Are Professional Tennis Players Pushing Their Bodies Too Far?


Rafael Nadal

Rafael Nadal (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Is it just me (a Paphos Tennis Coach) or are there more injuries this year on the professional tennis tour?  The latest, Andy Murray, is just recovering from back surgery.  Nadal has just returned from injury with a phenomenal impact.  But, this year in grand slams and tour events for men and women alike it seems like there are more withdrawals than ever due to injury.

Some may preventative because the tennis calendar is brutal, but some could be that professional players are reaching their limits.  When Djokovic had his phenomenal year, he broke new boundaries in fitness, speed and results.  He was the man to beat.  Since then it seems that all the players have worked phenomenally hard to bring themselves up to that standard.  Some have tried the famous gluten free diet, but all have improved their fitness.  Just look at the players next time you watch a match.  They have lost weight, they have more defined muscles and performance is amazing.  But, all of this comes at cost.  If you push your body like that through all the gruelling rounds of a tournament where the competition is fierce whoever you’re playing and if you do this almost 50 weeks of the year without many pauses then your body may just fail.  Of course, players do everything to try to prevent injuries, but it is inevitable.  The only player who has been virtually injury free is Roger Federer.

So what do you think?  Have players reached their limits in terms of what their body can do?  Should the tennis year be shorter?

The lesson though for us amateur players though is that we do need to be careful with our own bodies as well.  We’re not pushing them to the limits of the pros, but at the same time, we should warm up properly and do training specifically to minimise risk of injury.

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ATL Tennis Tournament draws are up


The ATL amateur tennis tournament draws are up on www.atlcyprus.com

These are Tennis Tournaments in each of the major towns of Nicosia, Limassol and Pafos.  It’s a series of knockout Tennis Tournaments throughout the year.  You register online and have two weeks to play your match.  The finals are all held on one day, usually at Aphrodite Hills.atl ad 1

Anyone can take part and there are singles and doubles categories.  The singles is also split into levels:

ATL 50 – beginners (it may even be their first ever match)

ATL 100 – advanced beginners

ATL 250 – intermediates

ATL 500 – advanced players & coaches

It’s great fun and only € 12 per tournament, or less if you pay for the whole year.  This includes entry into 2 singles categories and the doubles 🙂

So, whatever your age or sex, hurry up and register for the next tournament.  If you would like to see the finals of the big ATL 1000, then that will be at 4pm on Saturday 18th May at Aphrodite Hills.

Come join the fun!

Are You Warming Up?


Be honest, how many of you never warm up before you play tennis?  I’ve done it myself many times, been in a hurry and not bothered, but I try now to do it every time.

I may be wrong, so please let me know your thoughts, but it seems that men are especially bad at it. It may be that I know more male tennis players, but it always seems to be them that get injured and every time I ask them, they admit that they didn’t warm up.

It is very important to warm up your muscles before submitting them to the punishment we mete out every time we play. At the beginning of every lesson, we do a short warm up with stretching exercises from top to toe and in some lessons we work further on fitness, flexibility and strength.

There is loads of advice out there for warm ups, so I’ve attached a few links below:

http://tennis.isport.com/tennis-guides/how-to-warm-up-for-a-tennis-match

http://www.usta.com/Improve-Your-Game/Sport-Science/249177_Dynamic_WarmUp/

Seminars postponed


Most of you will be aware, but in case you are not, I have delayed the 2 Tennis Seminars SACHA SEMINAR A4 2PP V3that were scheduled for the 28th March due to the situation in Cyprus. I made the decision over a week before as I didn’t believe that it would be the first thing on people’s minds.

I will hopefully shortly be fixing a new date, probably in May, so please continue to register and I will email you updates:

Help your child succeed in sport

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Improve your tennis performance over 15%

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Try Out Tennis Day


Have you ever wanted to play tennis or would like to improve your game?  Your opportunity is here and you don’t need to dig your hand in your pocket. On Saturday 27th October, there will be a Try Out Tennis for free day. From 10am until 12pm at the courts opposite the Cypria Bay Hotel in Kato Pafos and from 2pm until 4pm at the Coral Beach hotel.

