Padel Fitness: How to Stay in Shape and Improve

Male padel player keeping fit

Padel is not only fun but also a great way to stay in shape.

With its fast-paced nature and strategic gameplay, padel requires players to be physically fit and agile.

In this guide, we’ll explore how you can use padel fitness to stay in shape and enhance your game.

We’ll discuss various exercises and training techniques that can help improve your strength, agility, and overall fitness, enabling you to excel on the padel court.

Plus, we even include a gym plan for padel players who want to improve as quickly as possible.

Warm-up Exercises

Before engaging in any physical activity, it’s crucial to warm up your body to prevent injuries and optimise performance.

Here are a few warm-up exercises specifically tailored for padel players:

  • Jogging or Jumping Jacks: Start with a light jog or a few sets of jumping jacks to elevate your heart rate and warm up your muscles.
  • Arm Circles and Shoulder Rolls: Rotate your arms in large circles, both clockwise and counterclockwise, to loosen up your shoulder joints and improve mobility.
  • Lunges: Perform a set of walking lunges to activate your leg muscles and improve flexibility in your hips and thighs.
Woman warming up with lunges

Cardiovascular Conditioning

Cardiovascular fitness is vital for padel players as it helps maintain stamina and endurance throughout a match.

Incorporate the following cardio exercises into your training routine:

  • Interval Training: Alternate between high-intensity bursts of activities such as sprinting or skipping and short periods of active rest, like jogging or walking. This mimics the stop-and-go nature of padel and improves your ability to recover quickly.
  • Cycling or Running: Engage in regular cycling or running sessions to enhance your cardiovascular endurance and build leg strength.
Man jogging in a park to keep fit for padel

Strength and Power Training

Developing strength and power is essential for executing powerful shots and swift movements on the padel court.

Consider the following exercises to build strength and power:

  • Squats: Perform squats to strengthen your leg muscles, including quadriceps, hamstrings, and glutes. Add variations like jump squats for explosive power.
  • Medicine Ball Exercises: Incorporate exercises like medicine ball slams, twists, and throws to improve core strength and rotational power.
  • Resistance Training: Use resistance bands or weights to target specific muscle groups involved in padel movements, such as shoulders, arms, and core.
Woman doing a barbell squat in a gym

Agility and Footwork Drills

Padel requires quick reflexes, agile movements, and precise footwork.

Incorporate the following drills into your training regime:

  • Ladder Drills: Set up an agility ladder and practice various footwork patterns, such as quick side steps, high knees, and lateral shuffles.
  • Cone Drills: Arrange cones in a zigzag pattern and practice changing directions rapidly, mimicking the movements required during a padel match.
  • Balance Exercises: Engage in balance exercises like single-leg squats or standing on a stability disc to improve stability and agility on the court.
Man doing side steps around cones on a padel court

Flexibility and Injury Prevention

Maintaining flexibility is crucial for preventing injuries and maximising your range of motion on the padel court.

Incorporate the following stretching techniques into your routine:

  • Dynamic Stretching: Perform dynamic stretches that involve moving parts of your body through a full range of motion. Examples include leg swings, arm circles, and trunk rotations.
  • Static Stretching: After your workout, engage in static stretches, holding each stretch for 20-30 seconds, to improve flexibility and reduce muscle soreness.
Woman stretching her hamstrings

What Are The Best Gym Exercises For Padel?

From our experience, the best gym exercises for padel players are:

Squats, Plank, Deadlifts, Rows, Plyometric (Agility) exercises, Bench Press, and Cycling.

Padel Fitness Gym Plan

Day 1: Strength Training

Squats: 3 sets of 10 repetitions

  • Focus on proper form and gradually increase the weight over time.
  • Rest for 60 seconds between sets.

Romanian Deadlifts: 3 sets of 10 repetitions

  • Maintain a slight bend in the knees and hinge at the hips while keeping your back straight.
  • Rest for 60 seconds between sets.

Dumbbell Bench Press: 3 sets of 10 repetitions

  • Use a weight that challenges you while maintaining proper form.
  • Rest for 60 seconds between sets.

Bent-Over Rows: 3 sets of 10 repetitions

  • Keep your back straight and pull the weight towards your midsection.
  • Rest for 60 seconds between sets.

Plank: 3 sets, hold for 30-60 seconds

  • Engage your core and maintain a straight line from your head to your heels.
  • Rest for 30 seconds between sets.
Best gym exercises for padel

Day 2: Cardiovascular Conditioning

Interval Training on Treadmill or Stationary Bike: 20 minutes

  • Alternate between 30 seconds of high-intensity effort (sprinting or cycling at a high resistance) and 60 seconds of low-intensity effort (walking or cycling at a lower resistance).
  • Adjust the intensity and duration based on your fitness level.

Rowing Machine: 15 minutes

  • Maintain a moderate pace and focus on your form.
  • Use the rowing machine to engage your upper and lower body simultaneously.
Rowing machine and cycling bikes

Day 3: Agility and Core Training

Ladder Drills: 3 sets, perform each drill 3 times

  • Quick feet: Step in and out of ladder squares as quickly as possible.
  • Lateral hops: Hop side to side over the ladder.
  • Ickey shuffle: Step into each ladder square in an alternating pattern.

Medicine Ball Russian Twists: 3 sets of 15 repetitions

  • Sit on the ground with your knees bent, holding a medicine ball. Twist your torso from side to side, tapping the ball on the ground on each side.

Side Planks: 3 sets, hold for 30-45 seconds on each side

  • Start in a side plank position, supporting your body on one forearm. Maintain a straight line from your head to your feet.
Best agility and core padel fitness exercises

Day 4: Active Recovery and Flexibility

Yoga or Pilates: 30-45 minutes

  • Engage in a yoga or Pilates session to improve flexibility, core strength, and body awareness.

Stretching Routine: 10-15 minutes

  • Perform static stretches targeting major muscle groups, focusing on areas like the shoulders, hips, hamstrings, and calves.
Yoga stretching exercises

On the 5th day, you repeat the 4-day plan and so on.

Remember to listen to your body and take rest days as needed.

The gym plan outlined above is a general guideline, and you can adjust it based on your preferences and schedule.

Also remember that It’s essential to combine gym workouts with on-court practice and the correct nutritional diet to give yourself the best boost in performance and fitness in padel.

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Alfie Godfrey Padel Athletes Founder

About the Author

Alfie Godfrey – Padel Player (8+ Years) & Coach

From the moment Alfie discovered Padel on a family holiday in Barcelona back in 2015, his passion for this amazing sport knows no bounds. Driven by a mission to propel Padel to new heights worldwide, Alfie is dedicated to delivering the pinnacle of quality content.

Drawing from his own extensive 8-year journey as a player and the collective expertise of the esteemed team at PadelAthletes, he provides unrivaled insights, recommendations, and guides. Alfie and our ever-expanding network of casual and professional players, club owners, and sports scientists empower us to create the ultimate resources on all things Padel.

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