Category Archives: Sport

My Life Has Started Up Again Thanks to Racing and My Best Friend

I had been under the weather for a long time last year. My wife had passed away, and then both of my parents died just months later. I spent most of the year in a depressed stupor. My best friend tried to get me to get out of the house for many months, and I refused to until he begged me to go to a Formula One race with him. I thought it would be interesting, but I didn’t want to go at first because I was so depressed. I’m glad that he invited me that day because it really helped me a lot. It helped me to become an interested participant in this world again. We bonded that day and I will always be grateful to him for helping me come back to life.

My wife and I were married for forty years.

River Surfing Gear

River surfing can be tough to learn for beginners, and it can be dangerous without the right gear. Here is what you need to get started.

  • Boards

No single board works well for all conditions. Instead, most surfers will develop a set of boards that work well in their area. Some start with traditional ocean boards, but it’s not an easy way to start. It’ll be easier to learn if you start with something with more volume and a larger planing area than most ocean shortboards, and less length than the long soft top boards that most ocean surfers start out on so you can fit onto the wave. Look for soft top boards with significant rocker. Save fiberglass boards for when you have your feet under you a little better, and don’t drive your board into the rocks quite so often.

  • Helmets

Helmets are nearly mandatory at just about every river wave. Look for something whitewater specific rather than a bike or climbing helmet.

  • Leashes

Wearing a leash is th eeasiest way to get killed river surfing. If you feel like you need a leash, get something as a quick release around your waist.

  • PFDs

A PFD is a good idea in high-volume rivers, particularly if you’re in a situation where you may be held down for a while.

  • Booties

Some foot protection is going to be important; most rivers are shallow and many urban corridors will have glass and other trash in the rivers that will cut up your feet if you’re not careful. You need to look for a trade-off between protection and feel for the board; generally you can get away with something thinner than most people kayak with, but test things out for yourself to see how much thickness you want.

  • Insulation

Unless you’re only surfing in the heart of summer, eventually you’re going to need something more than swim trunks to keep you warm. Wetsuits are the way to go here; a 2:3 wetsuit (2mm on the arms and 3 mm on the chest) can keep you warm enough for many conditions, though a 3:4 wetsuit isn’t a bad idea if you’re surfing in a colder climate. If you want to do things the hardcore route and surf through the winter, you may be in the market for a drysuit. They’re pricy, but they’re worth it if you’re building up ice on the banks or on yourself.

Surfing Exercises

If you want to exercise to get in shape for surfing start with your feet. The feet help provide shock absorption, balance, force, control, power, flexibility, strength and agility to your ride. All of the following exercises can be done in bare feet.

Sitting:

  • Start by rolling a tennis ball under your foot. This helps awaken the soft connective tissue (fascia). Do not put your full weight on the foot being rolled. Work up to using more pressure and using a lacrosse ball or golf ball. Roll the ball with a little more pressure under the heels, balls and outer edge of your feet and less pressure in the arches and toes. Spend at least 1 minute on each foot.
  • Try to pickup sand/small rocks with your toes. Once you have accomplished this task try to fling the objects with your toes.
  • Lift your foot off the ground and write in the air your favorite surfing spot. Pretend your toes are a pen and your ankle is a wrist.
  • With your feet apart keep your heels stationary and push/drag the balls of the feet and toes outwards away from center. When they are out as far as they can go (duck footed) lift the front of the feet off the ground (heels stationary) and bring them back to neutral. 10-15 times.
  • With your feet apart keeping your heels stationary lift the balls of your feet and toes up and go outwards. When they are out as far as they can go bring the front of the feet down and drag them back to neutral. 10-15 times.
  • Press your four small toes down and try to raise your big toe. This is a difficult exercise and when you first attempt it you can lightly hold down your 4 toes with your hand. Sometimes if you tap or lightly push the arch of your foot it helps. 10-15 times.
  • Press your big toe down and try to raise you 4 little toes. Again, you can start by spreading your toes as far apart as you can. Hold for 3-5 seconds 5-10 times.
  • Rock feet back and forth from heels to toes. 15 – 20 times.

