Rafael Nadal’s physique has changed a lot since the early years of his career. Over time, the Spanish champion had to lose muscle mass to protect his knees. Sascha Bajin, former coach of Naomi Osakatalked about this topic on Twitter: “Guys, the speech is very simple.
Muscle mass is weight. Every extra kg you have to carry with you is multiplied when you have to move on concrete. Your knees feel that weight, because they have to absorb most of the impact. The upper body muscles are actually not that important to tennis.
Having a huge bicep isn’t essential to being successful in tennis, at least in my opinion. Too much muscle mass can be a disadvantageas it risks weighing you down and making you slower on the court. Let’s not forget how long matches are at Grand Slams.”
Nadal has had countless physical problems during his long careeralso due to a very wasteful style of play.
Although he has had to sit out several tournaments, the Spaniard has demonstrated a longevity that very few would have expected when he set foot on the circuit. The former world number 1 left everyone speechless last year, winning the Australian Open and the Roland Garros against all odds.
Returning from a 2021 with just seven tournaments played, the Majorcan is back in vogue reiterating that he is a living legend of the sport. The last few months have been quite complicated for Rafa, who hasn’t been able to express his best tennis since The semifinal he reached at Wimbledon.
The beginning of 2023 did not bring him luck, given that the Iberian suffered a second-degree injury to his ileo-psoas during the Australian Open. The 22-time Grand Slam champion has already given up on the ATPs in Doha and Dubai, while His presence in Indian Wells and Miami remains uncertain. It’s not unlikely that Nadal will choose to preserve his body ahead of the clay court season.