3 Drills to Help Tennis Players Improve Lateral Movement

Are you a tennis player, coach or parent?


If you are, you will know that lateral speed and movement is critical for a tennis player - especially acceleration, deceleration and change of direction.


In order to improve lateral movement on court, you will need to include different speed drills into your training that will help you to improve your ability to get around the court like an athlete. When trying to become a faster player you must keep these things in mind:


  • Train with intensity: Speed training uses our ATP/PC system which provides us with energy for short intense bursts of activity, but depletes quickly and requires plenty of rest to restore. Thus, your speed drills should be fast an explosive, with rest in between.

  • Focus on mechanics: Technique and understanding positioning are key for improving speed, especially multi-directional movement patterns - if you are unsure if you are doing drills correctly, send me an email nathan@higherlevelperformance.co.uk and I can help.

  • Be consistent: Like anything in life, if you want to move better and faster on court, you must spend time week in week out honing your skillset.


With that in mind, here are 3 great drills you can add to your sessions to help improve your on court movement.


#1 - Scissors to Crossover Run


The first drill focuses on footwork, coordination and being able to drive explosively into a crossover run. Focus on covering the ground in as few steps as possible on the crossover run.


#2 - Fast feet to Shuffle


The second drill focuses on the shuffling movement pattern and change of direction. Aim to stay low throughout and push hard outside your centre of mass to change direction.


#3 - Fast Feet to Crossover Run


The final drill focuses on the crossover run, a common movement when having to cover distance on the court to hit a wide ball. If you want to make this more specific you can hit a forehand and backhand when going out wide.


How to use the exercises in a workout


  1. Make sure to warm up first!

  2. Complete each exercise for 15s and rest for 45s

  3. Make sure you work maximally for the 15s

  4. Complete exercises in a circuit style format, aiming for 4-6 rounds

  5. After each round you can take 90s rest if your speeds are dropping off


Do you want support helping yourself or your child/players becoming faster and more agile on court? Would you like to be quicker off the mark and get to every ball quicker?

If you answered YES! then jump on a free call and we can talk through how I can help you with your training and fitness - https://higherlevelperformance.myACE.co/meet/free-coaching-consultation-call

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