Cooling down is an important, but often underestimated part of tennis training. It allows your body to restabilize after exercising for a better recovery. When you give your body the time to cool down, you are are helping your body to improve your performance. Not sure if you’re practicing an adequate cool down? Here’s our best tips to get you started.
Hydration is an essential part of the recovery process. Make sure you are staying properly hydrated throughout your training and in the time after your session is done, too.
Run for 10 to 20 minutes at a gentle jogging pace. Your pace should be slow enough so you are not short of breath and able to talk with your training buddy.
If you have a heart rate monitor, you can also calculate the proper speed for your cool down run. This should be a speed that lowers your heart rate to around 60 to 70% of your personal maximum. You can calculate your personal maximum heart rate by subtracting your age from the number 220.
Keep in mind that if there’s no space available for running, skipping is not recommended as an alternative. The reason for this is that your osteoarticular system — or in simpler terms, your bones and joints — has already undergone a lot of stress during the preceding training or match.
After jogging, do a series of stretching exercises. You can use warm-up stretches as cool-down exercises as well.
Do the exercises in an energetic fashion, without forcing movement and without bouncing up and down too much. In contrast to the warm-up, during cool down make sure to lock your stretching positions. This way more muscle groups benefit from being lengthened.
For example, do a set of hip twists lying down. Bend your right knee up to your chest, and, with your left hand, pull your leg towards your left shoulder. Hold this position for 30 to 40 seconds on each side without turning your chest or lifting your back off the ground.
Another common stretching exercise for tennis players requires lying on your back on the ground and stretching your legs in the air. Rest your legs against the court boundary netting. Hold this pose for one minute. Add a stretch with your arms above your head and resting on the ground.
Your cool down routine should be an integrated part of hitting the tennis court for every practice or match. When you take the time to set your body up for recovery, you’ll reap the benefits in the long term.
Also while you cool down and recover, take some time to shop our full collection of ASICS tennis gear today!