shot

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ahh ok thx guys. Didn't know it was a bell shaped curve. Guess I'll keep my tension to 24 or 25. Is there a way to shift the bell shape curve so the max point is over like 30 lbs

6. Originally Posted by Footwork_816
ahh ok thx guys. Didn't know it was a bell shaped curve. Guess I'll keep my tension to 24 or 25. Is there a way to shift the bell shape curve so the max point is over like 30 lbs
it's not like a race or competition to see who can play at higher tensions... there's no shame in using lower tensions. it's whatever tension that allows you to play both touch shots and power shots effectively

as a matter of fact, as you get older like some of us, you'll appreciate lower tension

also, you can't compare playing tensions in colder countries like here in north america to those in hotter climates like mas/sg...
colder temps cause strings to be more brittle and less resilient, and so 24 lbs here will probably feel like 26 lbs in mas
Last edited by visor; 01-09-2012 at 10:12 PM.

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Originally Posted by visor
it's not like a race or competition to see who can play at higher tensions... there's no shame in using lower tensions

as a matter of fact, as you get older like some of us, you'll appreciate lower tension

also, you can't compare playing tensions in colder countries like here in north america to those in hotter climates like mas/sg...
colder temps cause strings to be more brittle and less resilient, and so 24 lbs here will probably feel like 27 lbs in mas
Lol ok. Professional players and their decisions probably influence me too much...I need to stop trying to copy everything they do . Although there is no shame it definitely feels like better players use higher tension...

Ha yea I feel sorry for you old guys. If you add 3 lbs to compensate for climate there are some people using insanely high tension here in America O_O

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also depends on the power you can wield, a stronger swing can use the higher tensions but someone without that wrist power will find it difficult to generate repulsion in my opinion

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i feel that the increased in tension seems to increase the shuttle speed of my hardest smash and punch clear... anybody feels the same as well?

increased in tension also means i have to use more strength to perform base to base clear as well.

10. Dun forget - higher tensions will lead to a reduced sweet-spot too, less forgiving.

11. Originally Posted by ns9900
i feel that the increased in tension seems to increase the shuttle speed of my hardest smash and punch clear... anybody feels the same as well? increased in tension also means i have to use more strength to perform base to base clear as well.
Yep, the shuttle leaves the stringbed faster with higher tension. That faster response and reaction is what pros want when they string at insanely high tensions. But you can get it without having crazy tensions... by choosing a stiffer racket! Less shaft bending will also give better response and accuracy like higher tensions.

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Originally Posted by visor
Yep, the shuttle leaves the stringbed faster with higher tension. That faster response and reaction is what pros want when they string at insanely high tensions. But you can get it without having crazy tensions... by choosing a stiffer racket! Less shaft bending will also give better response and accuracy like higher tensions.
That's right. With higher tensions the shuttle leaves the racquet earlier and so there is slightly less time for your opponent to react which is useful in short exchanges. However the shuttle velocity is lower but isn't too much of a problem in most cases as the slowest professional player smash is still effective if well placed and consistent.

Some may disagree, but aside from novices, I feel that low tensions is only good for smashing and long shots.

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thanks visor! for clearing my doubt. have been playing with 25lbs for quite long time until i noticed my clears ended way long with my 70-80% strength. so i increased the tension gradually from 26lbs to 28lbs, after adopting the suggestions by some fellow bc-ers here. now my clears ended nearer to the baseline, and surprisingly the increased tension actually increased the speed of my smashes and clears as well. sometimes intentional defensive clears become offensive clears over the opponents' heads.

Originally Posted by visor
Yep, the shuttle leaves the stringbed faster with higher tension. That faster response and reaction is what pros want when they string at insanely high tensions. But you can get it without having crazy tensions... by choosing a stiffer racket! Less shaft bending will also give better response and accuracy like higher tensions.

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