It’s still really warm outside, but that doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t try to get a bit of cardio in. Maybe running isn’t your thing, but have you even considered playing tennis? It’s a great sport to practice in your free time, and you only need one partner to play this with- or a wall if you want to work out solo. Let’s have a look at some of the amazing benefits of playing tennis.
1. Heart Rate Up, Heart Diseases Down
If you want to reduce heart disease, lowering high blood pressure is essential, but so are maintaining a healthy body weight, lowering cholesterol, being physically active and reducing stress. Playing tennis can help you accomplish all these things.
Tennis not only helps you burn some fat while you sprint from one corner of the court to the other, but it also improves the way in which your heart works. It lowers your resting heart rate and blood pressure, and it improves your metabolic functions- and you know what that means, right? A faster way to melt off your fat.
2. Tennis Improves Your Brain
That’s right, tennis helps your heart AND your brain. What more can you want?
The way in which tennis helps your brain is by generating new connections between nerves in the brain, and this happens because, when you play tennis, you need to be alert and quick, and you need tactical thinking. Practice makes the master, so grab your racket and get ready to develop your mind.
3. Enhances Your Flexibility And Balance
Tennis is the kind of sports that requires all your limbs to work together- and do so well, if you want to hit the ball. The feet anchor you in the proper position, and your arms help you keep your balance and also aim and hit. When you do this over and over and over, like it happens with tennis, these abilities naturally improve over time.
So after a few practice games you’ll notice your flexibility, your coordination and your balance dramatically improve. In your day to day life, this can be a huge benefit- flexibility means you have a larger range of motion, and coordination and balance reduce the risk of injury, either when playing sports or simply when engaging in everyday activities. The more you play tennis, the more your flexibility improves, as well as your coordination and balance.
4. Tennis Improves Your Bone Health
Generally when we talk about bone density, we recommend weight training. While that piece of advice does remain true, we can get similar if not identical benefits from tennis. That’s because, unlike distance running, tennis consists of sprints, short burst of running at high speed, one after the other. Sprinting works the muscles and bones similarly to how weights do, so it’s only natural that tennis in itself is a great help for our bones. Swinging your racket while playing tennis is also a sort of “sprint” but for your hand- a short, intense movement that helps your muscles grow and your bones strengthen.
Bone mass is affected directly by the parts of the body that you are exercising. So with tennis, your legs get most of the action- and most of the bone density- but it’s interesting to see that the hand you throw the racket with, over time, will have a higher bone density, because it’s exercised more often. But don’t worry, that doesn’t mean tennis is not a full body exercise- it most definitely is, but your dominant hand will get a bit of a bonus.
Do you play tennis? How do you feel it’s improving your well being? Share your experience in the comments section below.