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Thursday, Oct 24, 2019

Work hard, train smarter

Somdev Devvarman, India’s no.1 tennis player and one of the fittest athletes in the country, talks of the physical demands of the sport and how best to keep up with them.

india Updated: Sep 17, 2011 10:49 IST
Deepti Patwardhan
Deepti Patwardhan
Hindustan Times

How do you break down fitness into different components?
The areas of fitness that are most important are muscle strength and power, endurance, speed, agility and flexibility. To be a complete athlete, all of these components must be worked on. You are only as good as your weakest link, so along with working hard, you must also work smart and take care of all the different areas of need.

Tennis is one of the most physical sports. What is the kind of strain on the body?
The strain that is placed on your ankles, knees, hips and shoulders is incredible. Not only do you have to grind out one match, but you have to be ready to go the very next day and bring the same effort and intensity.

There is also a lot of travel , which adds to the strain. You have to be smart about how you eat, drink and ensure that you are getting plenty of rest at night.

Given the amount of tennis, what is the right balance between training and playing.
The calendar is hectic; the players have to play almost all year. During the season, it is important to have a couple of windows where you are not playing tournaments for 2-3
weeks, and work on your fitness. The off-season is the time to really go after it fitness wise.

What are the traps of overtraining?
Over-training just results in your body feeling fatigued all the time, you lose that jump inyour step. The problem is more common in younger individuals who maythinkthat more is always better. My suggestion is to strive for quality over quantity.

Tips to keep going
Everyone must eat slowly and enjoy their food. And more importantly Mumbai needs to get some sleep first.
Robinuthappa, Pune Warriors India

Fitness Tips
Deep Breathing
Relaxing for at least 20 minutes a day will go a long way to reduce blood pressure and your reactions to stress.

Complex Carbs
They help unlike white flour and sugar, as they provide a sustained energy as opposed to a quick hit.

First Published: Sep 17, 2011 10:45 IST

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