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Tips to Play Tennis Thru Time

Follow these tips to help you stay in the game for a lifetime.

Tips to Play Tennis Thru Time

Getting older doesn't mean you stop playing the game of tennis, it just means you need to make adjustments. Follow these tips to help you stay in the game for a lifetime.

1. Prioritize Tennis

As we get busy with work, family and hobbies, it's important to keep playing tennis.  Set time aside to play with friends, family members, and fellow players. 

2. Body Beautiful

Make an effort to stay in good shape.  Jog, walk, or exercise at home, the office, or join a fitness center.  Keeping the weight proper to your height and age will prevent injuries on hips, knees, ankles and backs.  Tennis is a very physical game and avoiding extra pounds will make it easier on the joints and back.

3. Equipment

The game has changed a great deal over the years and there are many racquets that help make it more fun and easier to play. As we get older, our strength and swing speed decreases, so switching to a larger head racquet [105+ in. sq.] with softer strings and smaller handles, may help you maintain your level. Oversized racquets provide a bigger sweet spot and offer more power.

4. Dress the Part

The sun damages the skin, so wear attire with long sleeves and longer shorts. Cushion socks with higher tops will minimize the shock on your feet and will protect you from the sun. Wear proper tennis shoes for clay courts, grass courts or hard courts.  They all have different soles to adjust to the court surface and never wear athletic or walking shoes to play tennis.

5. Join a Tennis Club

There are many benefits to joining a club and feeling a sense of belonging and camaraderie rank high among them. Don't forget, tennis is a social sport, so make friends along the way and keep competition in perspective.

6. Join a League & Play Tournaments

Leagues have become a way to not only play, but also to  keep in touch with the competitive spirit of the game. Join a tennis club, park district or adult programs available in your area.  The USTA, for instance, offers local, state, sectional and national tournaments for all levels of play and ages.  The most exciting matches I've seen are the ones were the 90 year old players were playing in tournaments. They are an inspiration to not only watch but also to see their children, grandchildren and great-children cheering them on.

7. Improve your game

Taking lessons and clinics will improve your game and certified tennis professionals will be happy to give you advice on how to adjust to your present age and health condition. Our goal as tennis professionals is to see you playing tennis for a very long time.

8. See the Doc

If you get injured playing tennis, see a doctor to be properly diagnosed and to prevent further injuries.  If you're outside and playing in the sun a great deal, see a dermatologist often to check for skin damage that could turn into trouble later.

9. Smile & Laugh

The most important tip to playing tennis through the ages is to make friends and have a great time playing this great game!

This article is from the May/June 2014 - Roland Garros issue

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