Nitin Kirtane shares with us his fitness regime as a professional level tennis player. Nitin is a Davis Cup player, recipient of the prestigious Dhyan Chand award, sought after tennis coach and doting dad to his sons playing in the Junior State National tennis circuit.
In the mind
"At crucial junctures during a match, close points are won by mentally strong players who believe that they will win. Here is where my grandmother's teaching of meditation or “Dhyan” still helps me concentrate. The regular practise of Yoga and Suryanamaskar also help immensely.
Recently I did an Art of Living course to improve my mental strength in tennis. It has bettered my focus while playing.
A proper healthy diet is perhaps the most important aspect in modern sports. Say no to eating oily or junk food, add dry fruits to your diet.
Players should always be hydrated properly to avoid issues like dehydration or cramps. Maintaining good eating habits has helped during my tennis career.
During tournaments, fruits like banana are very important. Eating early is best so that food gets digested. Good sleep means you are fresh for practise and matches. Sportsmen must eat healthy think healthy, exercise well and practice enough to be on top of the game.
Right through my tennis career and even today, my focus on physical fitness has been clear. The right exercise routine has helped me stay physically fit at the age of 47.
My exercise starts at 6 am at the gym with tennis specific training followed by tennis practise till 9.30 am.
The evening session includes physical fitness and tennis match practise.
When you lose
Every time I lost a match, I used to analyse what went wrong and what needs improvement. That helped me come back stronger in the next event.
The love and passion for the game keep me going. I have been playing professionally for four decades and there is still a lot to learn.
I also play actively on the ITF senior tennis circuit. As a player or coach, one has to be physically and mentally active. That motivates junior players to keep playing.
A good tennis day for me involves playing for a full day, working out and guiding my sons Arjun and Aaryan in their practise. I get a sense of satisfaction when I spend time on court and it de-stresses me.
Arjun and Aaryan have started playing on the Junior State National Circuit.
Both are at a crucial stage in their career and require guidance and motivation in the right direction. I stay as positive as possible with both practise and matches so that they work harder on their game."