For tennis star Mardy Fish, fitness focused on court

Mon Aug 29, 2011 5:13am EDT
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By Dorene Internicola

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Ahead of the start of the U.S. Open Championships on Monday top-ranked American tennis star Mardy Fish said anything to do with the sport holds center court in his workout routine.

"I'd say three-quarters is tennis at this time of year," Fish, who is ranked eighth in the world, said of his daily regimen. "A lot of it is playing matches. Obviously we'll practice most every day if we're not playing."

On matchless days he'll often hit the court for a two-on-one workout.

"There are two guys on one side and I'm on the other and they'll just run me from side to side," he said.

During a match, he explained, players run in short, quick bursts -- back and forth and side to side -- so that's what he trains for.

"Then we have to recover in 20 seconds and do it all over again, for three hours," Fish said." We don't run 400-yard (meter) dashes on the tennis court."

Fortunately, Fish added, he's been playing a lot of matches lately, so the downtime, which is usually no more than a week or two, is spent trying to stay healthy and consistent.

"A lot is maintenance," said the Minnesota-born right-hander, who turned professional in 2000.   Continued...

<p>Mardy Fish of the United States serves to Andy Murray of Britain during their semifinal round match of the 2011 Cincinnati Open tennis tournament in Cincinnati, Ohio, August 20, 2011. REUTERS/John Sommers II</p>