Do you think you should improve your tennis footwork? Do your children need these extra skills? It might be a good idea to start cross training with soccer skills. Here are some thoughts from Akari Ikeda, personal trainer at The New Basis in Los Gatos, CA.
It is always better for people, especially kids, to play multiple sports than to only one, specifically for overall coordination and endurance. According to studies, soccer helps significantly improve tennis skills, and footwork skills in particular.
You might have heard tennis coaches yelling at students saying “Move your feet and get to the ball!”
Even though you have perfect forehand and backhand hitting skills, if you don't have good footwork to reach the ball and get ready for strikes, you cannot hit the ball in a good position.
People are often focused only on their stroke technique, but it is very important to improve footwork because it will also improve “your agility, coordination, and balance, which is important for higher levels of play”, according to Suzanna Mcgee. (“How a Soccer Ball Can Improve your Tennis Game”).
I agree with Suzanna because from my experience of growing up playing both tennis and soccer, I feel like soccer experience has really helped me to improve my tennis skills.
you always have to move your feet to get to the ball.
controlling the ball while running requires balance and good footwork.
you always have to anticipate where the ball is going and get ready for it.
These are also very important skills in tennis.
The top Tennis Professionals actually have great soccer skills. For instance, Roger Federer played soccer until he was twelve. Rafael Nadal was a promising soccer player and played until twelve as well. Check this out: Nadal Playing Soccer. Andy Murray was talented enough to be asked to train with Football when he was fifteen. It's not only male players, but also professional female tennis players who play soccer well, such as Sara Errani, Roberta Vinci, and former world #1 Caroline Wozniacki.
Here at The New Basis, we can help you improve your game off the courts with drills, personal training and education on how the top players make it happen, but since there's no "one size fits all", you'll have your own plan of attack!
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If you are ready for the customized and supported plan that will step up your game in whatever sport you love, let us know! We'd love to work with you! Click here to schedule your complimentary sport and fitness consultation today!