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Five novel fitness activities to try out this New Year
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Five novel fitness activities to try out this New Year

Try these unique physical activities alongside your exercise routine to spice up the fitness journey
Photo by Goutham V / Happiest Health

The New Year is just around the corner. Yes, it is that time of the year when fitness resolutions are planned. You can add fun to your fitness journey by trying new avenues or novel activities. Exercising and following a monotonous routine can be discouraging at times. Adding fun activities not only breaks the monotony but acts as motivation too.

Activities as a part of New Year fitness resolution can add variety to the routine that not only improves physical health but also provides many mental benefits, says Ashish Baruah, a master personal trainer and nutrition coach from Guwahati. They improve creativity and help instill curiosity to learn more.

However, Baruah insists on having a regular exercise routine along with trying out new activities. “For those who are office goers or have busy schedules, should not just rely on new activities, but should also have a simple exercise routine like a walk, jog, or some basic gym workouts. By doing this, it will help an individual perform other physical activities at ease and reduce the risk of injuries.”

Here are some unique activities that you can try to make a fun-filled fitness journey as a New Year fitness resolution.

Hula hooping 

Hula hooping, a form of flow art, is the practice of continuously rotating a circular hoop around the body. It combines skill-based movement with artistic expression to reach a state of flow. Hula hooping is a great cardio routine that requires minimal space.

“The entire process is like moving each part of your body while having fun. It is great for muscle movement,” KA Nishitha, a flow arts performer from Bengaluru, tells Happiest Health.

Muscle activation, core strengthening, enhanced focus and concentration are some of the health benefits of hula hooping.

Juggling

Add juggling to your New Year fitness resolution. Juggling is throwing and spinning multiple balls (with two hands) in a loop. Mastering the basics is key as it requires determination and persistence. If one does not get the technique right, the chances of giving up and getting bored are high.

Uday Kanathur, a juggler, ventriloquist, and magician from Bengaluru says: “Juggling helps maintain fitness and controlling body weight. It works the hands, shoulders, neck, back and leg muscles.”

Standing for long durations while training or performing, the muscular exertion involved in throwing and catching, and the energy utilized by the brain, help burn the calories.

Juggling can cause strain, stiffness and pain in the wrists, shoulders, back and legs. Jugglers need to warm up and cool down after activities to avoid pain.

Pole dance

Pole dance is one such activity to incorporate as a New Year resolution. It combines the traditional benefits of dancing with that of gymnastics and calisthenics. 

Pole dance is a mix of cardio and strength training and a whole-body workout that improves flexibility and tones the body.

Anandita Thakur, a 26-year-old pole artist at Flux, Bengaluru, says: “While pole dancing, we use both pulling and pushing power, where the lats, biceps, triceps, chest, and core muscles are heavily engaged. Lats are the muscles that play a pivotal role in the pull and push aspect to a considerable extent.”

Pole dancing provides a host of mental health benefits too. It helps people to come out of their comfort zone and explore their body capabilities while the whole exertion releases the happy hormones, relaxing the mind.

Skimboarding

If you are someone who enjoys water sports, try skimboarding. However, it requires a basic level of fitness and strength to begin with.

A skimboarding fitness routine should consist of balance training, strength training, agility and reaction time drills, core stability drills, and stretching.

The various muscle groups involved in skimboarding are leg muscles (quadriceps, hamstrings, calf muscles), core muscles, upper body muscles (hip flexors and abductors, gluteal muscles), feet and ankle muscles. These muscles need to be strengthened to improve skimboarding performance.

Capoeira

This New Year’s fitness resolution, try the Brazilian martial art of capoeira which offers fitness, self-defense skills and holistic wellness. In capoeira, music is used to set the pace and intensity and facilitate communication among practitioners.

It has a distinct perspective as it combines the elements of dance, acrobatics, music, and spirituality.

“The objective of capoeira is to determine how long you can survive in the game. This makes capoeira a stamina-oriented form. Strength and flexibility will naturally develop if you practice consistently,” Ravi Suchak, capoeira instructor and co-founder of Capoeira Academy of India, Bengaluru, tells Happiest Health.

People of all ages and fitness levels can learn capoeira, which does not follow a rigid format. It allows practitioners to bring their essence into the art.

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