A tennis conditioning program with strength training can improve your game. Make it free-flowing Equipment is almost certainly the biggest contributing factor to the power revolution in the modern game. It is much easier to develop power after you have developed placement as opposed to developing placement after you have developed power. String is the main reason. This results in a split-second pause between the legs extending (which adds power and lift to your stroke) and the actual moment of hitting the ball. After all, we derive most of our power from the ground. Tennis is played on a flat rectangular surface, usually grass, clay, or a hard court of concrete and/or asphalt. If you’ve got an absence of tension and you set your body in a way that creates that elasticity, you’ll generate maximum power. Partner Throws Add Another DimensionWhen performing side throws with a partner, there is a greater demand eccentrically (i.e. But achieving power through physicality doesn’t automatically mean bulk. "Balance is a key element for any good tennis shot," he explains. The weight was 3kg - which perhaps gives you an idea of what to use with your player(s). It's not simply a matter of hitting the ball with the racket, but which spot on the racket is used to hit the ball. Or at least get the right grip. ). Performing power exercises the day before (or even the day of) competition, can have tremendous performance enhancing benefits because of hormonal factors. 1. Comparing tennis today to the game of the past is like comparing a boxer and fencer. You don’t have to necessarily rest for 2-3min (you can if that’s what you need) but the feeling should be, "I’m ready to throw the ball through the rough". As you would probably suspect, this quality is quite important for tennis players - every time a player initiates movement, they are attempting to be explosive. While that makes it sound like an endurance sport relying primarily on the aerobic energy system, maximal – or anaerobic – energy production is required at many points during a game. It’s an especially difficult question given that you’re playing on slower surfaces and with slower balls. They can be on the dead run, and you’ll see players nearly doing the splits and creating incredible power from the back of the court. Tennis has been blessed with singular champions who have transformed and transcended the game; power players who have changed the way the game is played, or perceived, or both. Like I said, keep it free-flowing. "Ideally you want your upper body to remain rather straight, your head very still, and then you rotate around this axis which does not move." Standard shelf weights generally range from 250 to 300 grams. January 26, 2012 February 21, 2012 Mark Williams . Why Tennis? In other words, max power development depends on a number of factors, including exercise selection, the implement used and the individual. The arm action in serving is on the low-force high-velocity end of the spectrum while the first step in tennis is more on the high-force low-velocity end. Elements of power Power: a ball that has no spin on it, is the most e ffective and fastest way of getting the ball to travel from point A to point B. Think of cracking a whip. Power is the ability to move explosively in a coordinated manner, and is an integral part of any sports program. This is only achievable if you give it plenty of rip. Throwing med balls from a variety of angles and in a variety of directions will help cover more variability with respect to power production. Check out this post for a comprehensive analysis. Tennis is now played predominately from the back of the court and it’s harder to hit a winner than ever before. Flexibility: The sit and reach test can be done for lower back and hamstring flexibility. If you’re trying to bazooka the ball and hit it out three times in a row, then it’s not going to be very enjoyable for an opponent or your friend. This is an important component of fitness for tennis. Top Answer. A ball is designed by the rules of tennis to lose 45-47% of the energy that goes into deforming it when it bounces (off the court or strings). String section I’ve prescribed, on a number of occasions 6-8 sets of a power circuit, keeping the reps to around 4-5. Likewise, if a player has a 2 handed backhand, then using 2 hands to throw a med ball would be more realistic and would theoretically have a better transfer to performance. The flexibility tests should be specific to the actions of tennis. You start the point with a serve half the time. (Message automatically replaces this text), Check out this post for a comprehensive analysis. Do you recall the force-velocity curve? Strength is needed and it plays a very important role.But the main physical qualities needed by tennis players are speed and quickness. Just take caution, don’t perform more than 1-2 sets and make sure the rep ranges aren't fatiguing. Where players like Albert Costa or Sergi Bruguera – clay court specialists of the 1990s – had a lot more shape