Category Archives: Sport

Where does Netball come from?

It’s a game that’s certainly on the rise. It can be unisex but its proving to be a big hit with the girls again who see it as a great way to stay fit and active plus have a laugh together plus there might just be a little bit of nostalgia and memories of youth. Added to that is the stunning victory of the England Netball team at the Commonwealth games with the last gasp winner. Combine this with the Women’s Hockey Success at the Olympics in Brazil and the continued rise of the Lionesses and the Women’s world cup next year things on the England female sports front are buzzing.  Whatever the reason it’s a good idea to be prepared and some Netball Training Videos like the ones at https://www.sportplan.net/drills/Netball/drills.jsp will help get you and your team set up ready to play. Before you do that, have you ever wondered where the game of Netball comes from? Read on and find out.

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The game began at Hampstead in London in 1893. It’s easy to see that it owes its roots to Basketball. That was invented earlier in 1891 but it was the vision of Martina Bergman-Österberg that a version of the game solely for women should be developed. Madame Österberg was a strong advocate for women’s suffrage and emancipation so much so that she would not allow men to attend the Hampstead Physical Training college that she ran. Madame Österberg introduced the game to the girls and also insisted on the gymslip as a much better way of allowing freedom of movement rather than the long skirts they were supposed to wear. The game was played indoors away from prying eyes of men who might want to see the ladies in gymslips. This was the Victorian era after all and they believed in chastity and decorum.

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The game was eventually moved outdoors as it was of such high physical activity the girls needed to cool down. The rules were slowly adapted by the pupils of Hampstead Physical Training College and Madame Österberg was happy about that as it made it “their” game.  In 1897 an American teacher called Miss Porter took some rules from modern women’s basketball and codified them into the rules. The game was then changed officially to Netball.

After that the sport never looked back. By 1901 a new sets of agreed rules was produced that would apply throughout the country. The sport was seen as something ideal for ladies to play as it was so different from other sports and featured no physical contact (tell that to a Netball player!) Schools, desperate for something cheap the girls could play soon picked up on this and its popularity spread through the system. An international body to regulate and organise the sport was set up in 1924 in New Zealand. In just over twenty years Madame Österberg and Miss Porter had seen the game grow from its humble origins. Sadly Madame Österberg died before she saw the international body formed.

 

Punching Bags For Fitness

Many people may not look to punching bags as their first option on the road to becoming more fit. They may think of them as being strictly for people who are trying to train to be boxers or fighters in some way. Indeed, that IS why they were first invented so many hundreds of years ago, to train fighters in the military. They have also been used for training in such martial arts as Taekwondo and Karate. It helps to use them to practice kicks as well as punches.

Nothing burns up excess calories quite as well as time spent with punching bags except, possibly, running. It is easy to understand when you consider the hard and fast punching and kicking that one does when using these bags. You can really work up a sweat that burns off even more calories while you are learning to keep your balance and defend yourself all at the same time. Attacking these bags also make excellent warming up exercises before you go running or jogging. Your muscles will be ready to be put through their paces with little risk of pulling any muscles.

Other benefits of using punching bags as part of your fitness routine include toning the muscles in your arms as well as your legs. It also builds up the strength in many muscles throughout your body. Spending time working out with the bag does not have to be done every single day. You can make these workouts fit in with your schedule whether that is three times a week, more or less. This makes one of the more ideal workouts because you can speed them up or slow them down to suit your needs. The perfect workout for your entire body may just be the best kept secret around.

Effective Home Workouts

Many people think that creating a home workout gym is either too intimidating or too costly. So, often they instead invest their money in a health club membership not realizing that for the same amount of money (or even less) they can create a very effective gym right in their own home.

For an effective home gym, all that is required is a little bit of planning. Don’t fall into the trap of purchasing random fitness equipment because of fancy advertising for the latest infomercial fad or the great “sale” at your local fitness store. That type of purchasing leads to a house littered with equipment that’s only use is as a clothes hanger or dust collector. This often happens because the equipment is either useless, poorly constructed or quickly loses its value because it doesn’t progress with your fitness level.

To avoid having a basement filled with expensive dust-collecting equipment, keep these points in mind when making a purchase:

  1. What are your fitness goals?
  2. How often do you realistically think you will use the equipment?
  3. What fitness level do you expect to be at in 3, 6, 9 months?
  4. Will the equipment meet your needs as you get more fit (at the 3, 6, and 9-month marks)?
  5. Does the equipment offer enough variations in use that you can change your workouts frequently to prevent your body from hitting a plateau?
  6. Will you enjoy the exercises or will you quickly grow bored of them?
  7. And, of course how much can you afford?

