Toowoomba tennis players score an extra 10 years of life expectancy

Toowoomba Tennis Association president Allen Smythe and David Janetzki MP discuss the life-extending benefits of playing tennis.

Toowoomba residents who regularly play tennis could be extending their lives by nearly 10 years.

Toowoomba Tennis Association president Allen Smythe has been promoting the health benefits of the sport for the past 28 years.

A heart health study from Denmark conducted over 25 years showed that tennis players could live an average of 9.7 years longer than people who did not exercise. 

Mr Smythe said the Toowoomba Tennis club had more than 300 members who played, including veterans, children, and seniors up to 90.

“I think tennis is a good, healthy sport that you can play from age five to 105,” Mr Smythe said.

“This study found that gym memberships didn’t increase your life at all – tennis was the sport that topped all others,” he said. 

“I believe it is because it is a social sport and also provides mental exercise as you have to strategise on court.”

Member for Toowoomba South David Janetzki MP congratulated the club on their recent $35,000 Gambling Community Benefit Fund grant which will be used to install new led lighting on three courts.

“It doesn’t matter if you’re a beginner or a pro, tennis is just a great sport,” Mr Janetzki said.

“You can be active while socialising with family and friends,” he said.

“That’s why this grant is such wonderful recognition of the efforts of Allen and his team at Toowoomba Tennis.”

The Copenhagen City Heart Study involved following nearly 8,600 people for up to 25 years.

The results were published in 2018 which found the life expectancy gains for different sports compared with the sedentary group were:

  • Tennis – 9.7 years 
  • Badminton – 6.2 years
  • Soccer – 4.7 years
  • Cycling – 3.7 years
  • Swimming – 3.4 years
  • Jogging – 3.2 years
  • Calisthenics – 3.1 years 
  • Health Club activities – 1.5 years