How to Improve Your Tennis Movement (Step by Step)

Are you looking to improve your tennis movement on the court?

We’ve got the perfect guide to the tennis movement you need to perfect.

Why is Movement in Tennis Important?

Have you ever wondered how someone like Lleyton Hewitt made it to world number one? Perhaps Guillermo Coria was your favorite player or maybe you’re now routing for Diego Schwartzman.

What do all these players have in common? Well, yes, they are small, but more importantly, they are all incredible athletes with exceptional tennis movement. 

Great tennis movement allows you to plug the gap between talent, height, power, or even tactical knowledge. 

Below we’re going to give you a step-by-step guide on how to improve your tennis movement allowing you to channel your inner Hewitt! C’mon!!!

It seems a bit of a silly question – what is movement? But movement is such a wide-ranging topic that it is good to start off with what tennis movement actually is. 

On the surface, good movement is being able to be in the perfect position at the correct time with complete balance, in order to play the ball where you want. 

Balance is critical here. You can arrive at the correct time and with the proper distance but if you’re not balanced, you won’t be able to transfer your body weight and create any power in the shot. 

Tennis movement can further be broken down into three different sections;

  • Anticipatory Movement
  • Recovery Movement
  • Reactive Movement

We will look at each type of movement and offer three actionable steps to improve each one. With some dedication in the tennis classroom and some in the gym, you’ll be taking your first steps to better all-round tennis movement

  • Step 1: Understand Recovery Positions 
  • Step 2: Improve your Tactical Awareness 
  • Step 3: Get in the Gym!

So, let’s take a look at the steps you need to take to improve your tennis movement.

Step 1: Understand Recovery Positions

As you’ve probably already figured out, the three types of movement interplay a lot. Thankfully, the Tennis Bros has already broken them all down for you in bite-size chunks! 

The best course to understand when and where to recover is to take the ‘On Your Toes’ Footwork Guide

This course will take you through every recovery position and the game situations where you use them. 

Recovering to the correct position is a fundamental starting point to becoming a competent tennis player. 

You should learn the correct recovery positions before you delve into the tactical intentions of your opponent and the patterns of play that will improve your tactical awareness. 

Without a sound knowledge of recovery positions, you will hit your shot and wait in the same position for the next ball. This gives your opponent complete control over how they move you. 

In other words, you rely solely on your opponent missing instead of being able to dictate the point for yourself.

Step 2: Improve Your Tactical Awareness

Good Anticipatory movement has everything to do with understanding tactics and transitioning that knowledge into action on the tennis court. There is no better course to improve your tactical knowledge than the Tennis Bros Singles Tactics and Doubles Tactics courses. 

Once you improve your tactical knowledge, you can begin to implement it into better recovery positions and reactive tennis movement. 

For example, you may be quicker to react to a short ball, if you know it’s coming.

After you hone your knowledge, you will then need to practice tennis movement patterns to ingrain them into your game. Using a tennis ball machine to practice recovery positions and patterns of play can be a great way to transition your knowledge into action.

Let’s take a look at what anticipatory tennis movement is and how we can improve it!

Anticipatory movement is any movement made as a result of your tennis knowledge and it can be split into two further sections;

  • Opponents Tactical intentions
  • Point Patterns of Play

An example of an opponent’s tactical intentions would be the following. You know someone is trying to play to your backhand. As a result, you recover slightly further to your backhand side to cover the shot and perhaps try and hit a forehand. 

An example of understanding patterns of play would be, approaching cross-court to someone’s backhand and following your shot cross-court to your recovery position at the net. By doing so, you anticipate the most logical place your opponent will hit their next shot. 

Improving your tactical awareness is going to enable you to anticipate your opponent’s shot before it happens and move accordingly. This will give you more time to get into position to hit a good shot and put you at a significant advantage in any match.

Step 3: Reactive Movement 

Reactive movement is your ability to react to the stimuli of the ball coming to you at pace and positioning yourself in the correct way to hit the ball. 

You are always looking to hit the ball with complete control over your body. If you are off balance, you won’t be able to control your body weight while hitting the ball. 

Ideally, you should be balanced on both legs with slightly more weight on your back leg. This will give you the kinetic potential to transfer your balance from your back leg to your front, giving you power and control. 

Improving your reactive movement boils down to your athleticism and improving every aspect of your fitness – speed, power, agility, flexibility, and coordination. 

Once again, we have you covered when it comes to tennis court coordination, speed, and agility. These tennis footwork drills practiced over time will train your nervous system to move without thinking on the court. 

Similarly, here are the best tennis agility drills you can do to improve your movement. 

Your reactive movement encompasses your entire fitness ability and athletic performance. As a result, it’s very difficult to point to one course or plan to follow that will make you the next Novak Djokovic. 

The topic of improving your fitness is too multi-faceted and too large in scope to cover in this article but I will point you in the direction of someone who has helped the tennis bros.

Ben Pattrick, better known as, Knees Over Toes Guy, has a fantastic set of courses that not only bulletproof your body for the hardships of intense tennis training, but also improve your overall ability to run, turn, jump, and throw. 

He presents the courses in a way that is scaled for everyone from beginners to professional athletes and I guarantee you will see the results if you follow along.

Become a Master at Tennis Movement

We’ve outlined a great plan to get you up and running on the court and become a tennis movement master. 

You’ll first want to learn recovery positions like the back of your hand. Learning the right recovery positions for any given game situation is part one. You’ll then have to practice, practice, practice until you’re recovering to the correct place without even thinking. 

The next easiest way to improve your movement is to become a better tactician. By learning everything in the Singles and Doubles Tactics courses, you’ll be able to apply your knowledge to improve your anticipatory movement. 

By knowing where the ball is going to go and moving towards it early, you will be able to take time away from your opponent and most importantly improve your positioning to hit your ball. 

Last but not least is to continuously improve your athleticism. Playing tennis will do this naturally but if you have the time and inclination to pursue fitness outside of the court, then take look at this free article on the best agility movement drills

Tennis Bros has a huge range of articles for you to soak up everything you need to know about tennis. 

By improving your tennis knowledge, you will not only become a better tactician, technical player, and mental player but also a better mover!

If you would like to cut your learning time down to just a few hours of concise material, take a look at “On Your Toes” – The Footwork Guide course.  This could be what you’re looking for.  Give it a go to help improve your tennis movement.

"On Your Toes" - The Footwork Guide
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Check Out These Free Resources On How to Improve Your Tennis Movement


The Tennis Bros hope this has been helpful to you and sets you on a path to becoming a better tennis player. With time and effort, we’re sure you’ll be changing your middle name to Lleyton Guillermo!

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