The summer season brings everyone out to play – in the sunshine, by the beach or on the golf and tennis courts. Being able to enjoy your favorite sports activities outside adds and extra level of happiness: we get to break a sweat, catch a tan and feel the sunshine tickle our noses as we gather with friends and competitors for the love of the game. Following our intense workouts, the joy-inducing weather beckons us to lounge around our sports club’s bar or cafeteria with a chilled drink and a healthy snack, to discuss game strategies for the next match or tournament. There really is no better season for tennis than the summer!
If you’ve got all your kit prepared and are ready to shine on the courts, you may be considering a new work-out routine to help you get in tip top shape for the season ahead. It’s not always easy to carve out the time for extra work-out sessions next to work, life and family responsibilities, but there are a few clever ways you can fit in the extra exercise without having to sacrifice too much time in your day. Here are the best, most efficient ways, to get in shape for tennis.
The Active Commute
Do you drive or bus it to work every morning only to find yourself getting grumpier and grumpier faced with traffic, crowds and public transport delays? If you live relatively local to your work, there’s a simple solution to combating the morning hassle and getting in shape for the tennis season: switch your usual method of transport for your bicycle! Biking is a great way to work on your condition – especially your legs, which you’ll be using a lot on the courts. By biking – or even walking – to work you are taking the same time you’d usually spend on the bus or in the car, exercising your way into top shape without loosing too many hours of your leisure time. On top of that, the fresh air and sunshine will make a great start to your day.
The Tennis Yogi
Yoga is for literally everyone and anyone. Regardless of your experience, body type and flexibility, you’ll always be able to find an intensive or relaxing yoga routine that suits you. The biggest sports celebrities in the world all agree that yoga is an excellent way to help you get, and stay, in shape for your tennis practice, seeing as it focuses on so many elements that are useful across a wide spectrum of sports. From proper breathing techniques, to deep stretches and ab-work, from mental-clarity to a sharpened sense of focus – yoga will prepare you for all your most challenging matches. The best part? You can easily fit yoga into every part of your day and can practice anywhere you want – even your bed!
The Tennis Ball Machine Drill
If you want to train with the crème de la crème, you can use tennis ball machines to get you in shape. If you think playing against a tennis ball machine is going to be boring, think again – it’ll probably turn into your most intense training session to date, depending on how far you dare to push yourself. These machines can be programmed to fire balls at specific angles and speeds, allowing you to practice every element of your game at your own chosen intensity. Once you’ve incorporated your tennis ball machine into your regular training, you’ll see just how addictive this drill will become.
The Running (Wo)Man
If you’re an early bird anyway, why not get up at the crack of dawn to go on a mind-clearing, healthy run around the park, along the beach or your neighborhood block? Regardless of where you are located, you will find perfect stretches for running even in the busiest of cities. It’s free, it’s challenging and super beneficial to your health and overall condition. Running will work your legs in preparation of your next match and send lots of feel-good-vibes to your brain. Put together a motivating running soundtrack and start your day – and your tennis season – off right.
The Winter-Sport Summer-Prep
Plan ahead this year by booking a fantastic winter sport holiday and you’ll be getting the very best training in preparation for your summer-sport: tennis! Skiing, snowboarding, hiking and skating are all excellent ways to get in shape whilst making the very best of the magical, winter-wonderland high atop your mountain or region of choice. Skiing especially offers a full-body workout that will come in particularly handy once you hit the courts this summer.
The Deep Dive
If you’d like to find a way to get in shape that will allow you to take full advantage of the warm weather, then swimming is for you. It doesn’t matter whether you choose to swim lanes at the sports center or just go for a freestyle swim in the ocean or lake – both are equally effective. In fact, renowned tennis coach Andrew Fitzpatrick, is known for building swimming exercises into his training regimes: it’s a low-past exercise that is also great for recovering from injuries. Swimming is a fantastic way to loosen the joints and free the mind in a full-body workout training.
Super Foods for Super Tennis
It’s no secret that our diet can heavily influence our training. If you’re headed out to the court after a night of binging on potato chips or have overindulged on a heavy meal, don’t expect to be hit with an explosion of energy mid-game. The wrong diet will do the exact opposite: it’ll have you feeling sluggish and lethargic, and that’s the last thing you want to feel when you’re headed for a big match. Pay special attention to your diet and you’ll have a much easier time getting in shape for tennis. It’s all about choosing your food wisely and making clever choices when it comes to finding your protein, vitamin and carb sources. So, swap the BLT for an avocado and salmon wrap, and trade the soft drinks for home-made lemonade and fresh water this summer.