The passing of summer signals game-on for fun in the sun and water-driven activities. Water sports not only help beat the heat, but they offer an excellent full-body workout with less impact than exercising on land.
Open Water Swimming (OWS)
For ocean- and lake-lovers alike, swimming is touted as one of the best total-body workouts around. Many communities have triathlon or open water swimming clubs with groups setting out at designated times for previously appointed distances. If new to the sport, it’s best to not swim alone and instead gain experience in a pool during a masters swim class. A great bang for your buck (only requires a suit, cap, goggles), it can literally be done anywhere-providing research is done on open water swimming locations, as some areas can have dangerous currents or rip tides. Buying a swim buoy is also recommended, because it provides great visibility as well as a rest option if necessary. Find everything you need to know about OWS here.
Stand Up Paddle or SUP
One of the hottest activities out there and best way to beat the “I can’t sit on the beach anymore” jitters, SUP can be done on almost any calm surface - lakes, oceans (for the more adventuresome) and rivers. An ancient sport that was given a modern rebirth by our friends in Hawaii, SUP involves standing on a surfboard while paddling on flat water or in waves. Many local beaches rent boards by the hour, and or inflatable boards can be transported in a nifty little backpack set-up. Boards come in all shapes and sizes for different kinds of SUP - ranging from cruisy lake boards, to surf SUP, to the racy downwinders. A lesson for proper stroke technique is never a bad idea, adding to an efficient core and balance workout.
Skiing isn’t just for winter enthusiasts. Water-skiing can elicit euphoric sliding sensations while challenging balance, timing and total body strength. USA Waterskiing is a great resource that covers all sports that involve being pulled behind a boat on a variety of apparatusesi. Probably the most popular water-skiing involves skiing on one or two skis made from wood, carbon or a composite while skimming the surface of the water holding on to a ski rope attached to the boat. Other progressive activities include wakeboarding (more like snowboarding), competitive course skiing, trick skiing, bare footing (no skis required) and jumping. Many local lakes offer lessons, or buddy up to your pal with that boat on the lake.
Wakesurfing is perfect for those who search for the endless wave. Done behind a specialized boat like the Malibu Wakesetter, the craft has ballasts in the hull that can be mechanically filled with water, pushing the back of the boat down to create a surf-able wave with the assistance of a specialized power wedge. The wave can be shifted to either side of the boat for regular or goofy-footed participants. The surfer is pulled up with a rope close to the back of the boat and after settling into the pocket of the wave can choose to let go of the rope and surf to their heart’s delight. As wake surfers are positioned close to the back of the boat, spectators can cheer their progress in a group activity setting. The sport has taken off with the birth of the Competitive Wake Surf Association, offering additional resources and information. Certain boat dealers will rent boats and give tutorials on how to create the perfect wave. This sport is not recommended for outboard motors.
Kiteboarding or kitesurfing is all about harnessing the power of the wind. Kiting (as it is referred to for short) is a melee of wakeboarding, windsurfing, paragliding, snowboarding, skateboarding, and gymnastics all rolled into one. Kiters ride a special board either twin tipped or directional, with straps or without, all while attached to a kite of varying sizes. Kiting is not without its obvious dangers, but taught by a qualified instructor, the intimidation factor can be brought down to a minimum. Kiters describe feeling like surfing constant waves with minimal effort. Numerous hot spots around the country offer
lessons and camps for the beginner. REAL Sports is a great option, or check out Book Kitesurfing Camps to find one in a location that suits you.
Not only for summer pursuits, mastering some of these activities will pep up beach vacations for years to come.
All content provided in this blog is supplied by Lyndsay Meyer and is for informational purposes only. Barclays takes no position as to the views, and makes no representations as to the accuracy or completeness of any information contained in the blog or found by following any link within this blog.
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