Today’s Post is about how many types of exercise can be done and which are good for different health related issues. We have tried to explain how different exercises benefits health wise and their advantages as mentioned below.
Types of Exercises –
- A brisk walk
- Climbing the stairs
- Playing tennis
- Doing yard work like raking, digging and gardening
- Jumping rope
All exercise mentioned above has its own advantages and health benefits if followed as per instructions and under guidance of experts.
Different types of exercise emphasize different elements of physical fitness. Well-balanced workout regimens include different types of exercise to help you avoid injury and develop or maintain overall physical fitness. You may perform different types of exercise in varying proportions, depending on your goals. For example, overweight individuals may burn more calories by increasing flexibility, and endurance athletes can avoid injuries by including strength exercises in their training.
Did you know that there are actually four types of exercise, all of which serve varied purposes? Everyone knows that routine exercise is very important for healthy adults for varied functions, including bone and muscle strength, weight-loss or weight maintenance, heart health and even cognitive health. But there are four different types of exercise: Aerobic (or endurance), strength, flexibility and balance.
Click here for Why can’t that be you? It CAN be you.
Whether you’re looking to drop weight, tone up or even bulk up, or to be able to enjoy your favorite activities again, all transformations start with a decision, a mental paradigm shift of taking ownership and embracing your vision as something that is attainable through a series of small victories that you can and WILL win. If you are looking for a change that transcends your life, the best time to consider what you want to change and how you are going to do it is always now. Remember, doing what you have been doing and expecting a different result won’t work. Here are the tenants of how to achieve the changes you are looking for in your endless pursuit of better.
#1 – The Principle of Individuality
It is critical you realize that except for identical twins, no two people have the same genetic characteristics and therefore will not respond to movement, diet and changes in their lifestyle at the same pace or with similar results. This is important because you must have realistic goals and give yourself credit for any change that is a result of your commitment to your goal of transformation. Give yourself some grace and always show yourself gratitude for what you are doing to make changes. Remember, success is often measured in millimeters, small victories that deserve to be celebrated and that generate positive momentum towards your larger goals. 2 more reps, 3% less body fat, 1 millimeter less on your waist, etc. Look for your small victories and don’t compare your wins to other people’s progress. You are on your own journey, embrace your positive results and keep your eyes on your next small victory instead of someone else’s.
#2 Nutrition and Diet
Realize that nutrition and diet play a HUGE role in a complete body transformation. We will explore important diet and nutritional considerations and techniques to be successful later.
#3 Mix Up Your Training
Maintaining variety in your training routine is a key to enhancing your performance. Staying committed to daily movement is essential for the body, mind and spirit, but selecting the right exercises at the right time is also critical for long term transformational success. As we explore the importance of understanding the five components of fitness, I’ll share some easy-to-implement exercise techniques using the TRX Suspension Trainer, which will offer you tremendous variety in your transformational program. We will explore periodization training, or progressive movement selection over time. This technique will allow you to progress at your own pace, with significant opportunity for success that will keep you engaged mentally and challenged physically. The TRX suspension trainer is a perfect tool for a total body transformation because it is portable, allowing you to take it anywhere, so no excuses. It is highly adaptable and extremely individual to any fitness goal, no matter who you are.
#4 Sleep, Rest, Recovery
The balance needed to experience training adaptations (progress) while avoiding excessive overload, inadequate recovery and even injury is tricky. The underlying causes are often a complex combination of emotional and physiological factors with training deficiencies creeping in that are highly individual, sometimes making it difficult to recognize. Most symptoms are identified only after they start, and physical function may already be suffering. Over training without ample time between workout rest and long-term recovery, coupled with inadequate sleep results in decreased performance capacity, burnout and injury. We will explore the signs and symptoms of over training, including several strategies to create your own sleep sanctuary to facilitate both short and long term recovery.
#5 The Importance of Routine
Routines help mold healthy habits and healthy habits are a catalyst for large-scale changes in how someone looks and feels when achieved. Creating realistic and consistent training, eating, hydration and sleeping routines are critical to achieving the fitness and health benefits you have or are working so hard for. The “use it or lose it” concept could not be more true, as detraining can occur in as little as 2-weeks of inactivity. Complete inactivity will decrease physiological function and performance quickly, as demonstrated in research with athletes who have been forced to halt training due to injury. For these reasons, a balance between training and recovery is necessary to avoid burnout and injury. Understanding the importance of progressive overload will enhance your ability to maintain a consistent routine that will keep you engaged and motivated to stick with while avoiding negative over training side effects. Several strategies exist to help build a healthy routine, and we will explore these training options in order to provide you with the essential tools to achieve the transformation you’re striving the achieve.
Click here for What is ‘Brisk Walking
If you’ve been spending hours in the gym exercising to stay fit and lose weight, here’s one more exercise for you: Brisk walking. It is good for your heart.
A study had shown that walking for at least 40 minutes multiple times every week helps reduce the risk of heart failure by almost 25% among post-menopausal women. Brisk walking is also beneficial for the heart as it improves artery health, and counters heart disease in diabetics.
The faster the walking speed, the lower the risk of hospitalisation and the shorter the length of hospital stay. Since reduced walking speed is a marker of limited mobility, which has been linked to decreased physical activity, we assume that fast walkers in the study are also fast walkers in real life.
Walking is the most popular type of exercise in adults. It is free, does not require special training, and can be done almost anywhere. Even short, but regular, walks have substantial health benefits. A study had shown that the benefits are even greater when the pace of walking is increased.
A healthy adult will typically choose a pace of walking which clocks in at about 2.8 miles per hour. That pace may be partially guided by the rate that your metabolism uses to start accessing fat in your body for fuel, as you move. A brisk walk is a relative term, since “brisk” for some, is either slow or quite speedy for others, depending on levels of fitness.
One measure to quantify brisk walking is “steps per minute,” and 100 steps per minute is considered moderate intensity or brisk walking. Fitness experts typically suggest a pace of 3.5 miles/hour on a treadmill to correlate to brisk walking, for an average person who does not exercise regularly.
If you wear a weighted vest while walking, will you burn more calories?
If you are able to keep the same pace as before, when adding a weighted vest, then you will typically burn more calories, until you become accustomed to the extra weight load. Once used to the extra pounds, you would then have to also increase your pace of walking to keep burning extra calories.
A weighted vest can help someone who has some physical limitations that prevent them from consistently increasing their walking pace. By adding extra weight in that example, the person would nudge some extra calorie burn.
The most overlooked and neglected form of exercise. Because it sounds and looks easy, most of us do not bother to walk and question the effectiveness of walking. But we should seriously give it a thought. Brisk walking is a great form of physical activity for people who are obese, elderly or who haven’t exercised in a long time. Brisk walking is low impact, requires minimal equipment, can be done at any time of day and can be performed at your own pace.
Brisk walking is generally a safe way to exercise. However, doing it correctly is important. Following are Five correct ways of brisk walking.
- Correct way –
- Walk a little initially and then gradually increase the time.
- Warm up and cool down with a slow, gentle walk to ease you up.
- Carry and drink water while you walk, to hydrate yourself.
- Take light, easy steps and make sure your heel touches down before your toes.
- Walk on grass rather than concrete to help absorb the impact if possible.
- Choose walks that suit your age and fitness level.
- Correct Time –
- You need fresh air with green & clean surroundings. There is no point taking more carbon dioxide than oxygen. Avoid busy roads and traffic hours
- Energy consumption is same no matter what time of day a person walks, so go according to convenience.
- Go on a light stomach. Do not eat an hour before going out for a walk. Fruits or juices are okay.
- Correct Speed –
- Brisk walking means that you can still talk but not sing, and you may be puffing slightly.
- Keep a moderately intense pace about 15 or 16 minutes per mile.
- Correct Clothing –
- Dress lightly
- Dressing too warmly can increase sweating and build up body temperature, which can cause skin irritations.
- Wear sunglasses, sunscreen, long sleeves and a hat to avoid sunburn.
- Correct Footwear –
- Wrong footwear or walking action can cause foot or shin pain, blisters and injuries to soft tissues.
- Make sure your shoes fit snugly and have appropriate heel and arch support.
Brisk walking has its share of myths and truisms that may or may not be true.
Myth: Walking does no good. Only intense exercise can give you health benefits.
Fact: Brisk walking for just 30 minutes for 5 – 7 days a week gives all the health benefits. Of course intense exercise has its own share of benefits but not everyone can participate in it. Walking is one form of exercise which most people can do throughout their lives and at least reap the basic health benefits rather than doing nothing.
Myth: To burn more calories you should use ankle and arm or wrist weights.
Fact: Using all these fancy accessories will put you at a greater risk for injury and muscle strain. Ankle weights strain your leg, knee and hip muscles due to the repetitive unnatural stress along with walking fast. The arm or wrist weights stress your elbows, wrists and shoulders and can also affect your posture leading to backache and neck ache. Instead, walk a couple of extra minutes to burn more calories and if you want to tone and strengthen your upper body, invest in some time just twice a week to train your upper body muscles with a specific weight training routine.
Myth: Wearing socks is not important.
Fact: Socks are equally important as they protect feet from developing blisters and keep your skin dry from moisture by soaking the sweat. Always wear synthetic acrylic socks or technologies such as cool max, dry fit and so on.
Myth: Any shoe can be used for walking.
