Vasilios Koronas, Nikolaos Koutlianos

DOI Number
First page
Last page


Tennis is one of the most popular individual sports all over the world. Strength and trained muscles are required for a player in order to achieve a good backhand, forehand, volley or flat stroke. Especially while playing tennis are many kinds of muscles involved, including the lower body muscles, trunk muscles and upper body muscles. The purpose of this review is to present the activated muscles in the basic tennis movements of forehand and backhand and to improve the knowledge about their role in order to help tennis players and coaches to enhance their tennis performance and to reduce risk of injury. To support the present review, data were gathered from library and network databases using keywords such as tennis, muscles, forehand, and backhand for publications between 2015 and 2019. Overall, thirty-five references were detected and used. The literature showed that forehand and backhand drives are strokes that involve muscles not only of the upper limbs but also a series of more complex movements that start with the feet and end with the swinging of the tennis racket. The insight for the action of the muscles in tennis should be utilized in tennis players so as to better understand the muscular function which takes part in specific tennis movements and has a greater performance. In addition, this knowledge is considered strongly beneficial for the coaches and the favourable building of the training process.


Tennis, Muscle, Tennis Stroke, Forehand, Backhand

Full Text:



Agrotou, S. (2015). Notes for the course of tennis. Athens. Department of Physical Education and Sports Science, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens.

Alexe, D.I., Alexe, C.I., Tohanean, D.I., & Tudose, A.V. (2020). Mijloace utilizate in pregatirea, monitorizarea, profilaxia, refacerea si cercetarea din domeniul sportului (Means used in training, monitoring, prophylaxis, recovery and research in the field of sports). Cluj-Napoca: Risoprint. In Romanian

Amaro, A.M., Paulino, M.F., Neto, M.A., & Roseiro, L. (2019). Hand-arm vibration assessment and changes in the thermal map of the skin in tennis athletes during the service. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 16(24), 5117.

Bisschops, J., & Lavallee, M. (2016). Anatomy of the leg. In: J. Dixon (Ed.), Muscular injuries in the posterior leg. Boston, MA: Springer.

Bolsterlee, B., D’Souza, A., Gandevia, S.C., & Herbert, R.D. (2017). How does passive lengthening change the architecture of the human medial gastrocnemius muscle? Journal of Applied Physiology, 122(4), 727-738.

Bordoni, B., & Varacallo, M. (2020). Anatomy, bony pelvis and lower limb, thigh quadriceps muscle. In: StatPearls, Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing.

Burute, P., & Vatsalaswamy, P. (2017). Accessory heads of forearm flexors and flexor carpi radialis brevis: a cadaveric study with clinical significance. International Journal of Anatomy and Research, 5(2.1), 3698-3703.

Capitanio, D., Moriggi, M., & Gelfi, C. (2017). Mapping the human skeletal muscle proteome: progress and potential. Expert Review of Proteomics, 14(9), 825-839.

Colomar, J., Baiget, E., & Corbi, F. (2020). Influence of strength, power and muscular stiffness on stroke velocity in junior tennis players. Frontiers in Physiology, 11, 196.

Elce, A., Cardillo, G., Ventriglia, M., Giordano, C., Amirante, F., Mazza, G., et al. (2017). Anthropometric characteristics of young Italian tennis players. Journal of Human Sport and Exercise, 12(3), 651-658.

Fields, K.B., & Rigby, D. (2016). Muscular calf injuries in runners. Current Sports Medicine Reports, 15(5), 320-324.

Genevois, C., Creveaux, T., Hautier, C., & Rogowski, I. (2015). Trunk and shoulder muscle coordination during one, two-handed medicine-ball side throws and tennis forehand drive. Journal of Athletic Enhancement,

Genevois, C., Reid, M., Rogowski, I., & Crespo, M. (2015). Performance factors related to the different tennis backhand groundstrokes: a review. Journal of Sports Science and Medicine, 14(1), 194-202.

Hodde, F.L., Ioannou, C.I., & Altenmuller, E. (2019). Mapping of finger fascicles within the flexor digitorum superficialis and profundus muscles. Muscle Nerve, 60(5), 579-582.

Ivančević, T., Jovanović, B., Đukić, M., Marković, S., & Đukić, N. (2008). Biomechanical analysis of shots and ball motion in tennis and the analogy with handball throws. Facta Universitatis Series Physical Education and Sport, 6(1), 51-66.

