12 strength training moves to improve your tennis game

November 3, 2015

Targeted strength training can hugely improve your tennis game

With the pros becoming bigger and stronger, tennis is becoming a faster, more powerful sport. If you want to improve your tennis game, a tennis-specific training program with speed and power at its core should be the cornerstone of your workout routine.

12 strength training moves to improve your tennis game

1. Standing medicine ball cross-toss

For this, it's best to have a partner, but you can use a wall. Stand two to three metres apart. Holding a suitable medicine ball to the side, the first person must throw the ball diagonally to their partner's opposite side using a powerful, twisting motion. The ball is then returned in the same manner. Continue for 10 repetitions before switching sides.

2. Box jump

Begin by standing with a tall wooden box in front of you. Crouch slightly and, driving with your legs, jump onto the box. Step down and repeat.

3. Medicine ball throw-down

Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, raise a medicine ball above your head and drive it down into the ground.

4. Pull-ups

While pull-ups are an old standard, they still make it on strength training routines for a reason. Using a shoulder-width, underhand grip, pull your chin above the bar before lowering back to the start position.

5. Cable lumberjacks

Take a cable loaded with a small weight in both hands. Stand with your arms raised as if you are about to chop wood. Chop diagonally downwards in a swift, powerful movement, twisting at the waist. After 15 repetitions, repeat for the other side. You can also perform this exercise using an upwards movement.

6. Push-ups

Use whichever position suits you, but burst up from the floor. Push-ups are great for building chest power.

7. Dips

Straight-forward dips using parallel bars work wonders for a tennis game. As with push-ups, burst powerfully through the upwards phase.

8. Lateral lunge

Time to hit the legs. Start with your feet together, then lunge out directly to your side. Feel the stretch and push back to the start before repeating for the opposite side.

9. Lateral hop

To complete this exercise, simply hop as far as you can from side to side to build single leg power.

10. Squat

Time to throw in the squat, the master of leg strength builders. Hold a barbell across your shoulders and lower your bum down and back until your thighs are parallel to the floor before pushing back up with power.

11. Medicine ball squat-toss

Eek out the last of that squat power to complete this exercise. With a medicine ball between your legs, drop into the squat and take hold of the ball. Burst and jump up powerfully from your heels, tossing the ball into the air.

12. Walking lunges

End with walking lunges to really finish off your leg workout, and maximize the effectiveness of this exercise by carrying dumbbells.

The above exercises will help target the muscles every tennis player needs to strengthen to improve their game.

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