The oxygen consumption of tennis according to the ACSM

L’American College of Sport Medicine ( has published a study made on 20 players to which some testing mobile systems for the respiratory gases(RGEM) and the heartbeat (HR) were applied during 50 minutes’ matches. The study allows also to measure the capillary blood lactate concentration at the end of the tests and the average values result fully below of the anaerobic limit (2.07 0.9 mmol·L).

Data have been confronted with the relationship between the length of the exchanges and the actual time of play (EPT) together with the frequency of the hits (SF). The average values have been reached in 270 matches.

The result has been explained in details in the research available for consultation on the ACSM site. In such research it has been demonstrated that the length if the exchanges is the main variable that determines the consumption of oxygen used during a match. In matches defensive oriented, with two rival players, the Oxygen variable is significantly higher at least foro ne of the two players compared to the match in which at least one of the two player is playing more of an assault match. The average VO2 registered during matches equals 29.1 mL·kg-1·min-1, while the highest peak reached during a match equals 47.8 mL·kg-1·min.

The research suggests also that good physical conditions are a fundamental requisite for those players that have backcourt match preferences.


Authors: Gerhard Smekal, Serge P. Von Duvillard, Claus Rihacek, Rochus Pokan, Peter Hofmann, Ramon Baron, Harald Tschan, and Norbert Bachl

Med. Sci. Sports Exerc. Vol. 33, No. 6, 2001, pp. 999–1005.

Written by Matteo Ponzano, graduated in Physical Education. For several years he has been an athletes and goalkeepers’ trainer and for three years he has trained goalkeepers from Torino Fc. Afterwards, he has worked as an tennis athletes’ trainer. Such sport is the main one he is dedicated to.

Qualifications and certificates

– Physical Trainer, FIT Level 2, since 2015
– TRX® Group Suspension Trainer since 2014
– DAN® BLS-D (Adult/Pediatric Care) Provider since 2014