Besides the sun, surf and sand,
the beach offers one of the
best places to continue your
fitness regime when you're
on a vacation. Don't break into
a sweat about packing in the pounds,
as you can continue losing those calories
and keep up with your strengthtraining
and cardio-vascular workouts
with this bunch of beach sports.
Imagine standing at the start of a long
stretch of the beach with the sound of
crashing waves in the distance. Sold
already, aren't you? For one, there's no
crowd to tackle, if you choose the right
time to run. Secondly, you end up getting
a good strength endurance workout.
Heath Matthews, physiotherapist
with Elite Athletes Performance, trains
sportspersons on the beach by making
them do several short sprints rather
than long runs. "We keep a mark at 20m
or 30m and ask them to run to it and
walk back. This increases their strength
endurance," he says.
Matthews' advice is to start your run
on the firm sand near the water to warm
up, then shift to slightly looser sand,
which ups the ante in your workout.
"The impact is lesser when one runs
on the soft sand, but because the sand
gives, running on it is more tiring." Then,
take a break from running on loose sand
and return to the firm sand. Remember
to balance the impact of the beach's
slight slope on both sides of your body.
"You can do that by running up and
down the same stretch instead of a single
direction," adds Matthews.
Precautions: Try to run with proper
running shoes since the sand could
cause blisters on toes and soles.
When he's not pumping iron
in the gym, Rajeev Bhatia
(40) is in Goa kayaking,
and encouraging others
to "give it a try".
"Not only does the
rowing offer a
great upper body
and core workout,
it does so without
the vigour of a
sea on either a sit-on-top or a sit-in
kayak in low tide and return at high
tide. It's simpler to learn kayaking on
the sea and it's great fun," says Bhatia.
Kayaking happens at the Morjhim,
Palolim, and Candolim beaches in Goa.
Precautions: Carry your mobile, wear
a life jacket and don't venture out too
far until you're sure of your kayaking
skills and stamina.
Running on the beach
is such a good cardiovascular
that even tossing a
frisbee or playing
catch has its benefits.
Daniel Vaz feels a
game of volleyball on the
beach is one of the best
ways to get a full workout
for the body and
still have fun.
After all, you
can only lie on
a sun-bed for so long, right?
"You leap into the air and use your
upper body strength to strike the ball,
putting your body through different
directional movements," said Vaz. "Even
if you fall, you won't injure yourself,
since the sand breaks the fall."
Precautions: Stay hydrated, keep the
shades on and don't play if it's too sunny.
Cool off with a swim
Wash the sand and sweat off your body
with some salt water that not only promises
to heal all bruises, but also leaves
you feeling blissfully weightless.
Swimming is not an impact sport, so
even though you're giving your body a
great upper and lower body workout,
you won't feel as tired.
Precautions: Don't swim out too far. If
you can't stand on the seabed, you're
in the deep, so be careful.