Plyometric Training For Tennis
Develop Explosive Speed Around The Court
Plyometric training develops explosive power.
Plyometric training for tennis has become a widely used training method by coaches and players around the world. It is an integral part of most serious players’ overall training program.
What Are Plyometric Exercises?
Plyometric training emphasizes explosive reactive power training. Plyometric exercises are characterized by powerful muscular contractions in response to rapid, dynamic loading or stretching of the muscles involved. For example, squat jumps, speed hops, bounds and depth jumps are all plyometric exercises. As are medicine ball throws and dumbbell swings (for the upper body).
Plyometric movements can be found in all sports, including, of course, tennis. For example, consider the explosive lateral movement required to run down your opponent’s sharply angled topspin forehand, and then the explosive movement required to cover his next shot into the open court. Which is exactly why plyometric training for tennis is so beneficial.
History Of Plyometrics
Plyometric training came to prominence in the 1960’s when it was linked to Russian and Eastern European international track and field success . One of the earliest advocates of plyometric training was Yuri Veroshanski, a Russian coach who had extraordinary success with his jumpers.
The 1972 Olympic 100-meter Gold Medal winner, Valerie Borzov, also credited much of his success to plyometric training.
Today, plyometric training is helping athletes in a wide range of sports. In fact, the chances are that most athletes involved in a sport requiring explosive power -- the combination of speed and strength -- are benefiting from plyometric training.
Until recently, it was believed that to begin plyometric training, athletes should be physically strong enough to squat up to 2 x their body weight. This is because plyometric training is, physically, very demanding. The exercises involve overloading the muscles in the form of rapid changes of direction while falling, stepping, leaping hopping bounding or jumping.
However, recent thinking is that low intensity plyometric exercises are also beneficial for tennis players, or any athletes, with relatively low levels of physical strength, as long as the higher intensity exercises are reserved for stonger, more physically mature players.
Ideally, plyometric training for tennis should be integrated into a comprehensive training program that also involves strength, movement and agility work, with the intensity level of the plyometric exercises being appropriate to the level of strength of the player.
To see video demonstrations of low intensity plyometric exercises for young tennis players, designed to increase speed around the court, please click on the links below.
Plyometric Training For Tennis - Increase Your Speed Around The Court Plyometric Training For Tennis - Develop Explosive Lateral Movement