Six Benefits of Playing Tennis

tennis ball - health benefits of playing tennis

Whether you’re playing in a local club or just hitting a ball around your back garden, tennis is a brilliant activity for all ages, not least because it’s great for keeping in shape. Now that Wimbledon’s officially back, it’s time to dust of your racquet and get back onto the court, but not before a run down of the benefits of playing tennis to spur you on!

1. It’s a head-to-toe workout: one of the main benefits of playing tennis is that your whole body gets a workout. Your legs are constantly moving around the court, either sprinting, jumping, or bending which, over time, leads to stronger leg muscles and improved fitness. Your upper body gets its own workout too, not just when you’re hitting the ball but also when you’re twisting, turning, and reaching to make that all-important shot.

2. It’s good for your heart: unlike jogging or swimming, tennis is a sport that involves a lot of stopping and starting, forcing your heart to work in intervals. Your heart works harder and faster while the game’s in play, but once there’s a break in play it slows down again. By doing this consistently, throughout a game, you’re improving your vascular system, enabling your heart to pump out more blood with every beat.

3. Mental wellbeing: as with any sport, playing tennis releases Endorphins, a chemical that helps reduces stress levels and gives you that “happy feeling” you experience after physical activity. Tennis is a great stress-reliever, and there’s nothing like hitting the court after a long day to vent some frustration in a healthy, fun way.

4. It gives your brain a boost: you might not realise it, but tennis involves the brain to be extra creative. It involves tactical thinking, agility, and split-second coordination of many different parts of the body, which (if you play tennis a lot), can improve your memory and make the neural connections that control the movement of your whole body stronger over time.

5. It burns fat and calories: when you’re playing tennis, you’re constantly on the move; bending, twisting, sprinting, jumping, hitting, crouching, swinging, reaching, pivoting. Your whole body is involved in the game and because of this you burn a lot of calories. And because you’re burning a lot of calories, you also burn a lot of body fat. In fact, singles tennis is said to burn around 400-600 calories per hour – not bad for a sport that can be played by all ages!

6. It strengthens your work ethic: tennis is a sport that requires a lot of determination and discipline if you want to continually improve your playing ability. It takes a lot of skill to get better at something, and having a real passion for the sport is essential if you want to be more than just a beginner. Setting goals to improve your skill set and then achieving those goals strengthens your work ethic as you’ll be able to see how much you’re able to achieve when you really put your mind to something.

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