I need more flexibility!

Koaske

Rookie
I'd like to know how I should stretch to get more flexible shoulders and other body parts used in groundstrokes and serve. I want to increase the range of motion in order to get little extra speed and to my strokes and serve. So, what kind of stretching exercises should I do?
 

joe sch

Legend
I would also suggest yoga practice.
It will greatly increase your flexibility which will really help your tennis game.
You will need to go slowly since you can stretch too much and pull or strain muscles.
 

Becker

New User
Koaske said:
I'd like to know how I should stretch to get more flexible shoulders and other body parts used in groundstrokes and serve. I want to increase the range of motion in order to get little extra speed and to my strokes and serve. So, what kind of stretching exercises should I do?
I can't say too much on training, seeing as I'm just another tournament playing adolescent, but when stretching/doing conditioning, the people that have helped with that have always said that stretching muscles isn't helpful in terms of performance.

Stretching muscles and such (generally static stretching) is helpful after a match, workout, or activity (although I prefer stationary bikes), but while good for preventing injury, which is supremely important, they're not going to increase performance.

Stretching the joints for increased range of motion is different, and leads to the performance gains. But don't disregard stretching muscles, just know what you're doing.

Also, when stretching, DON'T stretch to the point of pain, stretch to when it's mildly uncomfortable. Otherwise you're setting yourself up for injury, which is the exact opposite reason of why most people do routine stretching.

Hold stretches for 30 seconds to a minute. Some of the leading people in the field like stretching the entire body starting at the bottom (so starting at around calves, up to shoulders and neck) for three sets of 60 seconds, twice a day.

That's pretty time consuming, and I don't think that much is necessary. But generally, for the gains to be permanent, stretches should be held for that long. And again, "no pain no gain" does NOT apply here, you're just aiming for it to be slightly uncomfortable.
 

vin

Professional
"Sport Stretch" by Michael Alter is a pretty good book. I think it has a general discussion on stretching, but what I mostly like it for is the many stretches it depicts and the sport specific stretching programs it recommends.

I stretch after just about every time I play or practice to keep my muscles loose for injury prevention. I also use this as my time to maintain or increase my flexibility.
 
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