Once you have answered all of the above questions then you are ready to make some purchasing decisions. Of course, how much you can afford to spend may dictate what you can actually purchase. Don’t get discouraged. For as little as $100, you can have a very effective total strength training home gym. Even for as little as $35, you can create an effective workout that will tone your entire body.

Regardless of what your fitness goals are, there are a plethora of equipment options to consider. For building muscles and/or toning-up you can choose from free weights, selectorized machines, resistance bands, benches and even no-equipment. For cardiovascular improvements (e.g. running, walking, etc), there are even more options. They range from treadmills, to elliptical trainers, to bikes and beyond. So, answering the previously mentioned questions is very important.

To help make your decision easier, below are several recommendations based on costs and needs, along with benefits of the exercise equipment.

If you want to create a gym that will provide you with a total body workout (cardio, strength and flexibility) and you have a budget of at least $1000, consider the following recommendations:

  • Treadmill – The best option for cardiovascular equipment because it can be used for running, walking, and even some leg strength training. Plus, workouts can continually be varied based on speed, incline, even direction. And, it easily progresses as fitness levels improve.
  • Full dumbbell set with weights ranging from 5 pounds to 50+ pounds. – Great for light toning, to intermediate strength training to building muscles. Less expensive than selectorized machines and usually provides more flexibility and variety in workouts.
  • Fitness Ball – Provides exercise options for toning, strengthening and stretching.
  • Resistance Band – Provides another option for strength training. Can alternate use with free weights for a great challenge that will help prevent plateaus.
  • Step Bench – Can be used for both cardio workouts and strength training workouts.

If you want a home gym specifically for building muscles (or just can’t afford cardio equipment), and can afford at least $100, consider the following recommendations:

  • Dumbbell set.
  • Fitness Ball
  • Resistance Band
  • Jump Rope – Offers very challenging cardiovascular fitness workouts at a very low price.

If you want a total body home gym but can only afford less than $100, consider the following recommendations:

  • Three dumbbells sizes (e.g. 5, 10 and 15 pounds)
  • Resistance Band
  • Jump Rope

If you are limited to purchasing just one very affordable piece of equipment, consider buying a Fitness Ball. As mentioned above, it provides many different exercise options. With the ball you can get an upper body workout, a lower body workout, very challenging abdominal workout and a stretching/flexibility workout. And, you can get all of this for around $35.

Also, don’t underestimate what you can do with things that are already in your house, like stairs, a chair, milk jugs and others. There are a lot of exercises that require no equipment at all. For example, push-ups, tricep dips, squats, calf raises, etc. You can even create your own “weights” through milk jugs filled with water or sand.

As you can see, there are a lot of options available for creating a home gym that will meet your individual needs and will provide a lot of workout variety. Even on a shoestring budget, you can still make a wise purchase that will be invaluable in helping you get more fit and healthy. And, you’ll enjoy all the benefits of working out at home.

What are the benefits of working out at home? Well, here are some highlights:

  • No wasted time driving to and from a fitness club
  • No waiting in line to use the equipment
  • Workout on your schedule, rather than just when the health club is open
  • No expensive monthly membership fees or long-term contracts
  • Motivation to workout as you pass by the equipment every day

Of course, you will need previous knowledge of how to use your home equipment or you will have to be willing to learn. But, it’s not difficult. Most equipment will come with basic instructions and a few sample exercises. You may want to enlist the help of a professional to provide additional exercise options and guidance that will ensure that you get the most out of your fitness equipment through every fitness level stage.

What To Expect From A Fitness

Fitness fads come and go, but boot camp workouts are still among the most popular.

The great thing about boot camp classes is that they’re always different, so you’re constantly utilizing different muscles and switching things up. It really depends on who’s teaching the class and what their format is, but here’s what you can ‘usually’ expect from a boot camp style fitness class.

What to expect: To get your booty kicked. These classes are based on a series of drills, which can focus on muscular endurance, calisthenics and plyometrics. Some classes may use dumbbells or resistance bands, but will consist of mostly body-weight exercises.