in their strokes. You need muscle to matter in the modern game. The power chain In other words, once you develop placement your power will follow. The more flexible your body is, the greater effective range of motion (ROM) it will have. If you can only produce power at waist height, what good is that if you play on clay and have to deal with a high backhand? But power in and of itself simply means the rate at which work is performed. Nobody does that anymore. These variables, along with others described in this post, are what matter. Tennis can be played for life because it is a low-impact and non-contact sport. There’s a different requirement in the game these days. Players tend to become too focused on stroke technique and look for explanations of inconsistent play in technical flaws of the stroke. Here are some suggestions to add power to your game: First, grab a basket of balls, have a friend feed some balls to you and you do the same for them. Once you’ve determined that a player has the prerequisite power output, adding movements like the ones below could have profound benefits on serve & groundstroke speed. Research on the topic agrees. These cues will provide a good sense of whether the load is appropriate or not. For example, a soccer ball, volleyball, basketball etc could all be appropriate depending on the age and power/strength level of your athlete(s). 13 14 15. The fitness test batteries assist in examining tennis players’ capabilities for performance at different levels in the laboratory as well as in the field, in the junior or elite level. Rafael Nadal’s racquet is at the lower end of the 300 gram mark; Mark Philippoussis and Pete Sampras used to go for 400 grams. Explosive strength, in my opinion (no clear consensus via research) is the most important physical quality a tennis player can possess. But keep in mind that hitting the ball better does not necessarily make you a good player. To achieve both requires massive cuts at the ball. At the same time, there are also some simple steps that can help you build a bigger game. This is ideal. if power not then not good game play. You can really take some cuts at the ball and be offensive off the return. There’s been a transition from yesterday’s era when tennis was all about artistry, comprising a lot of stroke play with continental grips. That’s partly because of the court coverage that’s required for sustained periods, such as Djokovic and Nadal’s five and a half hour Australian Open final in 2012. Strength and Power Later, I’ll provide a video example of an athlete using a med ball that’s just too heavy. Players will grip too tight; they’ll force too much. Many tennis matches can exceed three hours in length and require frequent repetitions hitting groundstrokes and serves and running the court. Some Balls. Your first encounter with tennis strategy and tactics probably happened early in your tennis career. There’s a fine balance in the power game between enough strength to be able to create the weight of shot that you need to hurt people with but you also need the physicality to have an almost gymnastic-style ability at end range. Be Cautious with Weighted ThrowsWeighted throws have been shown to increase pitching speed in baseball players. The player that can do this in the most efficient manner will be the player that has the overall athletic advantage in the match. 2) Over the years, he’s found that general movements have recovery benefits - this has something to do with lymphatic drainage (a topic I’m not yet too familiar with). If you let gravity work, there’s an absence of tension. Tennis is an impact game, and each time you strike or run for the tennis ball your body absorbs serious impact. This is a worthy goal, but before endurance can be optimized, players should strive to improve the high end of power output and build capacity on top of that. However, becoming more flexible will have positive influences on your actual quality of play as well. Tougher tools The more spin on the ball, the slower the ball travels through the air. When it comes to power, recall that it's a function of both force and velocity: To achieve max power, we must then find the right blend of force and velocity (graph below) - too much of either and we’re not optimizing power. From movement characteristics to its development during the execution of groundstrokes, serves and so forth. The court is 78 feet (23.77 m) long. The speed at which the ball is stroked is another important variable the tennis player controls. Actually, you realized that technique doesn’t mean anything against experienced players. As soon as there’s stiffness, there’s an inability to displace the racquet as far as needed. A powerful serve means you’re generating plenty of racquet head speed – and the more speed you can create, the more effectively you’re able to swing, kick or manoeuvre the ball. So what speed allows you to … For example, a study by Genevois et al (2014) compared a 1-arm MB forehand throw versus a 2-arm MB forehand throw. In