Movement or footwork accounts for almost 90% of the game. One can have perfect strokes, but without the ability to get to the ball on time it does not play important role in being successful tennis player.
The training should include the following components;
- Strength training, to prevent injuries and become more explosive
- Cardio training, improve stamina and endurance
- Agility training; to become quicker on court
- Flexibility training; to prevent injuries and create better range of motion
Improving all these areas will also help prevent injuries that might occur from extensive on court training. There is no specific age when strength and conditioning training can be incorporated in player development program. It is crucial for beginner-level player to start with basic balance and hand-eye coordination drills as soon as possible. Without having this off court training, progression on court will be drastically delayed.
I usually always get the same question from my clients as to what percentage of training should be fitness and conditioning? There is no such thing as to much fitness training, but realistically about 30% would be an optimal percentage. Some tennis matches can go on for couple or even few hours, therefore it is very important to have great stamina and endurance. There is less than 30 seconds between points, so rapid recovery is crucial.