Kayaking for Core FitnessAs someone who has always been into fitness and nutrition I only just recently truly understood the importance of core fitness. Many of us do weight training and aerobic type exercises such as running, biking and walking but without doing core strength training exercises you will not get the proper balance needed for a strong and healthy body.
Core strength training is nothing new and in fact, athletes from all over the world have been doing it for centuries. Many people have the mistaken belief that the only way to work out your core is by doing boring sit-ups and crunches.
However, there are several fun activities that can be done for core training. One of my personal favorites is kayaking.
Below we will take a look at what the core is, why it is so important to your overall health and how kayaking can greatly strengthen your core muscles.
What is the Core?The core contains thirty different muscles between your ribcage and your hips. These muscles help your upper and lower body work together and are used in each and every move that you make.
A strong core supports the entire body and for this reason it is essential for creating strength, balance, stability and support for your back and numerous other muscles within your body.
If your core is weak, the rest of your body will not function as it should and you will likely suffer from aches and pains.
How Important is the Core?Considering that all real strength originates from the core, I would say that it is extremely important. Quite often people get into weight training for the aesthetics of having nicely toned arms and legs. However the core all too often gets neglected and without building the muscles in your mid section first, the rest of your body may look good, but you will not have true strength and stability.
Core training is the single most important exercise you can do. It can benefit any person at any age and keep the body young, strong and balanced.
Make Core Training FunSince the core is so important, it is necessary to make core workouts a part of your regular routine. Therefore it is important to make the workouts fun so that you not only enjoy them but stick with them as well.
Kayaking is well known for being an excellent recreational activity that greatly builds up and strengthens the core muscles. Besides getting a good workout you also get to enjoy nature and the outdoors which is an added bonus.
Although kayaking can also work out your arms, shoulders and back, the majority of the strength while paddling will need to come from your core.
I have always enjoyed the sport of kayaking because you can work out for a while then take a break and float on the water for a bit – assuming you are on flat water. If you have a bit more of an adventurous side then you could also try whitewater kayaking which will truly put your core strength and stability to the test.
Kayaking does not have to be an expensive sport. I often recommend the Advanced Elements AdvancedFrame for people just getting into inflatable kayaking as it is relatively inexpensive, and you can take it anywhere in the trunk of your car. Whenever you have a great body of water, you just take it out, pump it up and paddle away.
If you do not want to purchase your own kayak then there are always lots of great kayak rentals around. Renting can be a great way to discover if kayaking is right for you before you invest in a kayak for yourself.
For the warmer months of the year, kayaking is an exceptionally fun activity that greatly benefits your core muscles. With consistent core training you will find, as time goes on, that your core will become much stronger, your muscles will become tighter, your waist will become leaner and every move you make in your normal day to day life will become stronger and more balanced.
How Can Kayaking Help with Your Balance?Since kayaking builds your core muscles and strong core muscles create good balance, you will find that after even just a few paddling sessions your overall balance will improve. Having good balance will improve every move you make, both in athletic performance and in your daily day life.
Although kayaking is my personal favourite type of core workout, there are other options as well if paddling is not your thing. Each of the following activities will also help to strengthen your middle muscles and keep you fit and healthy: Pilates, Yoga, hiking, skiing, tennis, volleyball, exercise ball and Bosu ball training and many other specific core training exercises.
If you like the water and enjoy being outside, try to make kayaking a part of your regular fitness routine for improved core strength. By combining a core workout with your regular aerobic type exercise you will notice great results very quickly. Besides feeling stronger and more balanced, the numerous physical and mental health benefits are 100% worth it.
About the Author
Sam Walker is an avid health and fitness enthusiast with a passion for keeping fit. For more information on kayaking to achieve great health benefits visit Gear Reviews Online where you’ll find a comprehensive review of the Advanced Elements inflatable kayak.