Heart rate too high during start of match

Discussion in 'Health & Fitness' started by GrandSlam45, Apr 14, 2014.

  1. GrandSlam45

    GrandSlam45 Rookie

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    I seem to have a problem with my heart rate going through the roof during the first couple of games of a singles match. During change-overs I notice my heart is pounding away and won't subside until later in the set unless the match is a grinder.

    I think it's partially because I'm not in tip-top shape, but also because I overreact and try too hard. I react to everything with explosive movements, rather than just relaxing and breathing.

    Any tips for bringing the heart rate down both mentally and physically?
     
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  2. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Do a hitting session or warmup with more vigor, setting heartbeat over 120 bpm's.
    Before the set starts, take a break and slow heartbeat to a nice 110.
    WALK between points, to pick up balls, but don't dally.
    Take 3 nice full, not deep breathe's before each serve.
    Remember to breathe out during every stoke.
    Get a heart rate monitor and wear it. Over 130, slow things down.
     
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  3. comeback

    comeback Professional

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    Great advice, I used to know someone that had to play a full set of tennis before a match. Nerves also play a big part in heart rate (how do you think those lie detectors work?):)
     
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  4. ollinger

    ollinger Legend

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    You don't say anything about what your heartrate actually is at the start of the match. How do you know it's rapid? Do you measure it? A common error is that people who have palpitations (a term that means you feel your heart beat, NOT that it's necessarily rapid) believe that heart is beating rapidly when in fact the pulse is most often less than 100.
     
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  5. movdqa

    movdqa Legend

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    I usually run outdoors with a Garmin Forerunner 610 (GPS Watch). It came with a chest strap which I sometimes use to see how I'm doing during a run. I can get a display of my heartrate vs time vs elevation change vs speed. I can set alarms on heartrate as well.

    I think that Tony Horton's P90X class recommends using a HRM when doing his workouts and it might be interesting to get objective information on your heartrate while you're playing and to analyze after the match.
     
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  6. SystemicAnomaly

    SystemicAnomaly G.O.A.T.

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    ^ "Heart palpitations are a feeling that your heart is beating too hard or too fast, skipping a beat, or fluttering. You may notice heart palpitations in your chest, throat, or neck... They usually aren't serious or harmful, though, and often go away on their own. Most of the time, they're related to stress and anxiety or to consumption of stimulants such as caffeine, nicotine, or alcohol. Palpitations also often occur during pregnancy." -- from WebMD
     
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  7. GrandSlam45

    GrandSlam45 Rookie

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    I guess I was referring to palpitations, and not heart rate.

    Time to lay off the caffeine.
     
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  8. dman72

    dman72 Hall of Fame

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    I often have this feeling around the first few games of a set. It's usually when I haven't broken a real sweat but now I'm running all out. Happens a lot when the indoor courts are cold in the winter and warm up has been insufficient. I used to do 5 minutes on the treadmill prior to matches (especially against out of shape opponents who I knew would milk changeovers), but now I'm too lazy.

    During changeover, I'll feel like "whew, heart is racing". With me, it's just early match excitement/anxiety and it always dissapates.
     
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  9. SystemicAnomaly

    SystemicAnomaly G.O.A.T.

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    ^ Back when I was competing, I would often put in 15-20 mins on an exercise bike (or elliptical) prior to heading to playing. When I got to the courts I would do some rope skipping and a dynamic warmup. When I started my match I was already in my aerobic range and felt energized rather than sluggish or overstimulated.
     
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  10. BMC9670

    BMC9670 Hall of Fame

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    OMG... LeeD actually giving good advice without an anecdote from the '70s!!!:shock:

    Nice!
     
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  11. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    It's what I (me me me) did in the later '70's.
     
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  12. SystemicAnomaly

    SystemicAnomaly G.O.A.T.

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    Great advice overall but the target heart range would be largely dependent on age. The simplified formula puts the average maximum heart rate at 220-age (in years). For a 20 yr old that would be a max of 200 bpm. It might be best to shoot for 60-80% of your max while playing tennis or exercising.

    If you are out of shape (not exercised much for a while), you might shoot for 50-65% of max. For those who are very active/fit, 70-85% might be ok. For tennis play with very short rallies, you will probably find yourself in the lower range. If you have longer rallies and keep moving, it should not be too difficult to stay above 60% most of the time.
     
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  13. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Yeah, well I"m 65, out of tennis shape, haven't run since 2007.
    I find I lose form when my heartbeat is over 130bpm, in both tennis and swimming.
    I play my best tennis at around 115. Too low, I get lazy to prep in time. Too high, I can't see straight or think about strategy.
     
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  14. movdqa

    movdqa Legend

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    My cruising heartrate for running is about 155-165. I'd guess that my heartrate gets up there during or after hard tennis points. I haven't used the HRM while playing tennis - through I did wear the GPS tracker for an hour hit just to see how far I moved in practice.

    You're only 10 years older than I am - I can't see my optimum heartrate going down to that area in 10 years but it's all new territory for me. Maybe different people just have different vital sign ranges.
     
