If you are playing tennis or any sports you want to avoid the risk of injury and so you need to know the most important prehabilitation exercises that are key to tennis and other racquet sports.
This article gives some instructions on what to consider when looking at these exercises and what to do to prevent tennis injuries. Injury prevention and rehabilitation should be a central part of any strength and conditioning programme. Players of all ages and abilities should try to include low impact activities in a weekly schedule, but this not only helps prevent injury, but also keeps you flexible and healthy while training.
Spine, neck and back
If like many people you enjoy spending hours of your time on the tennis court you should consider how to protect your spine, neck and back from injury. By learning how to prevent and treat common tennis injuries, you will be able to play tennis for many years to come.
Stretching is always important before exercising or playing any sport to avoid pulled muscles but with your back you must take additional measures. Back pain is very common among adults and tennis can cause a lot of symptoms but following a few measures can help reduce or prevent back pain.
Exercise your core
Strong core muscles are very important in any sport and daily life. Tennis requires strong back muscles to help with the continuous start and stop movements in the game. Regular exercise is essential to prevention of back problems.
Adjust your posture
One of the most common reasons people have back problems is from posture and this is true for tennis players too. Consider your game posture. Are you arching your upper back with your head forward? You are placing stress on the lower back. Keep your back straight and your head up. Knees should be bent at no less than 90 degrees.
Buy the proper equipment
Proper tennis shoes are essential and will help you to avoid back problems. Tennis courts are hard and along with the unnatural sudden movements in the sport can lead to back, neck and shoulder problems. Choose good shoes and pick a tennis racquet that suits you.
Strength training, especially in the shoulders, can help prevent injuries like those on the elbow of tennis players. Take the time to warm up and stretch before the game and take breaks if necessary.
If you are a fair-weather tennis player, you should consider what activity you can do all year round to maintain your fitness. Tennis builds strength and flexibility and it’s a great way to cross train so this will help reduce the risk of muscle soreness.
Dynamic warm ups
For the warm up you should consider flexibility training involving movement as opposed to static stretching. Tennis is a demanding sport and players need to be properly prepared so they avoid injury and strains.
Warming up properly helps to increase the body temperature which helps avoid strains. It will increase heart rate and prepare the lungs for the upcoming activity. It will literally wake up your system and get your brain and muscles coordinating and will also stretch those muscles getting them ready to be used.
Static stretching vs dynamic
Static stretching has traditionally been used for all manner of activities but it has been shown that it can actually impair performance in some ways. Dynamic stretching prepares the body for the stresses ahead by actively moving while stretching.
Examples for warming up
You can try jogging while circling your arms, leg swings, high knees and lunges. Knee to chest tucks help maintain posture. Short progressive sprints at 50%, 75% and 100% and jumping jacks are all good for warming up and getting the body moving.
Rest and variation
Resting is also as important as warming up. Resting between tennis sessions and alternating them with other activities can also help reduce shoulder pain and the risk of other injuries such as to the feet. You can perform a roll massage or tennis ball exercises to prevent foot injuries or even as treatment for a foot injury.
Warming up is important to get the body firing on all cylinders and ready for a good session of tennis. It loosens muscles, gets the lungs and heart going and allows the brain to properly connect to the muscles. Tennis involves a lot of dynamic, lateral and sudden start and stop movements. Without preparation and warming up it is easy to get a back problem or muscle strain.