Babolat's new string has become a hot topic in tennis, so we asked Andy Brandi of the Harold Solomon Tennis Institute in Fort Lauderdale, Florida for his thoughts are on the trend.
What do Rafa Nadal, Andy Roddick, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, Sam Stosur, Franchesca Schiavone and Maria Sharapova all have in common? They all use Babolat’s RPM Blast.
Introduced in January at the Australian Open the RPM Blast string is taking the tennis world by storm, with players gravitating to this string in droves. What's behind this trend?
The RPM Blast, which is black in color, is easier on the arm. It increases spin because it grips the ball during contact and it shoots the ball out of the racket faster for more power. It gives unique feel.
Rooney Levine, who is with Match Point in Fort Lauderdale, says that 25% of those brining rackets for stringing are asking for RPM Blast. She mentions that it easier to string and is replacing Babolat’s Pro Hurricane Tour as the string of choice.
After hitting with it, I would recommend that juniors and female college players use it in a hybrid form. It would allow them to take advantage of the characteristics of the string while being easy on their arms. Be sure that you string it a little looser for better response. Older boys and college age male players can venture into stringing the whole racket with RPM Blast. Because of their added physical strength, it will allow them to take advantage of the string without harming their arm.
So my advice, if you have not tried it, get to your stringer. It will give you an added advantage.
Best of luck!
For a further information on this topic, see Doug Robson's recent article for USA Today.
Do you have a question for Andy or Harold? If so, please send it to clewis[at]zootennis[dot]com with the phrase Coaches Q and A in the subject line.
Monday, July 5, 2010