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Inspired By Wimbledon? Six Top Tips From British Doubles Pair Alicia Barnett And Olivia Nicholls To Help Improve Your Tennis Game

Alicia Barnett and Olivia Nicholls

Low cost, great exercise and sociable, tennis is one of the most accessible year-round sports. With free courts available throughout the UK, both indoors and outdoors and just the cost of a racquet and some balls to get started, it’s a great sport for families, newbies and amateurs and an excellent way to keep fit and even meet new people.

With the British institution that is Wimbledon underway, Pivo Inc – a developer of AI-technology for sport and self-improvement – has collaborated with British no.1 doubles pair Alicia Barnett and Olivia Nicholls to share top tips on how to get started with tennis, the exercises that will improve your game and how to hone those skills to become the MVP! 

  • Tennis requires very little cost to get started, making it a great way for families to keep fit on a budget. There are free tennis courts available across the UK making it a very accessible sport. Away from the court you can use anything as a net – a bench, table, wall or even bags on the floor. All you need is a comfortable pair of trainers to stop you slipping and getting foot or ankle injuries, a tennis racket and a ball. Ask friends or family members if they want to play or consider joining a club where you’ll have access to partners, leagues and coaches. 
  • Find a good coach or have some tennis lessons. Technique is very important, whatever level you are at, and getting technical instruction from a tennis pro can help improve accuracy, prevent injuries and give you confidence on the court. From how to hold a tennis racquet properly to adding spin and increasing power to your shots, tennis lessons can be invaluable. 
  • All good tennis players need to work on their strength, agility and endurance. Whether you’re a tennis newbie inspired by Wimbledon or a seasoned pro looking to improve your game, an exercise you should incorporate into your workout is skipping – moving your feet helps to increase your heart rate and prepare your body for a high intensity match. When it comes to playing on court, it’s really important to get your body moving and muscles warmed up properly so you can move around more freely.
  • One of the best ways to improve, for any level of tennis player, is to record yourself while playing tennis and analyse your technique and movement afterwards. Using a device like Pivo which converts your smartphone into an auto-tracking camera, is the perfect way to record yourself completely hands-free. You can then watch the footage back to see where you need to improve. If you’re not sure what to look for in your own games, share the footage with a coach for their feedback. Videoing yourself can help you realise certain things like whether you’re standing in the wrong place or hitting shots too deep or too short. Video analysis goes a long way in helping us improve our game.
  • Some matches can last a while, make sure you keep eating and drinking throughout the entirety to help keep your energy up and stay hydrated. The types of snacks and drinks we’d suggest include bananas and dates – both are great for energy, which means you can maintain peak performance throughout.
  • Tennis can have health benefits for everyone even if you aren’t a pro athlete. It’s great cardiovascular exercise and can also help improve muscle tone, strength and flexibility. Make sure you turn on your health tracker as tennis helps burn between 400-600 calories per hour. At the recreational level, one hour of playing tennis is also 10,680 steps.