You probably want to improve your health and become more active. Perhaps you have already added some new activities to your everyday life such as yoga and now want to consider a competitive team sport such as racquetball or tennis. This can be a tough decision to make when you have limited time to devote to it. Here at Success, Health & Lifestyle, we think racquetball makes an excellent choice when compared to tennis. We discuss the five reasons for this recommendation below.
Racquetball Burns Calories Quickly
Although the typical game of racquetball takes just 20 minutes to play, most people run between one and two miles in that short time-frame. You will derive the most pleasure from playing racquetball if you’re already physically fit, have excellent upper body strength, and strong coordination skills. But all players need to start somewhere. If you haven’t exercised or played competitive sports in a while, find a partner with a similar background and start with a shorter game. It won’t be long before you’re burning up to 800 calories an hour just by playing a moderately intense game of racquetball.
Equipment Costs for Racquetball are Low
Although both tennis and racquetball require a racket and a ball to play the game, each piece of equipment has considerable differences. For example, the maximum length of a tennis racket is 29 inches and the maximum width of the frame is 12.5 inches.
With racquetball, the racket itself cannot exceed 22 inches from the top to the handle. No maximum width requirements exist in racquetball.
In terms of cost, tennis rackets can range from about $20 to $200, depending on brand name and quality. A similar price range exists for racquetball rackets, although more are on the lower end of the spectrum as compared to tennis rackets.
These two sports also use different types of balls. Tennis balls have a fabric cover and a hollow inside while balls used for racquetball contain hollow rubber. The cost of the latter tends to run a bit lower depending of brand, quality, and quantity. The cost of shoes appropriate to each sport is another thing to consider.
Scoring is Easier in Racquetball
The goal of racquetball is to reach 15 points before the other player in each round. You must win two rounds to win the game. If each player wins one round, they will play a third tie-breaking round consisting of 11 points. Most people find racquetball scoring straightforward and simple to learn.
In tennis, players engage in a set until one of them wins three of out of five. Every set contains at least a few games that require you to beat the opposing player in more games of the set compared to the number of games he or she wins. Games within sets can proceed to a tie-breaking round as well. Whereas you earn only single points in racquetball, you earn points in groups of 15 or 10 in tennis. This can get confusing, especially for beginners.
Racquetball Has a Long List of Health Benefits
All sports offer some degree of health benefits. But you can improve your health in multiple ways by choosing to play racquetball. The top benefits include:
- Improves mental agility and eye-hand coordination: Playing racquetball requires you to make split-second strategy decisions. This prompts a faster response between your brain and muscles responsible for completing the action.
- Improves flexibility, coordination, and benefits: The wide range of motions you use in racquetball requires your body to stretch, remain balanced, and use precise coordination. The more you play, the more you improve your flexibility.
- Better heart health: The constant motion required in racquetball keeps your heart pumping much faster than it does while you’re sedentary. Racquetball is a workout for your heart and your body.
- Strengthen muscles and bones: Since racquetball calls on all major muscle groups, engaging in it often can slow the bone loss common with aging. It increases strength in your muscles and bones just because it’s a weight-bearing activity.
- Reduces stress: It’s challenging to think about your to-do list or other life stressors when you’re strategizing your next move and hitting a ball with a racket as hard as you can. The intense physical activity reduces feel-good endorphins in your brain to help you feel calmer even after the game is over.
Get Out and Be Social
Tennis and racquetball pretty much tie in this category since both require playing other people. Whether you join a league or play racquetball with friends you already know, it’s a great opportunity to get out of the house, stay active, and enjoy the company of others even when competing against them.