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  15. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Running is less technical than swimming or tennis, especially when I"m not a swimmer.
    Both swimming and tennis for me, I have to pay attention to form. Running, we've done it a few times all our lives, from aged 3.
    But at the higher levels of running, form IS very important to sustain higher rewards with less or the same efforts.
    I"m SURE you can play tennis at 165bpm, but you won't be playing your best, and you certainly won't be playing smart at that high a heartbeat.
    Ask your Dad. At 55, we can still feel invincible and strong. There is little change from the '30's thru 55. But then it starts going downhill FAST, like waaay faster than you can believe.
    Ask ANY old fart of 65 +. They will tell you deterioration goes really quickly after the age of around 55, so 50 for some, 60 for other's.
     
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  16. movdqa

    movdqa Legend

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    I have a friend that I play with that has had some ligament and tendon problems but they were self-inflicted and he could have had them fixed if he acted in time. There are many of us that think that the body will heal itself because it has in the past - not taking advantage of the wonderful medical system that we have.

    That said, I have a friend in her mid-60s and she runs well over 2,000 miles a year and does over a dozen marathons. My mother is in her 90s now and she had a workplace injury in her 50s that caused her a lot of problems later in life.

    One of the things that I've noticed in getting older is that muscles can get weak - ones that you don't use often but you can get an injury when you do go to use it - so the key is to keep your core in shape along with the rest of your body. 40 years ago, you'd be expecting to die in your mid-60s. That's definitely not the case today.
     
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  17. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Good point, we are not what our parent's were.
    My Dad at 40 was much much older than me physically than I am now, at 65.
    I can move quicker, faster, and for a longer time.
    But, while there are few 65+ anomolies around in tennis, most of my peers at around 65 move the same as I do, minus the ankle problems. And most of them were A/Open level players 35 years ago. Just wear and tear on the shoulder's thru the years.
    NONE have anywhere near the speed of serve, but they are now cunning low slice specialists.
     
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  18. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Oh, your 60+ female friend.
    I'll BET she is slow as molasses in the first 3 steps, but can run forever at her slow pace.
    She can't play tennis well because tennis requires an explosive first two steps.
    Like my current g/f, can run 5 miles, 5 days a week, but never quick enough to surf, play tennis, or even do sprints on a bike, and she was a Cat111 racer, good enough for full sponsorship on bikes, gear, clothes, and nutrition supplements. Her forte was finishing strong on long rides, great on moderate hills, but no explosion.
     
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  19. movdqa

    movdqa Legend

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    I looked up one of her times a few years ago, 4:11 for a marathon in a hot, humid race down south. That's a little under 10 minute miles. Basically recreational running pace. I wouldn't call that slow as molasses and actually pretty good under the circumstances. She said that a lot of people dropped out of the race.

    Many marathons have qualifying requirements and they do shut down the races at some point. Yes, you may be able to get around the requirements as a "charity entrant" or a local running club entrant but this person runs marathons around the country.

    This person was a national class runner many years ago. She doesn't play tennis but she is very good at corporate law though I doubt very much that she needs to work.

    I know some people in their 60s and 70s that play as you described - very efficient strokes and movement. I know some in their 60s that are very fast with hard, flat shots - but they're only good for five to six shots if they have to run a lot. My regular friend in his mid-60s can keep up with me for three hours on a hot day outside. He's short, light, and has great tennis stamina.

    He keeps trying to resign so that he can play more tennis but our company keeps making him offers that he can't refuse.
     
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  20. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Well, when I turned 62, my "company" offered me the same wages I'd collect from SocialSecurity, only I had to work 4 hours a day, 3 days a week to collect it.
    Then, Social Security contacted me and told me I'd get exactly the same rate of monthly pay when I turned 67. :shock::shock:
    I guess they made the decision pretty easy for me.
     
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  21. SystemicAnomaly

    SystemicAnomaly G.O.A.T.

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    While you may not be in top shape, I suspect that you might still be in moderately decent shape -- if you play tennis somewhat regularly, in addition to surfing and taking a walk/hike every so often. According to the standard (simplified) formula, 132 bpm would be 85% of your theoretical max. 115 bpm would be about 74% of your theoretical max.

    https://www.active.com/fitness/calculators/heartrate

    It sounds like you are redlining it -- at least according to the old standard formula. The simplified formula would put your theoretical max heart rate (MHR) at 165 and 85% of that would be 140 bpm. Some alternate formulae put the calculated max for a 55-yr old male a bit higher than 165:

    http://www.digifit.com/heartratezones/maximum-heart-rate.asp?Age=55#table

    I have also seen a formula that take your resting heart rate into account. The link above indicates that "your Max HR can be affected as much as 10bpm at times by factors including age, physical size of the heart, heat, personal hydration, and more. It can also change as fitness levels change.". They also suggest that more accurate methods of determining max heart rates include a Cardio Assessment or a a Metabolic Assessment.

    Recently, some health/fitness experts have indicated that the old standard MHR may not be very accurate for everyone. It may provide a general guideline for some but may be off quite a bit for others. Here are some recent articles on this:

    http://goaskalice.columbia.edu/exercising-beyond-my-max-heart-rate-safe
    http://www.nytimes.com/2001/04/24/health/maximum-heart-rate-theory-is-challenged.html
    http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/02/10/ask-well-maximal-heart-rate/?_php=true&_type=blogs&_r=0
     
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