Train Like a Tennis Player with This Conditioning Workout

Anyone who has played or watched tennis knows that full-body strength and agility is key. Williams, Federer, and all the greats prove it by darting around the court, changing directions incredibly quickly, and hitting amazing power shots. It should be no surprise that lots of training got them to that level.

If you’d like to channel their work ethic or prepare for your own competition, try this workout. You’ll notice most exercises are done while standing and focus on joint strength and mobility, since athletic training should often mimic movements of the sport. Bodyweight exercises are a great place to start for tennis especially, so that you learn how to control your body and keep it injury-free—then add weight. Free weights will allow you to stretch your range of motion even farther than machines allow, pushing your body to face real-life scenarios like extending a racket and bashing that ball back!

Tennis Conditioning Workout

Level: Intermediate

Time: 60 minutes

For each exercise, perform 3 sets of 10 repetitions, resting 60 seconds between sets. Use a challenging weight that allows you to complete all reps. If the weight is too easy, slightly increase it. If it’s too hard, slightly decrease it.

Anterior Lateral Lunge

Anterior Lateral Lunge

1 – Stand upright holding dumbbells at your sides, with your arms straight.

2 – Step forward and laterally to one side, lowering your body down toward the floor and leaning your torso slightly forward.

3 – Push off the front leg to return to start position.

• Complete all reps on one side before switching to the other side.

Push Pull

Push Pull

1 – Stand upright holding one handle with your arm straight out in front and the other at your shoulder with your elbow bent, feet split front to back.

2 – Press one handle out in front as you pull the other into your chest.

• Keep your hands at shoulder height.

• Complete all reps each way before switching.

Foot Up Split Squat

Foot Up Split Squat

1 – Stand upright with one foot on a bench behind with your arms by your sides.

2 – Drop your body down toward the floor, bending at your hips and knees and leaning your torso slightly forward.

3 – Push off your front foot to return to the start position.

• Complete all reps on one side before switching to the other side.

Alternating Step Up


1 – Stand upright with one foot on a step with your arms at your sides.

2 – Push off the top foot and drive up with your arms, coming up off the step and switching your feet in the air.

3 – Land with the other foot on the step.

Crossbody Raise

Cross-Body Raise

1 – Stand upright holding a handle at one side in the opposite hand with that arm across your body at waist height.

2 – Raise the handle diagonally up and across your body, keeping your arms straight.

• Finish with that arm fully extended up over the shoulder.

• Complete all reps on one side before switching to the other side.

Calf Raise

Calf Raise

• Stand on your toes on the edge of a step, with dumbbells at your sides.

1 – Drop your heels down as far as you can.

2 – Raise your heels coming up onto your toes again as high as you can.

Equipment Sub: Plates, Kettlebells

Lo-Hi Chop

Hi-Lo Chop

1 – Stand upright facing to one side, holding a handle in both hands at hip level with your arms straight.

2 – Pull the cable up from your hip to over your opposite shoulder.

• Move through your hips and shoulders, not your arms.

• Complete all reps on one side before switching to the other side.

Rear Delt Row

Rear Delt Row

1 – Bend over at the waist holding dumbbells with your arms straight and palms facing in, your feet hip-width apart.

2 – Raise the dumbbells up and outward to shoulder height, keeping your back flat.

• Bend your elbows slightly as you lift, if necessary.

Equipment Sub: Plates

Wrist Flexion

Wrist Flexion

1 – Sit with your forearms on your thighs, holding a barbell out in front with your palms up and your wrists extended.

2 – Flex at the wrists, raising the barbell up as high as possible.

Equipment Sub: Dumbbells

Reverse Extension

Reverse Extension

1 – Lie face-down on a bench, hanging your lower body off the bench with your toes touching the ground.

2 – Raise your lower body up until your whole body is straight.

• Lower your legs to tap the floor and repeat.

• Hold onto the top of the bench to assist you.

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Luke Andrus is a certified personal trainer, ACE health coach, writer, folk music drummer, husband, and a father. Most of his writing experience is in poetry and fictional short stories, and he also proposed to his wife with a self-published children's book. He is a Narnia nerd with a degree in History, a minor in English, and a semi-obsession with the French language. He believes that fitness is not just about vanity, but about lifestyle, integrity, and the ability to take control of your life.