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Lundqvist Another Goalie Cross Training With Tennis

Lundqvist Another Goalie Cross Training With Tennis
With the need for good eye-hand coordination and a lot of powerful lateral movement, Henrik Lundqvist used tennis to cross-train this summer (InGoal Photo by Scott Slingsby)

With the need for good eye-hand co-ordination and a lot of powerful lateral movement, Henrik Lundqvist used tennis to cross-train this summer (InGoal Photo by Scott Slingsby)

Sweden-based hockey writer Risto Pakarinen recently caught up with Henrik Lundqvist in Gothenburg and delivered an excellent and profile on the New York Rangers star for

It’s a great read for fans and goalies alike, but Among the most interesting tidbits for those who stop pucks for fun – or for a living – was Lundqvist talking about his off-ice training regiment this summer.

Of particular interest was how much Lundqvist relied on tennis, something InGoal Magazine has heard from other NHL goaltenders in the past:

“I’ve played a lot of tennis this summer,” Lundqvist told Pakarinen in Swedish. “These days I don’t want to spend hours at the gym, and I find tennis to be a great exercise for me. You need quick feet, there are lots of turns and twists, back and forth, just like on the ice.”

It’s certainly easy to see the parallels between stopping pucks and playing tennis. Both require a lot of quick lateral movements and excellent eye-hand co-ordination. Maybe that explains why other goalies have mixed tennis with the usual gym training the summers.

Vancouver Canucks goalie Eddie Lack told InGoal two summers ago he was mixing four position-specific off-ice strength sessions with “two or three” less structured workouts each week, including some tennis.

“It’s perfect for goalies because it’s like a short amount of time you work, and it’s exactly the same as in goal,” Lack said of playing tennis in the summers. “A point can take anywhere from five seconds to 45 seconds or a minute, so you have to be on your toes all the time, a lot of lateral movement, and hand-eye coordination.”

Lack’s good friend and fellow Swede Anders Lindback also mixes racquet sports into his off seasons.


“I always play a lot of badminton in the summer and tennis – co-ordination sports,” Lindback told InGoal. “And also I like to windsurf and that’s pretty good for balance and core strength. It’s really fun too. It’s more of a relaxing thing for me. I try to keep it within limits. I’m not going out there if the wind is too hard because I know you can go really fast too and I always try to be a little cautious with everything I do.”


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  1. tosh

    Tennis can be fun but also dangerous with increased risk of ankle twists, hip dislocations and wrist injuries to name a few. It’s a stop and go game much like baseball and it can be physically demanding. Before games I played table tennis for fun and I believe other Swedes play it to increase hand-eye coordination. Table tennis can be played indoors, takes less space, doesn’t cost as much and the smaller ball travels much quicker in than tennis. Henrik can do whatever he wants but he might get better results if he tried ping pong. What ya think Ranger fans?

  2. Darren

    I read “tennis”and thought “ankle twist” immediately which made me super nervous. To each their own of course, but as a Ranger fan I’d rather see him doing something else

  3. brock

    Tennis is great cross training for goalie it helps with quick feet and stability can also be a great leg exscersize if done properly