A beginners’s guide to tennis

Andy Murray captures Wimbledon trophy

The recent spell of warm weather, teamed with Andy Murray’s spectacular victory at Wimbledon, has hugely increased the popularity of tennis as a recreational sport. If you’re thinking of playing tennis, here is some essential advice for you to follow…

Equipment

The great thing about tennis is that limited equipment is needed to play; making it the perfect sport for those on a budget.

However, investing in a pair of trainers is essential for even the most casual of players, as wearing unsuitable footwear could lead to an injury that could end your tennis career before it’s even begun. I know it’s hard to choose between brands when most big sports brands put so much money into development. But Andy Murray uses Adidas – so maybe that’s a good indication of quality. I use Adidas and I’m almost as good if not better than Andy (fictitious embellishment), so I think Adidas is the right call. There are some great value Adidas available from Brantano, to save you shelling out a million pounds from a specialised sports retailer.

Similarly, there are many factors to consider when choosing a racket. If you’re a first-timer then opt for a racket with a larger size head, as this will improve your ability to hit the ball as well as the distance you hit it. Visit your local sports shop for advice on grip size as this can be tricky to get right and can affect your play.

Where to play

There’s no greater way to spend a summer’s day than out on the court with friends. Outdoor courts are a great way of getting some exercise outdoors, plus they are usually free of charge.

However when the British weather fails us, your tennis doesn’t have to suffer too. Move your game inside at one of many indoor courts throughout the country. In addition, local schools and sport associations usually run tennis clubs throughout the summer so it might be worth checking them out too, and to link up with other tennis fans.

Getting Started

You’ve got the tennis bug and the most tempting thing to do right now is to dive straight in. If your current fitness level is low, you may find that you start to ache after your first game. This is very common and is usually because you are using muscles that you wouldn’t normally use on a daily basis. If this is the case, set yourself a few rest days in-between your matches to allow your body time to recover and recharge. Once you feel your tennis ability, skills and fitness are growing, think about entering yourself into some competitive matches.

So now you know everything you need to know, you’re ready to hit the court and start playing tennis! Next stop, Wimbledon…

© photo courtesy of HEAD Tennis

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