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Buffster
02-02-2010, 08:49 AM
Hi Guys,

I want to work on my explosiveness by doing some off court exercises. I'm planning on lifting weights, but was wondering how many reps would be ideal to reach my goal of becoming more explosive. Should i target at low reps (3-5) with a heavy weight or hight reps (15+) with a low weight?

Thanks in advance

Buffster
02-02-2010, 09:08 AM
Thanks, I'm sure that will help.

T Woody
02-02-2010, 09:40 AM
Hey Buffster -

If you have the right gym and equipment, start working hang power cleans and hang power snatches for sets of 3 reps. Doing the hang power version will give you the most bang for your buck as far as speed and explosiveness without having to get too technical about the lifts.

Also, if you're looking for explosiveness and speed, 60 or 100m sprint repeats are VERY effective. You can do these shuttle run style as well to work on acceleration and agility. And high box jumps are great for power development.

Buffster
02-02-2010, 05:33 PM
Thanks man, this helps a lot. I'll be at the gym next week and I'm going to give it a shot. Thanks again, I appreciate it.

charliefedererer
02-02-2010, 08:14 PM
You might want to read the following for an overall guide to weight training for tennis: http://www.sport-fitness-advisor.com/tennis-weight-training.html

If you are already in good shape and have already been doing some lifting, you should be able to jump right to stage 2 of heavy weights at low reps to increase your strength so in the stage 3 "power' phase you're actually strong enough to maimally benefit from the exercises.

Be sure to do your shoulder/elbow/wrist injury prevention exercises as well: http://www.sport-fitness-advisor.com/rotator-cuff-exercises.html

T Woody is right about high intensity interval training and agility drills on the days opposite your weight training will give you tennis specific quickness and fitness:
http://www.sport-fitness-advisor.com/intervaltraining.html
http://www.sport-fitness-advisor.com/agility-exercises.html

Good luck!

Zachol82
02-02-2010, 08:29 PM
Hi Guys,

I want to work on my explosiveness by doing some off court exercises. I'm planning on lifting weights, but was wondering how many reps would be ideal to reach my goal of becoming more explosive. Should i target at low reps (3-5) with a heavy weight or hight reps (15+) with a low weight?

Thanks in advance

Explosive exercises are all about quick bursts when you contract your muscles and slowly resist the weight while coming back to neutral position. With that being said, the ideal way to do this would be with medium weight and high reps, about 15+. The best instrument for the job would be resistance band machines that are strapped to weights, since free weights can screw up your form if you don't know what you're doing.

Djokovicfan4life
02-03-2010, 09:22 AM
The best instrument for the job would be resistance band machines that are strapped to weights, since free weights can screw up your form if you don't know what you're doing.

They also aren't as effective as free weights. Better to learn "proper" form (nobody's is perfect) and lift real weights from the start, IMO.

Djokovicfan4life
02-03-2010, 09:30 AM
You might want to read the following for an overall guide to weight training for tennis: http://www.sport-fitness-advisor.com/tennis-weight-training.html

If you are already in good shape and have already been doing some lifting, you should be able to jump right to stage 2 of heavy weights at low reps to increase your strength so in the stage 3 "power' phase you're actually strong enough to maimally benefit from the exercises.

Be sure to do your shoulder/elbow/wrist injury prevention exercises as well: http://www.sport-fitness-advisor.com/rotator-cuff-exercises.html

T Woody is right about high intensity interval training and agility drills on the days opposite your weight training will give you tennis specific quickness and fitness:
http://www.sport-fitness-advisor.com/intervaltraining.html
http://www.sport-fitness-advisor.com/agility-exercises.html

Good luck!

Why no deadlifts in the program? I know that most tennis players aren't powerlifting or anything like that, but still, the deadlift hits so many muscles (around 70% of your body if I'm not mistaken) that it seems absurd to omit them entirely.

T Woody
02-03-2010, 11:54 AM
Explosive exercises are all about quick bursts when you contract your muscles and slowly resist the weight while coming back to neutral position. With that being said, the ideal way to do this would be with medium weight and high reps, about 15+. The best instrument for the job would be resistance band machines that are strapped to weights, since free weights can screw up your form if you don't know what you're doing.

What kind of exercises do you do with these machines to develop explosive leg power?

charliefedererer
02-03-2010, 12:28 PM
Why no deadlifts in the program? I know that most tennis players aren't powerlifting or anything like that, but still, the deadlift hits so many muscles (around 70% of your body if I'm not mistaken) that it seems absurd to omit them entirely.

The discussion seemed more to be what would a beginning program include and is not to be any kind of dismissive putdown of deadlifts versus squats. For the OP, the objective was to give him some guidelines to get started. You make a good argument for the inclusion of deadlifts, even though many consider it a more advanced lift. Like any lift, if done improperly, it can cause injury, and it seems that back injuries are not uncommon with deadlifts if the technique is wrong. I think the most important thing is for him to get started with some real expert help, read and discuss his workout as widely as possible, and also realize his exact workout regimen is going to be changing as he gets stronger and becomes more knowledgable.

tricky
02-03-2010, 01:00 PM
Depends on what you mean by being explosive. Sport explosiveness abides by the SAID principle, and unfortunately explosive squats won't significantly improve your lateral speed (though squatting as a foundation does improve that indirectly) for tennis.

