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Caroline Wozniacki's Commitment to Fitness

More than just another hot tennis babe, see how fitness helped her climb to No. 1

Sure, she’s often compared to Anna Kournikova—they’re both young, hot, blonde tennis phenoms. But there’s one big difference—12, in fact. Twenty-year-old tennis pro Caroline Wozniacki has won 12 Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) tournaments; Anna has won zero. The Danish star finished 2010 as the world’s No. 1–ranked woman’s player and has pocketed nearly $8 million in career prize money. That kind of success doesn’t come without plenty of hard work. “When I turned pro, I had no idea of the level of fitness that the top girls had,” she told MF. “I quickly found out that I could compete with the top players with my strokes, but if I was going to play the entire season and beat them, I needed to get much stronger.” Wozniacki threw herself into a rigorous five-day-a-week training program designed to pack muscle onto her 5'9 1/2" frame. During the sport’s short off-season, she emphasizes building a solid cardiovascular base. “That includes lots of long-distance running, weights, and agility drills,” she says. “Fitness has become equally as important to me as my tennis game.”

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She’s cutting back her tournament schedule in 2011 (as most No. 1–ranked players tend to do). She’s also begun traveling with a trainer. “I plan to do a lot more stretching and light weight work,” she says. “I’m stronger now than ever before. I can really drive the ball now. In the past, I just tried to stay consistent and hope my opponent missed!” What You Can Learn From Caroline “Treat fitness and strength as seriously as you do working on your forehand or backhand. Spend the time off the court working on your body, and you’ll see the difference when you play. You’ll feel more confident, and it will show in your game.”

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