Fact: There are different shoes for different activities. Shoe for a particular activity is designed specifically as per the nature of sport to absorb the unwanted impacts and provide the required support and cushioning. Therefore, always wear the right shoe meant for a particular activity.
Myth: Walkers should drink a lot of fluids.
Fact: Long time back there was this misconception that drinking water during brisk walking / running would cause cramps and decrease performance. Gradually it was suggested to drink more than required which lead to an imbalance of the fluid-electrolyte levels in the blood (Hyponatremia). The right way is to drink only enough to replace lost fluids. It is advisable to consume sports drinks containing sodium (body salt lost while sweating) rather than plain water.
Myth: Running burns more calories than walking.
Fact: 30 minutes of running and 60 minutes of brisk walking burn approximately the same number of calories. The number of calories burnt during a particular activity depends upon factors such as age, gender, body weight, fitness level and the efficiency of the performer. Thus, it is subjective.
Click here for Jogging
Jogging is an excellent way to keep fit and live longer. Scientific evidence has confirmed that this low-impact slow run decreases the risk of cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, obesity, hypertension, depression, and anxiety. It also increases your stamina and productivity. So, unquestionably, starting to jog can be the best decision of your life.
Jogging has been endorsed by many medical authorities for its value as a heart exercise and for general physical conditioning, usually to be practiced on alternate days. Warm-up exercises before jogging, properly designed shoes, loose clothing, proper jogging technique, and general good health—as well as sensible objectives—are necessary for safe pursuit of the activity.
Is it better to jog or run full throttle:
A new study suggests that slow jogging may be a good choice for health goals. Sticking long term with a slow jogging program may be more appealing to the average exerciser, than a vigorous running program. Did you know that slow jogging, a more forgiving exercise regimen than running, is associated with living longer? In fact, slow jogging may also beat fast jogging when it comes to that singular health goal. One to two and a half hours of slow jogging a week is associated with prolonging your life, while the life span of people who jog “often and fast” is similar to people who don’t exercise at all.
Don’t completely abandon your faster exercise regimen, though. More vigorous efforts have other health benefits and can also help when you are trying to maintain your weight, especially after a long term diet program. You may just need to temper the more vigorous workouts with some rest days or lighter exercise days. Slow jogging is a good swap out for days when you’re fatigued or when you simply don’t feel like you want to run a faster pace.
Many joggers do it wrong, which impacts the knees and is considered as dangerous as being sedentary. So, you should follow these effective and crucial 20 jogging tips that can help a complete beginner as well as a pro. Swipe up!
Following are key jogging tips that a jogger should know.
1.Warm Up – Warm-up is extremely important when it comes to starting any type of exercise. Your muscles undergo constant contraction and relaxation when you jog. Unless you prep your muscles to do so, you can get muscle cramps and may not be able to walk or jog properly. Warming up helps you prep the muscles for the endurance training that you are going to do. You will be able to job more effectively without the risk of injuring yourself.
- Set a goal – A goal without a plan is just a wish. So, you must set a daily or weekly goal for yourself. Write down your goal on a piece of paper. For example, “I will jog 2 miles today, and by the end of the month, I should be able to jog 5 miles at a stretch.” This goal will keep you motivated and focused, and you will soon be able to run long distances without feeling weak or out of breath.
- Wear running shoes – The next most important thing is to wear the right shoes. Shoes help protect your feet and bones from the impact of the thrust they experience when you jog. Wear comfortable running or training shoes. Talk to an orthopaedic doctor if you need specially made orthopaedic shoes for jogging.
- Loosen up – Loosen up your body so that all the tension from your shoulders, neck, arms, legs, and feet is released. Doing this will help you jog for a long duration and prevent your muscles from cramping. Shake your hands and feet to loosen up your body.
- Push your chest out – Many joggers slouch and jog. Not only is this incorrect, but your posture and spine health also take a hit. Whether you are jogging on the treadmill, the road, or a trail, make sure your chest is out, and shoulders rolled back to prevent spinal injuries and improve your posture.
- Start slowly – Start slowly by walking first. Increase your walking pace after 30 seconds. By the end of 60 seconds, you should be brisk walking. Then, start jogging at a slow pace. This technique will prevent you from burning out quickly. You will be able to jog for a long distance easily, which, in turn, will make you fitter and healthier quickly.
- Land softly – Stomping your feet will only injure your knees. So, it is important to land softly on the ground on the balls of your feet to dissipate the shock and not directly hit your knees. It will also help you stay strong and jog for a longer duration than you expect yourself to.
- Use breathing techniques – Breathing is THE most important part of jogging. Because unless you breathe at a particular rhythm, constantly, you will not be able to pump enough oxygen into your cells. This can lead to muscle fatigue, thereby preventing you from jogging for a long duration. Count your steps and breathe in and out. For example, breathe in slowly through your nose for four steps and then exhale slowly through your nose for the next four steps.
- Jog in different directions – Jogging in zig-zag and lateral motions and changing direction frequently will help train your leg muscles to be able to run on any kind of road or trail. You can run uphill and downhill, on rocky roads or race tracks. This will also make sure that you are burning enough calories, and your brain-body coordination is at its best.
- Talk to yourself – The difference between a beginner and a pro is not entirely physical fitness. A lot of it has got to do with willpower and perseverance. The best way to build strong willpower is to talk to yourself when you are jogging. Keep motivating yourself by counting the steps and thinking about the benefits you will reap and the adrenaline rush you will get by covering your target distance. Every time you feel like giving up, talk yourself to jog 10 steps more. This way, you will be able to jog long distances.
- Look for landmarks – Looking for landmarks is another strategy to help you jog longer. Look for a tree, a milestone, calories you burn, or a building so that you can decide when to take rest or walk instead of running. After 10 seconds, start jogging again.
- Time your steps – Timing your steps is an effective way to improve your jog. Set your goal to jog for 30 steps before taking rest. Increase this number as you start becoming more comfortable with jogging every day.
- Train in intervals – Jogging regularly is equivalent to training for an upcoming marathon or any other sports event. The best way to start doing that is to jog for 5 minutes and take 20 seconds rest. This interval training will help you jog longer and not get worn out.
- Practice box jumps – Box jumps are good for strength conditioning and improving muscle power and reaction time. They help train the muscles of your legs, especially when you jog on trails. Box jumps strengthen your thighs and glutes, which makes it easy for you to jog 5 miles at a stretch.
- Train downhill – Box jumps are good for strength conditioning and improving muscle power and reaction time. They help train the muscles of your legs, especially when you jog on trails. Box jumps strengthen your thighs and glutes, which makes it easy for you to jog 5 miles at a stretch.
- Plank – Planks are amazing for building core strength. From standing up to jogging, every human body motion requires good core strength. If your core is not strong enough, you will not be able to jog for a long duration. Start doing 3 sets of 30-60 seconds hold elbow planks and increase your core strength.
- Drink water – Dehydration can also wear out your muscles. So, drink 3-4 litres of water per day. Also, keep a small sipper with you when you jog so that you can keep yourself hydrated and do not give up quickly. However, make sure you don’t drink too much water while jogging. Take a sip or two when you stop or walk to rest for 10-20 seconds.
- Beat yourself – You are your own competition. If you jogged a mile at a stretch today, jog for 5 minutes more after you hit the 1-mile mark. This will keep you motivated, and instead of comparing yourself with anyone else, you will have a healthy relationship with yourself and be able to move forward and strive to be better than you were yesterday.
- Stretch yourself – After you are done with your run, it’s time to do cool down stretches. Stretching after a run is as important as warming up before running. Cooling down will help your muscles recover quickly and protect you from muscle injury. Stretch your hamstrings, calves, shoulders, arms, neck, and back.
- Sleep – Sleeping and resting help your muscles rejuvenate and recover. When you run, your muscles undergo wear and tear. Resting and sleeping help the muscles rebuild themselves bigger and stronger. Sleep for at least 6 to 7 hours, within 2-3 hours of having dinner, and listen to soothing music if that helps you fall asleep.
Jogging regularly will have following benefits –
- Improves cardiovascular health.
- Helps burn calories and aids weight loss.
- Improves lung health.
- Boosts stamina and endurance.
- Improves muscle flexibility.
- Builds core strength.
- Strengthens the muscles in your lower body.
- Keeps stress and anxiety at bay.
- Lowers depression.
- Lowers the risk of certain types of cancer.
- Fights diabetes.
Click here for Climbing Stairs-
Climbing stairs is a great form of cardio exercise. While climbing stairs, you work against gravity lifting your entire body. This activity strengthens your leg muscles making it a rather strenuous exercise.
Climbing stairs is one of the best exercises when it comes to pure FAT BURN, strengthening the lower body, toning the butt, thighs, calves, losing inches from those love handles and belly and building great abs. Along with these benefits, it is the immense good it does for your lungs and Cardiovascular System
- It is totally free and just about all of us can get access to a set of stairs.
- It leverages gravity and the heavier we are, the harder we’re forced to work and the more calories we burn.
- It is a relatively intense exercise that quickly increases our heart rate and in doing so can greatly improve our cardiovascular fitness.
- It helps strengthen and shape our most common problem areas like calves, thighs, buttocks and tummy.
- It is a very efficient way of burning maximum calories and is great for those of us with limited time to exercise.
- It can easily be mixed with other exercises, like walking, skipping and weight training, to maximize results and stair climbing workouts are easy to build progression into.
