Be healthy: activate yourself doing these three urban sports
The mercury is going up, summer is just around the corner and I want more than ever to change my gym routine under cover for a little exercise in the heat of the first rays of the sun. Spring is even the time of the year to encourage the laziest to start moving. To start 'sweating the shirt' this season, we suggest several forms of outdoor sports that are very topical and that promise to help athletes achieve their basic goals: to be in shape, feel good about themselves and never stop having fun. Watch out, they are catchy!
CrossFit or bootcamp
Inherited from the routines of the US marines, crossfit is a type of high resistance functional training that, although it has been in Spain for many years, is only now beginning to organise itself into groups for practice in parks and open circuits.
What do you need? Willpower and some good shoes, the rest is for the coach.
This type of exercise combines physical strength, power and endurance and it works the body at all levels.
The routines alternate series of cardio ranging from sprints or jumps to burpees, working with weights (dumbbells, medicine balls or the weight of one's body) and some elements of gymnastics, like handstands. The variety of possible exercises is so wide that it allows a different training or WOD (workout of the day) each day. Boredom is ruled out.
"Its leitmotiv: you against you, promotes the desire to excel and healthy competition"
Although a priori it seems suitable only for athletes, the good thing about crossfit is that each of its exercises can be scaled or adapted to the level of the person who does it. Mind you, in each session you can burn up to 800 calories.
Its leitmotiv 'you against you', promotes the desire to excel and healthy competition that makes the person try to improve their personal bests each time. A group sport that generates good vibes and a lot of community spirit. And if you can do it in broad daylight ... What else can you ask for?
Skateboard or longboard
Beach Boys music in the headphones, sea breeze, dark skin gliding on a board ... The sport that teletransports one to the kilometric promenades of the Californian beaches. Sounds good, doesn’t it? Well, skateboarding is much more than that, a very complete sport that requires high doses of balance, physical fitness and a little patience.
"Particularly works the lower muscle groups"
The basic beginner skateboarder’s kit includes a board, thick and flat soled shoes for total contact with the surface of the board, and protections (knee pads, elbow pads, helmet and gloves). With the equipment in place, the initiatory rite begins: learning to get on. It looks simple, but it is not. Ideally, place the skateboard in a place of stability, such as a flat lawn, to prevent it from sliding easily, and put your feet on it, alternating to find a comfortable position. Once the balance is found, just move to a surface as smooth as possible and start rolling.
Skateboard or longboard? The difference between the two lies in the type of board, the skateboard is smaller and, in addition to sliding, it is used to do tricks and jumps. Its natural habitat is the skatepark, those kinds of futuristic concrete mounds plagued by giant dunes that are part of the urban furniture of most cities.
The longboard table, as its name suggests, is longer, larger and, therefore, more stable. That is why it is best to start with this. Its main use is to ride, varying in intensity until you reach a descent speed with a record of 130 km/h and, at a still more expert level, you can skid, do turns and even do small choreographies on the board. Seeing pro longboarders in action is absolutely mind-boggling.
This sport is physically demanding and particularly works the lower muscle groups; buttocks, quadriceps and, to a lesser extent, the heart. In one hour of practice, you burn no fewer than 500 calories.
Parkour and BMX
Parkour is a sport that comes to us from France and that is to move around the city getting the obstacles of possible urban furniture as fluidly as possible: benches, fountains, parapets, walls ... Helped only by arms and legs and fast impulse movements; which means moving in leaps, the higher, the better. It is done exclusively outdoors and can be done alone or in a group.
"These forms of exercises are gaining popularity and make you work physically at all levels"
BMX, on the other hand, is also an extreme acrobatic discipline, in this case derived from the cycling that is done with off-road bikes or thick wheels. We imported it from California, although since 2008 it has been an Olympic sport, and to start safely it is essential to wear a basic safety kit similar to skateboarding (helmet, knee and elbow pads). Once on the bike, the best way to start is to try different small jumps on the two wheels until you master the actions of impulse, landing and braking. With this done, it's time to go out on the pavement to let your imagination fly and enjoy the adrenaline rush.
All these forms of exercises share a common denominator, they are gaining popularity and they make you work physically at all levels. But, for the athlete who does not feel ready to start in any of them, there is recurrent running. More fashionable every season, it only requires a pair of shoes and running. Its legions are counted by the millions and more and more runners are encouraged to compete even in demanding events like marathons. The thing is to forget the routine, go out and enjoy the benefits that exercise has on the body.