The best tennis conditioning is....

Discussion in 'Health & Fitness' started by TimeToPlaySets, Jun 10, 2017.

  1. TimeToPlaySets

    TimeToPlaySets Hall of Fame

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    ....tennis lessons.

    I was drilling running and short groundies,
    Very tiring, and required breaks.
    Had to stop several times since my legs were dead.

    Even return of serves drills for 30 mins.
    Split step and big step diagonally forward.
    Very tiring, and required breaks.

    It's a true workout when you're at failure, and you keep going a little more.
    Tennis lessons are the best conditioning I've done in a while.
     
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  2. SteveI

    SteveI Legend

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    Are you talking about a drill clinic or a private lesson??
     
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  3. TimeToPlaySets

    TimeToPlaySets Hall of Fame

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    Drill clinics are a waste of time and money.
    Private lesson and singles play.
     
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  4. Private lessons with a coach who knows what he's doing is the only productive way to go about it. Prepare to spend a lot of $$$
     
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  5. comeback

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    or you can buy a ball machine and put it on random..Hit every angle possible and keep moving..you won't last long:)
     
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  6. nytennisaddict

    nytennisaddict Legend

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    imo, the best tennis conditioning is done off the tennis court (long run phase, followed by sprinting phase).
    if you're getting winded in an hour long hitting session, you're not in shape for tennis (yet).
    while tennis can get you in better shape, it shouldn't be.

    the problem with using tennis to get you into shape... is you learn bad habits to compensate for lack of conditioning:
    * not split stepping to save energy
    * not recovering to the "center" (of likely angle of return)
    * leaning over at the waist, vs. bending at the knees (to keep your upper body vertical)
    * not taking enough small adjusting steps (due to fatigue)
    * falling into the contact,... or generally arming the ball due to fatigue...
    * not being able to run down wide balls even if out (which imo are the key balls to be hitting in practice)
    * generally making mental errors (due to fatigue) - ie. not keeping your eyes on the contact
    * manipulating the racquet (ie. hitting flat or even underspin) to make up for the fact you couldn't get there in time to get low, swing low to high, etc...

    this is also why i'm not a fan of doing the squat thing when picking up the balls... if i'm there to hit, i'm putting all my energy into hitting (running down ALL balls even if it's out)... instead of wasting energy squatting... squatting is good, but save it for after you're off the court. heck, even followup your hitting sessions with sprints.

    but when you're on the court, devote all energy into maintaining perfect form if you can.

    my $0.02.
     
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  7. I agree with you. I shake my head when people say "I'll just play tennis to get back into shape." And like you said, it develops bad habits. Off court conditioning will always be #1 to get into the best possible shape for tennis and not tennis itself.
     
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  8. nytennisaddict

    nytennisaddict Legend

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    best advice i ever got (from a former tour player), "you have to get in shape to play tennis". of course 95% of students ignore it.
     
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  9. TimeToPlaySets

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    Agreed with the above.... But maybe, I'm getting in shape to play tennis by playing tennis. As soon as form starts to break down, I take a break. If you can hit for an hour straight and not get winded, you're an iron Man. I can get winded from one crazy point. Lob, drop shot combo, etc
     
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  10. Sirius Black

    Sirius Black Guest

    ^ Then you should probably do some other form of conditioning. Jumping rope, running, something
     
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  11. Sex helps with hamstring conditioning.
     
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  12. Fintft

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    Yeah, b/c it's much more fun to focus on learning technique, while conditioning kinda happens at the same time (as the OP indicated).

    Having said all of that:
    a) Some pliometrics would greatly help
    while
    b) Core exercises are a must, especially for the ones with previous back injuries (e.g. I had a displaced disc in bball years ago).
    c) One of those 5 band elastic band chest expanders and light weights help.
     
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  13. movdqa

    movdqa G.O.A.T.

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    But what about Marcus Willis? He beat three good players in the qualifiers and got seven games off Federer and he isn't in the best of shape. Maybe a few exceptions here and there?

    I got in 7 miles today. Trying to decide on an evening run. It's about 95 out and sunny so it would be toasty.
     
