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Use your own body for tennis-specific strength

Don’t bother spending a lot of money on gym memberships or fancy workout machines. One of the best pieces of exercise equipment is staring back at you when you look in the mirror. It’s not only free, it’s something that you already have. Without any added weight, your body can provide all the resistance needed for a functional strength-training workout. It’s also safer, easier to use, and more practical for developing tennis-specific strength for the courts. Some of the primary benefits of body-weight exercises are:

1) Body-weight exercise forces you to be aware of your body.

2) They help you to maintain control over your entire body.

3) Your core is engaged in each movement.

4) Good posture is a must when performing the exercises properly.

Many times when you use free weights, you work muscles in isolation, which can lead to an imbalance in training. Working muscles in isolation can also increase their size and strength but doesn’t train them to work optimally in real-life situations. You can be a strong weight lifter, but if you’re going to be a tennis player, you have to have functional strength you can apply to

on-court situations. Sitting on a machine in the gym is not the way you move on the court.

Calisthenics can be described as systematic bodily exercises without apparatus or with light hand apparatus. Most people are familiar with basic calisthenic exercises like sit-ups, crunches, squats and push-ups. But there are a host of other exercises emphasizing agility, flexibility, endurance, and cardio exertion that will help develop a higher functional strength and body awareness.

Steven White is the author of…

Teaching Tennis: Protocol for Instructors

http://www.wishpublishing.com/tennis.htm

Bring Your Racquet: Tennis Basics for Kids

www.kirkhouse.com/books/bring-your-racquet

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Tags: books, coaching, fitness, lessons, tennis

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