Category: Sports

7 Health Benefits of Playing Tennis That Might Surprise You

Playing any sport has tons of benefits but there are some sports that come with tremendous health benefits. Tennis is one such sport that is kind of like a complete workout in itself. Further, while playing tennis, multiple muscle groups are involved, making it an ideal sport. 

While tennis is a racquet game, the play is designed to make you move around with agility, stretch your arms and legs and be alert at all times. Whether you are looking at tennis with a recreational objective or looking to become a professional player, you will not regret spending time at the tennis court.

In this article, we take a look at some of the health benefits of playing tennis that might surprise you.

  • Good for your heart

If going to the gym to do cardio is something you avoid because you find running on a treadmill tedious, then you might want to try playing tennis. The game involves you sometimes jumping to hit the high serve by your opponent and running around to hit the ball.

All these activities increase your heart rate which is good for your heart. This is because when the heart rate increases, you start taking deep breaths and this increases oxygen and blood flow in your body. This is extremely beneficial for the heart. 

  • Promotes new nerve Connections

Research has shown that playing tennis has the potential to promote new connections in the nerves of the brain. This is because the fast pace of the game requires you to be constantly alert and quick on your feet. Further, new nerve connections mean that the brain development process does not stop. 

  • Helps improve and maintain bone health

As per research, it has been observed that bone mass has a tendency to decline after the age of 30. In order to maintain and improve bone health, physical activity like playing tennis can definitely work wonders.

Even if you are below 30, you can use this game to maximize bone mass and post that age, it can reduce the risk of developing diseases like osteoporosis. Many believe that physical activity games like tennis can lead to fractures. While fractures may be a possibility, in the long run, playing tennis makes your bones stronger.

  • Prevents Depression

The world is going virtual. This means there is a good chance that you are reading this article while working from your home. The benefits of WFH are many. But so are the side effects.

Man is a social being. Tennis is not a game which you can play by yourself. This means it forces you to socialize with others. Connecting with others while playing tennis can reduce the risk of depression.

Moreover, tennis ensures physical movement for you and it has been seen that regular exercise also helps those with signs of depression. Overall, playing tennis can make you feel better.

  • Makes you more agile

As mentioned earlier, tennis is a sport that makes you move around the court. Not just that, it demands that you move around quickly to anticipate the ball and also hit the ball with accuracy. All of this means that with regular practice, playing tennis will make you more agile. 

The agility that you develop playing tennis also spills over to other aspects of your life. Be it normal movement at your work or playing hide and seek with your kid or doing some cooking, the difference in the speed of your movement will surprise you. This is because movements in tennis are multifold and not unidirectional. 

  • Helps with balance

Unless you have learned cycling in your childhood, balance issues may be preventing you from indulging in lots of activities. In tennis, balance is key to performing well. Again, regular practice can yield drastic results.

While playing tennis, balance comes into the picture because you are supposed to hit the ball while moving around the court and more so your arm has to be extended by just the right distance.

It doesn’t matter if you have always struggled with balance. It can be worked upon by doing exercises like starts and stops, back and forth movements, and side-by-side movements with maneuvers.

  • Excellent flexibility

The kind of lifestyle that we are leading these days is sedentary. With reduced physical movements, flexibility suffers. This can often lead to unwanted injuries when you indulge in sudden movements. These injuries are avoidable.

When you play tennis, your whole body has to coordinate with each other. The feet have to move your body towards the ball. The hand and the arms have to be quick in hitting the ball. The middle part of the body needs to be able to provide support. Thus, there has to be flexibility in your body to execute such complex movements quickly.

The wide range of movements that your body goes through in tennis increases your flexibility which can prevent muscle injuries. 

All health benefits aside, tennis is an excellent social activity. It can also be played in doubles. For a young person, this can help get over the initial awkward period that comes with being a teenager. 

In the case of adults (including seniors), it not only helps them to stay in shape but also to stay physically and mentally active. The importance of physical activity in the form of games like tennis cannot be overstated.