fact, I recently spoke with legendary track coach Dan Pfaff (he coached Donovan Bailey to the 100m Olympic gold medal in 1996) - coach Pfaff mentioned a couple things about this topic that have relevance here. Many coaches and players often speak of the importance of power in tennis. Keep in mind that tennis shots are unpredictable, chaotic and almost never the same as the ones that came before them. “Increasing your muscle power is useless if you can’t get your body to hit all at once.” In all … Don’t Rush, RESTTake a few seconds between reps and take sufficient time between exercises. Lastly, general movements potentiate specific movements - in other words, they augment the power of movements that you’ll encounter during tennis. They forget that one of the main reasons for missing strokes is playing too fast. This is critical for a number of reasons. In order to paint a clearer picture of this max power topic we should quickly review the science. ROM is King. And we’re moving into an era where both forehand and backhand are played with absolute incredible power. Although the mechanisms for this are not fully understood, many elite coaches believe this is due to both neuromuscular and hormonal factors. Greater ball speeds place more pressure on an opponent by decreasing the time needed to get to and prepare for the shot. The components of tennis required are aerobic fitness, flexibilty, strength and power, speed, agility and low body fat. Children, teens, parents, grandparents and great grandparents play. With juniors, this may even mean using different types of balls that aren’t necessarily weighted. When there is a short ball, they can put it away. Generally speaking, more strength means you are able to generate more force. Simple steps for power If you can throw well and you can replicate those mechanics with a racquet in your hand, then you’re naturally creating racquet head speed. The serve is even more important in the power era. Anything else will be counterproductive and may contribute to fatigue. To be able to hit winners and finish points early. Initiating your legs start a kinetic chain, from which your technique basically unravels. First, general med ball exercises are usually multi-joint and therefore have a high coordinative demand. Tennis is a game of strategy, strength, and fast reflexes. A further benefit of using a med ball with handles (like the one you see in the video examples throughout this post), is that it provides more degrees of freedom (remember this concept from a previous post?). Use Appropriate Loads This is the most important component. Speed is not limited to only running; it is involved in movement of the limbs and body in different actions. There are basically 2 ways to determine an athlete's so called 'optimal' max power range. Over the past couple of decades, there has been a real shift from serve-volley tennis to baseline tennis. The ability to pass is far easier than before. People love you one minute and then want to drop you the next;... More, As artistry evolves so too do players hard-hitting weapons. It is a racquet that is the jack of all trades. See Answer. From this angle, proper tennis form is important since it enables you to hit better. Added to that, players were typically using a gut string, so it was a lot harder to hit beneath the ball and with pace. The key to serving at 100mph plus is to transfer all the power you can create in your body into racquet head speed and then into the ball. The origins of the game can be traced to a 12th–13th-century French handball game called jeu de paume (“game of the palm”), from which was derived a complex indoor racket-and-ball game: real tennis. In this post, we'll briefly outline max power and it's relationship to force output and velocity. They set the stage for optimal power development and (hopefully) improvements in serve, groundstroke and movement outcomes. Physicality and power Wiki User Answered . Notice that the player on the far right has more difficulties compared to the player on the left. The ability of modern players is that they not only hit the ball heavy but they can also hit it with a lot of pace and they can hit it flat. Ryan Harrison has described his relationship with Donald Young as almost irreparable after... More, Roberta Vinci appeared on Italian TV and was put to the test - were the grunts she was hea... More, The greatest champions, goes the old adage, are those who leave their sport better than th... More, Tennis is a funny old game. This fact cannot be disputed; we need the ground to push off from to achieve power. Each player uses a strung racket to strike a hollow rubber ball covered with felt (most of the time colored Optic Yellow.) Power and the social player June 12, 2012: Nike Tennis Camps sits down with Jay Lapidus, former head men's tennis coach at Duke University to discuss the importance of balance while hitting the ball. The distance between point A and B when finishing the point has changed in today’s game –slugging several ground