Standing:

  • Walk on your heels and then walk on the balls of your feet.
  • Lift your big toe and feel your arch go up. Bring toe down and try to keep the arch raised for a few seconds.
  • Stand on a step with the balls of your feet on the step and your heels hanging over the edge. Slowly use the whole front of the foot to rise up as high as you can then drop your heels down as low as you can get them. 10 -20 times.
  • If it hurts

Surf Camp

As so many people are taking an interest in surfing, it makes sense to learn that there are many more surf camps being set up. Regardless of the ability of the surfer, there is bound to be a place that will match their capabilities. Even if you are planning to surf for the first time, you will find a place to go and there will be many others in the same position as you, although there will be some who have more experience and ability. If you are not sure about your interest, there is no need to get top of the range equipment. However, make sure you have the right items before you get there. The more advanced you get, you will find that there are still as many places to visit, but here you will be in the same group as people who have reached the same level of proficiency as you have. Before booking, it will be best to check that you are going to the right place.

This is so because you do not want to end up feeling like an outsider and not getting the most out of the time you spend at surf camp. Camps will have an expert on hand to let you know whether or not the camp is suitable for you and may even suggest others if theirs is not. There will be a couple of ways to find a site that is suitable. You can either look up an area that you want to visit and see what is available there or select the level that you want and then see which of the locations is preferable. As well as ability, there is cost to consider and this needs to be taken seriously as there could be other events that you want to try in the area. For many people, the main attraction is the knowledge that the people running the camp have the same interest as them, and a desire to help them improve their art. The environment needs to be friendly all the time and if going to another country it will be worth checking if any of the instructors or staff speak your language.

Even if you are a good surfer, there may be times when you need help and knowing that all instructors are trained to the highest degree, and that they consider the safety of the visitors as the most important part of their job. All the time that you are in the water having lessons, you will be accompanied by an instructor – as long as you choose a well-run company to deal with.

 

Best Places for Surfing in Bali

A side from their ultimate beauty, Bali’s beaches are also wonderful for surfing. Here, I have summed up 6 of the best of them for your reference.

1. Nusa Lembongan

Nusa Lembongan is a small island located about twenty kilometers from Bali’s eastern beach. You can reach this place by speedboat in an hour. Several cruises such as Balihay Cruises and Bali Cruise Bounty provides a transportation service to reach this island. This isle is great for surfing. In addition, it has stunning natural panorama that is very interesting for sightseeing. You can also do snorkeling and diving here.

In Nusa Lembongan, you can surf comfortably because the beach here is not too crowded. For utmost surfing pleasure, go to surf between April and October where the wave reaches its maximum height.

2. Serangan Beach

Serangan Beach is located in a small island near Denpasar. Although it’s close to the Bali capital city, Serangan Beach is not as crowded as Kuta and Sanur. This beach is favored by many surfers. The wave here is good for the beginner because its height is only four to six feet. The best surfing time in Serangan is in the morning, from November to April.

3. Kuta Reef

Kuta Reef is an ideal place for surfing in the world-famous Kuta Beach. The exact location of Kuta Reef is in front of Sandhi Pala Motel, or, about 800 meters offshore. To reach Kuta Reef, you can rent a boat that is available nearby the beach.

4. Uluwatu

Uluwatu is in the northern Bali and close to Pura Uluwatu. Only professional surfers are allowed to surf here due to its very high wave. It is often used as the place for surfing competition.

5. Padang Galak

Padang Galak Beach is also called as Ketewel Beach. This beach is known to be one of the best surfing places in Bali. To reach this beach, you only need twenty minutes trip by taxi from Denpasar. Padang Galak is also close to Sanur. This surfing spot is favored by many tourists, especially the Japanese.

Benefits of Rock Climbing

Rock climbing is both an indoor and outdoor sports and gives one a better recreation. This is one of the fastest growing sports activities in the world. Many are of the view that this sport is an adventurous one that invokes adrenaline rush. It is quite true. But, if you want to enjoy the sport you have to abide by the safety instructions and use all tools that will help to keep you safe. It is also very much beneficial for the health. The benefits can be categorized into three main types, which are physical, mental and social benefits.

