Thursday, November 20, 2014
We've been looking into finding the best, and most enjoyable ways to keep you fighting fit. Following on from our popular cycle campaign featuring Cycling Tips for Winter and the best ways to boost your nutrition while cycling, we've branched out and looked at some other sports that will get you into shape and keep you there!
As a leading provider of 50+ life insurance we understand you want to find the best ways to keep yourself in shape, so we’ve found the top five sports that contribute the most to good overall health and well-being.
Swimming is one of the best aerobic exercises out there. It’s low impact, which means your joints aren't put under too much stress, while it stimulates the metabolism and burns fat. Swimming works over two thirds of the muscles in our bodies, improves posture and even balances out blood pressure.
If the local pool isn't to your liking there’s a wealth of places where you can dive in to in the great outdoors. Britain has loads of opportunities for outdoor swimming if you’re brave enough to take on the challenge. You could join an outdoor swimming group and share the experience with other swimmers. For the really adventurous there’s even skinny dipping groups.
Cycling is a great way to commute, it keeps you healthy, it’s cheaper and more environmentally friendly than a car or bus and it keeps you fit. But have you ever been cycling to work along tarmacked roads and wished dodging cars and the occasional pothole wasn't the only challenge?
Take your cycling up a gear by taking your bike off road, if you’re worried your trusty commute bike isn't up to the off-roading challenge there’s plenty of places around the UK that will rent you a sturdy cycle. Mountain biking improves muscle strength, cardiovascular health and is a non-load bearing sport so you’re less likely to injure yourself – as long as you stay on the bike.
Even if you've never thought of picking up a putter or grabbing a nine iron you should play a round of golf at least once. Golfing offers loads of health benefits aside from getting out into the fresh air, it’s a great exercise for mind and body alike.
Golf burns calories, an 18-hole round of golf is equivalent to a 5 mile walk, and for an added workout you can ditch the buggy and carry your clubs yourself. Not to forget that whacking the golf balls around is a great stress-buster!
Pilates has become hugely popular over the past few years, and for good reason. It strengthens your muscles and pulls your body into proper alignment, reducing the pressure on your spine and joints. It’s brilliant for shaping and toning your body as it works all muscles evenly and focuses on strengthening your body as a whole while improving flexibility and posture.
If you've always viewed the strawberries and Pimms side of tennis as more your thing, it’s time to pick up a racket for yourself and give the actual game a go. As well as working on your competitive side, playing tennis is great for your coordination and also helps with bone strength and density.
With tennis you get out what you put in, which means you can choose between a leisurely friendly or push yourself in an all-out competition. You do have to accept that you probably won’t get to centre court at Wimbledon, but that’s no reason to stop you getting out on your local court and giving your health and fitness a great boost.
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