Quantification of the physiological and performance characteristics of on-court tennis drills

Machar Reid, Rob Duffield, Brian Dawson, John Baker, Miguel Crespo

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    53 Citations (Scopus)
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    Objective: To determine the physiological and stroke characteristics of common, on-court tennis training drills. Methods: Six high performance players performed 1 x 6 repetitions of four common on-court training drills on two separate occasions; once with 30s work:30s rest, and once with 60s work:30s rest. Heart rate (HR), blood lactate [La-] and Rate of Perceived Exertion (RPE) were measured prior to the start of each drill and after the first and last repetition. Measures of shot count and accuracy, post-impact ball velocity and distance covered per drill were also recorded. Results: Significant differences were observed between drills in measures of [La-] and RPE both during and after drills, yet individual HR responses were similar. Increased work times (60s v 30s) also produced consistently elevated [La-] and RPE responses. Distance covered and shot count increased with drill duration, yet players' average movement velocities as well as forehand ball speed and accuracy remained consistent. Significant decreases in forehand ball speed and accuracy were observed during more intensive training drills, while significantly lower mean movement velocities underpinned performance of less intensive drills. Conclusions: The four drills produced physiological responses similar to matchplay, with [La-], RPE, distance covered and shot count increasing along with drill duration. Aspects of shot performance and court movement characteristics were particular to each drill, yet general stroke and movement performance measures remained stable across all drills.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)146-151
    Number of pages6
    JournalBritish Journal of Sports Medicine
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - 2008

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