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  14. Crocodile

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    If you want to get really fit on the court play a set of singles against 2 people alternativel.
    [​IMG]
     
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  15. Surion

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    ******** as usual.
     
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  16. TimeToPlaySets

    TimeToPlaySets Hall of Fame

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    Did some hills today.
    It's been a while.
    93 degrees doesn't help.
     
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  17. movdqa

    movdqa G.O.A.T.

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    Me too. But I couldn't handle the heat. We've had a cool and rainy spring and two days of mid-90s weather. It usually takes me two weeks to get used to this stuff. Not really going to happen as we only have a few days of heat and then it goes back to unseasonably cool for the next two weeks. Pain in the neck for going to the beach.
     
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  18. I played in mid 90s heat yesterday evening. There's a small lead up tourament leading into the next weekend. It was good practice even though we played 8 game prosets. The heat will be much of the same here next weekend so I know what to expect. Won my 1st one and lost the 2nd. Kinda pissed I lost the 2nd. Should have won. Was being way too inconsistent.
     
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  19. jaggy

    jaggy G.O.A.T.

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    I need more than a 30 second workout though
     
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  20. GabeT

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    Thanks. This is really good advice. I realize I tend to fall into this mistake.
     
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  21. MathGeek

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    I mountain bike an average of 40 miles per week. I still suck at tennis, but I am in better shape than most opponents.

    I win a lot against players with more tennis skills, because I am in much better shape.
     
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  22. Dam that's a lot! Your legs and cardio must be superb.
     
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  23. movdqa

    movdqa G.O.A.T.

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    I ran forty miles last week and my body didn't fall apart (except for some hammertoe issues) and it's nice to be able to do that but my strength-training definitely suffered. Sometimes it's hard to maintain balance in trying to do cardio, strength and flexibility.
     
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  24. MathGeek

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    My workout philosophy is "no pain - no pain." The best workout plan is one that you will stick to week after week, month after month. Consistency with an imperfect plan is better than inconsistency with a good balance of cardio, strength, and flexibility.

    They are better than most opponents, except for the occasional runner 20-30 years younger. But my upper body strength and overall flexibility are lacking. So what? I'm really not a fan of the exercises that address those effectively, and in the long term, my health, weight, and quality of life are better addressed by a workout plan that I like and can stick to than a workout plan with elements I dislike. My advice - find something you like (or at least can stand/hate less) and stick with it.
     
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  25. movdqa

    movdqa G.O.A.T.

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    I maintain an exercise log with the running on the left side and strength and flexibility on the right side. Last week the left had a ton of entries and the right only a couple of entries. So I have a visual record of the areas where I don't do anything for a while.

    We lose muscle-mass as we age and sometimes you can lose it in an area that is seldom-used and it can fail when it's needed. And that's happened to me from time to time. It's usually not something catastrophic but it can result in pain for a few hours or a few days. I think that this sort of thing accounts for a lot of hip fractures in older people. Additional muscle-mass also boosts the metabolism and makes it easier to lose fat. If I wanted to lose a lot of fat, I'd focus on strength-training as that's the most efficient approach. Yes, I enjoy running a lot but I know that I have to do the other stuff to prevent injury as I get older.

    Flexibility is also important. Running and tennis kill your flexibility and I find that I have to stretch just to not lose flexibility.

    One other thing that's helpful is balance. Many people lose this as they get older and it can be demonstrated with various exercises where you close your eyes and attempt to do something with one leg.

    I used to argue about strength-training with LeeD (in his 70s). He was against it, partially because he's normally so active. But he posted recently where he's been working out in the gym and has gained a lot of strength. That's fairly impressive that some of the folks here could change his mind on a health-related area and that he would actually go through the trouble of implementing change.
     
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  26. nytennisaddict

    nytennisaddict Legend

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    i'm presuming you're doing technical trails?... cuz biking on road with a mtn bike for 40 miles (a week) is hardly a workout, unless you're hammering hills, or maintining 20mph on the flats (adjusted for the extra effort of pushing knobby tires :p).
     
