Tennis season is fast approaching, and for tennis fans, the Australian summer is the best time of the year. Not only are the days lengthening, giving us more time to play the game, but we’ll be able to watch as the international tennis tour makes its Australian swing. Culminating with the iconic Australian Open, tennis fans are in for a treat.
If you’ve ever considered playing tennis, or enjoy watching and think you might like to get involved, there’s no better time to start. The days are long, the weather is beautiful and tennis is a great choice for everyone, young or old, experienced or beginner. Here are a number of reasons why tennis is a great sport to play – all year round.
Tennis is truly a sport for a lifetime and can be played by very young children right up to very elderly people. There’s not many sports where this is the case! It’s non-contact and low-impact, and is one of the most widely played sports in the world. Unlike many other sports where youth is a distinct advantage, experience and the ability to be mentally strong can be just as important as physical prowess for tennis players.
Tennis gives you an effective combination of aerobic and anaerobic exercise that can do wonders for your health. Playing tennis will contribute to a higher calorie burn, better bone health, and improved muscular fitness, flexibility, balance, coordination and power. Full body workouts are highly effective to help get you in shape and improve your health.
For more about why you should get outside to get fit, click here.
Children (and adults) playing tennis learn a host of life lessons – how to focus and concentrate, how to be patient and strategic, how to deal with nerves, how to practice, how to set goals, how to play by the rules, how to display sportsmanship and how to win and lose gracefully. Tennis helps foster independence, and competition builds character and responsibility in children.
For 20 reasons why every kid should play sport, click here.
Tennis can be a team sport, and thus provides both adults and children with both social and learning opportunities. Team experiences help children immeasurably, and can build confidence, self-esteem and problem-solving abilities, along with resilience and the ability to cope. You can meet new friends while learning the game and playing in tournaments, and joining a local tennis club is a great way to make friends quickly if you’re new to an area. Tennis is also a great family sport.
Tennis is about more than mastering your strokes – you also need to apply strategy and tactics to the game. This makes for much more interesting contests, as well as providing greater challenges for players.
There’s always someone to look up to in tennis, whether it’s the polished perfection displayed by Roger Federer, or the fiery passion shown by Rafael Nadal. The range of interesting characters who inhabit the top echelons of the tennis world help add to the allure of the sport. There’s always something going on, and it’s certainly never dull – especially with players like Nick Kyrgios around! And if you’re tired of Nick’s antics, there’s always Roger.
While tennis lessons, high tech rackets and the latest in footwear might all be considered expensive, you have to look at the big picture. You don’t have to buy the latest gear and tech, and will likely find you can play a great game with a budget racket, clothes and shoes. Free courts can be found in most places, and the cost for hiring courts and equipment is minimal. You can invest as little or as much as you like into your tennis – it’s really up to you.
With tennis, you don’t have to be locked into playing in a certain format if you don’t want to. There are a wide range of different formats you can play, as a competitive player or as a social player. There’s not only the traditional formats of singles and doubles, but nowadays you can also play Fitbit Cardio Tennis, Fast4 Tennis, Hot Shots, Seniors, social or competitive – the choice is yours. You can play as little or as much as you want, at whatever level you want. You or your child can attend coaching and have lessons, play socially for fun, compete in social or competitive tournaments, or even try and make it to the pros.
Tennis gives you plenty of options, whatever your financial constraints, time commitment, level of ability or age – there really is something for everyone. With formats such as Cardio tennis, it doesn’t even matter if you’ve never played before, as the focus is on fun and fitness.
String a rope between some trees, mark off a court and bingo, you can start your own backyard tournament and keep the kids amused for hours. You might even want to join in yourself!
Running around on a court will release endorphins, making your feel happier and more energetic after playing. And there’s nothing quite like hitting that massive ace, or unplayable backhand stroke, or crafty volley. You’ll have a lot of fun playing tennis – and you may not even realise how hard you’re working!
Compared to many other sports, which have high incidences of injuries, tennis is relatively safe and doesn’t tend to cause many severe injuries. Most injuries sustained in tennis tend to be overuse injuries, although with proper management, even these can be minimised or avoided.
All you really need is one other person, rackets, balls and a court. Courts can be easily hired, and many places have free public courts that you can access at any time. Rackets and balls can also be hired if you don’t want to buy your own. You can even play without a partner, as most public courts come complete with a backboard. At a bare minimum, you could use a wall to practice your strokes and improve your timing.
There’s nothing quite like settling down to watch the Australian Open final on a scorching summer’s day, with all its thrills, spills and drama (especially if Serena Williams is playing!). You can easily find yourself sucked into the tension of the match, and losing out on sleep just to watch ‘one more game’. Tennis is a compelling sport to watch – and doesn’t take forever either (usually).
So there you have it – tennis is a great choice this summer. Enjoy watching the Australian summer of tennis, and better yet – give it a go yourself. You might find yourself hooked before too long.
If you’re looking for other sports to play this summer, have a read about why cricket is also a great choice here.