Rock climbing has similar health benefits like working out in the gym. It is, in fact, the best workout for the body. Both girls and boys of different ages can undertake this sport. Many people believe that the sport needs more upper body strength. Thus, girls feel discourages towards this sport. But that is not true. A proper rock climber is the person who has a good understanding of the sport regarding balance, technique, and strength of the leg. It helps to grow muscle endurance. The core muscles get stronger than exercising. It brings stabilization to the body and makes it lesser prone to getting injured. Again, climbing builds stronger biceps, hands and forearms, upper back, lower back, shoulders, neck, traps, abs, thighs, calves and glutes. Ones cardiovascular system also benefits a lot from the sport.

Climbing rocks are more like solving puzzles. So, it takes proper planning and patience of the individual. One needs to be prompt at decision making and take decisions like which place is better for a move and where they would be led to. Thus, it is sure to enrich your decision-making ability, problem-solving skills. You would become a better goal setter and get the determination to achieve your goals. Your awareness of the surroundings will be more. Your confidence levels will thus get a boost and you would be able to achieve success.

It is a team sport because you always need to be with a group of people to climb the rocks. Thus, you would need to put your trust on others. This in a way helps to build character and leadership qualities. Every person in the initial stage is the student who learns from the instructors and then is able to become a teacher with much experience and share his or her knowledge with others in the field. Overall it is a safe and enjoyable sport if you can maintain the right method to climb. So, be very patient in listening to the instructions of your instructor to have a safe climbing experience.

Important Tips For Climbing

Climbing a high altitude mountain is both tiring and tough, it is mentally and physically demanding and you must be well prepared for the hike if at all you are going all the way to the summit. When thinking of climbing a mountain, you most probably will be doing it in a team and you really do not want to be the whiner that drags everyone else down. Remember that anything can happen during the climb including elements such as bad weather changes, difficult terrains and avalanches. It helps to prepare well in advance and to ensure that you are physically and mentally ready for the challenge ahead.

Tip 1 Get in shape and prepare physically

You cannot wake up one morning and decide to go climb a mountain because you put your health at risk. High Altitude Mountains are really challenging and you must commit weeks of exercising and training before you finally start the climb to the pick. Create a workout schedule that puts your body to the test so it is able to withstand the varying terrains and conditions you might face when climbing the mountain. Try including high elevations, boulder fields and varied terrains in your workout program so the body becomes used to what is expected. It is also very advisable to increase cardiovascular intensity workouts and to include weighted workouts because you will be carrying refreshments and other gear as you go up the mountain. If going as a team, then you can also do the workouts together.

Tip 2 Get mentally prepared for possible challenges

The fact is that not everyone who prepared and desires to climb a mountain always makes it to the top. The climb does have possible impacts that might change everything; you may not always get the results that you expect at the end of the day. For instance, you might choose the perfect time to climb the mountain only for the weather to change drastically from sunny to snow, rain and hail. Injuries are also possibilities that can cut short your climb; death is also very possible especially in high altitude mountains. Even as you keep an eye on the weather forecasts around the time of the climb, ensure that you get regular health checks before you set out to climb to minimize the risks of not making it to the summit as you expect.

Tip 3 Get your climbing gear ready

It might be sweaty to climb a high altitude mountain, but the temperatures can get pretty low. Ensure therefore, that you dress appropriately making sure that you pay attention to how comfortable you feel in the gear you choose. Hiking boots that fit comfortably, breathable but warm clothes, gloves, fleece hats, scarves are some of the things you should think about. Other important items include polarized sunglasses, trekking poles and of course a solid backpacking bag. First aid equipment and water bottles and other snacks should also be included when packing for the climb.

Tips Before Climbing A Mountain

1. Plan especially if it will be your first time! Nothing can ever beat good planning. You need to plan out strategies on how to make your adventure worth remembering.

2. Aim for a more challenging climb next time. Since you already have an experience of going to the summit of a mountain, try something new on your second ascent. You may opt for expedition peaks as your next stop since they require long walks, great technical climbing skills and enough mountaineering expertise. So each time you go for a climb, make it a goal.

3. Get an experienced and trustworthy guide. Make sure that you get guidance from an accredited guide who is connected to a reputable mountain climbing operator. Remember that your trekking experience will be affected by altitude and terrain. Thus, it is very crucial that an experienced companion is at bay.

