Why We Cannot Let Boxing Perish

Is the Sport of Boxing in Trouble?

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Yes, at least in the USA. Boxing has gone through its peaks and valleys, but in the past it has always remained a popular sport even during dull moments. Now, with most title matches broadcasted via pay-per-view (PPV) only, the simultaneous rise of MMA, and a lack of advancements in technology found within the sport, the future of the sport appears to be bleak.

My Personal Experiences

So why do I care enough to write about this? After all, boxing is still popular in many other countries. Like most things in life, I had to experience the sport in order to understand it, and having done so, I have been able to gain an insider’s view of all the great things boxing has to offer.

Recreation

Many people believe that boxing is reserved for tough-guys who grew up fighting and want to continue doing so for a living. This is NOT the case. Many people, including myself, participate in boxing at a recreational level and still see many benefits. It’s easily the best workout I’ve ever been a part of, I’ve increased my fitness to a point where I feel good and have confidence, and best of all, it’s fun!

Team Environment

Although the workout focuses on conditioning and skills of a particular individual, there is definitely a team atmosphere at most boxing gyms. Often times you will help each other during workouts, spar together, and simply socialize as well. It’s a fun way to meet people who have similar interests.

At-Risk Youth

The first boxing gym I joined was in a low-income neighborhood near a few schools. There were lots of kids in the area, and often times I would see them peering through the window with pure interest. Eventually, they would summon the courage to come in and talk to a trainer, who always allowed kids to join for free or at a very cheap price.

It got to the point where the hallways leading up to the gym were covered in school projects related boxing, pictures of amateur boxers (kids and adults alike) enjoying success, and any kid in the gym was always having a fun time.

I’ve been a member of a few boxing gyms and this welcoming approach to children isn’t always the case, but I certainly did see the positive effects in at least one of those gyms. The kids were staying out of trouble, they had somewhere to go after school, and I was even able to see a couple of them become pro fighters once they reached 16-18 years old.

Affordability

One of the main reasons kids AND adults in low-income neighborhoods were able to have such a great time boxing is because they, or their parents, were able to afford it. Additionally, most gyms have equipment that everyone can use, so the cost of equipment for most first-time members can often be lower than $20 (e.g. your own mouth guard and hand wraps).

For a lot of recreational boxers, specifically adults, once they became familiar enough with the workouts, their level of commitment, and the types of exercises they enjoy, a lot of recreational boxers will begin shifting their workouts to their own home. For example, owning a pair of their own boxing gloves, some sort of punching bag, and maybe a couple accessories like a jump rope, was all they needed in order to squeeze in a solid workout at home if they didn’t have time to make it to the gym.

Final Thoughts

Boxing is an amazing sport, not just at the “mega-fight” level, but also at the small-time recreational level. There are so many benefits that it really is a shame to see the popularity drop in the USA. In my opinion, the most effective way to counter-act this is become involved locally. Simple things like attending local fights, trying out the sport at a recreational level, even just visiting a boxing gym and asking questions, are all great ways to get boxing back on track. I truly believe there is lots of potential for this sport in the USA (which has been proven in the past!), but it will take time and effort from those at the ground level – recreational boxers.

 

Baseball or Basketball: America’s National Pastime

baberuthWhat is America’s favorite pastime? Baseball! For over a century, families spent their afternoons together at the ballpark or in front of the television, cheering for their home teams. In fact, many regularly scheduled programs show reruns during the World Series so they do not compete with the popularity of the game. It has been like that as far as I can remember. Baseball has the richest history of all sports. When fans engage with the topic of baseball, they do not only speak of the history of the game, but America’s history as well. Names such as TY Cobb, Honus Wagner, Christy Mathews and Babe Ruth have been part of America’s major history. There something about baseball that seems as American as apple pie.

More about Baseball

Baseball is played with nine players active to the team, with one team batting and the other playing in the field and this sport has been around for years. It was first played in 1846 between the New York Knickerbockers and the New York Nine but it took a decade to reach its extreme popularity. Form minor league baseball had evolved as one of the most popular professional sport of the country and became known as the MLB or the Major League Baseball. The American public came to love the game and Babe Ruth, a very awesome player, is largely credited as being the reason that it became America’s favorite pastime.

