Severity of medical conditions of top-level male tennis players: implication for prevention


  • Giulio Sergio Roi University of Verona, Department of Neuroscience, Biomedicine and Movement
  • Federico Zambelli University of Verona, Department of Neuroscience, Biomedicine and Movement Sciences, Verona, Italy



epidemiology, illness, injury, return to play


Although tennis is one of the most popular sports practiced worldwide by millions of players, there are no data on the time necessary to return to playing after injuries or illnesses. To contribute to the discussion regarding time-loss medical conditions (TLC), a retrospective web search was conducted on the first fifty tennis players listed in the ATP ranking on February the 20th 2022, looking for TLC in a five-year period (1-1-2018 to 25-12-2022). We recorded 267 TLC 137(51%) of them occurred during tournaments and 130(49%) during training sessions. Recurrences were 31% affecting 27(54%) players. Most TLC were treated conservatively (N=256; 96%), while 11(4%) needed surgery. The median time loss of all the 267 TLC was 17 days (range 1-378). For conditions requiring surgery (n=11), the median was 61 days (range 10-367). Injuries, as opposed to illnesses, accounted for 81% of all TLC. Players and coaches should know the effects of medical conditions on the career of players and how to set-up an effective prevention program starting from early childhood. Prevention in top players should consider also playing surfaces and overall lifestyle including nutrition and sleep, together with other healthy measures such as vaccinations, especially for players traveling around the world.


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How to Cite

Roi, G. S., & Zambelli, F. (2024). Severity of medical conditions of top-level male tennis players: implication for prevention. ITF Coaching & Sport Science Review, 32(92), 18–23.




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