Wilson’s Spin Effect at TW


ST105S-6Wilson came to Tennis Warehouse last week to show off and share their Spin Effect technology with some of our staff. If you have been living under a rock, then it will be news to you that Wilson debuted two very spin-friendly frames this year — the Wilson Steam 99 S and Wilson Steam 105 S. The rest of you have probably already demoed one of these racquets or are anxious to get these racquets in your hands and are curious if this spin effect is too good to be true.

The Spin Effect technology from Wilson actually increases the RPMs of every shot hit when using these Steam S racquets by maximizing the spin-enhancing string “snapback” during ball contact. It is no secret that one of the biggest changes in the game has been spin. With the new shaped polys and racquet technologies, every player is looking for the best way to enhance their game. Wilson has created a doppler based device to track the ball, spin, speed, trajectory and more. They found that the traditional string pattern actually limits the spin potential in a racquet. With this information, Wilson was able to open up and optimize the string pattern on these Steam S racquets to provide more spin for the average player. Using the Steam 99S or 105S has actually been scientifically proven to automatically add more spin to your shots — up to as many as 200 more RPMs. With these stats, an average tennis player will find that this ends up lengthening the court by a foot and lowers the net by 2 inches. You can check out this technology in depth in this video: Wilson’s Spin Effect
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Tennis strings that produce the most spin

Rafael Nadal's "buggy-whip" forehand is being emulated by junior players all around the world trying to generate the most topspin that they can on their forehand.

Rafael Nadal’s “buggy-whip” forehand is being emulated by junior players all around the world in an attempt to generate as much topspin as they can with their forehands.  Photo courtesy of Cynthia Lum.

Tennis players of all levels have gone crazy for spin in recent years! With the latest racquet and string technology along with younger players trying to replicate the modern swings of Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic, players are trying to maximize the amount of spin in their games as best as they can.

Our TW University Professor Crawford Lindsey has done extensive testing on how spin is produced during a shot, and what factors apart from the stroke itself aid or hamper the production of spin. At contact, the ball hits the stringbed and moves the main strings (the strings that are horizontal at impact), sliding them out of position vertically against the cross strings. As the ball leaves the strings, the main strings snap back into their original position. A string’s ability to slide and snap back efficiently is what our TW Professor concluded to be the biggest difference between strings in terms of their spin potential. Therefore, the further the main strings can stretch during this process, the greater the snap back force is, and thus the more spin you can generate.
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How string patterns affect spin

Spin is in with the new super open string patterns by Wilson

Spin is in with the new super open string patterns by Wilson

With the release of the new Wilson Spin Effect racquets, the Steam 99 S and Steam 105 S, people are talking about the way that spin is produced and what effects a racquet can have on spin production. Wilson utilizes an open 16×15 string pattern that it claims helps to produce noticeably more spin than a traditional 16×18 or 18×20 string pattern. The difference lies in there being fewer cross strings than main strings, thus opening up the stringbed and creating more space in between the strings.

Interestingly enough, our TW University professor, Crawford Lindsey, was onto something very similar a few years ago when he started testing the effects that different string patterns had on spin. He conducted experiments (outlined in his “Spin and String Pattern” article in September of 2010) to test which string patterns were more effective in producing more spin.

This picture simulates the stretching of the main strings at contact, which is what helps produce topspin.

This picture simulates the stretching of the main strings at contact, which is what helps produce topspin.

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