- It can be done by almost anyone, regardless of fitness level.
- Because it is weight bearing, it helps build bone strength.
- It is low impact and safe for the knees (providing correct technique is used and a preexisting condition doesn’t exist).
The way forward with exercise is quality over quantity. Too many people fix a ‘one hour’ work out in their mind and if they can’t find time for that’ 1 hour’ they just don’t do it.
Aim for power workouts, 25 to 30 mins max, where you max out your reps, burn those muscles and really get your heart rate up. 35 to 40 minutes should include a great warm up and an extremely important cool down.
You can burn more calories walking/running up steps in 30 mins than a 1 hour run or walk, plus it challenges your body.
Start off with a couple of flights, Walk and run slowly. As you get better, run and then skip 2 steps at a time and run or walk.
In a nutshell –
Burns more calories:
Stair climbing engages your body’s largest muscle groups to repeatedly lift your body weight up, step after step.Thus, using your muscles to carry your own weight is far higher to running as compared.
Maximises your cardio efforts:
It also raises your heart rate immediately thus maximizing your cardio benefits.
Increases core muscle strength:
Climbing stairs is a great way to amp your core muscle strength.
Tones and sculpts your body:
It also engages every major muscle in your lower body
— glutes, hamstrings, quadriceps, abs and calves to exercise and thus tones your body better.
Low impact workout:
You don’t have to ideally sweat it out while climbing stairs. Just a few stairs every day will give you a good workout
Never run down the stairs, be confident while running up, take a break when needed.
Start doing this regularly and soon, you will be running up flights of stairs, feeling fitter, younger, stronger and leaner.
While most of us think of exercise as ‘sport’, the scientific evidence shows it is everyday activities like walking and stair climbing that are most closely associated with improved health.
Stair climbing is recommended by doctors and health authorities worldwide because high-quality studies show:
- Climbing just eight flights of stairs a day lowers average early mortality risk by 33%
- Seven minutes stair climbing a day can halve the risk of heart attack over 10 years
- Just two minutes extra stair climbing a day is enough to stop average middle age weight gain
Stair climbing delivers these benefits by improving our cardiovascular fitness. It’s officially classed as a ‘vigorous’ form exercise and burns more calories per minute than jogging.
Benefits of Stair climbing –
- Improved cardiovascular fitness.
- Stronger musculoskeletal system.
- Tones thighs.
- Tightens buns.
- Improves muscle tone.
- Promotes weight loss.
- Increases good cholesterol
- Fights stress.
- Aids sleep.
Reduces risk of stroke, cancer, obesity and type 2diabetes.
Click here for Playing Tennis -
Tennis is truly a global sport, played by all ages and backgrounds. The simple art of hitting a ball over a net with a racket has captured the imagination of millions. You needn’t wait until Wimbledon to enjoy the cardio and muscle benefits provided by a regular game of tennis. Getting the body of wolrd’s prize winning players requires a lot of work but even the amateur tennis player should reap the fitness rewards.
Tennis is a racket sport that can be played individually against a single opponent (singles) or between two teams of two players each (doubles). Each player uses a tennis racket that is strung with cord to strike a hollow rubber ball covered with felt over or around a net and into the opponent’s court.
Tennis is a unique game that consists of many parts in order to be successful. Tennis for beginners involves the tennis technique, footwork, strategy, mental game and fitness.
All of these areas of how to play tennis must be mastered in order to achieve good results on the tennis court. For a tennis beginner, how to play better tennis is often a demanding and physically tiring task. But with the proper physical and mental training, how to play tennis for beginners will soon be an inherent skill.
Tennis strengthens a number of muscles groups. Running around the court exercises leg muscles, while playing a shot exerts the core and upper body. Your overall muscle workout should be well balanced, although obviously your racket arm will be exercised more than the non-racket one.
Playing tennis is more than a great way to stay active as it’s a brilliant workout for the entire body.
Why should you start playing tennis –
- Cardiovascular –
- Muscle development –
- Tactical – Brain development –
- Enhances flexibility, balance and coordination –
- Self-esteem –
- Longer life –
- Happier Life –
- Its social –
- The whole family can participate
- Tennis teaches life lesson
- Tennis be anything you want it to be
- Its fun
- It develops your mind
- It’s a sport you can play your whole life
- Improves aerobic and anaerobic health
- Burns calories and fat
- Improves bone health
- It’s great cross training for other sports
- Improves discipline
- Boosts mood
Click here for Dancing -
Dance floors tend to be sweaty places for a reason. All of those shimmies and shakes burn energy like you wouldn’t believe—and come with many other surprising health benefits, too.
Dance is an enjoyable health promoting physical activity which many people worldwide incorporate into their lifestyles today. This physical activity appeals to some who may not be active and therefore may be another alternative of exercise. Dance for health has become an important factor in the prevention, treatment and management in several health circumstances. It is not only significant for your physical health but it also contributes to your mental health and subsidizes social communication Dance is an art which is learned from many cultures. Types of dance can entail body movements, expression and collaboration. Dance and health has been subject of a number of research studies that show dance to be a healthy exercise.
If running is like driving on a freeway, dancing is more like motoring through a busy city, he says. All of that starting, stopping and changing directions burns a ton of fuel even though you’re not covering a lot of ground. Like other forms of cardio exercise, dancing also seems to have mood and mind benefits. A study found that hip hop dancing improved energy, buoyed mood and lowered stress in ways similar to aerobic exercise.
Of course, the amount of energy you expend has a lot to do with how hard you’re pushing yourself. A gentle two-step isn’t going to measure up to an intense, hilly run. But torching calories isn’t the only upside to dancing. Just as trail running and hiking better engage your lower-body joints and muscles than straight-ahead, level-ground locomotion, the up-and-down and side-to-side movements of dance may likewise activate and train many of your body’s little support muscles and tendons.
The psychological benefits are also impressive. For decades, some therapists have prescribed dancing as an effective therapy for those who suffer from social anxiety or fear of public speaking. The idea: if you can loosen up enough to boogie in front of strangers, you’re a lot less likely to feel self-conscious when hanging out or speaking in front of an audience. A researchers suggests that dancing can curb anxiety.
Dancing demands a lot of energy output because it involves “movement in all directions. While running, swimming and other propulsive forms of physical activity use rhythm and momentum to keep you moving, there is a lot of accelerating and decelerating in dancing, which the body is less able to do in an energy efficient way.
Dancing also seems to encourage social bonding and what psychologists call “self-other merging.” Like chatting with a stranger and finding out you both attended the same school or grew up in the same neighborhood, moving and grooving in rhythm with others lights up brain pathways that blur the barriers your mind erects between yourself and a stranger, and so helps you feel a sense of connection and sameness
Finally, the touch aspect of dancing with a partner may offer some special perks. Touch is the first sense that emerges during infancy, and the more experts examine the benefits of massage, holding hands and other forms of human-to-human physical contact, the more they find that touching improves well-being and reduces stress and anxiety. Basically, dancing with someone else is like exercise and a hug rolled together.
Following are top ten fitness and health benefits to dance –
- Forever Young.Dancing is tremendously beneficial in keeping us young. It retards the aging process immensely. It benefits our heart, cardiovascular system and increases our lung capacity. Fact: The muscle exertion and breathing rates of dancers performing in one dance competition is equivalent to those of cyclists, swimmers and an Olympic-level 800-meter runner.
- Strong Bones, Lubricated Joints.Dance aids in the prevention and treatment of osteoporosis for men and women. For women during post-menopause, there can be a significant drop in estrogen levels which stops calcium from being absorbed into the bones. Dancing can also help keep joints lubricated in order to prevent arthritis.
- Calorie Blaster.Dance exercises our bodies to allow for increased circulation. It helps us burn those calories away, while improving our stamina. It is estimated that dance burns anywhere from 5 to 10 calories per minute depending on speed and intensity. For example, swing and mambo burn more calories than a slow waltz. Check out approximately how many calories you burn while dancing to your own tune:
- Better Blood.New research has discovered that it is necessary to measure both good and bad cholesterol levels when determining our health. Dancing aids in lipid control, which raises our HDL (good cholesterol), and lowers our LDL (bad cholesterol). Dancing is also great for diabetics because it aids in blood sugar control.
- Mental Mastery.Dance improves our memory by making us recall steps, routines and dance patterns making it a great mental exercise for our brains. The big benefit is that increasing mental exercise keeps your mind young, quick, alert and open.
- It’s All About Balance.Balancing yourself in one position may be easy, but balancing in the numerous types of positions involved in dancing is much more difficult. Dancers have mastered the ability to balance themselves in a number of positions. This strengthens our stabilizer muscles, while protecting our core and keeping us less prone to injury in our daily lives. Dancing also aids in co-ordination and helps strengthen our reflexes. It is a great way to keep our Central Nervous System and Peripheral Nervous System in tip-top shape by improving the connection of our bodies to our mind.
- Socially Satisfying.Dancing is recreational and entertaining. It creates a social life for us, while affording us the opportunity to make new friends. Friends helps us grow, make us laugh and support us as we learn.
- Culturally Diverse.Dancing has no cultural barriers. People from all parts of the world, with different ideologies, meet on the dance floor. Cultural interaction improves our health by expanding our mind and sharing our spirit!
- Groomed to Perfection.Dancing is not only fun and romantic, but it helps promote good grooming because everybody wants to look his or her best while they dance. Good grooming keeps us healthy by keeping us high on hygiene.