strokes in to the corners to force a short ball (which is typically put away), is most common. Some research suggests that an unloaded jump squat produces the highest power outputs while others have shown loaded jumps (~30% added load on an individual) as being optimal. Years ago, a player’s intention was to shorten the distance from point A to point B, as it was very hard to get the job done from baseline to baseline – this is why finishing the point off at the net was so prevalent. Reasons why Speed, Strength and Power is important for the game of soccer. Power isn’t always everything though. When you’re running at a steady sub-max pace, you’re still producing power - but I don’t think that’s the power a tennis player is after, do you? All the best servers hit the ball with immense power. They have shaped tennis through their deeds, their example, their behaviour (for better or worse), their playing and personal styles and their character. As a single-hander, you have to adapt your grip as the ball is approaching. You quickly realized that there is more to tennis than just fancy technique. When you’re running at a steady sub-max pace, you’re still producing power - but I don’t think that’s the power a tennis player is … Gain Volume Through Added SetsNeed a greater stimulus? Scott Draper was a top-50 player on the ATP Tour, achieving fourth round finishes at the French Open in 1995 and 1996, as well as the US Open in 1997. 2009-11-01 12:27:16. Lets talk about why. Mix Up the Angles of Projection When competing at a high level, I assure you that you won’t see the same ball twice. In the past, surfaces were faster and the balls were too. remember this concept from a previous post. All of the above points also apply to your ground strokes – the forehand especially. He's unable to coordinate the throw effectively, forcing him to 'muscle' the throw. The more spin on the ball, the slower the ball travels through the air. Thus, including strength training in your off-court workout is a smart move. In fact, a 2015 study (Kara et al) used throws in a med ball circuit routine - these elite players saw significant increases in serve speed after 6 weeks of training. Here’s a refresher - when a muscle (or group of muscles) produces high velocities (speeds), muscle force is low. Think about it. Note that the lesser the player, the harder it is to incorporate legs in the swing, especially the serve. Get a grip 4) This is exactly why the level of intensity of your game is judged more or less with the amount of times you’ve broken, or been broken. Tennis players tend to be on this never-ending quest to hit their strokes with more power, yet they often forget that more power means more risk. Overall, this is more demanding than simply throwing against a wall. The arms should just feel like they’re coming along for the ride – not driving the swing. 4) This is exactly why the level of intensity of your game is judged more or less with the amount of times you’ve broken, or been broken. You will get stronger on the court, your strokes will be more fluid and your confidence will build. Agility Training For Tennis A racquet sport training programme has to meet the demands of an all-round physically challenging sport. In tennis, the winner is the athlete who can move and hit more powerfully and explosively. Body shapes in the men’s game are a lot leaner – as Djokovic, Andy Murray, Nadal and Federer all demonstrate at the top of the game. by Matt Kuzdub. You need to create a torque in your body that in turn allows for an elastic band effect. At the same time, accuracy and a sustained ability to slug a ball from corner to corner needs to be extremely good. Explosive strength is generally trained using lighter resistances (barbell jump squats, power snatch/clean etc.) You can hit … Control rackets, on the other hand, are all about ball control. You are able to generate more acceleration of your mass. or via traditional plyometric activities (jumps, bounds, sprints etc. Look at form & the resultant velocity of the throw. Using the legs requires high levels of coordination – try using some of the tips below that don’t involve the legs before moving on to the lower half of your body. Racquets and strings have taken tennis to a new place. It’s the speed from which the whip moves up and down that’s going to make it crack. This is just to create the feeling of hitting with spin, as hitting with depth is important from a tactical perspective. That said, it's the principles that matter - max intent, appropriate loads, sets, reps and rest. A real secret to speed and power is relaxed muscles. The results - 1-arm MB forehand throws were significantly correlated with higher forehand speeds in elite players. If you’ve got long levers and you’re more linear through the ball, it’s OK to go slightly heavier with your racquet. It is important to train agility in the same manner that any other skill would be trained. Once you’ve created that elastic band effect in your serve, you need to keep it flowing. As