by Todd Scott
With winter in full gear, it's easy to get out on the courts and pull a
muscle if you don't have a proper
tennis warm up before taking the first swing.
With your muscles still cold, trying to 'warm up' by hitting a few light
shots to get your blood flowing, can still cause injury.
Here are a few warm up exercises to perform in progression before you
take the first swing on a cold winter day:
-1-> Line Jumps- Begin at the baseline with your feed side by side on
one side of the singles line. Quickly hop back and forth across the line
with both feet while moving towards the net and return to the service
-2-> High knees - Stand at the baseline and begin lightly jogging in
place. Once your legs are pumping, begin slowly working your way to the
net and return to the baseline. For the first set, don't lift your knees
too high during the 'jog'. The point is to get blood flowing through
your legs and you hip flexors. As you begin the second set, then begin
bringing your knees higher and higher. On your return to the baseline,
you should be trying to touch your knees to your chest with each step.
When warming up during the cold weather season, it's best to start with
a warm up that doesn't use tons of joint movement (such as the line
jump) and progress to exercises that use more and more movement. The
point is to ensure your joints and muscles are gradually stimulated to
prevent injury. After 5-7 minutes of warming up, you'll be ready to hit
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