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How to Get In Shape - Best Sports to Reintroduce Sports and Health to Your Lifestyle

Updated on October 15, 2013
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Mazlan wasn’t into health or fitness but as age crept up on him, he realized the importance and the benefits of staying fit and healthy.


Get in Shape

You have been very busy with your work, or just recovered from an injury, or maybe had a baby. You took a long break from sports and had put on a couple of pounds.

Now you are ready to get back into shape and lead a healthy lifestyle.

It will not be easy to get into this new routine. You just have to remember to do it slowly, but surely. And, it has got to be a pleasurable experience.

Reintroducing sports and health to your lifestyle is like changing your habit. Your mind and body may accept or reject it. Hence, it is important to take up sports that will involve others, so as to give you the needed push, motivation and encouragement.

To get back in shape or for health and fitness, you need to do exercise or play sports that will give strength, cardiovascular fitness and flexibility.

Let's review the following top 10 sports for you to consider. Choose one that you will enjoy doing.

10. How to Get In Shape - Try Volleyball

Volleyball is probably one of the easiest sport that you may want to start with. It doesn't demand too much running/sprinting and is easy on your heart. However, it's a team sport played by six players on each side, you will need to get at least eleven of your friends or family members to play. You may, however, made do with four players on each side.

Volleyball is a sport that will:

  • increase your agility
  • improves your hand-eye coordination and reflexes
  • increase your thighs and lower legs, arm and shoulder strength
  • increase your cardiovascular workout with the vertical jump

9. How to Get In Shape - Try Table Tennis

This is a great sport to work up a sweat and to pump your heart rate up. It is relatively cheap and you play according to your own limitations. Yet, you can still work out a sweat.

Table Tennis will:

  • improve your cardiovascular system
  • strengthen your leg, arms, abdomen, abs and back muscles
  • improve your reflexes and hand-eye coordination


8. How to Get In Shape - Try Squash

Squash may not be an easy game especially if you have taken a long break, as it is a fast-paced, high impact sport. However, it is an excellent strength and cardio respiratory workout, ideal for your health and fitness.

Squash will:

  • give you flexibility and sprint speed
  • builds up your endurance
  • cardiovascular workout will burn off calories.
  • improve your hand-eye co-ordination
  • strengthens your leg, arm, back, butt and abs muscles.

7. How to Get In Shape - Try Cycling

If cycling alone sounds boring and you need someone to motivate you, then go in groups or in pairs. This is more fun and cycling is a great cardiovascular exercise.

If you have no other option, then use the indoor cycling exercise machines. It is better than nothing.

Cycling will:

  • improve your cardiovascular fitness
  • strengthen your muscular system of the legs, hips, back and abs
  • improves your stamina
  • burn up calories

6. How to Get In Shape - Try Rowing

While it is not the most easily accessible form of sport, rowing is one of the few total body sports available. If you have never rowed before, you will pick it up quickly as it is a very natural motion. You can row alone or with a friend or three or seven other friends (for four or eight rowboat).

Rowing will:

  • improve your cardio respiratory health
  • builds up your endurance and flexibility
  • total body workout that exercises the arms, chest, legs, abs, back and abs.
  • it is a low-impact sport and it is easy on your ankles and knees.
  • high calorie burner (because it uses so many muscle groups)
  • great calorie burner


5. How to Get In Shape - Try Running or Jogging

Just like cycling, you should jog or run in pairs or with a group of friends. Treadmill could be an alternative ONLY if weather doesn't permit you to jog outdoors. Running outdoors gives you a far better therapeutic benefit than jogging on treadmill. Just make sure you get a good pair of running shoes.

Jogging will:

  • strengthen your lower body, hips, back and waistline
  • builds up cardio respiratory endurance
  • will not give you bulky muscle, but will increase your leg strength.
  • help improve your stamina

4 How to Get In Shape - Try Tennis

As a form of exercise, tennis is a total body workout sport. It is full of high intensity burst and will give you a strong cardiovascular health.

If you are a beginner or has laid off playing tennis for a while, then you should use a racket that has a wider head. This will minimize your possibility of missing the ball.

For advanced and experienced players, the narrower head will give you more power & accuracy.

