Are you getting bored with your same routine at the gym? It might be time to switch things up and try a new sport. There are some great activities that work your core, tone and strengthen muscles, and give your heart a good cardio workout. No matter what age you are, you can do most or all of the sports highlighted here.
Cross Country Skiing
Cross country skiing is a well-established Nordic sport. There is nothing new about this other than the advances in equipment technology. You will work every single muscle in your body and get an incredible cardio blast. This sport takes some energy and a little bit of coordination. But, once you get the rhythm or your arms and legs going, it requires a bit less effort. Cross country skiing is considered a true cross-training exercise, similar to cross-fit. It builds strength and endurance, and is a very aerobic workout. You will burn plenty of calories.
Many of us don’t think of swimming as a sport, but rather more of an outdoor leisure activity while on vacation. This may be because swimming is considered one of the lowest impact sports. That doesn’t diminish the incredible aerobic benefits of swimming and other water exercises. Swimming and similar water exercise routines are perfect for anyone looking to increase oxygen levels in the body and to work all of your muscles without the dangers that high impact sports present. You are unlikely to tear or strain a muscle while swimming. You will, however, burn calories and work hard while moving through the resistance of the water. This activity is especially good for those of us with muscle tension or tightness. The suspension of the water can help us relax and elongate our muscle tissue.
Stand up paddle boarding became really popular about 3 or 4 years ago. It is considered a relatively low-impact sport because it is pretty difficult to hurt yourself while doing it. If you fall, you end up in the water. Breaking any bones is unlikely. Paddle boarding requires you to engage your core, leg, and back muscles for balance. You use your arms and shoulders to move and steer the board. This is one of those sports that works every part of the body. You can do it in still water, or with waves, just like surfing. The added benefit is that you are outside and soaking up lots of vitamin D from the sun. It isn’t as easy as it looks, though; the first time might surprise you. You will improve your endurance over time. If you’re interested in paddle boarding you may want to consult with a sporting goods retailer, like Find Sports, to see what kind of equipment you need.
Fencing has been around since the Middle Ages. It is making a big comeback as a sport that sharpens mental and physical acuity. Fencing requires finesse, balance, and alertness. Because there is an opponent, you need to be focused and flexibly defensive. Fencing helps with coordination, reaction time, and core strength. Although it has been around for a long time, it is gaining momentum as one of the most beneficial activities for people of all ages. Fencing blurs the boundaries between skillfully choreographed dance and mindfully practiced martial arts.
Sometimes we need a new workout strategy. It could be because we are bored, or we are getting a bit older, or maybe we are a going through changes in body shape, size, and hormones. Children’s exercise needs and athletic prowess evolve constantly. Young and middle-aged adults often get stuck in a routine that eventually places repetitive stress on our bodies. As older adults, we need to be mindful of what our bodies are capable of and what is safe for us. All of the activities discussed are viable workouts worth trying at any age. These can be performed at an individual pace that suits you best.