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7 Olympic Games-Inspired Workouts

July 18, 2012

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ArcheryTired of the same old workout and looking for something new? With the Olympic Games just around the corner, now is a great time to pick up a new games-themed workout to shake you out of the doldrums.

While the Olympics may inspire you to start running or swimming, why not try one of the lesser known Olympic sports? Here are our top suggestions:

Beach Volleyball

A challenging, fun, and cardio-friendly exercise, beach volleyball is a fantastic way to enjoy warm summer evenings with some friends. Look for a local league, or set up your own beach volleyball night with some like-minded individuals.

Archery

Get your Hunger Games on with a little target practice. Archery provides a great upper body workout and also helps give you focus – so you can let go of everything that’s cluttering up your mind and concentrate on the task at hand.

Canoeing

Serene, peaceful, and requiring no special skill set, canoeing is an excellent upper body and core workout that lets you get in touch with nature. Start with a rental canoe to get the hang of things, and then consider investing in your own. Think of all the new places you can explore!

Fencing

Fencing provides cardiovascular exercise, tones muscles, and increases flexibility. It is also a mentally challenging sport, as you have to learn to out-think your opponent and this helps you develop your problem-solving skills.

Rowing

Outdoor rowing provides a fantastic workout, as well as letting you get to know a new group of people (or get your friends together for a rowing team). Rowing works all your major muscle groups for a full-body workout as well as helping with weight loss and stress relief.

Water Polo

Imagine playing basketball, hockey, soccer, and rugby all at the same time – in a pool! This is the essence of water polo. During one match the average player swims approximately 4 miles and burn about 700 calories per hour, so it’s not hard to see how water polo can whip your whole body into shape.

Trampoline

If you’ve ever hopped on a trampoline, you likely remember the burning quads as you began to breathe heavily. Trampolines are a great exercise, as they get your whole body moving. It also helps to improve balance, increase cardiovascular health, and improve bone density. At the same time it is a low impact, non-technical exercise that can be done by anyone of any age. Plus it’s fun!

So, which of these Olympic-themed exercises are you going to tackle? Don’t forget to watch London 2012 to see how the pros are doing it for some great tips.

Photo (top): loicwood

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