- A Happy Self.Dance elevates our mood by raising our endorphin levels. This is what allows us to heal stress and depression – two of our immune system’s biggest enemies! It helps us establish our self-confidence and self-discipline. It improves the harmony between our mind and body, giving us a sense of well-being.
Click here for Cycling -
Cycling boosts your brain power, relationship, health and happiness.
To be fit and healthy you need to be physically active. Regular physical activity can help protect you from serious diseases such as obesity, heart disease, cancer, mental illness, diabetes and arthritis. Riding your bicycle regularly is one of the best ways to reduce your risk of health problems associated with a sedentary lifestyle.
Cycling is a healthy, low-impact exercise that can be enjoyed by people of all ages, from young children to older adults. It is also fun, cheap and good for the environment.
Riding to work or the shops is one of the most time-efficient ways to combine regular exercise with your everyday routine. An estimated one billion people ride bicycles every day – for transport, recreation and sport.
Cycling for health and fitness –
It only takes two to four hours a week to achieve a general improvement to your health. Cycling is:
- Low impact – it causes less strain and injuries than most other forms of exercise.
- A good muscle workout– cycling uses all of the major muscle groups as you pedal.
- Easy – unlike some other sports, cycling does not require high levels of physical skill. Most people know how to ride a bike and, once you learn, you don’t forget.
- Good for strength and stamina– cycling increases stamina, strength and aerobic fitness.
- As intense as you want– cycling can be done at very low intensity to begin with, if recovering from injury or illness, but can be built up to a demanding physical workout.
- A fun way to get fit– the adventure and buzz you get from coasting down hills and being outdoors means you are more likely to continue to cycle regularly, compared to other physical activities that keep you indoors or require special times or places.
- Time-efficient – as a mode of transport, cycling replaces sedentary (sitting) time spent driving motor vehicles or using trams, trains or buses with healthy exercise.
Health benefits of regular cycling –
Cycling is mainly an aerobic activity, which means that your heart, blood vessels and lungs all get a workout. You will breathe deeper, perspire and experience increased body temperature, which will improve your overall fitness level.
The health benefits of regular cycling include:
- increased cardiovascular fitness
- increased muscle strength and flexibility
- improved joint mobility
- decreased stress levels
- improved posture and coordination
- strengthened bones
- decreased body fat levels
- prevention or management of disease
- reduced anxiety and depression.
Benefits of cycling –
1.You will get there faster
- You’ll have sound and deep sleep
- You’ll look younger
- Boost your bowels
- Increases your brain power
- Beats illness
- Live longer
- Cycling improves your sex life
- Heal your heart
- Cycle away from the big C ( Cancer )
- Loose weight
- Avoid pollution
- Enjoy healthy family time
- Make creative breakthroughs
- You can get fit without trying too hard
- Boost your bellows
- Burn more fat
- You are developing a positive addiction
- Make friends and stay healthy
- Saving Planet
Click here for Yard work like raking, digging and gardening -
Gardening has been shown to improve health, especially for those who start earlier in life. Spending time outdoors, deepening connection with nature, and enjoying the rewards of your work are all reasons to get out into the garden. But did you know that it comes with the added benefit of cardio? Shoulder workouts? Squats? Here’s how gardening this spring can get you ready for a healthy, active summer.
The benefits of yard work aren’t limited to the body alone. Spending time outside can help calm your mind and allow you to de-stress from the ever crazy world of work, school, cleaning, and technology. Being able to let your mind go while raking or just focusing on the sound of birds chattering while weeding and prepping your garden beds is a great way to give yourself the space to think deeply. It allows you to feel more productive while also connecting you to the Earth, a feeling that just about anyone is grateful for nowadays.
As soon as Spring sprungs, which for most of us means it’s time to get outside and get those gardens in tip top shape! If you find it hard to get motivated you’ll be happy to know that things like digging, raking, hauling and pruning all support you leading a healthy active lifestyle.There is sometimes a misconception that you must be in a fitness centre, wearing athletic clothing and dripping with sweat to be physically active. Truth is, getting outside in the fresh air and doing some yard work or doing chores around the house provides a variety of health benefits and you don’t need special clothes.
The average person can burn more than 200 calories per hour doing yard work. Here’s how.
- Rake — Raking is even better exercise than sweeping, particularly after mowing your lawn. You’ll burn up to 300 calories in an hour and leave your lawn looking spectacular.
- Dig — Digging is amazing exercise! It works your back, arms, shoulders, core, and leg muscles, and it will have you breathing hard in no time. Whether you’re digging a new row for planting crops or turning over soil, it’s a great way to get in shape.
- Hoe — Hoeing is much harder and more tiring than it looks, especially if there is a lot of very rocky ground. Spend a few minutes turning over the topsoil to work up a sweat.
- Squat while you weed — Most of us like to sit on a chair on kneel on the ground while we weed, but you can use your weeding time as a chance for a leg workout and to work on mobility. Squat as you weed, and hold the position until your legs burn. Resist the urge to sit or kneel, and you’ll work your leg muscles beautifully.
- Build something — Building uses our brains and our brawn. Whether it’s a wall, chicken coop, or maybe even a new firepit, building is a great and productive way to exercise.
- Push the lawnmower — No more riding mower for you! Get out that old push mower, and be ready for a great workout!
- Clean up — Load up that wheelbarrow and start carting. Hauling a wheelbarrow works your core, your forearms, your arms, your shoulders, and your back, giving you an excellent upper body workout as you leave your garden nice and clean.
Talk about killing two birds with one stone! You’ll have a spotless yard and be feeling like a million bucks. Well, after a good stretch, anyway. Now kick back and enjoy the fruits of your labor.
Yard work and gardening can provide you with a strong sense of accomplishment. If you don’t have a garden, offer to help a neighbor or join a community garden. Don’t forget to put on your sunhat, kick back, relax, and admire the fruits (and vegetable!) of your labor.
Health benefits of doing yard work –
- Cardiovascular exercise : One of favorite benefits of doing yard work is that it is great cardiovascular exercise. Yard work is a great way to increase oxygen flow to the heart, aids in arterial flow, reduces blood pressure and stress, and gets your heart rate going to give you quite a workout! Just be sure to keep some water on hand and stay hydrated!
- Involves your entire body : Yard work is not an isometric movement like lifting weights that works one or a few muscles. Yard work involves your entire body, which means you get a total body workout and develop more strength and fitness overall.
- Prevents aging : The more active you are throughout your life, the better. Yard work is a fabulous way to stay active and helps keep aging at bay. It also involves critical thinking skills, which keeps the brain young as well.
- Lowers Depression : To prevent depression as you age, it’s important to have friends, stay active and have hobbies. Consider doing more yard work. Not only does it keep you active, but because you’re out in nature, your stress hormones naturally decrease and depression tends to subside. Also, since you are outside, you’re exposed to natural sources of Vitamin D through the sunlight, which is the best form of antidepressant medicine you can get from nature. Just be sure to wear a bit of sunscreen to prevent skin cancer scares.
- Improves flexibility : Along with aiding an improved cardiovascular system, yard work also improves your entire sense of flexibility. Because you’re using your whole body, the muscles and joints are fluid and moving in all types of directions, which increases your ability to prevent muscle pain, inflammation and static muscles from inactivity.
- Therapy : Again, yard work is a time to be by yourself and have some time to engage in activity in nature. Since you’re bettering the way your yard looks, you’ll also get a sense of accomplishment from yard work. All these factors combined make yard work an excellent form of therapy. It isn’t just good for your yard, but also wonderful for you!
- Self taught : Perhaps one of the coolest things about yard work, is many people teach themselves and actually learn by doing. Nature just kind of has a way of showing you what to do and what needs to be done. If you need a little help getting started, check out some tutorials online as well, or just read some articles. Or, just get out in your yard and see what you can do. If nothing else, pulling weeds and watering is a great place to start!
- Supply of Vitamin D : Doing yard work can also reduce arthritis pain by helping with the supply of vitamin D in the body. Studies have shown that working outside in the sun helps to increase the amount of vitamin D in the body. The ultraviolet light from the sun breaks down some of the precursors of vitamin D to a form that is usable by the body. Vitamin D helps build strong bones and joints which helps reduce arthritis pain.One of the best things about doing yard work is the instant gratification. When the task is finished, the accomplishment is visually appealing. The worker can look back over the job well done and see a lawn free of leaves, a bed free of weeds, or beautiful looking flowerbed free of sticks and twigs.
There is a great sense of pride and self-confidence in seeing the immediate impact of a job well done. And for a time, short though it may be, the stress of everyday life is forgotten. So when stress is taking over and a relief valve is needed, find something to do in the yard and let the stress melt away while building strong bones and fighting arthritis at the same time.
Click here for Swimming -
It’s a full body workout –
Why is swimming good for you? One of the key reasons is that it’s a total-body workout. Swimming engages your entire body and builds muscle all over, from your torso to your thighs. Each stroke works out a different set of muscles, but no matter which stroke you’re using, the act of pulling your body through the water engages almost all your muscle groups.
Swimming has been called the perfect exercise. After all, you can get all of the benefits of an aerobic workout without any damaging impact on joints, and it can be done by both the very old and the very young.
