I’m very disappointed about the messages our top line tennis pros are giving to young people today. “A strain in the groin and I don’t play a tournament”, “A pulled muscle and I withdraw from the match”, “I won’t play unless I’m 100% fit.” What wimps!
These guys wouldn’t last 5 minutes in my group of over 70 tennis players. None of us have been 100% fit for 30 years. Last week we had one player just returning from open heart surgery. Another turned up with 6 monitors stuck to his body so his doctor could check his heart. A third player was getting used to a new knee and his mate was trying to adjust his game after recently having cataract surgery and can now see the ball properly. Anyone complaining of anything as feeble as a sore groin or a pulled muscle would be laughed off the court.
The other thing that I dislike about these multi- millionaire players is that they hit perfect shots – 99% of the time. How boring!
On the tough over 70s circuit, anyone who hit more than 6 perfect shots in a set would be accused of cheating. A high percentage of uncontrolled shots makes the game less predictable and would provide much amusement to the spectators – if we ever had any.
Now while none of us have been invited onto the veterans’ international circuit, we are all grateful that we can still turn up, hit a few balls and have a couple of beers.
Now not everyone in their 70s are physically able to, or want to play tennis. The point I’m trying to make is that doing some regular exercise that raises your heart rate and gives you a few laughs is good for you, especially as we age. It helps keep you younger, healthier and happier.
One thing I am envious of Federer, Nadal and co is that they have umpires to keep score for them. The one thing that causes friction amongst our group of aging, would be athletes is scoring. Only a couple of the group can remember the scores and who won the point before last. So perhaps we need some memory improvement techniques, as well as tennis coaching.
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