There are many sports that can be combined with fitness routines, workouts and personal training for the purpose of improving your fitness and health, but some are naturally better than others and with that in mind, below we have presented a run-down of the top sports to use as part of a structured health and fitness programme.
Swimming is a superb sport to use for improving your health and fitness as amongst other things it’s absolutely awesome for improving the strength of your heart.
Furthermore, it is a low-stress activity, and it’s also great for improving your lung capacity, building additional muscle, and of course is a great activity for burning calories.
As an added bonus, swimming has the advantage that it can be done anytime of year at an indoor pool, so it’s a highly convenient way in which to use sport in conjunction with gym training to improve overall levels of health and fitness.
Tennis is another great sport for improving your overall health and fitness, as just one hour of this sport burns around 600 calories, putting it on par with jogging and cycling as one of the best aerobic activities that you can do.
This is mainly down to the fact that when playing tennis, you have to constantly switch between little sprints, pivots, slams, and serves, which requires you to channel your strength and exert energy in short but powerful bursts – a perfect recipe for using sport for overall fitness and health purposes!
Rowing is a sport that has a near-endless list of health benefits, which range from effective weight loss, low risk of injury, and increased muscle strength. Rowing can be done inside on a rowing machine, or, after some rowing practice, out in the great outdoors – so it’s also a highly convenient sport that you can use to improve your health and fitness as well!
Squash simply had to make our list as it’s been named the number one healthiest sport in the world for a number of years now – this is down to the fact that it burns calories, increases aerobic fitness, boosts flexibility, develops strength and power, and improves hand-eye coordination.
Basketball is another sport that is excellent for fitness and health, as it increases spatial awareness, fosters decision-making capabilities, reduces stress, helps with coordination, and develops confidence within the participant.
For each hour of competitive basketball, a 165-pound person can expect to burn around 600 calories, while a 250-pound person can burn up to 900 calories – so it’s a highly effective sport for remaining fit and healthy and keeping weight gain down.
Cycling is another great sport for overall fitness and health as it offers a low-impact way to burn some serious calories, and it is also proven to make you feel happier and makes your brain stronger and more focused due to the physical and mental exertion that is required with this sport. Evidence has shown that people who cycled regularly for extended periods of time developed brain volumes of those three years younger than their actual age – showing that cycling truly is a great sport to do if you want to improve your physical and mental health and wellbeing.
7 Cross country skiing
Cross country skiing burns more calories than any other form of exercise or sport — up to 1,122 calories per hour when done vigorously! So it’s easy to see why this sport made our list! People who do cross country skiing regularly tend to be about 40 percent fitter than people who don’t, which is down to the highly effective full-body workout that this sport provides which is uniquely effective in raising levels of fitness and health.
Running is a great sport to do for fitness as those who run regularly are less likely to experience bone and muscle loss as they age at the same pace as those who do not run regularly or at all. The bones grow and become stronger by responding to physical demands, which is what makes running so effective for fitness, and it’s also great for mental and overall physiological health. Running is proven to cause a release of endorphins that can lead to the infamous “runner’s high – another reason why it’s so good for overall physical and mental health and fitness.
Volleyball makes our list for healthiest sports because it increases metabolic rate, builds agility, strengthens coordination, and boosts mood. In addition, it burns plenty of calories – studies show anything between 90 to 133 calories during a half-hour game of non-competitive, non-beach volleyball, depending on a person’s weight, while a competitive gym game of volleyball burns between 120 to 178 calories.
Gymnastics requires its participants to be flexible, strong, and in great physical shape – meaning that it’s another excellent sport to do when you are trying to consciously improve your overall fitness and health.
It also has a number of mental benefits too – it’s great for improving concentration and mental focus – making gymnastics another truly awesome sport for you to do when you are looking to use sport to increase your fitness and health.