Updated : 19 june 2015
Many years ago, before the open era of tennis, Tennis pros use Natural Gut strings exclusively.
Though the way tennis is played today is vastly different, Natural Gut remains extremely popular on the Pro’s Tour.
There is simply no other strings quite like Natural Guts.
Note : There are a few grades of Natural Guts, but I do not believe in the low and medium grade guts, everything written here will be based on high and premium grade guts.
Here’s why –
In terms of performance –
1) Natural Gut is the most powerful string there is. ( Simply incredible amount of power, whether you are hitting hard or simply touching the ball, the string generates a lot of extra power for you. )
2) Natural Gut has really good control. ( On impact with the ball, natural guts do not have obvious trampoline effects like other strings, it is so elastic that only the area in contact with the ball flexes creating a cupping/pocketing effect. )
(Note: This control here refers to touch shots not hard hitting powerful shots.)
3) Natural Gut increases sweet spot size significantly! ( Its ability to pocket the ball is soo good, even off-center shots can be pocketed! )
4) Natural Gut has strong bite and good spin potential. ( Soft string types notches easily, are sticky , runs a lot and lacks snap-back effect. But not Natural Guts! Its the softest string there is and yet still exhibits dynamic properties close to that of polyesters! )
Just in terms of performance we get close to perfection, Power and Control are contradictions but not for Natural Guts. Soft string types all have poor spin and bite , but not for Natural Guts. Increased sweet spot size? That is almost cheating )
In terms of qualities –
1) There are no other string that holds tension as well as natural guts
2) Nautural Guts has the best Playability
3) The very best Response/Feedback ( Vibrations from the string are extremely comfortable and very clear. )
4) The very best Comfort ( When in comes to comfort, there is no other strings that comes even remotely close. This string is incredibly elastic. )
5) Very Lively and Crisp ( There is simply no other soft string types that are as lively and crisp as natural guts . The feel of the string being both soft and crisp is one of the most premium and sought after qualities.)
6) All soft string types except Natural Guts have very high fictional coefficient causes terrible running, string sticking and bad notching. This is one of the biggest flaws of Nylon strings, poor snapping back effect and spin.
7) A low and medium grade Natural Gut, lacks many essential steps in order for the string to be Durable. ( e.g proper all season coatings, consistency in elasticity, consistency in gauge, proper chemical processes, etc) . They run a substantial risk of prematurely snapping.
A high and premium grade Natural Gut is a much better investment, they may cost twice as much but these strings are very much more durable. These strings no only perform better, they will pretty much last you till its last strand of fiber.
8) Natural gut continues to have a good level of elasticity even when strung close to 70 pounds. It can be strung at really high tensions giving a high level of control yet remaining comfortable. No other strings can remain comfortable nor retain its inherent elasticity like Natural guts under such set-ups. At such high tensions, playability and tension stability takes a huge toll but not for Natural Guts.
( But I do not recommend stringing at such high tensions for Natural Guts, durability will still take a toll, hybrid with polyester for stronger control would work better. )
How long a string lasts depends on durability , tension stability and playability. For a player who do not burst strings , durability will not be an issue and given the evergreen tension stability and playability of Natural Guts. These strings will be the longest lasting strings for such a player.
1) Nowadays the all season coating protects Natural Guts very well from humidity, however these strings are still not water proof, getting in wet will spoil the string very quickly.
2) Natural Guts will fray, slowly but surely thin strands of the string will peel off the string, this does not affect its performance and quality but eventually when its down to the last few last strand, durability will be an issue.
3) Price/Cost of the string is pretty much the biggest negative, these strings are many times more expansive than the normal average strings.
4) Natural gut plays very crisp initially but it loses this amazing crisp feel as it gets older.
5) The more elastic the string is, the more palpable tension lost becomes. Natural Gut could become too mushy for hard htting players after awhile. ( I do not recommend natural gut for big hard hitting players. )
6) Natural gut control level drops quickly for big hard hitters.
Using a Natural Gut/ Polyester is a great way to safe on the cost of the gut and even get certain benefits from the polyester in the combo. I will talk more about it in pages I have yet to write …
This is the Premium Grade gut that I am lucky enough to get my hands on .
This is the Natural Gut string that Mikhail Youzhny , Yen-Hsun Lu, Stakovsky and other Signum Pro sponsored pros use.
I have purposely priced it at a more affordable price so that Natural Guts which I find to be an extremely valuable string can become a more viable choice for more people.