I'm busy working on my blog posts. Watch this space!
The Tennis Specific Workout
April 22, 2018
I once heard a trainer say that "movement is movement" with regards to training for sports. This can definitely be the case when considering the body of a human can only move so many ways. There are definitely parallels to sports when it comes to movement but when it comes to training for specific sports there are definitely some distinctions.
Talking to a former student of mine whose brother plays on professional rugby team, I could tell there was a large difference to what his brother does to prepare for rugby versus what I would do for tennis. To put it in perspective, my roommate who trained the University of Denver's tennis teams said that "tennis players do not like heavy weights."
I did not learn this until my 30s when I started realizing the sport of tennis needed to be treated differently than most sports I played before. The main purpose of this blog is to focus more on the specific exercises that I I have found through my own research to be the best for tennis while also limiting the impact on the body. To summarize the main purpose of my workouts would be to be able to play tennis and not feel it the next day. This tells me I'm able to put a lot of effort on the tennis court in my body is prepared for that effort.
I will divide up this blog into the different exercises I would do for the lower and upper body. While I could make videos showing each exercise, I felt that it would be better for me to come with this information that the source is someone other than me. You will see some links to videos that can give you some ideas on implementing exercises for better workouts. I hope they help you stay fit but most importantly injury-free!
Having strong legs are essential to tennis but also with a long range of motion. You need flexibility along with strength. To do that, I encourage you to NOT do back squats. First, there isn't a time in our sport that we are lifting weight on our back so that wouldn't connect well. Second, it's hard on the back.It's essentially a lower back exercise and to me there's better ways to strengthening your back. Instead, you will see all my exercises I choose are keeping the weights at the waist rather than on my shoulders. I could definitely tell the difference with feeling a lot less stress on the back. They also helped keep my knees strong and stable rather than feeling like I'm putting a lot of stress on them as well. Give them a try and hopefully they will help!
This has been a big change for me as I have worked mainly on mobility with strength for my upper body. Stomach exercises have not changed much for me as I like to do planks and leg raises with some core twists for tennis movement. Here's a few more that might be helpful. The new ones that I did not know about until recently are related to shoulder mobility exercises. With a longer range of motion in the shoulders the better chance I can stay injury free which is very important to me. Try them out and see if they help you as well!