Tennis is a great sport for anyone who is looking to improve their fitness, maintain their health, and increase their agility. Furthermore, tennis is a game to be played at a club or with friends making it a wonderful social activity. However, many players believe that the most interesting thing about the sport isn’t its physical challenge, but it’s an emotional one. Playing tennis can improve a player’s ability to handle stress and increase their mental capacity overall.
So if you are a beginner or a seasoned tennis player, consider checking out a few books about the sport, whether written by players and fanatics. Here’s a shortlist of novels to check out if you’re looking to gain insight into the world of tennis or simply feel inspired.
Rod Laver: An Autobiography
Rod Laver was a red-headed country boy from Rockhampton, Australia who became a champion in tennis. Laver was a force in the world of tennis who played and defeated some of the very best players. He was the second man to ever win the Grand Slam (Australian, French, Wimbledon, and the US) in 1962. Furthermore, in 1969 he became the only player to win the Grand Slam twice! The book is wonderfully nostalgic and carries readers through Laver’s early days of growing up in Queensland to entering the amateur circuit, and on to his Grand Slam victories. Laver also shares the trials and tribulations of his life, such as having a stroke in 1998 and losing his wife after a long illness in 2012. The book is interesting and warm and provides the reader with insight into some of the greatest matches with the best tennis players.
Tennis Hobo: A Derailed Memoir by John Gruberg
You do not have to love tennis to enjoy this semi-autobiographical novel. Tennis Hobo is told like a road story in Kerouac tradition. John Gruberg worked as a tennis coach for many years and has experienced the joys and the sorrows that come with teaching the game. He provides readers with hilarious insights and unique instructional tips. One story includes hopping a train to make it to a tennis tournament in Montana!
Rafa: My Story by Rafael Nadal
Rafael Nadal is currently ranked number 2 in the world in men’s singles tennis by the Association of Tennis Professionals. He has won 19 Grand slam singles titles, the second-most in history for a male player. This book includes loads of insight into what goes on before a match and Nadal’s upbringing and coaching. Nadal comes across as a fairly likable man and provides readers with a bit of perspective when it comes to his mentality and how it affects his game.