Home Athletics Here is how you can fully become a Sports Participant

Here is how you can fully become a Sports Participant

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PICTURE BY ALEX BROADWAY /SWPIX.COM - Olympics - Day Eight - Athletics - Olympic Stadium, Olympic Park, London, England - 04/08/12 - Jess Ennis celebrates as she crosses the line to win the Women's Heptathlon.

Sport is easy to learn, it doesn’t matter the stage you’re at. If you look closely enough there will be sports clubs to take care of you, in as much you are completely new. So here is an introduction to the sport and why you should become part of it.

Definitely creating out time for exercise can be a tough decision. A lot of us get set in our ways, with a routine that includes coming in from work or school and then slouching in front of the TV  breaking that cycle of inactivity is not simple.

The idea of throwing yourself in at the deep end is a scary one, but don’t forget, you are not the first beginner that a club will have seen. Everyone has to begin from somewhere! Even the world’s best in any sport was once starters.

Most sports are open to all, regardless of age

If you are young, then now is the best time to become part of a sports group. How many people have taken to a sport in later life, only to wish they became part of it when they were younger? The advice is: try out different kinds of sports as you can until you find the one or a few that you believe is really great for you.

For those who are older, the advice is: just give it a go! What is there to lose? You may try something and find that it’s not for you, but what have you lost? The other side is that you may find a sport that you love and worry about why you never gave it try at first.

Play for the love of the sport

Obviously, not all sports are about competition. A lot of people participate for the love of the sport or just to be involved with other people, regardless of whether they win, lose, or draw. If you used to be part of a sport that you really enjoyed, but dropped it due to other commitments, now might just be the best time to give it a try.

Degree of fitness

Don’t worry if you are not actually fit or are carrying some excess weight. If your goal is to get fit, then you will get there as long as you show the right dedication, and if the sport is one that you enjoy, then motivation will be no problem.

Where to start if I’m not particularly fit?

What if you have been absolutely inactive for the past years and consider yourself out of shape and are worried about joining a sports group immediately. A good place to begin would be walking. Walking costs nothing, and can be fitted into our daily lives, simply by walking to work, walking to the shops or just getting off the bus a stop or two earlier. It is believed that each minute you walk, you add between one and a half to two minutes to your life.

Over time, you can steadily increase the speed or distance of your walks. Once you’ve improved your general fitness, you may find yourself ready to tackle a more challenging sport.

Other sports don’t require a particularly high degree of physical fitness but require mental fitness which we all have and are able to improve.

Accessibility of sports

So many sports are accessible to all. You only need to look at the success of the Paralympic Games to see that a disability is not a barrier to participating.

A lot of clubs are getting tuned into the desire to open up their sports to everyone, including those with disabilities. Some sports such as judo, because of the close contact involved, can see blind or partially sighted people able to compete equally with sighted people. Another instance is fencing which enables people with inabilities to compete against fully able-bodied fencers.

Cost of starting out in a sport

In most cases, the cost of becoming part of a sport is not an issue. Clearly, some sports such as sailing, golf, or horse riding may need a significant initial outlay if you want to buy all the kit, but there are still taster sessions for these sports to be found to try before you buy!

There are many initiatives, especially for the young, whereby subsidized sessions make it feasible to have a go without having to shell out for any equipment at first. Most clubs will have equipment for hire or even free of charge, and then will be able to advise on what to buy if you find you get a taste for a specific sport.

In conclusion, there is always a sport out there for all of us, the only thing stopping you from having a go is you. Try to think about what your goals are, even if it is to improve fitness, aiming for competitions, gaining competence in sport, or just enjoying yourself.

If you are not particularly confident or a bit wary about going along alone to give a sport a try, then participate in sport or exercise with a friend. At the very least you will both probably have a laugh at each other’s initial efforts! Then, if you both get a bug for the sport, it will be simple to keep it up with both of you inspiring each other.

Being involved will not only help you stay in good health, but will also make you feel great about yourself, and bring you into contact with people you probably would never have met.

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