Get fit for tennis

We should get fit for tennis instead of using tennis to get fit. With the French open and Wimbledon coming up and better weather, many of us will be inspired to hit the courts.

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Tennis requires upper body, lower body and core strength. It is a multi-directional sport. Therefore we need to be able to move in multi-directions and to change direction quickly. A well designed exercise programme can improve your performance on the court as well as prevent injury.

Warming up the muscles prior to play  is important. Jogging around the court, high knees, heel to toes, side stepping, lunges with rotation and shoulder circles are all useful warm up exercises. Theraband exercises for the deep stability muscles of the shoulder ( rotator cuff) prior to play can protect against shoulder injuries.  After playing stretching the major muscle groups of the upper and lower body can alleviate muscle soreness and maintain flexibility.

What we do between matches is probably more important. Take the tennis serve as pictured below. Look at all the muscle groups that are involved.

Squats, lunges and calf raises will strengthen the leg muscles that are used during the serve.

Pilates is an excellent form of exercise that will strengthen the abdominals and other core muscles that are involved.

Rotator cuff exercises using theraband or free weights as well as biceps/tricep curls, rows, push ups and shoulder presses can strengthen the upper body.

Here at southside physiotherapy clinic we can tailor a tennis specific exercise programme to your needs. We can assess for muscle weakness and give exercises to strengthen those same muscles. We will also ensure that your technique is correct in any of the tennis specific exercises you are doing.

For more information on a physiotherapy assessment or Pilates please contact us at 2897171 or