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16 Reasons Why You Should Play Tennis for Your Health

Woman warming up to start playing tennis - Paspa PT

If you’ve been thinking about increasing your physical activity, and you’re looking for a new (or renewed) activity to try, why not try tennis?

Did you know that…

  • People who participate in tennis 3 hours per week (at moderately vigorous intensity) cut their risk of death in half from any cause? (Research according to physician Ralph Paffenbarger who studied over 10,000 people over a period of 20 years.)
  • Tennis players scored higher in vigor, optimism, and self-esteem while scoring lower in depression, anger, confusion, anxiety, and tension than other athletes and non-athletes? (Research according to Dr. Joan Finn and colleagues at Southern Connecticut State University.)
  • Since tennis requires alertness and tactical thinking, it may generate new connections between nerves in the brain and thus promote a lifetime of continuing development of the brain? (Research supported by  scientists at the University of Illinois.)
  • Tennis outperforms golf, inline skating, and most other sports in developing positive personality characteristics? (Research according to Dr. Jim Gavin, author of The Exercise Habit.)

With these results in mind, let’s take a look at 16 specific reasons why you should consider playing tennis regularly.

Tennis physically enhances your…

  1. Aerobic fitness by burning fat and improving your cardiovascular fitness and maintaining higher energy levels.
  2. Anaerobic fitness by offering short, intense bursts of activity during a point followed by rest, which helps muscles use oxygen efficiently.
  3. Ability to accelerate by providing practice in sprinting, jumping, and lunging quickly.
  4. Powerful first step by requiring anticipation, quick reaction time, and explosion into action.
  5. Speed through a series of side-to-side and up and back sprints to chase the ball.
Older man starting to play tennis - Paspa PT
  1. Leg strength through hundreds of starts and stops that build stronger leg muscles.
  2. General body coordination since you have to move into position and then adjust your upper body to hit the ball successfully.
  3. Gross motor control through movement and ball-striking skills that require control of your large muscle groups.
  4. Fine motor control by use of touch shots like angled volleys, drop shots, and lobs.
  5. Agility by forcing you to change direction as many as five times in 10 seconds during a typical point.
  6. Dynamic balance through hundreds of starts, stops, changes of direction, and hitting on the run.
  7. Cross-training through a physically demanding sport that’s fun for athletes who specialize in other sports.
Man enjoying the health benefits benefits of playing tennis - Paspa PT
  1. Bone strength and density by strengthening the bones of young players and helping prevent osteoporosis in older ones.
  2. Immune system through its conditioning effects. This promotes overall health, fitness, and resistance to disease.
  3. Hand-eye coordination because you constantly judge the timing between the oncoming ball and the proper contact point.
  4. Flexibility due to the constant stretching and maneuvering to return the ball to your opponent.

Is it any wonder that scientists and physicians around the world view tennis as the most healthful activity in which you can participate?

 All of these health benefits make tennis one of the most beneficial sports you can play–physically, mentally, and emotionally.

Is it any wonder that scientists and physicians around the world view tennis as the most healthful activity in which you can participate? All of these health benefits make tennis one of the most beneficial sports you can play–physically, mentally, and emotionally.

It’s not too late for you to begin playing tennis–regardless of your age.  The human system can be trained and improved at any stage of life!

If you have any questions contact Paspa Physical Therapy here

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