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Playing on Synthetic courts
I play one and a half hours a day six days a week. I am 45. We have recently started playing on Synthetic courts. An Orhopaedist told me that for people who are above 40, playing on synthetic courts can be very bad for the knees. I have read on websites that it can also casue lower back pain. Can someone explain in little detail how harmful it is .? So far, I have not been able to convince other players to shift to softer courts.
I have started using silcon heel cushions as a preventive measure. I was told that knee caps are not a preventive measure. Is that correct(If it is not, please specify which type of knee caps would suffice) and is there any other precaution in terms of equipment – special shoes or anything else.that one should use on synthetic courts for people of my age?
If you feel any signs of pain after a match or the next day, certainly consider a softer court. Tennis is a healthy activity in general. Listen to your body and you'll be fine.
I would say that if you've been doing this for a while that your knees will be absolutely fine. These are the same people who think you need a belt to do squats. They're preaching absolute garbage for the most part. If you want to take some preventative measures do a bit of weight lifting, and make sure you warm up before you play and stretch after, just like you would do before doing anything physical. If you start feeling pain then you probably need to make a change, but don't do it just because of what you've heard.
Are the synthetic courts you are referring to hard courts? I usually call the har-tru courts (green American clay) synthetic. Now the Swedes play on a surface called Omni-Court which is very different, but it is basically a harder court. If you are referring to har-tru courts, they are very easy on the body as are the red clay courts. You will have no issues there. If you are playing on sufaces that are considered hard, they will cause some pain issues. Swollen knees and feet as well as a sore back are all pretty common when it comes to hard court play. I imagine the gel inserts will be a big help if you have to play on hard courts. You will probably just have to play this one by ear and see how you feel after playing on the "synthetic" courts. Trial by fire is the only real way to tell........
I play on cement courts almost 100% of the time.
My aging body needs new shoes, inserts, and limited court time before the back, hips, knees, ankles, and feet soreness develops more than I can rest them.
I find HarTru really soft, and abrasive, with slow, high bounces.
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