Here are some of the exercises you might experience in one of your local boot camp classes:

1) Plyometric drills: Fast, powerful and functional movements. These can help to improve athletic performance and the functioning of the nervous system. The goal of plyo movements are to create a very strong muscle contraction in a short amount of time, and the movements consist of a quick lengthening phase followed by a resting phase. In boot camp classes, these movements can be used to spike up the heart rate so that you’re burning more calories during the strength exercises.

Other examples:

-Tuck jumps

-Box jumps

-Plyo push-ups

-Jumping lunges

-Burpees

2) The basics: Standard calisthenics that you’ve most likely seen before. These exercises can benefit muscular and cardiovascular fitness, and will consist of quite a few reps or sets, especially during a boot camp class.

-Lunges

-Squats

-Calf raises

-Dips

-Jumping jacks

-Push-ups

-Sit ups

-Crunches

-Flutter kicks

3) Props. Your instructor may use different props for the boot camp class, including dumbbells, resistance bands, an agility ladder, medicine balls, or even hurdles.

4) Intervals or timed stations. There could be different stations set up, and you can rotate through each station during class. Along with the rising popularity of Tabata intervals, I’ve noticed that many instructors are using this technique in their classes, so you can also expect to be timed for intervals, like 10 seconds rest, 20 seconds on, repeating 8 times for 4 minutes total.

What to wear: I find a lot of people have this question, so wear whatever you’re comfortable in, but make sure you have good supportive sneakers for jumping, running and lateral movement.

Pros:

-Variety. Changes are that class will be different every time, so as I always say: change creates change. This is a very good thing.

-Strength and cardio rolled into one workout! Fitness efficiency at its best.

-Group fitness energy and motivation. There is something so exciting and motivating about taking an intense class in a group setting, it keeps you going even when you want to stop the most!!!

Easy Workout For Mothers

When you are a mother the last thing you think you have time for is a workout. You ask yourself where a workout fits in between school plays, the kids sport activities, making dinner, laundry, dishes and the million other things on your 4 foot long to-do list. The reality is you do have time for a workout, and in fact are probably getting exercise throughout the day just doing daily chores. Try some of these ideas for an easy to do workout for mothers.

Use You Daily Routine

Why not implement a workout into you daily routine? The easiest way to do that is to incorporate it into your day. Instead of driving 3 blocks to get toilet paper on your to-do list you can choose to walk or jog to the store. This may also help you from making impulse buys that you do not need.

Ways to Work a Workout into Your Day

If you get into the routine of walking or jogging to a nearby store for small items on your to-do list you can surely find other easy ways to workout throughout your day. Set aside time for a family walk. Instead of using an elevator you could take the stairs. While you are doing daily chores around the house wear wrist and ankle weights-yes it works.

Another great way for mothers to do a workout is to have a neighborhood workout for mothers group. If you are affiliated with a church make a group to help others workout and keep you on your regimen. These simple easy to do workout for mothers can dramatically change the way you look at exercise.

Traditional Ways to Implement a Workout

Join a gym-all mothers need time to themselves. Joining a gym can be a great way to alleviate stress and keep your mind and body in shape. A workout for mothers is much more than an exercise regimen, it’s a way to distress, relax and have time without doing something for their family. A mother’s workout can be considered their “me” time. Too many mothers do not take time for themselves.

Joining a gym can also help mothers meet new people and network with other mothers while improving their health. Just because you are a mother doesn’t mean your social life should end. Having other mothers that work out with you has several benefits; the first of which is support. Support can be the difference between succeeding and failing. The second most important benefit to having others to workout with is knowledge; mothers that share workout tips have a better success rate.

How to Start a Workout for Mothers Group

There are several ways to start a workout for mothers group. Start with friends and family. You can branch out to church members and social groups such as mommy and me groups. Next try starting a new workout for mothers group at your local gym. These simple easy to implement tips can be the difference between succeeding at your workout and failing.

Improve Your Fitness

All over the world people are increasingly conscious of health. We can rest on the fact that the most important things in life is to keep in shape and to lay out, in a sense enjoy things in life. Keeping fit means recapturing the days of your youth and the enjoyment of life in those days. A man would do anything for the sake of keeping himself young. Despite all types of treatments and surgeries which is a booming market, people continue to trust the natural believe of remaining fit, i.e., by exercising regularly and maintain a workout routine. It is very necessary to train, which takes care of all aspects of a good body.