It is utilized by athletes to stay strong and keep fit when recovering from injury, and there is no fancy equipment needed—just you and the deep blue. Swimming has many more benefits that those obvious advantages seen on the surface; its improvements to overall health go much deeper.
Swimming is an exercise for people of all ages. It can be easy and inexpensive, and a person can go at their own pace. Swimming helps a person to get or stay in shape, but the benefits also extend to mental health.
People who are 19 to 64 years old should get 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity each week. Younger children should be physically active as well.
It is important to incorporate strength training exercises into any routine, to keep muscles strong and flexible. As health permits, this should be continued for as long as possible throughout life.
Swimming engages almost every major muscle group, requiring a person to use their arms, legs, torso, and stomach.
- increases the heart rate without putting stress on the body
- improves strength
- tones muscles
- enhances fitness
- helps to manage weight
- It require minimal gear! You can work out with only a swimsuit and goggles!
Why swimming is good for you –
Every type of exercise has its selling points. But swimming is unlike any other aerobic workout in a few important ways.
First, the fact that you’re submerged in water means your bones and muscles are somewhat unshackled from the constraints of gravity.
This makes swimming the ideal exercise for people with osteoarthritis, for whom weight-bearing exercise can be excruciatingly painful. According to a research of people with the condition, swimming decreases arterial stiffness, a risk factor for heart trouble. More of his research has linked swim training with lower blood pressure among people with hypertension. The coolness and buoyancy of water are also appealing to people who are overweight or obese, for whom load-bearing aerobic exercises like running may be too hot or uncomfortable.
But don’t be fooled; your body is working hard when you’re in the pool. Water is denser than air, so moving through H2O puts more external pressure on your limbs than out-of-water training, studies have shown. Even better, that pressure is uniformly distributed. It doesn’t collect in your knees, hips or the other places that bear most of the burden when you exercise with gravity sitting on your shoulders.
How you breathe during a swimming workout is another big differentiator. During a run or bike ride, your breath tends to be shallow and your exhales forceful. It’s the other way around with swimming. You breathe in quickly and deeply, and then let the air trickle out. Because your head is under water when you swim, these breathing adjustments are vital, and they may improve the strength of your respiratory muscles. This kind of breathing keeps the lung alveoli—the millions of little balloon-like structures that inflate and deflate as your breathe—from collapsing and sticking together.
Plus, who wouldn’t want a swimmer’s body? Swimming fires up more of your body’s major muscle groups than other forms of cardio exercise. If you think about running or biking, you’re mostly using your lower body. Swimming not only engages your legs, but also recruits your upper body and core—especially your lats, the muscles of your middle back, and triceps, the backs of your upper arms. You look at pictures of swimmers, and you see how the upper body development is really tremendous.
Finally, your back benefits. Working out in a horizontal pose—as opposed to the upright position your body assumes during other forms of aerobic exercise—may be an ideal way to counteract all the time you spend hunched over a desk or steering wheel. There’s no hard impact on your back like there is with running, and instead of being bent forward like you would be on a bike, your back tends to be arched slightly in the opposite direction. That may help improve your posture and prevent the back injuries and pain that stem from long stretches of sedentary time.
The exercise is also linked to many of the same life-extending, heart-saving, mood-lifting benefits associated with other forms of aerobic exercise. And it’s fun, which matters. People tend to enjoy swimming more than running or bike-riding. While about half of people who try a new exercise program give up within a few months, people who take up swimming are more likely to stick with it.
If you’re sold on swimming, starting slowly. Don’t try to do too much too early, and focus on proper technique. Consider enlisting the help of an instructor if you didn’t have any formal coaching as a kid. If you’re not used to swimming, it can be hard to relax in the water. Being nervous and tight may limit the sport’s benefits.
Start off with 30-minute sessions three times a week, and don’t forget to take frequent breaks. “You want to ease into it and build up, just like a running program.
Take a deep breath and dive into benefits of swimming –
- Swimming improves muscle definition and strength : Swimmers gain muscle strength throughout the entire body. Where runners see muscle build in their legs, swimmers utilize more muscle groups to move through the water. While the legs kick, the arms pull. As the back reaches and rotates, the stomach tightens to power the legs and stabilize the core, making swimming one of the best aerobic exercises to give you a total body workout.
- Swimming builds up bone mass : For years, researchers scoffed at the idea that swimming affected bone mass. While more studies are needed, new findings show that previous research dismissing swimming’s bone benefits may need to be revisited.
- Swimming helps you stay flexible : Swimming requires you to reach, stretch, twist, and pull your way through the water. Your ankles become fins and are stretched with each kick as you push off against the liquid pressure. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t still stretch on your own, but repetitive stretching found in your various strokes also helps with flexibility.
- Swimming reduces inflammation : While swimming’s cardiovascular benefits of strengthening the heart muscle are common knowledge, research also indicates aerobic activities, such as swimming, reduce inflammation that leads to atherosclerosis build-up in the heart.
Reducing system-wide inflammation leads to lessened disease progression in many other areas as well, so expect to hear of more benefits as the research progresses.
- Swimming hold its own for calories burned : Everyone knows that swimming is a great way to burn calories, but most don’t realize it can be just as efficient as jumping on the treadmill. Depending on the stroke you choose and your intensity, swimming can burn equal or greater calories than running.
Additionally, you don’t have to worry about sweat in your eyes. For example: for 10 minutes of swimming you burn 60 calories with the breast stroke, 80 calories with the backstroke, 100 calories with freestyle, and an impressive 150 with the butterfly stroke.
For perspective, running a 10-minute mile burns around 100 calories. Therefore, a strong 30-min butterfly speed session can burn 150 more calories than running a 5K in the same time frame.
- Swimming is safe and suitable for people with preexisting Health conditions :
Asthma – The humid environment of the swimming pool may make it a good choice for those with asthma, while the breathing exercises associated with swimming can help to expand lung capacity and give people with asthma more control over their breathing.
Arthritis – As a zero-impact sport, swimming can be great for arthritis sufferers. It stretches your muscles, improves your posture and has a soothing effect on your body.
Multiple sclerosis (MS) – Because swimming keeps your limbs buoyant, it can be beneficial for those suffering from MS.
- Swimming lowers stress and depression : Love that natural endorphin kick? While many talk about a runner’s high, swimming can bring about all those feel-good emotions too.
In addition to the happy hormones, you also can feel a relaxation response similar to yoga. As I mentioned previously, swimming stretches your body constantly. Combine this with the deep rhythmic breathing, and you can experience a relaxation rush that’s very unique to the sport.
Swimming is also calming and meditative, as the sound of your breathing and the water rushing by helps you focus inward and drown out all other distractions. This lowers stress and depression naturally.
Research also shows that swimming can reverse damage to the brain from stress through a process called hippocampal neurogenesis. So, if you feel like you’re drowning emotionally, jumping in an actual body of water may be exactly what you need to find your feel-good feet again.
- Salt-water swimming can be a beauty treatment for skin : If you switch from pool swimming to open water workouts in the ocean, you will notice a vast improvement in your skin over time.
Swimming regularly in salt water helps the skin retain moisture and detoxify to promote new cell growth. You will be surprised how smooth and healthy your skin feels after an invigorating ocean swim.
- Swimming can make you smarter : Of course all exercise is great for the mind, but can swimming actually make you smarter?
Research concluded that kids who regularly participated in swimming were able to master language development, fine motor skills, confidence, and physical development sooner than the control group.
Swimming may also help with math skills, as swimmers regularly calculate the meters swum in sets or interval drills to put their adding and subtraction skills to work.
- Swimming may just lengthen your life : While all exercise can produce greater health and longevity, studies point to swimming as one of the best choices for doing so. Researchers concluded that those who swam had a 50 percent lower death rate than runners, walkers, or men who didn’t exercise.
- Swimming is a cardiovascular workout : Aside from the vanity aspect—the V-shape swimmer physique with a small waist and broad shoulders is often reported to be one of the most attractive body shapes around—swimming is also a rigorous workout for your cardiovascular system, building strength and endurance, toning muscles, and raising your heart rate without placing extra stress on your body. It also reduces inflammation, boosts lung capacity, improves the strength of your respiratory muscles, and lowers blood pressure.
- Swimming rarely causes injury : While running can have a negative impact on your bones and joints, swimming is completely non-weight-bearing (because the water supports your body weight), giving you the opportunity to work out without stressing your joints. There’s certainly some room for debate when it comes to the debilitating effects of running, but it’s also true that the low-impact nature of swimming makes it much less likely to cause injuries.
- Swimming improves your sleep : Swimming (like other aerobic exercises) can help people get a good night’s sleep. According to the National Sleep Foundation, exercise has a compelling link to quality of sleep, and intense activities like swimming can even help people to fall asleep faster.
- Swimming is suitable for all ages and fitness levels : Some types of exercise may be challenging for people who are new or feel very unfit.
However, swimming allows a person to go at their own pace, and it can be inviting for newcomers. A person can learn to swim at a very young age, and most swimming pools have a designated area for beginners and people who prefer to swim slowly.
- A great skill to have : The benefits of learning to swim safely and confidently can extend beyond mental and physical fitness. In some cases, it may even be lifesaving.
- Swimming is good for people with injuries : Having an injury or conditions, such as arthritis, can make it difficult to do high-impact exercise.
Because water gently supports the muscles, swimming is preferred by many who are unable to take part in high-impact, high-resistance exercises.
