Don’t Hide Under the Covers: Reap the Benefits of Winter Sports

Cold-Weather SportsWhile winter is a good excuse to stay at home and hide under the blanket, it is actually the best time to embrace opportunities to experience what the cold can offer. In fact, according to WebMD, cold-weather sports provide great exercise, helping build balance, endurance, and muscle mass. Many winter activities can burn calories and help you develop a stronger upper body.

Skiing

Cross-country skiing is one of the best winter sports for building endurance and burning calories. This aerobic activity involves continuous movement for longer periods while the heart pumps enough oxygen to the muscles. This strengthens the muscles in the thighs, bottom, calves, and even biceps and triceps.

It is still important, however, not to overdo your skiing routine. Create a realistic timeline on how long you plan to ski and prepare yourself with practice and training. It is a good idea to check ski prices and packages that are perfect for your or your group’s ability and level.

Snowboarding

This winter sport uses the hamstrings, calf muscles, and quadriceps when using the board, as well the ankle and foot muscles when steering. The best thing about snowboarding is that it can burn about 480 to 485 calories per hour. It requires core power and strength to balance and navigate the board down.

If you want to burn more calories, you can look for a steeper and more challenging route. Make sure, however, that the terrain level is appropriate for your skill level. If you’re a beginner, take lessons first instead of going down the hill and trying to figure out what to do later.

Ice Skating and Ice Hockey

Skating is a low impact exercise that boosts your flexibility, agility, balance, and quickness. It is also a good way to develop lower body muscles such as the quadriceps, hamstrings, and calves. Adding jumps to the routine can build bone mass and build strength and endurance. The good news is, it is possible to burn calories even if you’re just a beginner.

Ice hockey, on the other hand, is a great cardio workout. Balance is highly important, as well as maintaining total muscle control. Hockey is an ideal strength-training workout, which can develop abdominals and both lower and upper body.

These winter sports and their benefits give you more reason stay out in the cold and enjoy what the winter can offer. Invite your family and friends and try one of these winter activities.