4. Be prepared. Preparation is key when it comes to ensuring that you will enjoy every experience that you will get while on your way up to the peak. If you are living away from the mountain you are planning to visit, make sure to book for your flight and accommodation the moment you reach the area near the adventure. Likewise, you need to ask around about permits and other legal requirements.

5. Know what lies ahead. Before hitting the summit, some climbers may need to stay in a base camp for a while. Find out if your mountain climbing adventure requires such. By the way, when you are in your base camp, maximize your stay by checking if all your gears are intact and complete.

6. Start hitting the mountain. Yes, begin to climb. Excitement will now officially start. But we have a tip: stick to your route. By doing so, you will have less chances of getting into accidents since you are going to take the route which you actually prepared for.

7. Descend only when you still have enough time to get down safely. Contrary to what others might believe in, descending is actually more difficult than ascending since you need to control the fall of gravity. Thus, be extra careful.

Be Safe and Ready for Mountain Climbing

We will discuss about six other tips which will help you be prepared even more for that awesome climb that you have been planning about. So check on the following tips for that great trekking adventure:

1. Let there be light. You can never be sure that when you climb up during day time, your way will be bright enough. With the many trees and boulders, there is a chance that your path will be dark. Also, you will surely still be there even during nighttime. With this situation, you need to bring with you some flashlights or headlamps. These are important trekking gear. Do not forget that.

2. A first aid kit in your things is also a must. When you are outdoors for mountain climbing, there is a risk of getting into accidents and suffer from cuts and bruises. Include in your first aid kit adhesive bandage and tape, antibiotic ointment, pain killers, and a small bottle of hydrogen peroxide or iodine antiseptic.

3. Avoid getting dehydrated, so bring enough water. When you are trekking towards the summit of a mountain, getting thirsty is certainly an inevitable occurrence. Therefore, you need to bring with you plenty of water.

4. Have your savior at hand – duct tape! It has always been an advise by experts that a roll of duct tape can be your best friend as it helps you save anything that is broken. For instance, if it was an extra windy night and a portion of your tent got torn, just get a duct tape and seal the damaged with it. Viola! Your tent is fixed.

5. Enjoy the climb. Trekking is not all about conquering the peak of a mountain. It is also about enjoying every site and sound that you encounter on your way up. Thus, you need to enjoy the scenery and the flora and fauna that you get to see as you move your feet and butt towards the top.

6. Be a responsible climber. Whatever it is that you bring with you in going up, you need to bring them back to where you came from. This means that everything, including your trash, must not be left up there.

Psychology of Boxers

For centuries, boxing has primarily been viewed as a physical and testosterone filled sport. A sport where physical strength and ruthless egos drive a match and fill seats in an arena. While the brutality of the sport may be what attracts fans, it is the psychology of the sport that truly depicts a great boxer. The mental stamina and toughness of any given boxer can make or break how successful they are on any given day. In the boxing world, this is called, mind management.

Mind management consists of four different areas that help a boxer take control of a match and perfect his overall ability to perform: Calmness under pressure, a ruthless sense of focus, mental toughness and lack of self-blame when things go wrong. In order to be a successful boxer, it is very important to possess all four of these traits. Many boxers underachieve due to built up stress, nervous and anxious feelings and lack of ability to controls their demons. Being able to be calm under pressure may be one of the most important attributes of the mental side of boxing. If a boxer isn’t able to control his or her ability to calm nerves or push aside anxious feeling before a big match, it may affect their ability to keep a clear head and physically perform to the best of his or her ability. Being able to obtain a ruthless sense of focus is the power to counteract negative thoughts and feelings. Opposing boxers will constantly try to intimidate their opponents by getting into their heads and taking their minds off of the match. Mental toughness plays a big role before and after a match. If a boxer loses a big match and isn’t able to overcome the feeling of failure or defeat, it could lead to a downward spiral in future matches to come. This is where lack of self-blame comes in. As a boxer, it is inevitable that one will at some point in their career lose a big match. Those who are able to rise above and work harder will be the much better off than those who take the loss personally.