17.Swimming is good for people with disabilities : A physical disability, such as paraplegia, can limit workout options.
Because water provides resistance and support, many people find that swimming is an ideal option. Because swimming can boost confidence and improve social skills, it may benefit people with mental disabilities.
- Swimming is safe during pregnancy : Swimming is a recommended form of exercise for pregnant people.
Added weight can cause joint and muscle pain during pregnancy.
Swimming is especially popular with pregnant people because the water can support this weight. This helps to feel more comfortable while staying fit. It is always a good idea to consult a doctor when undertaking a new form of activity during pregnancy.
- Variety and fun : People tend to get bored with repetitive exercise, but there are many ways to keep swimming interesting.
There are several strokes to master and flotation aids to try. Also, classes in water aerobics and polo, as well as racing and diving, can help to add variety.
- Swimming Boosts mood : Exercise releases endorphins, which improve the mood. Swimming may also boost confidence and social skills, which can impact a person’s self-esteem.
- Swimming is accessible and affordable : Many towns and cities offer public pools with discounted rates. Some offer free access at certain times or free swimming lessons.
Swimming in a lake or ocean may be an attractive option. Always take safety precautions, such as ensuring supervision, when swimming in open waters.
- Swimming improves social well being : Swimming is very much a social sport. Swimmers of all ages can take classes together, train together, or work with a coach in the pool. Even if you have a pool at home, it is where you gather with your friends and family.
A study revealed exercising and socializing together leads to improved mental health. Participants in the study had lower levels of anxiety and depression than their peers did.
- Swimming teaches goal orientation : Swimmers become goal-oriented in their personal and professional lives. Swimming gives kids and adults something to strive for. Whether it is kicking a kick board across the pool, improving a lap time, or recovering from an injury with water rehabilitation, setting goals and achieving them is the key. The skills swimmers learn in the pool to realize and achieve such goals are skills that can and will be used out of the pool as well.
- Kids who swim becomes active adults : Swimming is an important activity to help combat the childhood obesity rates, and it is fun too. Swimming has all the three elements of physical activity recommended to keep kids healthy: endurance, strength, and flexibility. Swimming provides kids with the tools, skills, and dedication to maintain healthier lives as adults.
- Swimming teaches team-building skills : Swimmers on teams or in swim classes have better team-building skills. Swimmers learn to work together, to encourage each other, to communicate, and to become leaders. All of these skills translate into effective leaders in adulthood.
Team-building skills encourage collaboration, goal orientation, inspiration, strategy development, and coordination, which all result in successful careers and professional relationships.
- Swimming burns more calories than jogging : When you compare swimming to running, you can burn more calories swimming laps around the pool than you can running laps for an hour. One hour of vigorous lap swimming can burn as much as 715 calories. The same amount of time running at 5 mph burns only 606 calories.
- Swimmers are more confident : Swimming is a confidence-building sport. Early evidence revealed that young swimmers are more confident than their non-swimming peers. This is also true for competitive and non-competitive adult swimmers. Swimming teaches confidence in the pool and in the open water, which translates to confidence on land as well.
Myths about swimming –
Myth #1 – Swimming makes your taller : Although people point to the fact that professional swimmers, like professional basketball players, are tall, this doesn’t mean that the act of swimming is an effective way of boosting growth. Professional swimmers are essentially self-selected through their height. Does swimming make you taller? No, it’s correlation, not causation.
Myth #2 – Swimming after eating causes cramps – One of the most persistent myths around swimming is the idea that you need to wait for about an hour after eating to go for a dip. This is supposedly because the digestive process diverts the circulation of blood away from your muscles. Although this is true, it’s not enough to stop your muscles from performing properly, and there has never been a documented case of drowning because of a full stomach.
Click here for Rowing -
Rowing is a diverse sport offering different types of rowing opportunities, both on and off the water. You might be giving it a go for health reasons or perhaps to try something new and be more adventurous with your exercise routine. Then there are those who love the thrill of competing. Rowing can provide you with all of these opportunities.
Rowing provides many different forms of adventure, whether it is a long endurance session exploring new waterways that you would never be able to experience by land, or being hit by large waves as you try coastal rowing. There is certainly plenty to satisfy the curious or daring.
Whatever form of rowing you try, it is a great way to stay physically active or develop your fitness even further. Rowing works nearly all of the muscles in your body so it is a very efficient work-out; It can be one of the most physically demanding sports… if that’s what you want out of it!
If you decide to take up rowing competitively you might want to know the types of training that you will be doing to make you strong, get you fit and prevent injury, under the guidance of your coach.
Rowers generally do a combination of land and water training. Land training could include anything from sessions on the indoor rowing machines to circuit training (sometimes using weights depending on your experience) and core stability. Benefits include improvement of strength and endurance and preparation for your water sessions.
Water sessions might cover technical skills and drills or rowing for extended periods of time, again depending on your level of ability.
Aside from feeling good in yourself there is plenty of scientific evidence demonstrating that regular physical exercise lowers the risk of many diseases and improves your health. Benefits to your health have been shown to come from as little as 30 minutes of aerobic exercise three times per week, so why not improve your health whilst doing something you will love?
There are three main components to health-related fitness, and two of these ‘body composition’ and ‘cardio-respiratory’ fitness are the major factors in preventing illness and disease. Regular rowing can increase your fitness in these areas.
Body Composition describes the percentage of fat, bone, muscle and more in your body (fat mass and fat free mass). It is possible to have your body fat measured and this gives a good indication as to whether you need to lose or gain weight (other factors must also be considered).
Cardio-respiratory exercise enhances your lung’s ability to provide oxygen to the blood and the heart and thus to the rest of your body. A lack of cardio-respiratory fitness is closely linked to heart disease. The good news is that cardio-respiratory fitness can be improved very quickly and without being too time consuming. Rowing is an excellent way to improve cardio-respiratory fitness and give yourself a major health boost.
The rowing machine, also known as rower and ergometes, is the newest trend in the fitness world. And it has rocked the fitness world with its calorie-incinerating benefits. Fitness experts claim that using a rowing machine burns approximately 10-15% more calories than running or cycling!
WHY Rowing ?
It’s one of the more calming sports to do, especially in the early mornings when the water is calm and the setting is peaceful. Rowing is an excellent form of exercise, not only because it is good for your health, but also because it can be done solo or as a team to build teamwork. There is something both relaxing and motivating about being on the water. Once you learn the proper technique, rowing can offer a tremendous amount of physical health benefits, including increased power and strength. But even if you don’t have access to water and a boat, your local gym has rowing machines (ergometer) that simulate the same movement and resistance as being on the water.
Surprising Health benefits of rowing –
- Promotes healthy body composition:Rowing can help maintain a healthy balance of fat mass and fat-free mass in your body. If an analysis of your body composition indicates that your body fat is high, rowing can be a good way to burn off fat, as it is predominantly an aerobic sport. In fact, you can easily burn up to 600 calories per hour.
- Enhances cardio-respiratory system:Rowing enhances your lung’s ability to provide oxygen to the blood, heart and the rest of your body. A lack of cardio-respiratory fitness is closely linked to heart disease. The good news is that improving your aerobic fitness can be done in short intervals, so it does not take too much time out of your day. All you need is 30 minutes of steady state exercise – or 10 minutes of high intensity intervals – in the boat or on the rowing machine.
- Offers low impact exercise with high results: Both competitive and recreational rowing are unique in comparison to most sports because they exercise all of your major muscle groups. Everything from your legs, back and arms are engaged while rowing. In addition, rowing is a low-impact sport. When executed properly, the rowing stroke is a fairly safe motion, providing little room for the serious injury often found in contact and high-impact sports.
- Promotes weight loss: Competitive rowers expend almost twice the number of calories on a 2,000-meter course as a runner in a 3,000-meter steeplechase. However, since rowing is low impact, you will not experience the same wear and tear on your body and joints as you would if you were a runner. Plus, you build strength in your upper body and core.
- Helps the heart: Cardiovascular training involves any activity that requires the use of the large muscle groups of the body in a regular and uninterrupted manner. Rowing is one of the few non-weight bearing sports that exercises all the major muscle groups.
- Builds muscle strength: The primary muscles that rowers work are the quadriceps, the large muscles in front of your thighs. These muscles are necessary for extending the knee, and they also serve as hip flexors, which allow you to make powerful leg movements. As your quadriceps become stronger, activities and exercises such as walking, jogging, lunges and squats can be done more efficiently and with greater strength.
- Reduces stress: The consistent and rhythmic activity associated with rowing, combined with being outdoors on the water, has an unparalleled impact on reducing stress.
- Stabilizes the body: Rowing in a boat requires the stabilizer and neutralizer muscles to fire up. Those same muscles might help to avoid a fall or help keep you from hurting your back when lifting a child or a heavy box awkwardly. Your core, or trunk, becomes stronger and better prepared to handle off-balanced movement.
- Improves muscle and joint mobility: Rowing conditions many different muscles and joints without straining them, making this exercise ideal for those with arthritis or osteoporosis. The muscles and joints experience a wide range of movement during rowing, which will eventually minimize stiffness and increase flexibility. If you live a sedentary lifestyle or become stiff after long periods of inactivity, loosen your muscles and joints by rowing at a moderate pace for 20 to 30 minutes.
