The importance of strength training for tennis athletes

18 June 2020

The importance of strength training for tennis athletes

The importance of strength training for tennis athletes

Tennis, as a sport, is quite demanding from a technical point of view and, in order to be successful, it’s very important to acquire a set of "tools".

The correct development of your practice will influence the various areas of performance and, consequently, the final success of the player.

The technical part is a fundamental component of the development of a player of any level, in order to provide him with essential skills for the proper practice of the sport. There are several dimensions that a tennis athlete must have developed, however, the dimension that I will explore in more detail is the physical dimension, in this case , the importance of strength training in the optimization of physical performance in tennis athletes.

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In fact, strength training is a potent adjunct in a training process of any modality, as the objective is to ensure that muscle tissues can be able to tolerate its technical and specific practice, with minimal damage to joint and muscular integrity and with the maximum optimization of the biochemical and hormonal processes inherent to the creation of muscular tension.

Strength training is one of the fundamental ingredients in building the physiological basis for achieving maximum performance. The construction of the training program must be based on the following training principles: progressive overload principle, variability, specificity, continuity, regression and individualization. Thus, it is possible to have a starting point for training planning, however the key is to individualize the training program to the specific context of each athlete, with the necessary information within the scope of his clinical, physical and sporting history.

What is the importance of periodization in an athlete's strength training program?

Periodization is important to maximize muscle strength, power and endurance in the medium / long term in the physical performance of each athlete. In the initial part, called the preparation phase, one should start with the basic development of strength, which includes high volume and low intensity work. During this phase, tennis players have more time to prepare.

During the competition phase, training conditions have to be changed. Athletes should lower the training volume and increase the intensity. The goal at this stage is to maintain technique, maximum strength and power. During this phase, the periodization may adopt a mixed model, alternating heavy loads with light loads, in the same training day or in the same week. It is advisable that a few days before any tournament, athletes should carry out maintenance training with less volume and less intensity in order to avoid muscle fatigue and potential injuries.

In conclusion, within a well-planned strength training program, small daily and weekly adjustments are a constant part of the training process in order to be able to effectively manage fatigue and rest. The manipulation of the three variables: volume, intensity and frequency, together with the continuous search for excellence in the game and training technique, are essential factors for the athlete to achieve his goals.

By Daniel Almeida, Personal Trainer at Academia Bodylab

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