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What Are the Health Benefits of Racquetball?

author image Suzanna McGee
As an experienced athletic trainer, fitness expert and competitive tennis player, Suzanna McGee possesses the tremendous ability to inspire you with her teaching and writings to be the best that you can be. Her passion for writing and educating people has resulted in a book on tennis fitness, which is currently being published.
What Are the Health Benefits of Racquetball?
Playing racquetball is intense fitness-building exercise. Photo Credit Patryk Kosmider/iStock/Getty Images


Racquetball is a relatively young sport -- it officially debuted in 1969 and grew rapidly in popularity. Today, players around the world enjoy playing racquetball in fully enclosed courts, which allows play all year, even during the hot summer or cold winter months. The game is played with a short, light, stringed racket and a hollow rubber ball. Two to four people play games to 21 points, with specified rules. The racquetball game is intense and fast paced. While focused on the competition, players reap many health benefits.

Fat Reduction

An average racquetball game takes about 20 minutes. During this time, the player runs approximately 3,650 feet, according to U.S. Olympic training center. In one hour of play, the player runs more than two miles and burns between 600 to 800 calories. Playing racquetball regularly will decrease body fat levels and maintain healthy weight.

Cardiovascular Health

During a racquetball game, the player maintains high heart rate levels for a prolonged period, often at a constant rate of 75 to 85 percent of the maximum heart rate, which improves the aerobic capacity. Additionally, the constant quick bursts of energy during quick starts and stops improve the anaerobic capacity.

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Strength, Coordination, Flexibility

Racquetball works almost every muscle group in the body, especially the larger muscles of the lower body and the core. In addition to building strength and quickness, playing racquetball improves coordination, agility, balance, explosiveness and suppleness.

Mental Well-Being

Besides the musculoskeletal benefits, racquetball improves mental clarity and quickness by making quick and strategic decisions. It helps with neural adaptation by stimulating faster connection between brain and muscle movements, which improves a player’s reflexes even off the racquetball court. Hand-eye coordination and eyesight are enhanced as well.

Fun Fitness Moves

Racquetball is fun and competitive, and it will make people return to the court as often as they can. A sport you enjoy is a strong lure to get moving on days when you're tempted to skip your fitness regimen. For a competitive game, you have the option to participate in amateur and professional tournaments throughout the entire year.


Racquetball is a highly intense sport, and you should always consult your doctor before you pick up any new intense activity. All racquetball facilities require that you wear eye protection because you could sustain significant injuries if you get struck with a ball or racket in your face. Always wear the racket wrist strap to prevent accidental slips of your racket during the swing. Wear proper racquetball shoes with good stability and always be aware of the ball and other players on the court to prevent unintentional collisions.

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