This review addresses metabolic, neural, mechanical and thermal alterations during tennis match play with special focus on associations with fatigue. Several studies have provided a link between fatigue and the impairment of tennis skills proficiency. A tennis player’s ability to maintain skilled on-court performance and/or optimal muscle function during a demanding match can be compromised as a result of several homeostatic perturbations, for example hypoglycaemia, muscle damage and hyperthermia. Accordingly, an important physiological requirement to succeed at competitive level might be the player’s ability to resist fatigue. However, research evidence on this topic is limited and it is unclear to what extent players experience fatigue during high-level tennis match play and what the physiological mechanisms are that are likely to contribute to the deterioration in performance.
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