a result, I thought both feet on the ground would provide more power when hitting. In a tennis match, each player or team … These days, players can take huge cuts at the ball, so the ball is faster off the racquet. Power is important because it's harder for ur opponent to get the ball; u give them less time to react, reach the ball and to position for their groundstroke. Put simply, power comes from the ground up. June 29, 2017 Tennis is a sport where hand-eye coordination is important so that your hand and the other parts of your body quickly react to do the right moves. Asked by Wiki User. Tennis players should include a variety of movements into their programs. Even if you were a boxer, it was more about using the jab to set the opponent up for the swinging hook. It only makes you a good hitter of the tennis ball. You need muscle to matter in the modern game. It is a global sport. Tennis can be played as a sport or as a recreational activity with friends and family. As artistry evolves so too do players hard-hitting weapons. The height of the ball moving over the net has changed. While that makes it sound like an endurance sport relying primarily on the aerobic energy system, maximal – or anaerobic – energy production is required at many points during a game. No matter what shot it is – the serve, forehand or backhand – you’re trying to create a position for your legs to drive from. You’d never see athletes in the past, such as Boris Becker, being able to do that. Because of the string and the amount of revolutions that they put on the ball, not only does the baseline become less of an issue but when you try and pass an opponent, the speed with which the ball can come up and over the net has also dramatically changed. Furthermore, a 6-week training study by Genevois et al (2013) saw an 11% increase in forehand speed from pre to post. Elements of power Play Better Tennis With Proper Placement Not More Power Tennismindgame.com would like to thank Scott Baker from Tennis4You.com for this excellent article regarding developing your strokes and of course tennis strategy. You can actually make the ball travel out of your hand at speed. The physicality, the speed and the movement are almost incomprehensible. Here are 2 Futures players that I work with doing a MB Side Throw exercise. Coordination In Tennis … Success in the game largely comes down to how the racket is wielded. To withstand this force you need both upper and lower body strength. Why Balance & Stability Training Is Important Balance and stability training are training components to improve speed economy and agility. Scott Draper explains the place of power and some ways you can achieve it. The tallest players – think Juan Martin del Potro at 198 cm or Mark Philippoussis at 196 cm – tend to have longer swings and aren’t quite as rotational as the smaller players who are generally more angular in their attack as opposed to the linear styles of longer limbed players. Ball speed also limits the opponent’s options and makes it more difficult for him or her to produce the shot. Having this ability is vital in almost every movement scenario during tennis play. 1) He explained that if an athlete has difficulty with general movements, you cannot progress to more specific ones. Scott Draper explains the place of power and some ways you can achieve it. There are countless others that can be used effectively to increase max power output. It transitioned to more multi-segmented forehands, or the modern forehands when grips started to move further around, giving players the ability to hit with a lot more spin. Superior athletes have superior movement and a superior ability to generate power. 2. Timing. A drill for hitting with spin is to try and hit the ball as hard as you can whilst keeping it inside the service line. You can’t necessarily afford to carry the massive bulk you once could. These changes don’t mean that you shouldn’t be looking for ways to come in or serve volley, but there is a need to be more discerning when making that choice. Backhand benefits This ‘put away’ ball is usually struck somewhere between the baseline and service line. In this case, the load is probably too heavy for him and should be adjusted. There are less single-handed backhanders in the game than ever before, which lends itself to having a greater ability to dominate on the return of serve. There are two heavy weights at each end of the court – think Serena Williams v Maria Sharapova or Rafael Nadal v Novak Djokovic – and it’s a slugfest. If you can’t throw a med ball powerfully with 2 arms, you can be sure it'll be tough to do it with 1-arm - which is more specific to what you’ll encounter during tennis play. Having power generating capabilities within a large bandwidth of angles and planes will provide better transfer to unpredictable scenarios. You can either use high-tech devices - like the PUSH Band (an accelerometer based device that can extract power & velocity metrics from a variety of strength/power movements) - OR, a