Pilates and Tennis

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Summer is here and so is the tennis season.

More and more people will be dusting off their rackets and hitting the courts.

Tennis is a high speed, high impact, power-based game, requiring rotation and extension through the spine and putting particular stress on the shoulder. Unsurprisingly, back, hip, knee and shoulder injuries are amongst the most common.

Whether you’re a social player or a budding pro, Pilates can not only help reduce the number of common tennis injuries you pick up, it can also improve your movement, power and ultimately, your game itself.

Racket sports are by their nature one-sided. Most players repeatedly use the same hand and arm to hit the ball, generally in the same direction, with the head and neck usually adopting the same position in anticipation of playing a shot. Such pronounced left- or right-sided movements load stress on the structure of the body, producing a physique that is out of balance and more liable to break down with over-use injuries particularly prevalent.

Further problems can result from the fact that few tennis players have a bio-mechanically perfect serve. Repetitive, inefficient patterns of movement combined with the quest for power increase problems in the collection of joints that make up the shoulder. ‘Tennis elbow’, or inflammation of the muscle tissue and ligaments at the base of the elbow, is caused by chronic twisting of the arm plus repeated shocks to a small bony ridge on the outer elbow.

At the studio we recommend reformer classes to help you improve your game and to prevent you from any injury. We also run a Tennis workshop so contact us for more information.

Can Pilates make you nicer? Apparently it can if you are Andy Murray! The tennis star credits the method with making him  a better person!

For a man once dubbed ‘the most negative person I’ve ever met’ by a former coach, Pilates has helped transform him.

The on-court meltdowns and the dour post-match interviews are a thing of the past.

And those within Team Murray say he is now ‘a delightful, sensitive, happy, funny, sensitive young man’ who is finally enjoying being himself.

Murray turned to Pilates in recent weeks to stay fit after a back problem.

He is said to have realised the growing importance of mind over matter in his game amid an overwhelming weight of expectation on his shoulders.

“Right now I feel good, I’ve practiced well the last few days and not been waking up with soreness or stiffness.”

“I started Pilates a few weeks ago which I think has already helped.”

It helps build flexibility, strength and endurance and emphasises breathing in order to relieve stress and allow adequate oxygen to flow to muscles.”

No muscle group is under or over trained and for Murray it is proving to be an invaluable addition to his training regime.

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