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You Gotta Slow Down

December 14th, 2008 · No Comments ·


Tennis is a great sport. Not only does it offer a great cardiovascular workout, but it also strengthens muscular and skeletal system.

Regardless of the level of skills that a player possesses, knowing how to decelerate from his or her forward movement on tennis court is just as critical as practicing other techniques. Proper body deceleration can enhance overall performance as well as prevent devestating injuries, such as hyperextended knees, ankles, or torn rotator cuffs.

Two general training methods, plyometrics and sports specificity, can be implemented to help a tennis player decelerate efficiently.

Plyometric Exercises:

  • Step down: start from standing 24″ above the ground and slowly jump off the box (or any stable object like a chair). Land softly on the groun with knees bended and arms coiled ready to jump back onto the box.
  • Box jump: find a box or stable landing surface, jump onto the box and come back down quickly without losing balance.
  • Lie face down on a flat surface, and have one arm sticking out parallel to the ground with a small medicine ball in hand. Drop the ball and catch it as it bounces back; do the exercise for 30 seconds.

Sports Specificity:

  • Front rotator cuff rotation: hold a light dumbbell and have elbow bend 90-degree. Slowly lower the weight until forearm is parallel to the ground and come back up.
  • Overhead shoulder raise: raise a dumbbell, without bending the arm, to above the head from the side of the body.
  • Front lunges: lunge forward with one leg and quickly explode back to the original position.

Good luck, make tennis a fun and safe activity!

Tags: Injury Prevention · Exercise

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