Do you warm up/stretch before you get on the court?

Discussion in 'Health & Fitness' started by Tennisguy3000, Jun 6, 2013.

  1. Tennisguy3000

    Tennisguy3000 Semi-Pro

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    I usually walk (fast walk/jog) to my local courts before playing to get warmed up. I recently drove to a social league match & played right away... Didn't go well with a pulled hamstrung ;-(

    Just wondered what most if you do to warm up before you get on the courts.

    Thanks
     
    #1
  2. SystemicAnomaly

    SystemicAnomaly G.O.A.T.

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    Always best to warmup prior to play but you should NOT perform static stretches just prior to play. This has been discussed numerous times in the past few years. Dynamic stretches are great as part of a warmup but standard static stretches should be done after tennis/exercise or at other times of the day. Static stretches, where stretches are held (typically for 15-30 seconds), tend to degrade muscle performance for 30-60 minutes or more. Both muscle strength and muscle speed are affected.

    With dynamic stretching, stretches are not held at all (or are held for only 1/2 seconds or so). Arm circles, leg swinging, walking lunges, and tennis shadow swinging are all examples of dynamic stretches.
     
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  3. crosscourt

    crosscourt Professional

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    I don't know whether this is good or bad but last year I went to an academy in France to play (as an adult) and get some coaching. The coaches always insisted on a warm up - but it wasn't onerous at all. We ran round the court two or three times at low speed. Then we side shuffled from the net to the baseline and back, then repeated that doing crossover steps and butt kicks. Then we lunged our way across the court and back. Finally we waggled our arms around. That was followed by a reasonably controlled start to each session. It doesn't sound like much but I think it worked well.
     
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  4. newpball

    newpball Legend

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    It is a great tool for teachers to cut teaching time while getting payed for it. :twisted:

    Just a little bit of (in place) jogging, moving the body, a few jumps, move the arms then some easy hits, forehand, backhand, some volleys, some easy serves and then you are ready to go. More than a couple of minutes is unnecessary in my opinion.

    And I agree stretching (or better lengthening as my body works coach always insisted on) is great, but later, at home, with some 'yoga' music in the background.
     
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  5. sovertennis

    sovertennis Semi-Pro

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    All of the above constitutes as much warm up as you'll need, although you could also include jump roping and using those stretchy bands. I usually follow this with about 3-5 min of mini-tennis (yeah, go ahead and scoff if you must) then, in concert with my playing partner work my way to the backcourt while keeping one ball in play. Works pretty well.
     
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  6. SystemicAnomaly

    SystemicAnomaly G.O.A.T.

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    Jumping rope is an excellent idea for training or for warming up. Mini-tennis is also a great warmup ritual. However, mini-tennis is really more about "warming up" your stroke mechanics and you hand-eye coordination rather than warming up your body/muscles.
     
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  7. sovertennis

    sovertennis Semi-Pro

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    It all works together, doesn't it?
     
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  8. RogueFLIP

    RogueFLIP Semi-Pro

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    If I have the luxury of time before playing, about 2 hours prior I will use a foam roller over my body to kinda "wake up" the tissues so to speak. Or I'll use the roller to break up any trigger points I feel. I try to stay on a knot or trigger point anywhere from 3-5 minutes.

    I will incorporate some yoga postures as well, but I usually hold my postures or stretches anywhere from 3-5 minutes as well.

    I'll do this for about an hour or so...depends on how tight I feel.

    After loosening this way, I'll do a bit of meditation and visualization.

    Then I'll head over to the courts. 10-15 minutes of dynamic warm-up mostly what SA mentions above: Arm & leg swinging, back circles, shadow tennis swings/serves/overheads. Shuffles, crossovers, etc..

    If I'm pressed for time, say I play right after work, I always try to at least to get 5-10 minutes of the dynamic warm-up. I never do static stretches if I'm playing in an hour or less time.

    If I feel tight or a knot somewhere after my dynamic warmup, I'll try to put some pressure on it with a tennis ball instead of trying to stretch it out.
     
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