RacquetWorld's Newsletter Racquetball Tip of the Month


Fly Home Snowbirds


Labor day is approaching, the summer is winding down, and my “school” schedule is right around the corner. Like many of you, I live in an area where the sun is a cherished commodity and with no outdoor racquetball courts, I don’t put in many summer hours on the court. Well, now it’s almost time to fly home to my courts (from the golf course down the street not Florida) and this year I don’t want to pull, rip, injure, or embarrass myself the first couple times out. That means I better get off my duff…and so should you!

I find that with my Neanderthal-like warrior attitude fueled by the thrilling first taste of on court adrenaline in months, I potentially face excruciating pain right there on the court. Without doubt the next day’s soreness will bring tears. From past injury experience, I like to concentrate on my hamstrings and my forearm/elbow/shoulder area to minimize the crying.

I hear you all…”I still got some summer left…leave me alone…send me a free racquet.” Well, that racquet could potentially only do you 5 minutes of good if you don’t start getting ready for the court…RIGHT NOW..THIS WEEK!

All you summer softball players…running to first base in a straight line will not protect those hammies on the racquetball court when you move sideways…don’t be fooled.

So what will I be doing?!?!…I’ll be hitting the elliptical and Stairmaster concentrating on my hamstrings (there’s a setting for hamstring workouts) at least 30 minutes a day…then over labor day weekend I will go up to an hour to gain some wind. I will also grab those dumb bells and work on extended arm rotations, shoulder shrugs, bicep curls, and wrist flexes. I really just want to strengthen all the little arm muscles around the wrist and elbow before I subject them to the powerful whiplash effect generated by my forehand. I will do these every other day…it takes 15 minutes to feel a quick burn.

It always sounds pretty easy…and when Labor Day comes and goes and I get on that court completely cold and unprepared I will only have myself to blame. Writing is always easier than living…

My last bit of advice for all you off court summer snowbirds is to take your first couple on court appearances easy. One stupid injury and you’ll be sitting the bench for weeks thinking about this simple summer article and wishing you could go back to the day you first read this tip. You won’t be alone…I’ll be right there with ya.