- Offers a full-body exercise: A rowing machine works the lower and middle back, hamstrings, calves, gluteal muscles and biceps. Rowing works more body parts than most cardiovascular machines, and it provides a low-impact exercise that people of various fitness levels can complete comfortably.
Rowing machine exercises :
Great for weight loss, toning and building muscles, and increasing stamina, this machine is a fitness game changer. Rowers work out several major muscle groups and will help you develop both your upper and lower body. Most importantly, using a rowing machine gets your heart pumping and lungs working, providing a serious aerobic workout
No matter what your age is, a fitness plan that includes cardio (or aerobic exercise) is an important contributor to your overall health. The benefits of regular aerobic exercise include weight loss, increased stamina, and a stronger immune system. Endorphins released while you work out can also help improve your mood and sleep quality. Because it requires the use of so many major muscle groups, a rowing machine is an effective way to raise your heart rate and increase your oxygen intake for an effective cardio workout. The adjustable resistance on most rowers lets you easily work up to your target heart rate as well as slow back down to your resting rate.
Although regular rowing is challenging in itself, there are a few variations that you can do to up the challenge and make the workout even more intensive. Make sure to get a good warm-up before going all out with rowing!
- Simple rowing – Most people shy away from the rowing machine because they don’t know how to use it. It is important to get the technique right; otherwise it can result in injuries. The simple basic rowing exercise consists of 3 positions:
(a) The Catch: Sit on the rower and bending your knees, put your feet in the hold. After that extend your arms and grab the handle firmly in your hands. Make sure your back is not hunched and your abs are tight.
(b) The Drive: Push with your legs, straightening them until they are completely unbent and pulling the handle with your extended arms at the same time.
(c) The Finish: After you have straightened your legs completely, lean back making a 45 degrees angle. Keep your arms extended. Then reverse the technique to the original position.
- Power Curls : Power curls are great for your biceps. It also challenges the core more because you do your curls while holding the Finish pose.
- Do the simple rowing 3 times and hold the last one in the Finish position.
- Now, bending your elbows bring the handle towards your chin and uncurl.
- Do 4 curls while holding the Finish position.
- Repeat the whole exercise 5-8 times.
- Side rows : Side curls not only work on arm muscles but also help in cinching that waistline. This variation also increases the pressure on chest.
- Get into the Catch position. Make sure your back is erect.
- Now push while straightening your legs.
- At the same time pull the handles with your arms to your left side and lean back.
- Do the left side 8 times and then repeat for the other side.
- Sprints or extreme rowing : This variation is used to increase the cardio effect of the exercise. Sprints or extreme rowing lessens the intensity on the resistance aspect while increasing the speed of rowing. This result in a greater aerobic activity leading to extra calories burnt.
- In this exercise you do the regular rowing, but the difference is you do not take the handle all the way back. Increase the speed of rowing while stopping in the Drive position.
- Do as many as you can in 1 min.
- To intensify the exercise, you can increase the time period and the speed of rowing.
- Long distance : This variation emphasizes the strength training aspect of rowing by increasing the resistance and lowering the cardio activity rate.
- In this variation, do the simple rowing but at a slower pace.
- Reaching the Finish position, bend your elbows and pull the handle back towards you. Lean back as much as you can while pulling the handle. Do not hunch your back.
- Simple rowing with calisthenics : This is not much of a variation but a workout. The change in this exercise is that we alternate rowing with calisthenics exercises.
- Do one set of rowing (12 times) or row for 1 min.
- Then do 8 alternate walking lunges.
- Again do a set of rowing. Then do 8 squats.
- Do another set of rowing and do plank twists.
- Weight loss : Regular workouts on a rower can help you burn calories, tone muscles, and give you increased energy. A rowing machine workout burns an average of 600 calories an hour. That’s more efficient than many other home gym machines on the market. Combined with eating a healthy, balanced diet, using a rowing machine consistently is a great way to help you achieve your fitness goals.
- Upper-body workout : As you might expect, rowing machines provide a stellar upper-body workout. Rowers exercise the rhomboids in the shoulders, trapezii in the upper back, and lats in the lower back. The benefits of a stronger back and shoulders include improved posture as well as a reduction in back pain. In addition to your backside, rowing machines also provide a nice workout for your biceps, pecs, and abs, which helps you develop a stronger core. Because you need to maintain a strong grip on the oars, you’ll also develop stronger hands and wrists, which is a big plus for anyone who enjoys activities such as climbing or yoga.
- Lower-body workout : Perhaps one of the best rowing machine benefits is the workout they give the lower body. In fact, rowing enthusiasts consider rowing primarily a lower-body workout. The main leg muscles involved are the quads in the upper front of the thighs, however the calves and glutes (buttocks) also feel the burn. Building strong legs and glutes will help you look amazing and working out the lower body actually burns calories at a faster rate. In addition to improved muscle strength and tone, resistance training on a row machine is a great way to maintain flexibility and balance.
- Low-impact cardio : For those who are overweight or have existing joint problems, high-impact workouts may carry more risks than benefits. A rowing machine is a great alternative for those who are unable to perform weight-bearing exercises, such as running, hiking, walking, and yoga. The motion of rowing is natural and low impact, putting minimal stress on the joints. Like stationary bikes, rowers are great for injury prevention and are also an excellent way to strengthen and condition the knees after surgery. While back strain is a concern, you can minimize your risk by using correct rowing form. Good rowing posture lets your legs do the work, taking the pressure off your back.
- Increased endurance : If you feel like your get-up-and-go has got-up-and-went, chances are you may not be getting enough physical activity. Rowing machine workouts may feel exhausting at first, but the long-term benefits of regular exercise will increase your endurance and give you more energy. Because rowing exercise is cardiovascular and works out all your major muscle groups, it’s a step above many other types of workout equipment. With repeated use, you will gain increased stamina and boost your metabolism. More energy means more drive to do the things you love!
- Convenient : Just because you don’t live on the water with a rowing boat sitting at the dock doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the same physical benefits from rowing. You can purchase an affordable rower to use in the comfort and convenience of your own home. Sometimes getting motivated to work out is more challenging than the exercise itself. Uncomplicated and accessible workouts, like rowing, are much more appealing. It’s also great, because you can recruit a workout buddy to join you for added encouragement.
- Affordable : While it’s not hard to spend a pretty penny on high-end rowers, you can find many basic machines that won’t break the bank. You don’t have to sacrifice quality on your rowing machine to save a buck, as there are numerous models with extensive features. You may have access to a rower at your gym, but if rowing is your main form of exercise, you can save money in the long run.
- Easy to use : If you’re just beginning your journey to get in shape, the maze of complicated workout machines at the gym might have your head spinning. Don’t worry! Exercising on a rowing machine is relatively simple to learn and ideal for all ages and abilities. It’s important to make sure you use proper rowing technique when you exercise. It will help to both maximize your workout and minimize the potential for injury. Your feet should be securely fastened in the stirrups with your shins close to a 90 degree angle to the floor. It’s best to keep your back straight, your core engaged, and to row in a smooth, fluid motion. You’ll get the hang of it in no time!
- It’s fun : If exercising is something you dread, it is a lot harder to motivate yourself to do it. Making a fitness plan that you enjoy is your key to success. Because rowing works out your entire body, it’s easier to stay engaged while doing it. Plus, you can challenge yourself by increasing the resistance as you become a more seasoned rower. Crank up the speakers and row to the beat of your favorite tracks, put your favorite show on the TV, or recruit a workout buddy for extra encouragement. Once you become a pro, you’ll be feeling so good that hopping on your rowing machine will be a treat!
Rowing machine is a great way to get into shape and burn calories. But it is important to make sure your technique and posture is good. It is advised to gradually get used to the machine with slow simple rowing. Try the variations once you get the hang of it.
Another important thing to keep in mind while rowing is the breathing technique. Inhale while in the Catch position, exhale with force when you pull the handle, inhale when get back into the original position.
Always end a rowing workout with a good stretching session.
So, when you have got only 30 minutes to workout or are not in the mood to do anything complicated, just hop on to an inside rower. It will blast those pounds and get rid of those extra inches. And the bonus? Rowing is real fun!
Reasons to hop on rowing machine –
- Rowing is an effective aerobic exercise. Its cardiovascular benefits keep the heart and lungs healthy.
- You get a total body workout with the rowing machine. Rowing works on all the major muscle groups. It is one of those few exercises, which work on both the upper and lower body.
- Only a few exercises burn calories the way rowing machine does. Rowing machine is effective for weight loss as the exercise provides both strength training and cardio workout. Yes! It burns fat and builds muscles at the same time!
- It is beneficial for endurance training.
- Vigorous rowing engages all the major muscles in the body and tones and strengthens them.
- It provides broader range of motion.
- Rowing machine provides greater resistance than cycling. The continuous pull and push motion of rowing provides resistance in not one but two directions.
- It is low impact in nature and can be used by people with joint problems. It is also suitable for elderly people.
- Rowing helps in improving the flexibility of the body as well as stamina.
- It has lower risk of injury.
- Rowing machine is a good option for cross-training.
- Rowing machine is convenient and efficient. It burns more calories in less time.
Click here for Rope Jumping -
Of all the childhood memories, the most unforgettable is that of games. Among all the games, make skipping your favorite. For one, you could play it with my friends or even play alone. You can load yourself with pancakes, fried food and not worry about weight gain at all for the simple reason that skipping was enough to burn it all!
