It may involve tennis-inspired moves, but you certainly don’t need to be Serena Williams to wield a racquet and smash it out at Cardio Tennis. Known for its ability to fry calories – up to 500 per hour session for girls and 1000 for guys – the self-paced action and catchy music is drawing all sorts to the court.
We caught up with Tennis Townsville’s Cardio Tennis instructor and self-confessed tennis nut Trish O’Connor to find out what all the fuss is about.
Can the non-tennis players amongst us play Cardio Tennis? We have a really wide range doing it, from people who’ve never hit a ball to those who play. Cardio Tennis is more focussed on fun, fitness, getting energised and moving. The tennis element makes it a bit more competitive!
Is there a big range in fitness levels? Yes, because everyone is self-paced. I can tell the people who want to push themselves so I’ll push the ball a bit wider. Age-wise, I had a 70-year-old lady come the other week and she kept up; so it just depends on whether you’re really seeking to have that cardio experience, as opposed to just the technique. We have the music going and everyone gets into it – even through the speed ladders you’ll see a few little hip swings come out!
What should newbies expect? Every week we mix it up – sometimes it’s strength work, other weeks it’s pure cardio, but it’s all tennis-based. Everything we do, whether it’s core or arm work, is to enhance your tennis game. We set a record the other week for just over 7,000 steps in one session.
What parts of your body does it work? Everything! Tennis is such an awesome all-round form of fitness because it’s short bursts, so you get that explosive power. It’s good for defining arms and building shoulder strength, plus abs – when you’re hitting the ball you need to use a lot of stability and engage your core.
Any misconceptions about Cardio Tennis? People think that they need to be able to play tennis to do Cardio Tennis, but really it’s aimed at those who have never played and are here to have fun and try to hit a ball – if they hit a ball over, it’s awesome. It’s amazing to see that progression in skill too – you see people who, three months ago had never played, and are smacking it over the net.
Do you find participants get inspired to get involved in tennis in other ways? I think a lot of people come because their kids are interested in tennis and it gives them a bit of tennis experience so that they can come down and have a hit as a family.
Last words? I’m very passionate about tennis and think more females should play, but I think they’re so scared because they’ve never experienced it. It’s just a good way to have fun – we’re a little community and it’s very social – there’s always a bit of banter too!
Where: Tennis Townsville, 32 Burke Street, North Ward
When: Monday and Thursday nights from 5.30pm-6.30pm. Please note that Cardio Tennis sessions are currently on hold. Please contact Tennis Townsville directly about when they’ll resume.
What to wear: Fitness gear, a water bottle and a sweat towel.
More information: Call Tennis Townsville on 4721 5129 or email [email protected]