coach’s eye. A player must absorb the force efficiently and quickly use a reactive/elastic stretch to project the ball back towards their partner. This isn’t surprising as using 1 arm is more specific to tennis - and science has proven that specificity is important - this is based on the SAID (specific adaptation to imposed demands) principle. Slightly heavier. We’re not able to use the speed component of the force-velocity curve, which limits power output - the goal of this type of training. Tennis originally was known as lawn tennis, and formally still is in Britain, because it was played on grass courts by Victorian gentlemen and ladies. The serve has obviously always been the most important shot in tennis, given that it’s the one time when you have full control over what you’re going to execute and it’s also the easiest time to get a free point in a rally (especially in the men’s game). power is essential in mens and womens tennis.. the ability to hit the ball hard and clean when u have to go winners.. and the ability to hit the ball deep to keep your opponent … We saw earlier that explosive … At first glance it may seem like the main purpose of achieving better flexibility would be to prevent injury, and surely that’s a very important part of it. Point to point More than spin… Tennis is now played predominately from the back of the court and it’s harder to hit a winner than ever before. The player on the left is more efficient and coordinated with his throw - you can see his lower body loading first and then releasing this energy into the throw. Today’s game incorporates both elements – that is, speed and spin. Some of them play all sorts of shots with sometimes awkward, sometimes funny movements and yet they win matches. From movement characteristics to its development during the execution of groundstrokes, serves and so forth. This deceleration component requires a high amount of eccentric strength, balance and stability to control a max effort throw. Kerry Zavagnin, who plays for the Kansas City Wizards and US National Team, has benefitted from Williams Soccer training. It will give you a nice platform for your tennis journey. That’s unbelievably heavy. General exercises are those that any athlete, training for any sport would benefit from, while specific exercises, may have a more direct transfer to the sport in question. Specific exercises are often used too early in the programs of junior and elite players. In tennis, an athlete needs to serve a ball with as much velocity as possible, react to an opponent's serve, and return it with the same amount or more velocity. For this reason, along with potential injury risk, throws should be monitored and used with caution. If throwing mechanics change, something has broken down. Tennis is a life time sport. You’ll definitely be limited in the amount of power you can produce from that position. A grip that goes too far, such as the western grip, makes hitting the ball flat when required generally more difficult (especially at end range). In many cases, the only way is through changing your physicality. It has been calculated that an hour-long game of singles tennis burns around 600 calories for men and 420 calories for women. "Ideally you want your upper body to remain rather straight, your head very still, and then you rotate around this axis which does not move." Add strength training to your arsenal. A fast arm Generating maximum power requires an absence of tension. Using the proper progression is a necessity. As a double-hander, you start with both backhand and forehand grips ready. With the return of serve featuring more dominantly in today’s game – keeping the opponent from attacking the serve is critical to preventing one of the modern weapons from surfacing. Developed between 1859 and 1865, tennis is a sport played between two players (singles) or between two teams of two players each (doubles). Insufficient training will lead to a player’s inability to return the ball on the opponent’s court. We'll also provide video examples of a number of general & specific exercises for the development of max power in tennis and to conclude, a general framework will be outlined so that coaches and players can program/implement med ball exercises into their training regimes. Floor was very important for hitting consistent groundstrokes requirement in the modern game competitions for age 8 & under age. Played for life because it is important from a variety of surfaces, Balance and stability to control max! To 300 grams legs start a kinetic chain, from which the whip moves up and over the net say. With weighted ThrowsWeighted throws have been shown to increase max power topic we should quickly review the science forehand.! Which the ball moving over the net has changed yet they win matches skills are predominant,... It ’ s just too heavy for him or her to produce the shot player! Athlete using a med ball exercises were performed, we derive most of the time throws! 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