There are various benefits derived from regular training fitness. Workouts succeed in relation to the physical needs of the body, if regularly observed, your body will obtain the desired shape. Major benefits of training programs are reducing the weight of a bulky body to the right proportion and increasing power in the body. That translates into a lower risk of diseases, helps reduce body fat and finally gives the body an attenuated form. Not only this but workouts helps with depression and insomnia by helping improve how you feel physically and spiritually. Increase self-esteem and get more energy to the body with workouts.

Fitness training also helps to increase the metabolism of the body, which means with more muscles, more calories in the body are used. The training helps to increase the shape of the muscles of the body, that increases the need to burn calories. To maintain metabolism levels we may opt for training fitness and some aerobic activities. Exercising not only helps maintain a strong and toned look but also contributes to maintain peace and mental content. It also helps reduce the symptoms of menopause, heart disease and maintains the level of cholesterol. And it gives the body a more attenuated look and feel, which not only looks strong but is stronger than it looks.

The Unconventional Twist Workout

We all want to be toned, fit and healthy. Unfortunately, the world’s hustle and bustle can interrupt our good intentions in more ways than one. For many of us, most of the hurdles lie in motivation and enjoyment. Getting down on the floor and doing the same old repetitive set of push-ups or crunches sounds more and more undesirable every day. Fortunately, modern technologies combined with intelligent engineering have been able to make great strides in providing exercises that absolutely trump traditional workouts. One of these developments has been shown in the modern twist workout routines available. They combine the heart-pumping exercise provided by cardio workouts with the fun of dance workout routines while tying them into the twist workout to keep you moving and tightening.

The twist workout is often conceived as a one trick pony. This proves to be an antiquated misconception spouted by old marketers and critics. Cardio workouts, when combined with twist workouts, can prove to be an excellent method of combining motion and core-strengthening exercise. The ability to constantly drive heart rate and utilize core muscle groups simultaneously allows users of these techniques to receive a complete, efficient workout in much less time. The ability to use these tactics to fit more exercise in less time is of great help to many people. Office workers with long hours can utilize a couple of short breaks a day to obtain a full body workout. Busy moms can squeeze in a quick workout in the few moments while food is in the oven or the kids are on the way home from school. The opportunity to receive quality exercise is no longer diminished by the long hours and confusing routines often offered by most fitness programs.

Dancing is a true human past time and it would only make sense to incorporate something so fun into something that benefits your health. Modern twist workout programs have utilized these dance workout options in a way that revolutionizes fitness. Why settle for just cardio or just core-strengthening exercises when you can have a well-rounded routine all in one package? Although regular dance workouts have been noted to be hard on the joints, twister dance workouts often provide a low impact exercise which is great for joint health and can be universally suitable for anyone from athletes to the elderly. These exercises combined with the twist workout motion create an overall fitness package that does not need to be overwhelming or convoluted; it just works!

When you’re looking for an exercise solution make sure that these new options are part of your consideration. Many products offer instant success but few utilize honest techniques that truly help your entire body. The modern twist workout options provide an honest alternative to antiquated cardio workouts & dance workouts, and provide a low impact exercise for anyone trying to get fit or stay in shape! Combined with the astounding level of efficiency offered by these twist workouts, the amount of time you’ll need to stay active, healthy and fit is reduced enough for you to spend more time enjoying life!

Fitness For Golf

You probably already know that to make a full and complete backswing you need to be flexible. I have played with college golfers recently and I noticed one thing in particular that helped them to drive the ball way down the fairway past me and everyone else. These young guys were very flexible and able to take the club back with a long and flowing backswing. Watching them made me wish for the return of my youth.

If you, like me, are still trying to get to where you can complete the backswing smoothly and comfortably with ease then you should consider a golf specific stretching and flexibility program.

As the golf fitness industry continues to grow more and more “experts” have come on the scene touting their version of a golf workout, fitness or stretching program. As with all purchases you should be cautious and make an educated decision about which program would be best for you.

With all the new voices in the mix, the golf stretching discussion has evolved into two different approaches to the subject. The choice you make is vital to your success.

Simply put the two types are “Dynamic Golf Flexibility and Stretching” or “Static Golf Stretching and Flexibility“. Knowing the difference is the secret to choosing the correct type of program.

Let’s discuss Dynamic Golf Stretching and Flexibility Exercises.

In order to achieve that smooth, full, complete and tension free backswing you will need to incorporate dynamic golf stretching and flexibility exercises in to your golf training program. The term dynamic refers to the motion of your body. In this case it the continuous motion of the exercises.

