Tennis court closures are unnecessary

Sport already follows COVID-19 guidelines

Photo+illustration+by+Colin+Canaday.+According+to+an+announcement+by+the+Minneapolis+Parks+and+Recreation+Board+April+24%2C+many+facilities+found+in+public+parks+will+be+closed+or+removed.+Among+the+services+removed+are+tennis+nets%2C+an+unfortunate+and+unnecessary+decision+by+the+Park+Board.

Colin Canaday

Photo illustration by Colin Canaday. According to an announcement by the Minneapolis Parks and Recreation Board April 24, many facilities found in public parks will be closed or removed. Among the services removed are tennis nets, an unfortunate and unnecessary decision by the Park Board.

Colin Canaday

According to an announcement by the Minneapolis Parks and Recreation Board April 24, many facilities found in public parks will be closed or removed. Among the services removed are tennis nets, an unfortunate and unnecessary decision by the Park Board.

There is no doubt in anyone’s mind that exercising has physical, as well as mental benefits. According to a 2006 study published in the Official Journal of the Association of Medicine and Psychiatry, “exercise improves mental health by reducing anxiety, depression, and negative mood and by improving self-esteem and cognitive function.” There are numerous other studies demonstrating the exact same conclusion of this paper; exercise helps mental health.

In trying times of uncertainty, there should be a constant effort to limit the amount of change experienced while still ensuring safety. Needlessly closing equipment necessary for stress relief doesn’t solve any problems.”

Tennis is a sport that inherently follows the rules of social distancing. Ideally playing from baseline to baseline, two people playing tennis could stay about 78 feet apart. With both the World Health Organization and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention roughly agreeing on the recommended six feet distance between persons, 78 feet is well above any reasonable precaution. The United States Tennis Association has even commented on the relative safety of tennis, stating “Because tennis does not require any direct person-to-person contact, players can enjoy the many physical and mental benefits that tennis offers so long as you practice social distancing by keeping six feet apart from other players to ensure you are in a safe exercise environment.”

Furthermore, by removing safe exercise alternatives, such as tennis, people are more likely to seek other methods of exercise to relieve stress, such as walking outside, which may prove more dangerous. Even with the closures of parkways in order to maximize the amount of room available for people, it is impossible to believe that people will be able to stay farther apart than the 78 feet that would have otherwise been allotted to them had they been able to play tennis, making this alternative far more dangerous.

Humans do not like change. Therefore, in trying times of uncertainty, there should be a constant effort to limit the amount of change experienced while still ensuring safety. Needlessly closing equipment necessary for stress relief doesn’t solve any problems.