The "Core" of Injury Prevention for Tennis Players and All Athletes; Core Training

After a great tennis lesson from Tim Smith and some kettlebell work yesterday my abs are sore today! In a good way, like many workout enthusiasts, we like know that we did something. Tim was teaching me to quiet the movement of my body and use my lower body (amongst a flurry of other cues) so I doubt the tennis made me sore, but my goodness if the Turkish Get Up (TGU) with a kettlebell did not whip me!

If you are not familiar with the TGU with a kettlebell, here is the basic progression with three of the most popular kettlebell instructors in the US!

Anthony DiLuglio, Steve Cotter, Pavel Tsatsouline

Kettlebells can provide a great total body workout and challenge the core in a “functional” manner.

Many clients that I see are not ready for kettlebells right out of the gate, they need to start off with some more isolated core work
like some sort of quadruped progression which is a staple of any core stabilization program.

Core stability is critical for tennis performance. Researchers have noticed the importance of this more and more of late;

“Uncommon abdominal muscle injury in a tennis player: internal oblique strain

J Maquirriain and J P Ghisi

The case of a strain injury of the internal oblique abdominal muscle in a professional tennis player is presented. This uncommon lesion resulted from eccentric, unbalanced trunk rotation. Magnetic resonance imaging helped to confirm the diagnosis. Tennis specific core strengthening is crucial for rehabilitation and recurrence prevention.”

If athletes have good muscular balance, joint alignment, core stability, joint mobility and coordination injuries such as this are much less likely to happen. Look at the last line in the quoted text “core strengthening exercises are crucial for rehabilitation and recurrence prevention”. WORD! Now think about if this was done BEFORE someone got hurt! the writing is on the wall for recreational and serious athletes alike, care for your body ahead of time and it will pay dividends for years to come.

Find a Corrective Exercise Specialist, go through an integrated assessment and follow the program they recommend. Your body will thank you for it!

Time for me to go to some myofascial release and static stretching to loosen up!

Thanks for reading!

Eric Beard
Athletic Performance Enhancement Specialist
Corrective Exercise Specialist

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