It’s a fact that UK public health chiefs are quick to remind the population of on a regular basis. Exercise and keeping fit bring huge benefits for our physical and emotional health. Athleticism takes the qualities of physical fitness one step further; something that can only be even better for our bodies. But what are the best ways of increasing your overall athleticism?
One option is to take up a sport. Not only is there a social element to participating with others, but there is also a wide range of sports to achieve the results you want. A good thing you want to look out for when making your choice is the tempo, endurance, and overall exertion needed. So, here are just some of the best sporting options for your general athleticism levels.
If you’ve ever watched a basketball game, you won’t have failed to notice the pace at which it moves from end-to-end. For participants, there’s no let up in the tempo. Take your foot off the accelerator and you’ll quickly encounter wave after wave of opposition attacks. Don’t forget the physical twists and turns as you defend the ball and get into position for the shot.
No matter what position you play, football is a physically and mentally intensive sport that can have significant benefits for your athleticism. You may be a defender with dreams of being the next Virgil van Dijk; needing strength and power to withstand opposing forwards, as well as a high degree of agility to complete tackles to perfection.
Or do you see yourself as the new Lionel Messi? To attack with aplomb in football, you need to have pace and agility to turn the defender inside and out. You also need that physical strength to dominate the battles on the ground and in the air. And that can often be required for the full 90 minutes – unless you’re involved in a high-tempo, shorter-length five-a-side game.
Boxing might not be everyone’s cup of tea – but it won’t half boost your fitness and athleticism levels. The reliance on upper-body strength is one notable benefit. But you’ll frequently need to keep on the move to avoid your fellow competitor getting the better of you. And, as it takes the highest levels of endurance over 12 three-minute rounds, it’s a hugely viable option.
Rugby union (and indeed rugby league) is a hard-hitting, hard-wearing sport for anyone looking to build up their athleticism. There are numerous situations your body can be put through based largely on the position you play.
A winger, for example, requires pace and agility to create try-scoring opportunities – in addition to the pure physical strength to make try-saving tackles in defence. For forwards, the challenge will be slightly different; forced to hold their own in the scrum and taking on many ball-carrying responsibilities. This lasts for 80 minutes too, which means good athleticism is critical.