Jarmey, D.C., & Sharkey, J. (2015). The concise book of muscles, 3rd Eds. California: North Atlantic Books.

Kumar, A., & Kumar, A. (2017). Biomechanical comparison of two different variations of backhand drive in tennis. Indian Journal of Physical Education, Sports Medicine and Exercise Science. 17(1), 9-11.

Lai, A.K.M., Biewener, A.A., & Wakeling, J.M. (2019). Muscle-specific indices to characterise the functional behaviour of human lower-limb muscles during locomotion. Journal of Biomechanics, 89, 134-138.

Larionov, A., Yotovski, P., & Filgueira, L. (2018). A detailed review on the clinical anatomy of the pectoralis major muscle. SM Journal of Clinical Anatomy, 2(3), 1015.

Maharaj, J.N., Cresswell, A.G., & Lichtwark, G.A. (2016). The mechanical function of the tibialis posterior muscle and its tendon during locomotion. Journal of Biomechanics, 49(14), 3238-3243.

Martin, C., Bideau, B., Delamarche, P., & Kulpa, R. (2016). Influence of a prolonged tennis match play on serve biomechanics. PLoS ONE, 11(8), e0159979.

Myers, N.L., Kibler, W.B. (2018). Core stability in tennis players. In: G. Di Giacomo, T. Ellenbecker, & W. Kibler, (Eds.), Tennis medicine. Springer.

Olewnik, L., Podgorski, M., Polguj, M. Ruzik, K., & Topol, M. (2019). A cadaveric study of the morphology of the extensor hallucis longus - a proposal for a new classification. BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders, 20(1), 310.

Rodríguez, D.S., & Del Valle, M. (2018). High-intensity specific intermittent training (SIT) in the preparation of the tennis player. Archivos de Medicina del Deporte, 35(6), 402-408.

Roeter, P., & Kovacs, M. (2019). Tennis anatomy. Champaign, IL: Human Kinetics.

Saeki, J., Nakamura, M., Nakao, S., Fujita, K., Yanase, K., & Ichihashi, N. (2018). Muscle stiffness of posterior lower leg in runners with a history of medial tibial stress syndrome. Scandinavian Journal of Medicine and Science in Sports, 28(1), 246-251.

Sanchis-Moysi, J., Dorado, C., Idoate, F., González-Henríquez, J.J., Serrano-Sanchez, J.A., & Calbet, J.A.L. (2016). The asymmetry of pectoralis muscles is greater in male prepubertal than in professional tennis players. European Journal of Sport Science, 16(7), 780-786.

Save A.V., Fishman F.G. (2019). Tennis and golf wrist. In: A. Bauer & D. Bae (Eds.), Upper extremity injuries in young athletes. contemporary pediatric and adolescent sports medicine. Springer, Cham.

Sawali, L. (2018). Arm muscle power and energy system measurement of forehand drive on tennis. International Research Journal of Engineering, IT and Scientific Research, 4(4), 30-39.

Tohanean, D.I. (2018). Motric activity - the main factor in preventing sedentary schooling in 12-14 year-old. Bulletin of the Transilvania University of Brasov, Series IX: Sciences of Human Kinetics, 11(60), 123-128.

Özek, S. (2020). Isolated long thoracic nerve injury case presentation: a sports injury. Acta Neurologica Belgica, 120(1), 199-200.

West, C.T., Ricketts, D., & Brassett, C. (2017). An anatomical study of additional radial wrist extensors including a unique extensor carpi radialis accessories. Folia Morphologica, 76(4), 742–747.

Whiting, W.C. (2019) Dynamic human anatomy, 2nd Eds. Champaign, IL: Human Kinetics.

Zdilla, M.J, Paulet, J.E., Lear, J.J., Addie, K.M., & Lambert, H.W. (2018). A review of extensor hallucis longus variants featuring a novel extensor primi internodii hallucis muscle merging with extensor hallucis brevis. The Journal of Foot and Ankle Surgery, 57(6), 1218-1220.

Zhang, S., Fu, W., Pan, J., Wang, L., Xia, R., & Liu, Y. (2016). Acute effects of Kinesio taping on muscle strength and fatigue in the forearm of tennis players. Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport, 19(6), 459-464.



  • There are currently no refbacks.

ISSN   1451-740X (Print)

ISSN   2406-0496 (Online)