Skipping is no new age trendy exercise. In fact, it has been there for years now. Unfortunately, the rope got lost somewhere in store room.
Basic rules to follow while doing rope jumping –
- Buy a good quality rope. An inappropriate rope can break while you are exercising and hurt you. So make sure the rope is strong.
- One of the most basic and common questions that skippers have is if skipping must be done barefoot or wearing footwear. Many studies claim that barefoot skipping is better as it makes your feet strong. It also helps to cure many foot-related problems. Barefoot skipping comes naturally to some. But, most people need to train themselves slowly to be able to jump rope for a good session of barefoot skipping. If you feel pain when you try barefoot skipping, wear trainers or good sports shoes to absorb the shock of your feet meeting the ground repeatedly.
- Wear a good high impact sports bra. Skipping allows a lot of breast movement. If you do not wear a proper fitting sports bra, it can cause tears in the breast muscles. This will cause your breasts to sag.
- It is true that skipping can be practiced by people from any level on the fitness scale – beginners, intermediates, and advanced. But, you should keep it mind that skipping is used for endurance training and conditioning, not just burning calories. So, practice progressive skipping to build your endurance level and condition your body slowly over the time. So, start small and then gradually increase your speed or the length of time. Otherwise, it can prove to be taxing on your heart and harm your joints.
- Jumping surface for the exercise matters a lot. Skipping exercise should not be done on a carpeted surface or stone or asphalt surface. You should do the exercise on shock-absorbing surfaces, preferably wooden floors or other smooth surfaces to avoid tripping or rubbing, which can lead to injuries.
- A proper jumping area is required for this exercise. Though skipping can be done anytime and anywhere, it still needs an open area so that the rope doesn’t get stuck in any objects nearby. The area should also have high ceilings or open sky.
- Rope jumping is a high-intensity exercise and hence one must do a proper warm-up before starting the exercise. Stretching exercises are a must before skipping. A light on-the-spot jogging warms up the body for the high-aerobic skipping exercise.
Few useful tips before starting rope jumping :
How to start skipping – The first thing you should do before you starting skipping is adjust the length of your rope. Hold the handles at each end of the rope, one handle in each hand, by your sides. Now, step in the middle of the rope, keeping the length taut with the ends stretched upwards. Shorten the rope till both the ends reach your armpits.
Hold on! Before we start, let’s see what options we have at hand, i.e., how many types of rope jumping exercises are there, and how will you benefit from each.
Types of skipping exercise : There are various types of skipping exercises.
- Double Jump : The most common style of skipping exercise is double jumps. This technique is often practiced in high speed and burns most calories. The intensity of double-jumps can be varied according to the speed and how high you jump; whether you take your feet completely off the ground or just enough to pass the rope. Jumping higher results in slower skipping, but it is good for muscle toning. On the other hand, low and fast skipping is good for HIIT and endurance training.
Here’s how to do it.
- Steps – Hold the rope stretched upwards and taut, with one handle in each hand at your sides, with your elbows bent and forearms parallel to the ground.
- Keep your shoulders rotated back, chest pushed out, elbows close at your sides, abdominal muscles tight and your weight on the balls of your feet.
- Bring the rope forward by rotating your wrists.
- Jump with both the feet 2-3 inches off the ground to let the rope pass under your feet.
- Repeat the motion and vary the speed according to your fitness level.
- Cross jump – Cross jumps are the least intensive of the skipping styles. The style is often incorporated in high-intensity workouts when one needs a break from high-aerobic exercise. It is better to continue less-taxing cross-jumps instead of stopping altogether.
- The posture for the cross-jump would be the same as that for the double-jump.
- The difference between the two styles of skipping is that double-jump involves jumping with both the feet simultaneously and the cross-jump involves skipping with one foot after another.
- Bring the rope forward by rotating your wrists. The movement comes from your wrists and forearms, and not by rotating shoulders or whole arms.
- First, skip the rope with one foot followed by the other.
- Repeat the motion as fast as you can without tripping over the rope or spraining your foot.
Now, this next rope jumping exercise is a little tougher in the sense that you must have great balance and endurance. But, with our simple explanation and steps, you will perform this exercise with ease and fun.
- Single-leg jump : Single-leg jumps are an advanced level of skipping style, which require good balance and put more weight on one leg. It should be attempted after one can do double-jumps and cross-jumps fairly well. To prepare yourself for single-leg jumps, you can begin with balancing exercises like standing for an extended period on a single leg or doing asanas like Natarajasana and Garudasana that require balance.
- Hold the handles of the rope, one in each hand; shoulders rolled back, chest out, abs tight and the belly button sucked in.
- Now, lift one leg bending it at the knee.
- Start jumping the rope on the single leg that is on the floor while keeping the lifted leg in the air.
- Do your set of repetitions and then do the other leg.
- Single-leg jumps should be attempted slowly and with practice. Very fast jumps can result in leg injuries or falls.
These rope jumping exercises will burn the extra calories and slim you down. Rope jumping can also be incorporated into your daily workout routine to get even better results.
Skipping can be incorporated in a workout in many ways. Skipping for 20 minutes suffices for the daily cardio for those who want to lose weight. It also improves the running skills of a person and is used by runners for warming up. Cross-jumps are also practiced as an outdoor form of racing. Double-jumps and single-leg jumps are on-the-spot styles of skipping. Cross-jumps can cover distances. So, you can also do cross-jumps on the tracks.
Alternating the high-intensity skipping with a hold pose like plank or a low-intensity exercise like knee-highs or butt-kicks burns more calories and conditions the heart. It also ensures that we burn calories not only when we workout but throughout the day.
Here is a sample workout that uses skipping as a HIIT exercise.
The following workout stretches about 15 minutes with 20sec-10sec divisions. Since this is an HIIT workout, it has 20 sec of high intensity and 10 sec of a holding exercise. One 20 sec-10 sec makes one set, and you have to do 2 sets of each exercise.
Start with stretching and warm-up for 5 minutes.
- 20 sec double-jumps at normal speed. Jump high in the air.
- 10 sec of holding the plank pose.
- 20 sec double-jumps at high speed.
- 10 sec hold of the deep squat position. Make sure your knees are behind the toes. Squat as deep as you can.
- 20 sec of single-leg jumps at moderate speed. Alternating legs after one set.
- 10 sec of arm-hugs. Stand straight with your abs tight and move your arms in a way as if you are giving yourself a big hug. Take both your arms as far back and out as you can and bring the inside crossing each other and wrapping around your body. Sweep as big as you can.
- 20 sec of single-leg jumps at high speed. (as high as you can without the risk of injury)
- 10 sec of holding the seated C-pose, with knees bent, butt on the floor, calves lifted and paralleled to the ground and torso off the floor. Put your hands at the back of your thighs to hold your legs in the air if you are a beginner or otherwise have a problem with pilates positions.
- 20 sec double-jumps at high speed.
- 10 sec chair pose.
- 20 sec single leg jumps at moderate speed. Alternating legs after every 5 sec.
- 10 sec of marching in the place at a normal pace. But make sure you lift your knees high and move your arms front and back covering as much area as you can.
- 20 sec of cross-jumps at high speed.
- 10 sec of knee-to-elbow tummy tucks in plank.
- Cool down with stretching exercises for 3 minutes.
Make sure you keep yourself hydrated during the workout. The stretching before and after the workout is important as it prepares the body at the beginning for the high-intensity aerobics and in the end brings the body slowly down from that peak. The cooling down also helps in reducing the cramps that may hit later in the day. Since skipping is a cardio exercise, it is important to consume a post-workout meal with healthy carbohydrates and proteins.
Keep in mind the basics and don’t go all out at once if it has been a while since you last skipped. Ease your body into it slowly and keep it steady, but progressive. Experiment with your skipping styles and sessions. Include skipping as an exercise in different workouts or just do it alone. In the end, it always feels like a fun game and makes us feel energetic and young at heart.
Benefits of rope jumping :
- It is one of the best cardio and HIIT (High-Intensity Interval Training) workout.
- Jumping rope is known to burn around 1300 calories/hour (now that’s high!). Thats an effective way to melt your fat, right?
- Skipping exercise burns more calories in comparison to running. Besides, you need not go outdoors as skipping can be done at any place. What’s more? Bad weather can’t hamper your fitness routine.
- It’s one of the most inexpensive forms of exercise as you can buy a skipping rope for less than INR. 100.
- Skipping helps in muscle toning as it is a body weight exercise.
- It improves footwork, balance, coordination, and agility. Most of the runners and other athletes jump rope for training.
- It is one of the best exercises for endurance training and conditioning.
- Skipping gives a full-body workout. It is especially great for toning and developing the thighs, shins, and calf muscles. Simultaneously, it also works on the abs and arms.
- It engages and improves the hip-flexor muscles.
- Studies show that skipping exercises put lesser pressure and are less shocking for the joints than running. It is a low-impact exercise when compared to running and therefore a better option.
- Skipping enhances cardiovascular health as it improves the rate of heart beat. It is beneficial for blood pressure patients.
- Skipping can be done by anybody and everybody, from beginners to the advanced levels.
- It is also known to help in improving bone density.
- All that the skipping exercise requires is a jumping rope, which can fit into your purse or handbags and is travel-friendly. So, you will never have to miss your workout. All you need is a rope and an open area to burn calories, and you are good to go.
Now is the time to find your skipping rope.
To be Continued