As the pros take to the turf at Wimbledon this summer, millions of us will get swept up in the passion. With the popularity of tennis at an all-time high, George Adey, Performance Tennis Coach at Nuffield Health Tennis Academy in Hull, outlines his top tips to help you dominate the court this summer.
Tennis may be regarded as a civilized sport, be it can be brutal. Warm-up with a gentle run for 3-5 minutes followed by some stretching to avoid injury.
Choose your battleground
If you’re prone to injury, avoid playing on harder surfaces like concrete or hard clay as this will place more pressure on your joints. Opt for artificial turf or grass if you can.
Make sure you use a racket with the correct size grip. Using the wrong grip can lead to the dreaded ‘tennis elbow’. Your club coach or sports shop assistant should be able to help if you’re not sure.
Good stance = best chance
Get yourself in a good ready position to prepare for a rally and give you the best chance of winning the point. Keep your feet shoulder-width apart, bend your knees slightly, place both hands on your racket and keep your head towards the court.
Ace your serve
Leaping into the air might seem like a powerful way to intimidate your opponent, but you’re more likely to fault than ace your shot. Always keep your feet still to help maintain balance and control.
Make some noise
There are some pros that are famous for their on-court grunts and sighs. It’s for a good reason. As you make contact with the ball, breathe out so that your muscles are relaxed. This helps ensure optimum ball strike.
Don’t wait for the ball to travel in line with or behind your body. Make contact when it is in front of you to allow maximum control.
After you have taken your shot, always head back to the middle of the court to give yourself the best chance of covering any counter strike to win the point.
Keep it simple
Even the pros win or lose matches by hitting the ball out of court too often. Tennis is a game of getting the ball in. If you do this more than your opponent then you will win – simple!