Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
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Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
ISSN: 1303 - 2968
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©Journal of Sports Science and Medicine (2013) 12, 211 - 224
Review article
Nutrition for Tennis: Practical Recommendations
Mayur K. Ranchordas1,, David Rogersion1, Alan Ruddock1, Sophie C. Killer2, Edward M. Winter1

1 Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield, UK
2 Loughborough University, Loughborough, UK

Mayur K. Ranchordas
✉ Sheffield Hallam University, Department of Sport, Sheffield, S10 2BP, UK
Email: m.ranchordas@shu.ac.uk

Received:
31-08-2012 -- Accepted: 12-10-2012 --
Published (online): 01-06-2013

ABSTRACT

Tennis is a pan-global sport that is played year-round in both hemispheres. This places notable demands on the physical and psychological preparation of players and included in these demands are nutritional and fluid requirements both of training and match- play. Thus, the purpose of this article is to review nutritional recommendations for tennis. Notably, tennis players do not excel in any particular physiological or anthropometric characteristic but are well adapted in all areas which is probably a result of the varied nature of the training demands of tennis match play. Energy expenditures of 30.9 ± 5.5 and 45.3 ± 7.3 kJ·min-1 have been reported in women and men players respectively regardless of court surface. Tennis players should follow a habitually high carbohydrate diet of between 6-10 g·kg-1·d-1 to ensure adequate glycogen stores, with women generally requiring slightly less than men. Protein intake guidelines for tennis players training at a high intensity and duration on a daily basis should be ~1.6 g·kg-1·d-1 and dietary fat intake should not exceed 2 g·kg-1·d-1. Caffeine in doses of 3 mg·kg-1 provides ergogenic benefit when taken before and/or during tennis match play. Depending on environmental conditions, sweat rates of 0.5 to and over 5 L·hr-1 and sodium losses of 0.5 - 1.8 g have been recorded in men and women players. 200 mL of fluid containing electrolytes should be consumed every change-over in mild to moderate temperatures of < 27°C but in temperatures greater than 27°C players should aim for ≤ 400 mL. 30-60 g·hr-1 of carbohydrate should be ingested when match play exceeds 2 hours.

Key words: Caffeine, diet, electrolyte, supplements, carbohydrate, fluid
Key Points
  • Tennis players should follow a habitually high carbohydrate diet of between 6-10 g·kg to ensure adequate glycogen stores, with women generally requiring slightly less than men. Protein intake guidelines for tennis players training at a high intensity and duration on a daily basis should be ~1.6 g·kg·d. Dietary fat intake should not exceed 2 g·kg·d.
  • Caffeine in doses of 3 mg·kg can provide ergogenic benefit when taken before and/or during tennis match play.
  • 200 mL of fluid containing electrolytes should be consumed every change-over in mild to moderate temperatures of < 27°C but in temperatures greater than 27°C players should aim for ≥ 400 mL.
  • 30-60 g·hr of carbohydrate should be ingested when match play exceeds 2 hours.
  • During periods of travel, specific dietary requirements can be communicated with agencies and hotels prior to arrival and in the event that suitably nutritious foods are not available in the host country, players can bring or send non-perishable foods and goods where customs and quarantine laws allow.

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    Mayur K. Ranchordas, David Rogersion, Alan Ruddock, Sophie C. Killer, Edward M. Winter, (2013) Nutrition for Tennis: Practical Recommendations. Journal of Sports Science and Medicine (12), 211 - 224.

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