Tennis players love spin.  The fact is becoming ever more apparent as racquet and string manufacturers scramble to come up with revolutionary, spin-boosting frames and strings.  Gamma has a pretty good track record of introducing excellent, innovative strings and their newest offering looks pretty fascinating on paper, so I strung it up and took it out on the court.

Gamma Glide™ is a new string designed specifically to be used as the cross string component of a hybrid.  Glide™ is made from a proprietary material that reduces the sliding friction between strings.  This allows the main strings to slide further along the crosses and snap back more quickly, imparting more spin on the ball.  The snap back mechanic is one factor that helped make polyester strings so popular and the idea behind Glide™ is to provide the same snap quality back in a string that offers greater comfort and feel.

Gamma Glide™ is available in two different configurations: a standalone half-set package that can be paired with your favorite main string and a pre-packaged Glide™ Hybrid with Gamma Moto main strings and Glide™ cross strings.  I've hit with Gamma Moto in the past and liked it, so I dove right in and went for the prepackaged hybrid.

After spending years stringing my racquets in the mid-60s, I've been really backing off and experimenting with much lower tensions—especially with polyester strings—so I installed the Gamma Moto in my mains at 52 pounds.  Gamma recommends stringing Glide™ with 5%-10% more tension than was used on the main strings, so I went the full 10% and tensioned the crosses 5 pounds tighter at 57 pounds.  In retrospect, I think I might've liked to try the Glide™ a bit looser—maybe only 5% tighter than my mains, but of course that figure will probably vary some from person to person.

Installation was really pretty simple.  Coil memory was fairly low and I had no issues with tangles or knots.  Keep in mind that Glide™ is a bit different than the typical soft, multifilament string most people opt for as the cross component of their hybrids, though.  It is a monofilament string, so expect it to feel stiffer than natural gut or your favorite multifilament.  Even so, it's not so stiff that it's tough to weave and a little bit of stiffness actually makes it easier to get through covered holes.  Because of its monofilament construction, Glide™ is fairly robust, but I'd still recommend exercising some caution during installation if you're using a textured or geometric string—like Gamma Moto—in the mains.

Playability-wise, Glide™ Hybrid with Moto certainly delivers better feel and comfort than a full stringbed of polyester, but I didn't quite get the same snap-back feeling that I do with a full stringbed of polyester.  I felt like I got less spin than I do with a full bed of polyester but more than I do with a polyester/multifilament hybrid.  Steve, one of our stringers, expressed similar feelings after hitting a racquet strung with Glide™ Hybrid.  I chatted with him about it a little and he told me that while he initially felt like he was generating more spin, his final impression was that his spin production probably remained about the same as usual.

In terms of durability, Glide™ is less durable than polyester cross strings, but that's always part of the trade off to get better feel and more comfort.  After about 90 minutes of play, the Glide™ was showing some scrapes and light signs of wear, but it certainly fared better than a soft multifilament string normally does for me.

Overall, I did come away with some positive feelings towards Gamma Glide™, even it if didn't turn my forehand into Rafael Nadal's.  I think it's got some real potential for players who want some of the benefits of polyester, but don't want all the stiffness of a full poly stringbed.  Glide™ does seem to help preserve polyester's spin-boosting properties while offering better feel and comfort but for me it didn't quite provide the same snap back feeling that I like.  So, if you're looking for some new hybrid combinations to try this spring, give Gamma Glide™ or Glide™ Hybrid with Moto a try.  It's definitely a good hybrid compromise for players who like the spin potential of polyester, but don't like the stiffness.