Maria Sharapova on the Workout That She Loves for Agility Work (and No, It’s Not Tennis)
Maria Sharapova is a force to be reckoned with on the tennis court. The superstar athlete was ranked as number one—worldwide—in tennis at the age of 18, and went on to win five Grand Slam titles in her long and impressive career. Though she's retired from the sport, Sharapova is still putting her fitness skills to use with her at-home exercise and recovery regimen.
As anyone who has ever played it knows, tennis requires extreme concentration and agility. Off of the court, Sharapova's a huge fan of boxing, which uses similar expertise. "I've started doing a lot of one-on-one boxing at the beach," says Sharapova. "It's such a great cardio workout with a lot of unexpected movements, and I love the focus it requires." Just as that tennis ball could zip to your left, right, or forward (or beyond you) for you to return, a punch thrown in boxing can come from a number of sides, so lightning-quick muscle response is key—and it's something that Sharapova likes to work on.
Usually, Sharapova likes to sharpen her jab-cross-hooks in a boxing workout three days a week. But she mixes in some low-impact work by rolling out her yoga mat. "That's my current regimen: boxing typically three times a week, with a yoga flow workout mixed in between for recovery on the off-days," she says. "I try to fit in a yoga flow to focus on stretching." With the muscle-lengthening poses done in a vinyasa flow, Sharapova gets the double benefits of active recovery and added flexibility (which then helps her when she has her boxing gloves on).
To keep her body healthy, Sharapova is diligent about her recovery regimen, which involves more than a few yoga flows. "Outside of yoga, I'll use an infrared sauna a couple of times a week, too. I've found that it's such a good way to stay fresh," she says. And, as of last week, Sharapova signed on to be a Therabody Advisory Board member, which means that she'll be working with the fitness recovery tech brand—known for its percussive massage therapy device, the Theragun—on more ways it can be used for people's at-home wellness routines. "Before and after every workout, and just about every evening, I spend about 10 to 15 minutes using my Theragun to stay loose," says Sharapova.
Something that the tennis star has learned over her (very) active years? Though there are so many workouts you can choose to sweat through, it's good to stick with a set regimen. "It's great to throw in a new workout every now and then, but sticking to a routine is how you'll ultimately start seeing an improvement in your strength," says Sharapova. Take it from an Olympic medalist-slash-tennis all-star.
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