Yoga teacher Betsy Mayotte, MS, RYT200, NASM-CPT, joined the Tennis Center at College Park (TCCP) last summer to offer classes for members and JTCC parents. She teaches hatha yoga with an emphasis on alignment and breath awareness to improve flexibility, strength, and balance. She also is certified as a fitness trainer by the National Academy of Sports Medicine. Betsy feels right at home at TCCP, having spent much of her life around professional tennis in the Mayotte family. She draws on that experience to enrich her classes. Whatever their level, she encourages her yoga students with the words of Arthur Ashe: “Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can.” Betsy will be a regular contributor to the All ACES blog.
Why do so many tennis players turn to yoga to enhance their performance on the court? The simple answer is that yoga can help develop physical strength and flexibility. Yoga postures with colorful names like “warrior,” “tree,” and “triangle” can improve the tight hips, quads and hamstrings that often challenge tennis players. With continued practice, yoga also can help players prevent injuries and restore balance to offset the effects of an asymmetrical sport like tennis.
But the benefits of yoga go well beyond what can be seen with the eye. Breathing techniques that are practiced along with the physical poses bring focus and a sense of calm, giving players a mental edge that can make all the difference in a game or match. In the words of tennis great, Bill Tilden: “When I remember to breathe my serve goes in. When I don’t, it doesn’t!”
Because yoga offers so much for tennis players, TCCP offers free yoga classes for members and JTCC parents. TCCP yoga students experience a well-rounded practice as well as a particular focus on yoga for tennis. Just this month, for example, we explored pre-match and post-match yoga, a home practice routine for players, and techniques for restoring balance to mind and body.
Yoga classes are offered on Monday evenings in the TCCP yoga studio:
Intermediate Yoga (6:00 to 7:00 PM)
For those with some yoga experience.
Welcoming Yoga (7:00 to 8:00 PM)
For those who are new to yoga or who want to review basics.
Come join us and experience the benefits for yourself!!