I used to play with wooden racket, but this is out of style now. Nowadays, the materials used are synthetic materials, which are lighter and more aerodynamic.

Tennis will:

  • give you a strong cardio workout
  • develop strong leg muscles
  • workout your abs
  • your upper body workout will include strengthening your arm and shoulder muscles
  • improve your agility
  • burn calories. As you will be constantly moving and pausing, you are in fact doing something similar to interval exercise, where your heart rate will go up, then down. This will increase your metabolic rate and hence burn your calories faster.


3. How to Get In Shape - Try Basketball

This is one sport that can be played with family members. As one of the most common sports in the world, basketball is both easy and beneficial to practice. It is, however, a fast moving game. Take it easy for the first month and increase your speed and agility as you progresses into the sport. Just like tennis, basketball is a sport with lots of starting and stopping. This will increase your metabolic rate and hence burn more calories faster.

Basketball involves a lot of running/sprinting and jumping. Hence, it is wise to get a good pair of basketball shoes. Initially you may fall and injure yourself, so get an elbow and knee guards as well.

Basketball will:

  • burn your calories
  • strengthen your cardio respiratory system
  • increase your whole body endurance
  • builds up your leg muscles as you sprint and jump higher
  • builds up your abs, shoulder and arm muscles with your dribbling, bounding, passing and shooting
  • improve your coordination and balance
  • increase your concentration level and self-discipline

2. How to Get In Shape - Try Ultimate Frisbee

Ultimate Frisbee is one of the youngest sport games around. It is now commonly known as Ultimate (as Frisbee is a registered name/trademark in some countries). It is a fun way to give your whole body a workout. Players spend the two hour game running up and down the field, jumping, twisting and turning to catch discs. This will give you a great cardio workout, yet affordable to play.

To get back into shape, Ultimate will:

  • burn calories faster, as this is similar to interval training with stop and run that will build up the metabolic rate
  • increase endurance and agility
  • improve your cardiovascular endurance
  • strengthen your legs, shoulders and arm muscles
  • strengthen your oblique and abs muscles


1. How to Get In Shape - Try Swimming

Swimming is my favorite sport and it is one of the safest and most beneficial. It is also one of the few sports that will work out almost all of your body muscles.

It is the best choice for cardio respiratory health and for your overall muscular endurance. If you have a bad knee problem, swimming is an extremely kind and easy sport on your knee, as you are not imposing your body weight to each movement, due to the buoyancy.

Swimming will:

  • increase your cardiovascular fitness & endurance
  • builds your total body muscular strength and endurance especially on your legs, abs, shoulders and arms
  • improve your body flexibility. The swimming strokes and gentle rhythm of the movements will help to lengthen and stretch your muscles. This will give you a lean and not a bulky muscle tone.
  • burns your calories and help with your weight management

How to Get In Shape - Top 10 Sports to Reintroduce Sports and Health to Your Lifestyle

Have you decided on which sports to choose? Pick one now and enjoy your new healthy lifestyle.

Visit my profile page to see my other articles here.


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    • greatstuff profile image

      Mazlan 5 years ago from Malaysia

      @ChloeHibb Thanks for taking time to read and comment. If you run, then try another sport that will exercise your upper body as well, like volleyball? It's a fun family game

    • greatstuff profile image

      Mazlan 5 years ago from Malaysia

      Hi Natashalh, yes you are absolutely right, dancing is a great and fun way to work out. I am one of those people that doesn't seem to remember the steps after 1 or 2 minutes later. So in my gym I do yoga, spinning and other strength exercises. I prefer group exercise as it will push and motivates me. If I do cardio exercises like cycling/spinning or running on a treadmill alone, I tend to give up too soon.

    • greatstuff profile image

      Mazlan 5 years ago from Malaysia

      Hi CyclingFitness, thanks for dropping by. I see that you are a cyclist yourself. Unfortunately I spin in the gym and just came back from doing my 50 mins spinning class.

    • Natashalh profile image

      Natasha 5 years ago from Hawaii

      I love dancing. There are many social dances you can do that are so much fun they don't even feel like a workout. You can get healthy, make new friends and have fun, all at the same time.

    • CyclingFitness profile image

      Liam Hallam 5 years ago from Nottingham UK

      Some fantastic options to improve someones health. Thanks for sharing.