When a tennis ball hits the strings of a racquet, the impact creates vibrations that travel through the racquet frame and into the player's arm. This can cause discomfort or even injury, particularly if the vibrations are not absorbed properly.
The core material of both products is made of Sorbothane, a type of viscoelastic polymer that is specifically designed to absorb and dissipate energy. The ShockSorb UltraSoft has a lower durometer rating (i.e., it is softer) than the ShockSorb Original. This means that the UltraSoft is more pliable and able to deform more easily than the Original. When the UltraSoft deforms upon impact, it creates a larger surface area for the impact energy to be dispersed over. This results in less energy being transferred to the player's arm, which can reduce discomfort and injury.
The ShockSorb Original is slightly harder than the UltraSoft, but it is still softer than traditional rubber and silicone dampeners. One of the unique features of the ShockSorb Original is the "pop" sound that it produces upon impact. The sound is louder and more distinct than what is produced by traditional dampeners, which a lot of our junior and pro players prefer. You typically need to hit the ball quite hard to produce this effect. So while it's possible to hear the "pop" sound with normal shots, it's more likely to occur when hitting the ball with greater force. This is a feature that many of our players, both juniors and pros, appreciate as it provides an audible confirmation of their powerful shots.
Overall, the ShockSorb UltraSoft's softer, more pliable material allows it to absorb more shock and vibrations than the ShockSorb Original, making it a better choice for players who are particularly sensitive to these types of impact. However, the ShockSorb Original is still an excellent choice for players who do not have arm problems, as it provides excellent shock absorption without sacrificing too much of the feel and feedback of the racquet.
Ultimately, the choice between the ShockSorb Original and the ShockSorb UltraSoft comes down to personal preference and individual needs. Players who value the feel and feedback of their racquet may prefer the Original, while those who need more shock absorption may prefer the UltraSoft.
While the ShockSorb Original and UltraSoft have been widely used and recommended by many players to help alleviate discomfort and prevent further injury, it's important to note that everyone's experiences may vary. While some players may find these dampeners to be very effective in reducing vibrations and shock, others may not experience the same level of relief. Additionally, it's important to note that dampeners alone may not be enough to fully address and resolve underlying arm injuries or pain. If you are experiencing persistent discomfort or pain in your arm, it's always a good idea to consult with a medical professional to determine the root cause and appropriate treatment plan.
In the next blog post, we will explore in more detail why one or the other may work better for certain players with pain. We will discuss how the ShockSorb Original and UltraSoft can be used to help alleviate discomfort and prevent further injury. Stay tuned for our next post!