The Controversy

Although all professional sports have been faced with different controversies, the love of baseball by fans had been threatened with some players’ use of performance enhancing drugs known as steroids. This had cast a shadow over the sport and fans were divided regarding the issue. It was a controversy that lasted for several years. The public felt that they were cheated or betrayed knowing that there were diehard fans who admire players of this game. There were conclusions drawn that this controversy was true because there was a sudden jump in home runs and improved performance among players who were suspected to be using the drug. Plus, there was cheating when players would cork baseball bats. Nevertheless, hopefully the issue will blow over, and this fine American tradition will continue to bring people together for the years to come, despite losing the luster as the America’s favorite pastime.

Is Baseball still America’s Favorite Pastime?

This is a question that is very difficult to answer. Though we must admit that with the controversy that plagued baseball, many have traded their classic baseball for a big orange ball. Basketball popularity has grown widely and it has become a favorite among many sports fans. It has even become very global that National Basketball Association players are known worldwide. We can from see that the ratings of NBA finals are undeniably high and many people are becoming more into the sport of basketball than baseball nowadays.  So, is baseball still America’s favorite pastime? Well, you have to make that call, but for me baseball has been and always will be America’s favorite past time.

Air Rifle Target Shooting as Sport

air rifle shootingIn recent years, the popularity of rifle shooting as a sport has soared, opening up a wealth of opportunities and variations on the sport. Air guns have entered the target-shooting arena as another choice for shooting enthusiasts. While traditional rifle sports maintain popularity, the air rifle sport is growing and gaining traction.

 

While traditional rifle shooting as a sport has a variety of different goals, air rifle shooting is typically focused on still target shooting. The Olympics features one such competition during every summer Olympics.

 

Considered part of the rifle competition portion of the Olympics, the air rifle and air pistol competitions have targets placed ten meters from the shooter’s stand. While in most ways this competition mimics the high-powered rifle events, this distance is much closer than the traditional rifle shooting events, due to the decreased power and range of the air gun.

 

Another big difference in the Olympic event is the position of the shooter for the competition. While traditional high-powered rifle events feature three positions for the shooter – standing, kneeling, and prone – the air rifle competition only has the shooter positioned to stand.

 

The Olympics isn’t the only professional venue for air rifle shooting competitions. There are international and national events held regularly to qualify for the Olympics. Additionally, new leagues are popping up across North America with the particular focus of air rifle target shooting. They offer competitions, classes, and events for beginners, enthusiasts, and professional sportsmen.

 

As with high-powered rifle events, many air rifle target shooting events allow participants to practice and compete in the traditional three-position rotation, but with less of a distance to each target.

 

Why are air guns gaining traction as a target-shooting sport? Many people prefer the lower cost and easier upkeep of an air gun. Whether shooting BBs or pellets, air guns don’t require the same investment or cleaning as a traditional rifle. Many air gun owners rarely clean their air guns, and don’t see a decrease in accuracy or distance. Pellets and BBs are readily available for purchase, and less expensive to practice with, as going through rounds and rounds is not uncommon.

 

Air guns are a good first step in the competition world.  The lower power and the decreased distance allow the beginner to become comfortable and used to the sport before moving on the higher-powered rifles or pistols. Training and competing with an air rifle is the first choice for parents getting their children into the sport. Events and training can be just as serious and competitive as with high-powered rifles, without the cost.

 

While traditional, high-power rifle shooting as a sport still has a massive following, air gun rifle target shooting is gaining traction and is a solid lower-cost, fun alternative and a developing sport in its own rite.

A Lesson From Pro Athletes

Pro Athletes Train, They Don't Workout

With the exception of extremely high level who are given access to a personal trainer or a fitness coach most of us are simply working out. We’re lifting weights to stay in shape during the off-season, we’re running to keep try and keep our gut at bay. And while anybody who is at least exercising is doing more then the majority of the population, they’re also wasting a huge amount of time.

