The time has changed, the sun is shining, and it is time to get outdoors. This means more picnics, more days at the beach or lake, and more time lounging in the sun. This time of year is also the best time to take advantage of outdoor activities that will keep you active and strong. Here are just a few fun outdoor activities to keep you moving.
1. Ultimate Frisbee
Ultimate Frisbee isn’t just a game for college kids anymore—it is now a sport anyone of any age can enjoy. Ultimate Frisbee is a non-contact sport that utilizes elements from soccer, basketball, netball, and even football to make an exciting and engaging game. In order to participate in Ultimate Frisbee, all you need is a Frisbee, two teams, and a field. In Ultimate Frisbee, you are allowed to run and leap your way to scoring points for your team. It is an excellent sport for cardio, as well as leg strength. Play Ultimate Frisbee without the fear of injury that other contact sports have.
2. Beach Volleyball
Beach Volleyball has been a summer favorite for years. Fortunately, if also utilizes almost every major muscle group in the body, including arms, legs, back, butt, and core. This is due in part to the lack of resistance that is provided by the sand when a player pushes off the ground. Players use their arms and shoulders constantly to keep the ball from touching the ground, and they also must use their legs to squat, jump, and pass the ball. Whether it be in the sand or on a solid surface, volleyball provides a great full-body workout.
Tennis is the preferred sport for those who want to play one-on-one. Tennis improves cardiovascular function, and rigorous strength training. Constant movement from left to right keeps muscles moving, and different speeds keep you active. A tennis match will certainly help with arm and back strength as you smack the ball, and core development is essential to keeping a steady hand. It is also a great way to improve coordination.
America’s favorite past time is also the preferred sport of many rec leagues and company teams. Whether you are a hitter or a pitcher, you will have the opportunity to work out different muscle groups to improve your health. It may seem obvious, but improving arm strength is harder than it looks. Hit the ball harder by building strength in your back, shoulders, and core. Lateral movement, squatting, and throwing are all great ways to confuse muscles to quickly build muscle and burn fat. Invest in high-quality equipment depending on your position, especially out in the field: find first baseman gloves if you’re in infielder, and look for catcher’s mitt if you’re placed at home plate. When it comes to bats, there are plenty of options; head to a local batting cage to experiment with different styles.
5. Flag Football
Flag football is a fun team sport that requires the ability to think on your feet and communicate quickly with your team. This non-contact option reduces the risk of injury and allows you to relive your glory days as a varsity high school running back. To play, you may need pull belts with flags attached, as well jerseys and a ball. Alternating between various motions will confuse your muscles to improve strength of larger and finer muscles, such as those in your quads, calves, and hamstrings. Throwing the ball will also advance arm and back strength.
Not every outdoor activity needs a field. If you seek to focus your training on your back, chest, and arms, kayaking is the sport for you. You will also work your core because without your legs, you rely solely on your core for balance. Not only is kayaking fun and active, but it is also a way to appreciate the scenery around you on a beautiful sunny day.
Hiking is walking with a view. Various terrain and elevations work to increase cardio-vascular function and reduce risk of heart disease. Higher elevations can see improvement in your lung capacity which will allow you to breathe deeper and fuller. If you go backpacking, the weight on your back and shoulders will allow you to strength train while you are on the go, while also providing stability so you do not injure your lower back. Shop the latest hiking and backpacking gear on a site such as REI.com.
Getting active doesn’t need to be chore. Take advantage of the fair weather and sunshine by getting your sixty-minute exercise in every day. Participate in something you enjoy, such as these activities and more, and you will find yourself forgetting the minutes as they tick by.