| By Xavier Luna
Photo Credit: Getty Images

 

When it comes to any sport, let alone tennis, practice is key. You have to put in your hours on the court, take constructive advice from your coaches, work to sharpen your strengths and hone your weaknesses. But are you going to be the type of player to just like the game, or do you want to love the game?

If you really want to love the game, then you have to realize the commitment it takes to becoming great—both on the court and while you're away from the court. With this said, we thought it would be fitting to focus on how you can improve your tennis game off the court. Here's a closer look at four simple ways to do so:


1. Work on mental exercises

You're bound to be in situations during play where things aren't going right. If you're mentally weak, your struggles will snowball to the point of certain defeat. But if you're mentally strong, even if it's not your best day, you can stay in the match and battle. Make time for some quiet focus at home where you can come up with breathing exercises and things to say to yourself to refocus when the going gets tough.


2. Eat right

Talk to any serious athlete, and they'll be the first to tell you how important eating right is to their game. We'd recommend you start taking your diet very seriously. Stay away from sugar-laden and greasy foods, and learn to eat more lean meats along with plenty of fruits and vegetables.


3. Work on your physical fitness

Building strength and endurance is key to ensuring you can finish a match as well as you started it. This is why your exercise regime should also be a strong focus away from the court. Things like bike riding, performing body weight exercises like squats and cardio, are all great workouts to make a part of your regular fitness regime.


4. Practice your serving toss

Your serving toss is one of the most important aspects of the serve, and there's an easy way to practice this movement at home. Each morning, as you grab a pair of balled up socks to wear out of your drawer, simply give them a toss as if you were going to make a serve. You don't even need a racket to perform this exercise. It's a practice technique that doesn't get any easier or more convenient.