Looking for a great way to keep fit while enjoying the outdoors? Then keep reading because we think we have a great alternative to the gym for you to consider!
We all know we need to exercise regularly, but the difficulty is finding something we enjoy doing so we continue to keep at it, week after week.
Find a boring way to keep fit and we can almost guarantee that you won’t stick to your exercise regime for long. So why not find something that gets you outside where you can engage with others and keep fit, while having a great time together?
One way to do that, if you live near enough to a large body of water is by learning how to sail, and becoming part of the crew. In time you might even buy your own boat and enter competitions!
Many people who start sailing actually do incorporate some gym work into their fitness program, so it’s not like we are saying not to go to the gym at all.
Just find a reason to want to exercise and incorporate it into your overall fitness program, and in sailing you may have found it. Those who have not been active for a while find that some proper gym routines can assist them in slowly building up their fitness, under the careful eye of a personal trainer.
As time goes by they find the rigours of onboard sailing to be less demanding and they become more able to lift, bend, and stretch as they move around the boat.
Many sailors find that racing in particular requires a full body workout: pushing, pulling and lifting to build the upper body, and lots of squats, deadlifts and lunges to build the lower.
If your gym has a rowing machine you can make good use of that too and incorporate lots of cardio to build the heart and lungs for those bursts of energy that will be required.
As your fitness levels improve you will find that pulling in the sails become easier, and hiking (or stacking – where the crew lean their weight windward) will occur more naturally.
Sailing may involve a lot of rope pulling, turning a winch, and trimming sails, all of which will keep you fit.
And of course there are the emotional benefits of just being on a boat out on the water. You will find your mood improving in no time at all. You will also find your agility and concentration levels improve.
So, should you try sailing as a means of keeping fit? Well, if you love being outside, around other people, keeping active, and can swim, you might just find an activity which will become a lifelong passion.
If you are thinking about it, why not talk to your health professional first to see if this type of activity is suitable for you, and if cleared, start checking out some local sailing clubs. Most of them have open days, and welcome new members with open arms.
Living each adventure,
Christine and Trevor
Empowering people to live a healthy, active, authentic and fulfilling lifestyle.
Adelaide, South Australia.
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DISCLAIMER: This article is written for informational purposes only and is based on Christine and Trevor’s own life experiences. No food featured on this site should ever be consumed or handled if known or suspected allergies exist. Nothing featured here should be taken as medical, professional or legal advice. It is always recommended that you consult the appropriate professional before changing any routine or adopting any new procedure.