It’s the Australian Open and the world’s best tennis players are showing us what years and years of training can achieve.
Of course, we don’t all have hours to spend at the gym to match that elite level training – nor would we want to. But that doesn’t mean we can’t borrow a few ideas from their workouts to incorporate into our own.
We spoke to renowned tennis coach Marc Sophoulis, who had coached the likes of Anastasia and Arina Rodionova, Di Wu and Monique Adamczak, to find out what we can do to train more like a pro tennis player.
The trainer, who has partnered with Blackmores, shared some tips and common mistakes people make, as well as a simple five-move workout you can do in the gym, the park, or at home.
Tips we can snatch
Marc says tennis players focus just as much on their recovery as their warm-up - as they're equally important in getting the best out of their bodies and avoiding injuries. He says this advice is as much for a tennis player training for a grand slam as an accountant who would like to lift 30kg.
- Spend 30-60 minutes recovering after each training session.
- Eat recovery foods within the first 20 minutes of exercise.
- Train with intensity and don’t waste time during exercising. Train for shorter periods but with higher intensity and focus.
- Before beginning any exercise routine ensure you seek professional advice.
Common mistakes we're all making
The biggest mistake Marc sees people make? Trying to do too much too soon. He explains that trying to progress quickly with your exercises without slowing building up your strength is a recipe for soreness and injury. This means it's better to go lighter on the weights until you've got your technique down pat.
Marc says failing to plan is also a big mistake. He says people often don't schedule their exercise into their day or stick to a workout schedule, again meaning they miss out on getting the best results.
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He also recommends getting a trainer to design a program tailored to your own body and goals, while supplementing this with the right food.
Five exercises you can do anywhere
"Before any exercise, it is really important to warm up first," Marc says.
He suggests trying the following activities to get your heart pumping, body warm and to be ready to exercise:
- High knee marching (3 minutes)
- Jogging on the spot (3 minutes)
- Windmill arms forward (10x)
- Windmill arms backwards (10x)
- Lightly stretch any muscles you’re about to use
Now, you're ready to go. Just remember that if you're a beginner to take it easy and if you have any injuries, speak to your doctor before trying any new exercise routine.