The Players Guide to Tennis Pre-Game Warmups

Young Tennis Athlete Stretching on the Court

Improve your skills and resist injury by learning how to warm up right. No matter the sport, it’s imperative that athletes go through the right exercises and activities to get their muscles ready for action. Today, we’re focusing on tennis and the kind of routine one needs to make habit before they hit the court for their next match.

The Importance Of Warming Up

Warming up before a match is vital. You have to get your muscles ready for play and, since tennis is already so hard on the joints, you can risk injury if you don’t allow your body enough time to prepare for play.

Raising your body temperature before game time is the main goal behind why we stretch and move beforehand. Just getting your arms, legs, and mentally stimulated and activated will help an athlete perform at a more elevated level.

At least a half hour before the start of the match, players should be spending time improving their range of motion and focusing on specific areas of the body. The rotator cuff, ankles, knees, back, and hips are all important areas to pay extra attention to; these areas see a lot of the pressure throughout playtime.


5 Pre-Game Warmups To Utilize

Backboard Drills

Grab a wall and start warming up your swing. It’s simple, you don’t need a partner, and it’s one of the most essential pieces of the pre-game warmup. You’ll want to incorporate both groundstrokes and volleys into the warm-up.

Try: 10 minutes after stretches.

High Knee Skips

Do sets of these to really get the blood flowing. Skip with an exaggerated jump.

You can also do this by skipping in place. Bring the left knee up – all the way to the chest – and switch legs. Pump your airs and engage your abs.

Try: 2 sets of 30 seconds.

Arm Circles

Simple but essential, arm circles will really get you ready to start swinging the racket.

Begin with your arms straight out at your sides with your palms facing down. Then create small, quick circles with your arms. You’ll want to gradually ease into slower, larger circles as you begin to warm up. It’s perfect for doing after you stretch!

Try: Go forward for 1 set of 30 seconds & reverse for 1 set of 30 seconds.

Frankenstein Walks

Get your hamstrings ready for action we this quick and simple warm-up. And it’s exactly what it sounds like, you’ll do several sets of walking back and forth like, well, Frankenstein. It helps loosen up your hips and calf muscles as well.

Try: 2-3 of 10 on each leg.

Cross Court Warm-Up

This is the best way to find your rhythm before the match begins and start getting your footwork in sync. Whether with a teammate or a coach, it’s optimal that another player is involved throughout the exercise.

With players standing on each side of the net, both volley the tennis ball back and forth over the neck. It’s perfect for hand-eye coordination and mentally tuning into the game at hand.

Try: Several rounds going as long as you can.