TENNIS IS GOOOOOD FOR YOUR MENTAL HEALTHUSTA SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA
MAY 2, 2023 | LEXIE WANNINGER
TENNIS IS GOOOOOD FOR YOUR MENTAL HEALTHUSTA SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA
MAY 2, 2023
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May is a month of celebration for several important causes, including National Tennis Month and National Mental Health Awareness Month. National Tennis Month is an annual event celebrated throughout May to encourage tennis enthusiasts to come together and promote the sport. This month offers the opportunity to highlight the physical, social, and mental benefits of playing tennis.
National Mental Health Awareness Month is observed in May to increase public awareness of mental health and the importance of seeking help. It is a time to spread awareness, educate the public, and fight the stigma surrounding mental health. Both these observances hold great significance and are essential for promoting a healthy and active lifestyle, both physically and mentally.
Tennis is a sport that provides numerous physical and mental health benefits. While many people are familiar with the physical benefits of playing tennis, such as improved cardiovascular fitness, coordination, and muscle strength, not as many people know about the mental health benefits of playing this sport.
Research has shown that playing tennis can have a positive impact on mental health and wellbeing. Here are twelve reasons why tennis is good for you mentally:
#1 – Tennis reduces stress and anxiety.
Tennis is an excellent way to help you deal with physical, mental, social, and emotional challenges, and increases your capacity to deal with stress and anxiety. When you play tennis, you are engaging in a physical activity that requires focus and concentration, which provides a physical outlet for pent-up energy and can help take your mind off of any stressful or anxious thoughts. According to a study conducted by USTA National, tennis players showed significantly lower levels of stress, depression, and anxiety compared to non-players (1).
#2 – Tennis boosts self-esteem and confidence.
Playing tennis can boost self-esteem and confidence. When you play tennis, you are constantly challenging yourself to improve your skills and compete against others. This can lead to a sense of accomplishment and self-confidence. Being confident in one’s ability to deal with the demands of a situation creates a healthy response to stress; this is especially important in the development of younger players (2). According to a study conducted by the Tennis Industry Association, 80% of tennis players reported increased self-esteem after playing tennis regularly.
#3 – Tennis enhances cognitive function and increases brain power.
Playing tennis can enhance cognitive function, including decision-making, strategic thinking, problem-solving, and attention span. Tennis is a sport that is based on evaluating angles, geometry and physics to get the best result, which translates into better problem-solving off the court. From alertness to tactical thinking, tennis enhances the neural connections in your brain. This is true for players of all ages. Kids who play tennis regularly get better grades; meanwhile, according to a study published in the Journal of Aging and Physical Activity, playing tennis was associated with better executive function in older adults.
#4 – Tennis provides social interaction.
Tennis is a social sport that provides opportunities for social interaction and building and maintaining relationships with others. Whether you are playing doubles or singles, you are constantly communicating and interacting with your partner or opponent. According to a study conducted by USTA National, tennis players reported significantly higher levels of social support compared to non-players.
#5 – Tennis improves sleep.
Regular exercise, such as playing tennis, has been shown to improve sleep quality and duration. According to a study published in the Journal of Sleep Research, adults who engaged in moderate-to-vigorous physical activity, such as playing tennis, had better sleep quality and duration compared to those who were less active.
#6 – Tennis reduces symptoms of depression.
Playing tennis has been shown to reduce symptoms of depression. According to a study published in the National Library of Medicine, tennis players had lower levels of depression compared to non-players (3).
#7 – Tennis increases resilience.
Tennis can teach you how to deal with setbacks and failures, which can help you become more resilient in other areas of your life.
#8 – Tennis improves mood.
Playing tennis can improve mood and increase feelings of happiness and positivity. According to a study conducted by the Tennis Industry Association, 74% of tennis players reported increased feelings of happiness after playing tennis regularly.
#9 – Tennis enhances brain function.
Playing tennis can enhance brain function by increasing blood flow and oxygen to the brain.
#10 – Tennis promotes mindfulness.
Playing tennis requires focus and concentration, which can promote mindfulness and being in the present moment. Tennis can help you develop a positive mindset and outlook on life as you learn to focus on your strengths and improve your weaknesses.
#11 – Tennis improves mental toughness.
Tennis requires players to perform under pressure and deal with the stress of competition. As a result, players learn how to manage their emotions, remain calm under pressure, and stay focused on the task at hand, ultimately building great mental toughness.
#12 – Tennis provides a sense of control.
Tennis allows you to control the pace and direction of the game, which can give you a sense of control in other areas of your life.
In conclusion, playing tennis can provide numerous mental health benefits, including reduced stress and anxiety, increased self-esteem, enhanced cognitive function, social interaction, improved sleep, reduced symptoms of depression, increased resilience, improved mood, enhanced brain function, and promotion of mindfulness. Tennis is a fun and enjoyable sport that can provide a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction as you improve your skills and win games. These benefits make tennis an excellent sport for both physical and mental health.
1) How Tennis: How tennis protects and supports mental, emotional and physical health for life
2) Physically Speaking? Is Tennis Good for Health? (2020): https://www.wtatennis.com/news/1627547/physically-speaking-is-tennis-good-for-health
3) Tennis Enhances Well-being in University Students. https://doi.org/10.4081/mi.2016.6510