Come and join the fun, with games & other activities, as well as a taster lesson.  Both Adults & children are welcome.  Just come in trainers & racquets will be provided.

Call Sacha Appleton Tennis Academy now to book your slot in advance on 99 329107

Exhibition Was a Hit!


On Sunday, Sacha Appleton Tennis Coaching was on display at the Health & Wellbeing Festival in Pafos. A bright black and green combination stand stood out in a prime position by the entry.  Interest levels were high and attendance was good for the 2pm introductory tennis lesson.

My stand at the exhibition

I certainly enjoyed the show and would like to thank everyone who came to see me.  I would like to give an especially big thank you to Nasos at Tennis Point for all his help – the prince roll up posters were superb and the huge Prince Tennis Racquet went down a storm.

Watch Some Great Tennis Matches At Aphrodite Hills This Saturday Afternoon


The ATL (Amateur Tennis league) is coming to town – Cyprus Tennis fans are getting a treat.  The  ATL Cyprus’ 2011 season is drawing to a close.  The ATL 1000 Singles finals for both Limassol and Nicosia are taking place in the luxurious surroundings of Aphrodite Hills this Saturday afternoon.  Are you coming?  It’s a great opportunity to watch some good tennis and meet other tennis players.  As a Tennis Coach, I recommend it as you can learn more about how to play, what tactics to use and how to handle playing a match.  So why not come and join us?

At Aphrodite Hills there are 5 hardcourts and 4 sublime clay courts – if you’ve ever played on them, you will know they are championship standard.  A fitting place to hold these finals and sign off 2011 with a flourish.

So who’s playing?

In the Nicosia ATL 1000 Finals, Yiannos Trillides, seeded no 1 in Nicosia and 2 in Cyprus in the ATL rankings, will be facing Petros Ioannou, seeded  5 in Nicosia and 13 in Cyprus.  Have they played each other before?  I don’t know, so if anyone does have that info, please send it into us.

In the Limassol ATL 1000 Finals, Dimitry Lazerev, seeded no 4 in Limassol and 7 in Cyprus, will be looking to end Limassol and Cyprus’ no 1 Marios Papacharalambous’ unbeaten run.  Will he succeed?

Have you noticed though, that all the finalists are men?  Where are the women?  There are some very good female players in Cyprus, but not many have yet signed up to play in the ATL tournaments.  If you’re a female tennis player, why not take part?  I’ve played a number of times in ATL tournaments and never felt I lost because I was playing a man – I lost because I made errors.  So, come on all you women players join us and take pleasure in beating the men 🙂

And, if you’d like to watch some top flight tennis, then come along on Saturday afternoon.  Pull up a chair, have a drink and watch the matches unfold.

Tennis Coaching in Cyprus


Nicolas Mahut against Kristof Vliegen in the 2...

Image via Wikipedia

I love this quote:

“I have always considered tennis as a combat in an arena between two gladiators who have their racquets and their courage as their weapons” – Yannick Noah

Yannick Noah may be a player from many years ago, but this is still more than true.  Just think back to Wimbledon 2010 – where else would you see that?  A record-breaking match that lasted 11 hours and 5 minutes over 3 days and on one of those days 7 hours of continuous play.  John Isner and Nicholas Mahut were gladiators and went beyond normal human endurance.  I wonder if we will ever see anything like it again?

When you play singles, it is just you out there.  All the preparation work has to be done before to get you to that point where you have all the tools, knowledge of how to use them and the physical and mental strength.  All this though is nothing unless you have the desire to win.  Not all of us though want to compete.  What brings us to together is our love of tennis.

So, whether you are beginner, intermediate, or more advanced, or whether you wish to just have fun, or see how far your potential can take you, why not come and try out my coaching.  PTR trained, I love teaching Tennis in Cyprus as well as playing it and get great satisfaction to see my pupils advance.

I have also put together a full support team for those of you that are serious about tennis, or serious about getting fit.  This includes a qualified nutritionist, personal trainer and sports therapist.

I look forward to seeing you out on the courts!