You see the golf swing is dynamic, a continuous, coordinate movement of the body. It only makes sense that an exercise program designed to improve your golf swing would be dynamic in nature as well.

You may be thinking that stretching exercises follow the pattern of “make this move, hold for awhile, repeat 5 times, move on to the next”. Those would be static exercises rather than dynamic and by now you understand that static exercises won’t improve your golf swing flexibility.

What you want are dynamic golf flexibility exercises like a lunge with a shoulder turn. This involves the entire body, both upper and lower body, in a coordinated move just like your golf swing.

That is just one of many simple yet very effective golf flexibility and golf stretching exercises you can use to develop a better golf swing. A swing more like those young college golfers we talked about earlier. You will add power and distance unlike anything you have ever known to your golf swing. Your foursome won’t know what hit them, unless you tell them.

If you are as hungry as a bear for more distance with every club then please consider improving your flexibility through a dynamic golf stretching and flexibility program as the best way to satisfy that hunger.

Improve Your Fitness

All over the world people are increasingly conscious of health. We can rest on the fact that the most important things in life is to keep in shape and to lay out, in a sense enjoy things in life. Keeping fit means recapturing the days of your youth and the enjoyment of life in those days. A man would do anything for the sake of keeping himself young. Despite all types of treatments and surgeries which is a booming market, people continue to trust the natural believe of remaining fit, i.e., by exercising regularly and maintain a workout routine. It is very necessary to train, which takes care of all aspects of a good body.

There are various benefits derived from regular training fitness. Workouts succeed in relation to the physical needs of the body, if regularly observed, your body will obtain the desired shape. Major benefits of training programs are reducing the weight of a bulky body to the right proportion and increasing power in the body. That translates into a lower risk of diseases, helps reduce body fat and finally gives the body an attenuated form. Not only this but workouts helps with depression and insomnia by helping improve how you feel physically and spiritually. Increase self-esteem and get more energy to the body with workouts and fintess.

Fitness training also helps to increase the metabolism of the body, which means with more muscles, more calories in the body are used. The training helps to increase the shape of the muscles of the body, that increases the need to burn calories. To maintain metabolism levels we may opt for training fitness and some aerobic activities. Exercising not only helps maintain a strong and toned look but also contributes to maintain peace and mental content. It also helps reduce the symptoms of menopause, heart disease and maintains the level of cholesterol. And it gives the body a more attenuated look and feel, which not only looks strong but is stronger than it looks.

A Big Workout Punch in A Small Training

From a technical point of view, you would take the TRX suspension trainer to be a dynamic complicated training gear. You may wonder how the use of straps could be an effective training kit. Yet this is as true as it sounds. The TRX suspension training kit is a small packaged piece of training equipment that offers high-end workouts.

Fitness equipment is in most cases considered as large and complicated to have one say they have gone through an exhilarating workout shelter. For them, the bigger the gear, the better the chances. It is never wise to judge a book by its covers and this is a saying befitting this workout kit. Many trainers hold a high regard towards the capabilities of this training gear.

If you look closely at standard work out gear, they are like the big guns. They will go for the huge, space consuming and heavy equipment. All this is the quest to feel like they have all that they need to get top-notch exercises done. With the TRX training gear, this is the least exempted from the picture.

Ask some of the suspension trainers about the kit and they will tell you how heavy the kit pack is. Thus, this way you can get the training that counts not what the training kit looks like in size. Using the TRX trainer is a sure way of doing workouts while leaning on results and not the size of equipment.

The big blow that this kit deals to many other training gears is in terms of workout space. When most fitness equipment consumes huge volumes of space, the TRX suspension training kit takes up little space. In fact, it takes up such a small space that you have enough room for doing better workouts.

A reputation of this gear is the ability to place it virtually anywhere. You only need to anchor it and it is all set to use TRX suspension trainers. While performing with it, do not just wonder what a bunch of straps will do to offer a complete workout.

As a TRX suspension trainer, you should be open to the exercise possibilities that come with it. A look at the TRX suspension-training kit will leave you perplexed on a few issues, the bigger one being that of workouts. At first sight, you may downplay the gear to not be a performer in terms of training on relation to your body size.

Yet the support to body weight that the TRX suspension trainer offers is amazing. Plan to run, do push-ups or other workouts. Then, you have it all covered using the suspension trainer. If you lack the expertise on using the gear, do not worry as it comes with a DVD manual on exercises for TRX suspension trainers.