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  27. MathGeek

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    I do about 10 minutes every day of upper body work with free weights and some tension devices, so I am not neglecting it completely. This is in addition to the upper body work I get naturally through tennis, mountain biking, kayaking, and other activities. My 16 year old son does a lot more upper body work with free weights, and I can still beat him in arm wrestling. So I guess my minimum upper body work is not yet a problem given my age (50) and activity level. But there is no way I could stand devoting any kind of equivalent to my upper body or flexibility that I do mountain biking. No way I could do 40 miles a week paddling the kayak or that kind of time and effort with free weights or push ups or tension devices.

    My older son (17) can beat me in arm wrestling and also is faster in foot races and cycling. I can still out jump them both, though. My wife joins me cycling for 15-20 miles every week, and I've also got support among family and friends in kayaking and tennis and other activities. Not having local support or company for the upper body stuff makes it much less appealing. I've tried the gym and weight room stuff, and the social dynamics of those environments (even with friends who are into it) are a big turn off. It's just a different crowd which tends to value much different things (regarding fitness and other things) than I do. Had a home weight bench and set some years ago and bulked up a bit in the upper body. It was too tedious to maintain in the long run, so I pared it way back.

    My doc raved about my weight and fitness on my recent annual checkup. He thought I should just keep doing what I am doing. My wife (an expert in orthopedic biomechanics) is also very happy with my fitness, health, and conditioning and does not really want me to change anything.
     
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  28. movdqa

    movdqa G.O.A.T.

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    I used to ride with the Charles River Wheelman and they would have 25 and 35 mile loops on Sunday Mornings. Sometimes 100 mile rides.

    I asked one of the guys in the office in a cycling group how far they go at lunch and he told me 20-30 miles. These guys carry their bikes in or on their cars and it looks like a pain in the neck kind of sport as far as setup and teardown go but they love it. They have all of the clothes and gear too. Some are former runners (as in marathoners that had knee issues).
     
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  29. MathGeek

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    Most of the miles are off road with lots of elevation changes, but when it is wet, I stay on the road and hit areas with the most elevation changes I can find. I've used a heart monitor to check the real challenge of the workout. Between the heart monitor and the improvement in my stamina on the court, I'm doing OK. The greater elevation changes and thin atmosphere made 30 miles a week in Colorado Springs more of a cardio workout than 40 miles a week in the south, but hey, it's better than nothing. The Summer heat sure helps my heat tolerance too. I'm still OK as opponents melt away on the court.

    I keep my bike on a rack that slides into the trailer hitch receiver on my SUV. It's much more convenient than trying to put it into or on top of cars, and the rack holds 4 bikes. Unless we need the hitch for something else, my bike just stays there. When it is on the rack, the bottom of the bike tires is only a foot or two off the ground, so on and off is a snap.

    Even if I had a car with no intent of towing with it, I'd get a receiver hitch, just so I could use this bike rack.
     
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  30. ChaelAZ

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    Completely disagree, as do all tennis coaches and tennis academies, pros on tour, and pretty much every players that ever developed a decent game in the sport. I hope that isn't what your coach is promoting for you.

    Anyway, tennis is excellent exercise and I fully support people who are playing to help get in shape and stay active. I agree it is not enough, but only for those who are trying to maximize their court potential. Then you really should be dividing time between fitness training and play. However, there are plenty of cardio tennis classes and drills that are specifically done to improve strokes and movement, which are a great challenge for fitness as well, so there is a cross-over point and fitness and skills development are not always exclusive of each other.

    Personally, I love it all. My fitness training is specific to sport performance, but in on court practice I usually do one-minute fitness drills to end sessions as well. This helps improve the mental part of the game where fitness being pushed activates a rushed feeling, which effects one's mental ability to stay in points.
     
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  31. TimeToPlaySets

    TimeToPlaySets Hall of Fame

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    Clinics are a total waste of time and money.
    You will NEVER correct a flaw in your stroke by taking one swing and going to the back of the line.
    You will also NEVER correct a flaw by playing rally points and stupid games.

    You want to fix your stroke? Do the new thing 500 times in a row.
     
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