Another thing is, in terms of program design, phases dedicated to explosive training are usually fairly short. Most of the time, you're just working on developing a basic strength foundation, and then you switch over to a shorter explosive phase (which could involve plyometrics) and so in order to gain the skill acquisition to maximally use neural drive and pre-stretch timing to generate ballistic movement. It's the final 1/4 of the total program.

Very generically speaking, the most effective means to improve explosiveness is whatever appropriate movement gives you a challenging strength curve through range-of-motion. For example, squats with chains. That often develops better results than similar plyometric schemes.

However, for a tennis player, a basic routine of good old squats, deads, dips, and rows would be plenty good as a foundation. And then you add in additional RC and elbow work so that you don't develop tendonitis.

WildVolley
02-03-2010, 05:46 PM
Good post by tricky.

It is hard to be overly explosive in many lifts without putting yourself at risk. For example, if you are too explosive in the squat, the weight can lift up and then come back down with a lot of force.

If you are talking about explosive leg strength, the evidence shows that Olympic style lifting is the best sort of training. However, it is technically complex and dangerous. In some cases you can simplify and do high pulls rather than cleans with heavy weight.

tricky is correct that many athletes training for explosiveness are using chains and bands and the like. This equipment can be used more safely in an explosive manner without creating a lot of unwanted momentum in the equipment.

Another way to train explosively is to use equipment that you can throw, such as a medicine ball or shot put.

Zachol82
02-03-2010, 06:45 PM
What kind of exercises do you do with these machines to develop explosive leg power?

Actually, I don't use machines to develop explosive leg power. I do plyometrics, as well as the plyometrics routine from p90x. You can Google plyometric exercises and see what they are.

Djokovicfan4life
02-04-2010, 09:24 AM
The discussion seemed more to be what would a beginning program include and is not to be any kind of dismissive putdown of deadlifts versus squats. For the OP, the objective was to give him some guidelines to get started. You make a good argument for the inclusion of deadlifts, even though many consider it a more advanced lift. Like any lift, if done improperly, it can cause injury, and it seems that back injuries are not uncommon with deadlifts if the technique is wrong. I think the most important thing is for him to get started with some real expert help, read and discuss his workout as widely as possible, and also realize his exact workout regimen is going to be changing as he gets stronger and becomes more knowledgable.

Well, show me a safe exercise, and I'll show you a gigantic time waster. People screw up their shoulders bench pressing (or smash their face if they fancy the thumb-less grip and crappy spotters). Heavy squats aren't exactly a picnic for the lower back either. And yes, many people hurt themselves badly deadlifting.

But if you've been in a gym lately you can attest to the fact that most people are morons. They deadlift with all back until they hurt themselves and then they discourage others from doing them because it's "a recipe for back injuries". They squat half way down and engage mostly quads and not the hamstrings and glutes, and then after their knees give out they tell others that squats are "bad for the knees".

And don't get me started on the Smith Machine. "I'm scared to death of injuring myself, yet too shy to ask for a spot, so I'll rely on a machine that forces me to move in an unnatural way". And that's injury prevention.

Short version of above rant: Learn what proper form is and work on it every time you get under the bar.

tricky
02-04-2010, 09:41 AM
For the OP, the objective was to give him some guidelines to get started. You make a good argument for the inclusion of deadlifts, even though many consider it a more advanced lift.

I actually consider the regular/sumo/SL deadlift a less technical lift than the front squat. Key is to not be too ambitious. Also, it helps to have somebody check if you're rounding your back.

charliefedererer
02-04-2010, 11:11 AM
Well, show me a safe exercise, and I'll show you a gigantic time waster. People screw up their shoulders bench pressing (or smash their face if they fancy the thumb-less grip and crappy spotters). Heavy squats aren't exactly a picnic for the lower back either. And yes, many people hurt themselves badly deadlifting.

But if you've been in a gym lately you can attest to the fact that most people are morons. They deadlift with all back until they hurt themselves and then they discourage others from doing them because it's "a recipe for back injuries". They squat half way down and engage mostly quads and not the hamstrings and glutes, and then after their knees give out they tell others that squats are "bad for the knees".

And don't get me started on the Smith Machine. "I'm scared to death of injuring myself, yet too shy to ask for a spot, so I'll rely on a machine that forces me to move in an unnatural way". And that's injury prevention.

Short version of above rant: Learn what proper form is and work on it every time you get under the bar.

You make great points about absolutely needing proper form and spotters.
Sadly, you also make the all-too-true point that most people in the gym do not seem to be following your great advice.