Tennis is a popular game for many reasons: it is sociable, outdoors, challenging and physically satisfying. As a physical exercise, you just can’t beat a good game of tennis as the ultimate stress-buster. But playing tennis also provides a host of emotional, mental and social benefits.
1. Feeling good
Exercise causes the brain to release endorphins. A game of tennis will always improve your mood. To release your stress and promote a feeling of wellbeing, nothing beats a good game of tennis with a well-matched partner. Physical exercise is a great distraction from the everyday stresses of life. When you’re focused on beating your opponent on the tennis court, you won't be able to think of anything else.
2. Alertness and coordination
Exercise such as playing tennis counters the negative effects of stress and fatigue. A regular game of tennis will improve your concentration, and in the case of memory, even noticeably boost it. Playing tennis also improves balance, flexibility, speed and accuracy.
3. Serotonin regulation
A regular game of tennis with friends stimulates the secretion of this neurochemical by the brain, affecting feelings of wellbeing. Serotonin not only improves our mood by alleviating anxiety, stress and depression, but also influences sleep, appetite and libido for the better. There is nothing like a good night’s sleep after a strenuous match on the court.
Vigorous exercise such as tennis alleviates muscle tension, leading to improved states of calmness and relaxation. Playing tennis will of course also keep your cardiovascular and muscular system in top shape.
Positive changes in the physique boost self-perception and confidence. Playing tennis regularly will lead to an enhanced body image, self-esteem and self-confidence. As you learn and improve your game, you’ll also experience the satisfaction of challenges faced and met head-on.
Tennis also improves your social interaction on and off the court. As you play tennis with a partner, the social interaction will improve your personal outlook and well-being. Adopting a healthier lifestyle and taking charge mentally, leads to a greater sense of personal satisfaction, but instead of doing it all on your own, you have a tennis partner to cheer you on, and of course, you will be supporting him or her too.
7. Positivity and mental stimulation
Tennis is a sport which helps to keep up your hope and optimism. There are a myriad of ways to play the game, such as just rallying for fun without keeping scores, doing drills, exercising against a backboard or playing singles or doubles. The variety of options will add diversity to your training and give you control over your tennis training session as you make the most of the time you spent at the court, even if it is a short but intense while.
You do not necessarily have to play a complete match to enjoy the psychological benefits of tennis. Studies show that exercising regularly leads to a more positive state of mind. So, pick up a racket, call up a friend and head to a court near you to start playing tennis.
8. Build mental muscle
Although tennis is a very physical game, strategy also plays an important role. Learn to outsmart your opponent, or be outsmarted – either way, you have something new to learn every time you hit the courts.