40 Percent Of What Food Goes To Animal Feed Racquetball After 40 – How to Beat the Younger, Faster Player

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Racquetball After 40 – How to Beat the Younger, Faster Player

My return to racquetball began six months ago, just after my 42nd birthday. After one session in the 4-wall ping-pong room, I quickly remembered why I love this game. Action. Speed. Aggression. Procedure. External movement. Body Slams Dirty talk…Racquetball has all of this – plus a great cardio workout. After an hour, I was used.

The next day, I remembered why I stopped playing. Oh. Wounds in places I forgot I had. However, within a few weeks of playing regularly 2X a week – and with an enthusiastic warm up routine – my body quickly improved.

I’m not a doctor or an athlete, but I love to play sports and work out, and I’ve learned what I can do to keep my old body in shape. If you want to get back to racquetball (and c’mon…I know you do!) here are three areas you need to focus on to keep playing…and winning.

1. Don’t Write Your Own Checks You Can’t Cash

The adrenaline of the game can motivate you to play games that will punish yourself. The most common physical attacks are: water for the ball and running into a wall. Add to that hyperextending your joints and hitting the ball too hard and you have a recipe for a serious headache after your court session. If you play several times a week, nagging bumps and pulls can turn into serious injuries that will take significant time to recover. If you are over 40, you may have a few more LBs than you did when you played in your 20s. The extra weight combined with hard movements and lunges will lead to either heel injuries, knee strains, or back pulls (or all of them!). I’ve had them, and the only way to get them back is often to do NOTHING for a long time – and that’s not fun at all.

Don’t let your pride get the best of you. I’ve lost many game partners who put up a good fight for a game, but can’t come back next week to play again.

Use your head. Stretch for at least 15 minutes before playing. Pre-treat your stretch with a short jog. Play against the side walls for at least 5 minutes. Do small exercises on the ground – it’s small lunges that lead to muscle pulls, so warm up the muscles before playing.

Deal with your post-game battle wounds ASAP. Don’t be a hero and hang around for a week – if you do you start down the road of long term nagging injury. Ice, jacuzzi, asprin, wrap, etc. Get some sleep so your body can heal. Take glucosamine for your joints. If you take care of yourself, it will acclimate…just don’t expect it to bounce back like it did in your 20s!

2. Gear Up

Goggle, Shoes, Racquet Gloves and Knee Support. This is the weapon you need.

Yes, goggles can fog up… but goggles can’t be replaced. Every time I think of taking off my goggles – I end up taking a shot at the cup. A compressed racquet ball hitting your eye socket can instantly tear your eye ball. That said. Take 2 pairs and rotate them when one fogs up.

The shoes. You need good shoes, that fit snugly. Don’t get your old nikes – get some new shoes. You don’t need to use a tax. Get 2 cheap pairs that you can rotate because the pair has time to recover. If your ankles are a bit of a character, you may want to consider basketball shoes for extra support. If you twist your ankle you are on the injured reserve for a while. Or, you can wrap your ankles before playing. Hey! It’s not about looking ‘pretty… it’s about winning!

Racquet gloves. Maintain your hand to avoid carpal tunnel from pressure to grip the racquet. Worth the small investment.

Knee support. I’m not a big guy… 170 pounds, 5′ 10″ – and I’m in good shape. But, I wear knee supports, and I’ll tell you why. Because my knees are hurting blow. If you want to play hard, you’ll end up diving for the ball or scrambling off the floor. You’re a warrior-you can’t help it! In the heat of battle, your knees will take hits, but in the next day. you will be hurt And each next game… they will get worse, and worse. Soon, you will stop playing for a while, Let’s face it – you are not 20 anymore, your body needs time. To get it back.Also you need to go to work on Monday and still be full load for all your families junk!Make sure you have some rest for your family!

Don’t show up with velcro knee pads… you’re not even left behind! Slip-on, non-restrictive breathable latex-type knee supports that prevent movement will help your knees survive.

3. Winning Strategy: Place & Location. Especially important if you are playing young bucks that have the ability to sleep. To preserve your energy, you need to be smart. Playing smart is putting the ball in the right place, and putting yourself in the right place on the court. Hitting the ball hard does not win the game. Moving the ball where your opponent doesn’t. Let the adulterer run. Make them dive. Let them beg for mercy!

Here are a few gaming tips I’ve learned that increase your odds of winning.

1. Quiver O’ Serve. You should have 3 or 4 good jobs in your arsenal. Make a difference to your work. Look back before serving to see where your opponent is. Hitting into the back corner is fine, but let it play off the side wall before it lands. Hit one that goes to your opponent’s ankles – fast. Illa is a dead high-angle lob if you can’t bring it back to the wall. Put the ball faster wall-hugging the back. Once you get your opponent to attack on your serve, keep your difference and feed the serves quickly. Don’t give them time to set up.

2. Body Position. In general, with regards to position, try to stay in the middle of the court. If you’re up against a wall, hit a cross wall shot and the ball returns to where it came from – which forces your opponent to your wall. Don’t hold the ball. If your opponent is ahead in the court, take him back with a dog-shot that forces him back. If you find yourself in a corner, get out of it and get back to the center as quickly as possible. Stay in the middle.

3. Wait for the Ball. When you get a good forehand shot, don’t blow it. If you see a way where you can hit the ball, make sure you are HIGH in your shot. If it’s all juice, you’ll hit too hard and the ball will bounce too high, causing your opponent to get back with a negative return.

If the ball goes past him, no big deal. Turn and play off the back wall. Play your game, not the opponents game.

4. Find your Achilles’ Heel. Take lots of shots early in the game to find your opponents weakness. But don’t be tempted when you have a shot. Get the kill. Toy with your opponent when you can afford it.

5. Let the Serve! You can’t score if you don’t have the work. If you’re returning a job, it’s GAME ON time. Get the job back at all costs. Don’t let your opponent run up a tab. How do you do this when they have a bad service? Learn how to read your opponents’ body language. Often a server will ‘telegraph’ their move with a change of feet, a change of wrist, rather than a shoulder. These little ‘counts’ will give you that extra milli-second to get the jump on that job and get that SOB out of the server box.

6. Postage, storage, storage. Make your opponent run, scramble, dive. EVERY shot should be hard to return. That doesn’t mean it has to be a dead shot, or a hard hitting ball. To place the ball where your opponent is not, you need to know where they are! Which leads to my next tip.

7. Look at the ball and look at your opponent. Develop your kung fu skills. If your opponent is screaming, they will hit weak returns (except for the occasional LUCKY kill shot!). Try to anticipate where their next shot will go.

8. And finally, my favorite tip. If you really want to get better, play at least 2X a week, and play with someone better than you! My regular partner beats me pretty much every game. He is simply a good Ninja. A large arsenal of Sin drugs. A bad off shot (forehand and backhand). And an excellent strategic player. This man was competitive when he was young and never stopped. But, I’m getting over it and I’ve beaten it a few times. I want a challenge to win. I also beat other racquetball players easily.

But… I don’t say having an obsession and being happy 5+ times a week. You will beat yourself up and quench your thirst for the game. Find some regulars you can play with and stick to a schedule.

Have fun, cross train, play hard, and let those young men SING!

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