As we are all familiar with the world-famous sport - Tennis, which being a high-impact sport demanding full-body participation during running, serving, and attaining different positions while performing on the court. Because of these demands, it is important for the player to maintain strength, flexibility, and muscle conditioning, to prevent any type of injury. Lack of conditioning, overtraining, and inappropriate techniques of performing a certain task during the game can lead to injuries. However, these injuries can be minimized by doing a proper warm-up before playing, to prepare your muscles for the demands of the game. During Sports, our body is under a lot of pressure, which sometimes leads to wear and tear in the muscles, joints, and bones. Sports injuries can be well treated by your physiotherapist, he/she helps you to recover rapidly and also provides some education on the prevention of further injuries. In this blog, we will provide you with common types of injuries suffered by tennis players and their prevention strategies.


Prevention of Tennis Injuries:


Warm-up your body

Start with a brisk walk for, ten-minutes, then move on to stretching exercises, to condition your muscles and prevent muscle cramps. It is also advisable to gently stretch and warm up by standing hamstring stretch, standing calf stretch, hip adductor stretch, and low back stretching until you can feel a stretch. Hold the stretch for ten seconds and repeat it ten times. Finally, rotate your shoulders and wrists in a clockwise and anticlockwise direction, ten times each.


Keeping body Hydrated

Staying hydrated is essential as it increases your stamina, speed, and concentration levels. In extreme cases, dehydration may cause nausea and vomiting.


Adequate Intake of food

Continuous consumption of energy during the game might cause a loss of stamina resulting in an imbalance that might further cause injury.   So it is good to have some food containing a balanced combination of vitamins and minerals during the intervals, it helps to remain alert and also boosts energy levels.


Common forms of Tennis Injuries are as follows:

Rotator cuff injuries

Shoulder Impingement

Rotator cuff injuries and shoulder impingement occur due to the repetitive overhead movement required to serve and hit the ball. These repetitive concentric and eccentric movements place demands to maintain high levels of muscular control, required to maintain the stability of the shoulder joint during tennis strokes.

Treatment for these conditions is rest, ice, Kinesio- taping, and anti-inflammatory medications. To increase the flexibility of the muscles, ligaments, and tendons, range of motion, and strengthening exercises can be designed by your physiotherapist:

·         External rotation with resistance (90 0 abduction)

·         External rotation in a prone position (plyometric)

·         External rotation with scapular retraction

·         Isotonic rotator cuff exercises.

Tennis elbow

Golfer's elbow

Tennis elbow injury occurs to the tendons located on the outer side of the elbow, this overuse and overload occur from the serve and forehand strokes whereas medial epicondylitis is caused due to excessive use of topspin and overload on the backhand stroke-causing pain and inflammation. The racquet must be of the proper size for gripping. Treatment for tennis and golfer's elbow involves rest, ice, Kinesio- taping, and anti-inflammatory medications. A wrist brace or tennis elbow band can be used and special physiotherapy exercises for stretching and strengthening the muscles are beneficial.

·         Gripping exercises

·         Flexor and extensor wrist curls

·         Forearm pronation and supination with dumbbells

·         Ball dribbling on the wall

·         Plyometric wrist snaps.


Wrist strain

Carpal tunnel syndrome

These injuries occur due to the laid-back grip, rotation of the palm upward, and quickly turning the wrist to perform the topspin. Treatment for these conditions involves rest, ice, Kinesio- taping and anti-inflammatory medications, and range of motion and strengthening exercises:

·         Wrist flexion

·         Wrist extension

·         Wrist ulnar deviation

·         Wrist radial deviation

·         All the above exercises can be done with dumbbells.


Lower Back pain

Players suffer from low back pain due to the fast weight transfers, jumping, and twisting, resulting in repeated flexion, extension, rotation and lateral flexion of the spine commonly required during cocking or loading phase of the tennis serve.  The physiotherapist designs strengthening exercises for back and abdominal muscles to increase strength:


·         Abdominal bracing with alternate arm and leg lowered

·         Sit-ups

·         Side planks

·         Core stabilization

·         Lunge with rotation

·         Knee to chest with rotation on a stability ball

·         Unilateral knee to chest with rotation.


Femoroacetabular impingement

Labral tears

Femoroacetabular impingement and labral tears can occur in tennis players due to the multidirectional movement pattern, loading and abruptly starting, cutting, twisting, and stopping. This form of hip injury can be treated with the help of RICE and physiotherapy sessions under the guidance of a physiotherapist.


·         Hip abduction and adduction

·         Elastic tubing kick exercise

·         Plyometrics lateral steps overs

·         Lunge with exercises.

·         Clamshells

·         Reverse clamshells.


Patella tendinopathy

Medial collateral ligament (MCL) sprain

Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) sprain

Calf strain

Rectus femoris

Hamstring strain

Lower legs tend to bear most of the pressure, as the players are often required to perform sudden movements and shift their balance. When a muscle is overstretched it becomes prone to tears. Tennis players need to constantly twist, turn and change speed, therefore both the patella tendon below the kneecap and the medial ligament inside it can be easily damaged.

If damaged it is important to stop immediately and treat the knee with RICE, braces, Kinesio- taping, and physiotherapy sessions:


·         Sitting knee flexion-extension with resistance or weight

·         Prone Knee flexion-extension with resistance or weight

·         Unilateral standing

·         Squats.

·         Equilibrium board exercises


Sprained Ankle

Achilles tendonitis

Ankles are the most commonly prone to injury, when the ligament that supports the joint gets overstretched due to repeated jumping, stepping on an uneven surface, or incorrect stepping.

The most severe form of the injury needs a brace or cast for a few weeks to help in the healing process. Physical activity worsens the pain and is usually treated with some rest, ice, Kinesio- taping, stretching, and anti-inflammatory medicine, followed by physiotherapy.


·         Ankle dorxi flexion with resistance

·         Ankle plantarflexion with resistance

·         Eversion and inversion with resistance

·         Equilibrium board exercises

·         Heel raises

·         Toe raises


After playing tennis in the end simple warm-down helps in breathing and the heart rate returns to normal levels, causing muscles to relax. It also reduces the risk of post-exercise soreness by removing lactic acid from your muscles. After relaxing take a 5-minute walk followed by stretches carried out during your warm-up, drink plenty of water, and have something to eat to regain energy.


The treatment will depend upon the nature of the injury. Your physiotherapist will work to relieve the painful symptoms and helps to restore function so that you can return to sports without pain. And also provides you with proactive advice so that you can avoid similar situations that put you at risk of an injury in the future.