We need to rid ourselves of the mindset that we’re going to work out. What does that mean to you? When someone says I’m going to work out. It means they’re leaving behind their sedentary self behind for an hour to go work out. Okay, so what comes after that? They’ll mindlessly throw around a few dumbbells, maybe they’ll jump on the bike for 20 minutes and then finish it all up with a nice sauna (who doesn’t love a sauna?).

Most of you are probably nodding, uh huh, yep. That sounds about right, that person is staying in shape *high five*. Not so fast. What is it that they’re trying to achieve? What’re their goals? Sadly most of the folks in the gym can’t answer this question without resorting to an exceptionally generic “to stay fit” response. That’s not good enough and it’s not going to get you the results you need or want.

We need to practice training like we practice any other fundamental skill. The minute we stop tracking and critiquing ourselves is the minute we’ve lost and begin to decline. If you’re not growing (and I don’t just mean your muscles) you’re inevitably atrophying. If you’re going to spend 5 or 6 hours of your week in a gym you damn well better know why you’re there.

A point guard doesn’t work out, he trains. It’s easy for them to set goals, they have coaches and trainers who are constantly measuring and monitoring them. They identify parts of their game which need work, not explosive enough? Do X, Y, Z and track it using A, B, C. Each week you should be improving by this much or that much.

The next time you’re thinking about going to the gym skip it all together. Sit down and figure out what is it that you want out of the gym. Be specific – do you want to cut down on body fat or do you want to be able to run 10 miles in a certain amount of time? Once you establish your wants you can begin to build a training schedule that caters to them.

Stand-up Paddle boarding is One for the Wise

SUP Ladies

SUP, Ladies

Paddle boarding is an activity that often gets overlooked. Quite frankly, it just isn’t as popular around here than kayaking, canoeing, or other water recreation sports. However, if you chose to get involved in paddle boarding, we’d argue that you are wise.

There are tons of benefits that come along with paddle boarding. First, it’s very therapeutic. Getting out on the quiet water without the hassle of an engine is serene. Additionally, paddle boarding forces you to harness your balance. I mean, nobody wants to fall off of the board, right? Even though paddle boards use a wide base to optimize stabilization, it still takes a considerable amount of balance to control one. If you don’t have great balance, you will learn quickly. Also, some people even do yoga on them to aid in achieving optimal balance!

Secondly, it’s a great workout. Paddle boarding utilizes very specific sets of muscles that you wouldn’t likely exercise if you weren’t paddle boarding. It’s important to note that many water recreation sports will also give you adequate exercise. However, paddle boarding is one of the few sports that will encompass so many great techniques into one fluid motion. It’s definitely worth looking further into!

Lastly, getting regular exercise, plus the meditation and serenity that paddle boarding provides is essential to living a happy, healthy life. It doesn’t necessarily have to be paddle boarding. You can choose from an array of different activities, but we believe pretty firmly that you will find plenty of value from your paddle boarding experience.

If you’re looking for a great paddle board, it’s important to weigh all of your options. I have found that www.paddlersretreat.com is a great resource for comparing product and pricing for kayaks and kayak accessories. Sure, there are plenty of other sites. However, we have had a tough time finding a good, objective resource that aims to provide 100% good, raw information, rather than just trying to plug a product. We think they do a great job.

We hope this has helped you in your journey to become a more active, healthy, and happy person. We wouldn’t recommend it if we haven’t tried it ourselves. If you have any tricks, tips, comments, questions, or concerns, please feel free to leave us a comment below. We will get back to you as soon as you can! We prefer this to be an open floor discussion. We appreciate you having a look at our article! Happy boarding!

Off-Season Work Outs

Offseason Workout For Sports

Regardless of what sport you play, whether that be baseball, soccer, football, hockey or basketball you’re going to need to do off-season training in order to stay at the top of your game.

Obviously with each sport you will emphasize different activities. For instance, you’re probably not going to spend as much time doing plyometrics if you’re baseball player – however you probably will spend a lot of time doing plyo’s if you’re a basketball player.

There are some activities and exercises that are universal, regardless of what sport you play you’re going to benefit from doing them in the offseason.

