Why Do Tennis Players Need Balance? (In-Depth Explanation)

To be a good tennis player, you must have several physical skills. One of these skills is having a good balance. But why do tennis players need balance?

Having a good balance is very important for a tennis player. With the right balance, a player can prepare perfectly for each stroke. Your body must be perfectly balanced before hitting the ball in tennis. This allows the shot to be executed with the proper technique.

Besides physical balance, it is also important to have the right balance in your game. I will explain more about this in this article.

Why is Balance Important For a Tennis Player?

Tennis is more than just swinging your racket and hoping for the best. There is technique involved to make sure you actually hit the ball and that your shots are successful.

In order to practice proper technique, you need to have balance. Balance influences your stance, your power, and even your tactics. Without balance, you can’t hit the ball optimally.

Besides physical balance, there is another kind of balance important in tennis. This is the balance between different shots.

You need to practice a lot of different shots so your playing won’t become monotonous and, therefore, predictable.

You also want your shots to be balanced to decrease your weaknesses.

Muscular balance is an important factor as well. Tennis players usually have one arm they use more than the other, especially when a single-handed backhand is involved.

This means one arm might become stronger and more muscular.

Such a muscular imbalance can eventually lead to injury because it facilitates instability.

How is Balance Used in Tennis?

Physical balance is crucial to all tennis techniques. With most shots, you achieve the best result when standing still as you hit the ball.

This way, you have the most control over your shots and get into the right position, allowing you to use your body for speed and power.

Even if you want to run to the net after hitting a ball, or if you want to fall into the shot, you need to be balanced.

Rotation of the body is quite important for powerful shots.

If you not only swing your racket but also rotate your body along with your shot, you will hit balls that fly to the other side of the court in seconds.

Without proper balance, you cannot make the right rotations because you will fall over if you do.

Another shot in tennis where balance is crucial is the serve. You need to throw the ball right and hit it at the highest point, but none of that is possible if you’re unbalanced.

Yet again, balance is essential for power too.

A powerful serve can mean a big advantage in a match, so balance definitely is something to prioritize.

Next to physical balance, you need to have a balance in your playing style as well. This means you need to vary your shots.

Playing the same forehand that bounces off the service line every time will not get you very far.

Make sure you have a variety of shots in your arsenal, from deep balls full of spin to dropshots and even smashes.

How to Improve Balance in Tennis (6 Tips)

1. Step on a tennis ball

This might seem like a weird tip, but it can be very helpful to step on a soft tennis ball.

Place the ball so your heel is still on the ground, and the ball is in the middle of the front of your shoe. Then you start slowly swinging your racket.

The swing technique is not important here, and you don’t even have to finish the swing. Focus on how your foot feels on the ground.

This will help you better feel the ground once you remove the ball, and keeping your heel on the ground helps with your balance.

The tennis ball forces you to do so since you will lose your balance if you lift your heel. Exercise slowly and be careful because you might twist your ankle if you’re not cautious.

2. Invest in a Bosu Ball

Balancing on a Bosu Ball

Bosu Balls are great for improving your balance in tennis. It looks like half a ball, which you can put on the court.

You can do several exercises with this to work on your balance.

You could hit shots while standing on the Bosu Ball with one leg, or maybe you prefer jumping onto the ball with two feet at the same time before jumping back off and repeating this a few times.

3. Stand perfectly still after hitting a ball

To improve your balance in tennis, you should practice keeping your balance during a shot.

To do this, you don’t even need a partner, and you can simply drop-feed the ball to yourself.

Hit the ball in a relaxed way, and keep standing still for a few seconds after hitting it.

This way, you can feel if you truly are balanced and adjust your balance when hitting the next shot. It also helps you learn what a balanced stance feels like.

4. Use your non-dominant hand

This tip is mainly relevant for forehands, but it can also be helpful for single-handed backhands and volleys.

While preparing to hit a shot, you should use your non-dominant hand for balance.

With forehands, you hold your hand in front of you to point to the ball. Not only does this help you assess where the ball is better, but it also helps keep you balanced too.

Tennis player hitting a ball

5. Keep your head still

Your head might not be something you focus on while playing tennis, but it certainly can help you with balance.

When you hit a ball, you should keep your head still and your eyes on the ball. Don’t look at where the ball is going too quickly because this can disrupt your balance.

6. Work out both sides of your body

You might unconsciously put more focus on working on your balance during a forehand, as that is the most common shot and, in many cases, the shot people are most comfortable with.

Don’t forget to work on both sides, as one strong and one weak side still equals imbalance.

Conclusion

Balance is important in many ways. There is the obvious physical balance you need to execute your shots during a rally properly.

You also need balance to hit powerful serves. Besides that, you should also bring some balance into your playing style.

Playing forehands only usually won’t result in winning, so throw some backhands in there too.

(Click here to learn more about the different physical demands for tennis)

Brian Henderson

I am what you might call a true tennis fanatic. When I am not on the tennis court teaching or playing myself, I am probably writing an informative article about tennis. My goal is to get as many people as possible excited and informed about tennis.
Published: 
March 16, 2022

Share

Published: March 16, 2022