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Effective Tennis Training Program for Kenyatta University Athletes

Jan 27, 2023 | 0 comments

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Jan 27, 2023 | Essays | 0 comments


Tennis is an outdoor sport in Kenyatta University that has many competitions yearly. The program is designed for an athlete who is in the university team. The program is designed for the end year championships that include inter universities, national and regional championships.

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Joseph is a 20 year old Kenyatta University student who has been doing cardiovascular training since the age of 16 years, in addition to strength or flexibility training. He is healthy since he has no medical problems and he is not under any medication. He also has appropriate composition of the body and is highly motivated. The designed program will be helpful in his tennis championship sport.

The total training period of the program will be the macrocycle and it will have training phases. The training phases or the mesocycles of this program will be divided into a period of four weeks or one month. The microcycles within the months will be one week each. The athlete’s individual training workout or session will represent one cycle smaller than the microcyle. From the above description, the training program of Joseph will be like the table below

Training Phases (Mesocycles) Preparatory Phase Competitive Phase Transition



  1. To acquire and improve general physical training capacity
  2. To improve the athletes biomotor abilities required for tennis (agility,coordination,balance,flexibility,endurance,power,mobility,strength and speed)
  3. To master skills

The preparatory phase will be characterized with bulk of training volume for the athlete to adapt. The phase will be divided into two phases; the General and The Specific Preparation. The main objective of the general preparatory phase of the program will be to establish high level of physical conditioning and to promote further training. The General Physical Preparedness (GPP) will be emphasized through general exercises that are unique to the tennis (aerobic endurance/general strength).

The specific preparatory sub phase will be devoted to specific movements and exercises of the tennis patterns. The training will become more specific with the training volume still high. This stage will also represent the transitional shift to the competitive season. Mastery of skills will be the focal point of the specific sub phase.

General preparation

Conditioning- this phase will be to develop the required physical qualities for the high level competition. The interval work will be increasing gradually from 25-60 minutes, 3 days per week averagely. The volume and intensity patterns will be varied

Strength training-resistance training that is tennis specific will be done 2-3 days per week. Interval training will be incorporated with varying patterns across the week.

Specific preparation

Conditioning: it will begin by incorporating high speed intervals to train the body to adapt to the buildup of the waste products and the high energy use patterns that are associated with situation of the game

Interval runs will be performed with the athlete (forward, backward, and side to side) for 3 days per week. The duration will start at 5 minutes and progress up to 20 minutes by the end of the 3 days per week\additionally, the work: recovery duty cycles will start at 1:3 and then progress to 2:1. For instance, 10s work: 30s recovery and this will progress to 10s work: 5s recovery

Plyometric and speed drills will be added in aerobically based intervals

Strength training- will be continued twice per week, concentrating on the sport-specific higher velocity lifts

Sport specific- during this phase the play will include competitive matches



  1. To perfect techniques to enable athletes performance at the highest level
  2. To extend improvement of the biomotor abilities
  3. To maintain the General Physical Preparedness

This phase will focus on skill perfection of the athlete, strategic planning and tactical maneuvers. General physical preparedness and conditioning will be maintained. The competitive phase will also be divided into two; the precompetitive sub phase and the main competition sub phase. The pre competitive sub phase will have the unofficial competitions and exhibitions to evaluate the skills of the athlete.

The main competitor phase will be to maximize the potential of the athlete and facilitate exceptional performances during competitions.

Pre –competition

Conditioning-this phase will feature agility and speed drills that are specific to on court performance.

Strength training-resistance training will decline from 2-1 per week and will be explosive in nature. Rubber tubing and medicine ball will be used for the biomedically specific resistance/speed work

Sport specific-the on court work will concentrate on execution and strategy in addition to playing at more competitive level

Taper –recovery periods will be slowly be increased and the volume of work decreased across the duration cycle


Conditioning-agility, speed and quickness drills will be applied and will last 15-20 minutes per day

Strength training- resistance training will be decline continuously dropping light weight a single day, explosive lifts. The on court points will concentrate on high-intensity points with limited formal play

Taper –all resistance trainings will be ended at this point. Light on court work only and limited points for honing the skills will be used.



