Image by OpenClipart-Vectors from Pixabay
by 40+& Fit Staff
Tennis is one of those sports that is played by people at many different levels. The sport of tennis has competitive levels that include amateur and professional. At the same time, tennis is also played as an activity by people at various skill levels. The good thing is, the health benefits that come from playing tennis can be achieved regardless of your actual skill level.
What is tennis and how is it played?
Tennis is a game and sport that is played with a racket and a ball. The racket features a rigid webbing strung in an oblong shape at the upper end and a hand grip at the lower end. The ball features a hollow center that is covered by a rubber material and has a felt exterior cover.
The court is a large rectangle with a net stretched across at the center. The court is split into two halves and each side of the court is also cut into halves. There is also a narrow strip that runs the full depth of the court on each side. These two areas are used only when playing doubles.
Tennis can be played with 2 or 4 people, with two being on each team. The server and receiver alternate positions and points are scored when the service is not volleyed back to the server side. This means the ball was not returned before it was either out or hit the court in bounds twice. The time is when the service failed to go over or it touched the net before going over. Once the service has been volleyed it is allowed to touch the net before going over. The server continues to serve until there is a double fault and then it goes to the other side and they begin to serve.
9 Health benefits of playing tennis
Leading health experts have long recommended people increase their amount of physical activity. They go on to say that simply adding 30-60 minutes of moderate activity regularly can improve your overall health. For this article, we decided to share some of the health benefits that we discovered while doing our research on tennis. Below is a list of the nine health benefits that we found during our research.
Improves cardiovascular health – Running around and chasing a ball on a 30-plus foot court is good for you. The cardio workout will be good for your heart.
Help to promote weight loss – The amount of movement around your body will get chasing that little ball will raise your heart rate and promotes weight loss. If you play for 30-60 minutes a day you will reap the benefits and lose weight in the process.
Assists with a range of motion – Tennis requires a large amount of reaching and stretching of your joints, muscles, and ligaments. All of these actions help to keep them lubricated and flexible. This is important for people of all ages, but especially for seniors.
Aids in balance – Balance is important for all ages, and tennis can help train your body to maintain its equilibrium. This is how your body can keep in total balance so that you don’t simply fall over.
Reduces the likeliness of Osteoporosis – Osteoporosis is the thinning of bones which leads to fractures. According to the experts, weight-bearing exercise helps to maintain healthy bone density.
Improves agility – The constant back and forth and side-to-side motion needed to return a serve and to volley require a person to be agile (light on your feet). The more you play, the better your body becomes trained to the specific motions.
Improves motor control – Motor control is very important for us as people, it allows us to perform tasks that require multiple movements at the same time. Being able to swing a racket, and hitting the ball while maintaining the balance needed to keep from falling over.
Increases absorption of vitamin D – The body requires vitamin D for internal bodily functions and the sun is the most abundant source of all-natural vitamin D. Spending time on an outside tennis court is a great way to get all of the free vitamin D you need.
Promotes social interaction – Not all health benefits of tennis center around physical health, there is also the psychological benefit of the social interaction of playing tennis. Considering most people play tennis in a club of some sort. Being around other people is very beneficial to your mental health.
Do you have to play competitive tennis to get the benefits?
Physical activities such as tennis do not need to be played at a competitive level for you to receive the benefits. Far more people play tennis as a form of exercise than play it as a sport. To gain the health benefits from tennis you only need to spend 30 to 60 minutes a day.
The act of chasing the ball around the court and trying to hit it back to the other side is one of the best forms of exercise you can get. It doesn’t even require you to be very good at it at all. The cardiovascular benefit alone is enough to make it one of the best activities. Then you add in all of the other things that are helped by chasing a little ball around a court.
Is Tennis safe for people of all ages?
One of the things that have been discovered about tennis is that there isn’t anything that would limit the age at which a person can play it. This means from the very young to the very old can safely play. The only limits that exist are physical ones that might keep a person from playing. When it comes to seniors, several health benefits are mentioned earlier in this article that are of particular importance to them. The “aid in balance” and “ assist with a range of motion” in particular can be very beneficial to seniors. After all, slip and falls injuries are one of the most common causes of hospital visits for seniors.
Tennis is enjoyed by people of all ages, gender, social, and economic statuses. People play it for several reasons as well, it is a way to relax and unwind after a long day. It is a way to get out and enjoy fresh air and sunshine. Then there are the definite and measurable health benefits of playing tennis. Lastly, some play it for competition and sport. Regardless of the reasoning for playing, it is undeniable that there are health benefits of playing tennis even on the easiest level.
As with all exercise, check with your Doctor before attempting to see if it’s right for you.