1. Yoga

Yes, yoga. No matter what sport you play you’re going to benefit from increased flexibility and improved core strength. Think it’s for sissies? Think again. Russel Wilson, reinging Quarterback of the Super Bowl Champs Seattle Seahawks practices yoga year round. 

The best part about yoga is it’s pretty inexpensive. All you need is a yoga mat, a yoga towel (preferably non-slip if you’re doing hot yoga), a few yoga blocks and a strap.

Did you know that flexibility will improve your explosiveness? It will also reduce the number of injuries you occur in the off-season and during the season. Stretching may be boring but it’s also one of the most beneficial things you can do. Plus yoga is something that doesn’t conflict with other high intensity workouts that you can only perform several times a day. Oh and while you’re at it pick up a foam roller – you can check out this site for more help with that.

2. HIIT

High Intensity Interval Training is one of the most efficient ways to get a workout in. HIIT sessions can take you as little as 20 minutes and you’ll be feeling it. You can do a variety of HIIT but sprints are a good one to start with. Get yourself a HIIT app which allows you to set rest time, interval length and total work out time. You can do this easily enough in a park or on your normal running route.

HIIT will improve your explosiveness which will help you regardless of whether you’re trying to drive a golf ball 325 yards or you’re sprinting up the court on a fast break. And of course it’s an excellent way to improve your cardiovascular health.

3. Other Sports

Unless you have a mandate from coach that you can’t play other sports this is a terrific way to improve a wide variety of your skills. For instance playing basketball will improve your hand eye and cardio. Golfing will also improve your hand eye dramatically. Every sport is different and will help you with a different skill set.

5 Items Essential for Kayak Fishing

Fishing On a Kayak

Kayak fishing (or yakangling), is one of the fastest growing sports on the planet right now. The cost of boats and fuel has risen over recent years, and that has given a flux to kayak fishing. Kayaks are relatively inexpensive compares to fishing boats. If you decide to get an inflatable kayak, they are even less!

They also have a ton of other benefits:

  • Stealth: fish don’t hear you coming. This is clearly better than the ridiculously loud option of using a motor. We’ve seen a lot more success going the kayak route! You also have access to small coves and areas you wouldn’t have if you were using a motor boat.
  • Relaxing: kayaking is extremely relaxing. It’s a great way to get on the water and enjoy nature. It’s a very serene experience. Even if you’re not into fishing, we would recommend you try kayaking anyway.
  • Exercise: kayaking is tough work, but it’s not too tough. Anyone can do it. However, instead of sitting on your boat, you’ll be propelling yourself with your paddle. It can add up to great exercise!

Now that we got that out of the way, let’s talk about kayak fishing accessories. Some people go nuts with the accessories; some use only the bare minimum. However, we’re going to talk about some items we think are essential!

First, even if you don’t think you need a life jacket, you do. Get one! They are relatively inexpensive, and they are like the seatbelt of the kayaking world. They are absolutely necessary.

Second, try getting a kayak rod holder. You won’t want to carry both your paddle and your reel. Plus, the rod holder will make for a nice prop while you are paddling, and they keep your kayak organized. They are a great addition to the kayak, and they don’t take up much room.

Third, we’d recommend a kayak fish finder. A lot of people choose not to use one because they believe they are experienced enough to go without one. That maybe the case, and you certainly don’t need one. However, until you get used to kayak fishing, it will pay off to have one. They are a lot of help.

Fourth, try out a gopro. This clearly isn’t an essential, but they are fun! You can record all your kayak fishing excursions and share them on the net. We come across great kayaking videos all the time because of these!

Lastly, grab an anchor set for yourself. This will allow you to stay in one area if the fishing is good there. You won’t be floating away from the great fishing spot, you’ll be right there until you decide to call it quits.

We hope this helps! If you can think of anything we’ve missed, please feel free to leave a comment below and let us know. We’re always happy to take your input! Until next time, happy fishing!

The Most Dangerous Sports in the World

Danger is all around us, every moment and every minute, we are surrounded by dangers as if they were trying to catch us unguarded. However, there are several things that we can do in order to prevent danger from reaching us such as staying away from obviously dangerous places. So for the love of your life, if you don’t want dangers, you might not want to try these sports.

