Tennis players know the sport is a full body workout that uses nearly every muscle. Thankfully you can continue to strengthen and train these muscles year-round through cross-training. These 4 tennis exercises are a great way to keep you ready for your next match.

  1. Jump rope: This is an inexpensive and easy way to work on footwork and endurance. Start off trying out 1-minute intervals and eventually work your way to 10 minutes or longer. This calorie burner is also a great core workout.
  2. Climb stairs: Find a local stadium, parking garage, or hotel and climb stairs for 20 minutes or longer. Try bending your knees for a more intense leg workout or pumping your legs up for a core workout. Keep a fast pace to improve your footwork.
  3. Stretch: Use your downtime from tennis to focus on stretching. Daily stretching has many health benefits such as heart health, mobility, and flexibility.
  4. Core exercises: The core is often overlooked by tennis players who instead focus on upper and lower body strength. The core is essential for the constantly changing direction and sprints you perform. Side stretches and side crunches are beneficial for the torquing and turning your serve requires. Try a 10–15-minute ab circuit a couple of times a week.

Using your off season to start incorporating small additions into your routine can also lead to big improvements in your physical fitness. Consider adding 50 sit to stands, 100 calf raises, 30 second intervals of wall sits, 50 crunches, or 30 second planks throughout the day. Break your daily goal into manageable segments. You might do 50 calf raises while you brush your teeth or 25 crunches as soon as you get out of bed.

You can continue to train physically and mentally by making a point to walk 10,000 steps daily, eating healthy protein-filled meals, drinking 8+ glasses of water daily, and focusing on your posture. Yoga, meditation, and visualization will help your mental game once you’re back on the court. 

Even if you need to take a break from the cold and cross-train indoors during the winter, you can still stay in tennis shape and keep yourself match ready.

Photo by Oliver Sjöström on Unsplash