  1. To restore the central nervous system
  2. To analyze the past program of training with the results
  3. To map the coming annual plan

This phase will not mean a period of detraining but it will be a period of active rest. The training volume and intensity will be reduced gradually. Total passive rest will be allowed if the athlete will have an injury. This phase will take a maximum of 5 weeks

The table of the training program is below


Month 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12


phases (Meso cycles)

Preparatory 1 Competitive 1 T 1 Preparatory 2 Competitive 2 T 2


Specific preparatory PC Competitive U M Gen prep Specific preparatory PC Competitive U  



T1-Transition phase for two weeks

T2-Transition phase 4-5 weeks long

PC-pre competition, or matches, exhibition games and competitions

U-Unloading or tapering for the major competitions of the year

M-Maintenance of 40-50% of the previous training load

The distribution of the training load of each of training will be as follows

Cycle Volume Intensity Over-Distance Endurance Tempo Lactate Threshold Vo2 Max
Preparatory Moderate to high Low 60% 30% 5% 5% 0%
Pre-competition   Moderate Moderate to high 55% 25% 5-10% 10-15% 0-10%
Taper Low to moderate Moderate to high 55% 25% 5-10% 10-15% 2-5%
Competition Low to moderate High 55% 20% 5-10% 5-10% 0-5%
Transition Low Low 85% 5-10% 0-5% 0% 0%




Duration- 2 to 4 weeks from mid January to February

Purpose- to recover psychologically and physically from the in season competitive phase. These include a tennis related injuries like muscle fatigue and psychological fatigue

Flexibility- this will be done several times daily and will include warm-up, and cool down

Aerobic conditioning– will utilize cross training that emphasize physical activity in other sports

Strength training- will be done 2 times per week

Other- the athlete will train 2-5 times per week to maintain the desired abilities, develop new goals for the next season and review past season


Duration- 8 weeks from mid February to mid April

Purpose- to develop aerobic base and strength

Flexibility-many times daily and will include warm ups and cool downs

Aerobic conditioning- continuous activity at 70-85% MAX HR, 3-5 times per week for 30 minutes

Strength conditioning- 3 times per week

Other- set future goals and master the seasons calendar, begin learning new tennis skills, increase nutrition knowledge


Duration– 8 weeks from mid April to mid June

Purpose-to increase strength, power and aerobic conditioning, and also begins anaerobic training

Flexibility- several per day, warms and cool downs

Aerobic conditioning-1-2 times per week at 70-85% MAX HR for 30 minutes

Anaerobic conditioning- 2-3 times per week at 85-95% MAX HR

Strength training- 2 to 3 times per week

Plyometrics- 2 times per week

Other-further develop and perfect the tennis skills, continue tennis practice, incorporate skills and sports psychology in the practice sessions


Duration-12 weeks from mid June to mid September

Purpose- peak levels in skills training, emphasis on sport specific training, power, strength and endurance conditioning

Flexibility- many times daily, warm ups and cool downs

Aerobic conditioning- 1 time per week

Anaerobic conditioning-3 to 5 times per week at 95% MAX HR

Strength training- 1 to 2 times per week

Plyometrics- 1 to 2 times per week

Other- refine the tennis skills, choose the best tennis equipments, begin to run through the complete program, apply skills and sport psychology


Duration-12 to 18 weeks from mid September- the inter university, national, and regional championships

Purpose-to maintain power, strength, anaerobic and aerobic conditioning throughout the season

Flexibility-many times per day, warm ups and cools down

Aerobic conditioning-none

Anaerobic conditioning-3 to 4 times per week at 95% MAX HR

Strength training- 2 times per week

Plyometrics- 1 time per week

Other-refines and improves the tennis skills constantly, develop knowledge of nutrition for meals while travelling and the pre- competition, and improve skills of sports psychology for the performance of the program.


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