Cheerleading

Cheerleading has developed from being just a side show to a completely fledged sport. It’s an exceptional and physical action focused around organized routines that may take 1-3 minutes. A portion of the activities included in this sport incorporate tumbling, hops, dance and stuntung amongst others. Accidents can happen when stunts like throwing a member in mid-air or human pyramid goes wrong.

Motor Racing

Motor racing is both a recreation and aggressive sport practiced by beginners and experts alike on tracks, streets, natural terrain and closed circuits. Participants normally drive through uneven territories at high velocity while being pursued by different racers neck-to-neck, any incidental fall can prove lethal since there is a chance that they may get bumped by other races who are also moving at a very high velocity.

High Altitude Climbing

It includes climbing elevated land forms like slopes, mountains and plateaus for thrill and delight. You oblige special outfits to perform this deed since the aforementioned spots are very remote; they emphasize rough territory that may wound one’s skin and cause damage if the body is not generally secured. Additionally, before taking an interest in this sport, it’s prudent for one to look for the administrations of expert expedition guides who can offer direction through the rocky outback domain.

Cave Diving

It includes underwater swimming in mysterious caves that are partially loaded with water. The apparatus used to attempt this sport differs based around elements like clarity and depth of the waters. Nevertheless, practically all of these diving expeditions include the utilization of a unique scuba gear. This hazardous sport obliges requires specialized diving abilities as it may include decompression. Contrasted with scuba diving and caving, there are respectably few professionals who take part in this sport because of its high hazard nature. The cavern waters are wild and may hold risky animals sneaking underneath, though there are special dry suits that secure divers from such experiences the danger is still true. Other potential dangers incorporate suffocating and decompression sickness. One would additionally need particular supplies like re-breathers and diver propulsion before diving into the murky pools.

Base Jumping

It’s may also be alluded to as B.A.S.E. fall sport, it’s a one of a kind action where contenders jump from prefixed objects utilizing a nice parachute on their back to break even the fall. BASE is simply an acronym alluding to 4 classifications of fixed items that the participant can jump from including buildings, bridges, cliffs and antennas. Base jumping sport is viewed as more treacherous than different types of activities like airplane sky-diving, this is on account of the distance one needs to reach the ground is small and there’s additionally the danger of hitting the ground hard.

Top NBA Point Guards of All Time

Point guards are essential to a basketball team as they are the ones who decide when and where to pass the ball. Speaking of that, let’s talk about some of the greatest NBA point guards in history in no particular order.

Steve Nash

Who would’ve felt that the Canadian child out of Santa Clara was going to transform into a first ballot Hall of Famer? He didn’t get much smolder in his initial two seasons in Phoenix nor his initial two in Dallas after the Suns exchanged him for Pat Garrity, Bubba Wells, and a 1999 first round pick (Shawn Marion). By his third year with the Mavs, he transformed into a genuine starting point guard. Alongside Dirk Nowitzki, Nash made the Mavs pertinent once more.

Gary Payton

With Shawn Kemp as his assistant, Payton got wreck out West for a long time. He is fourth all-time in steals and put the cuffs on the best of them. Payton had an inside and out diversion to run with his mouth which made him a thistle in every adversary’s side. He wasn’t the best shooter, yet drove and either layed it up or hit Shawn Kemp with an alley-oop.

Walt Frazier

His mid-range jumper was executioner, his defense was unsurpassed, he ran an immaculate offense, and he had Red Holzman for a coach. Frazier additionally delighted every moment of being a star.

Jason Kidd

In his prime, Jason Kidd was the best point guard in the league. He was one of those players that could influence the game without scoring. With basically no jump shot, Kidd was still fit to beat you. Kidd tossed mind-boggling passes, had an executioner crossover, had sticky fingers, and would hit doubtful lay-ups like it was typical.

Jerry West

While scoring about 30 points for every game all while helping the Lakers make nine finals, West averaged nearly seven dimes for his career. He was hazardous in the open floor because rivals didn’t know whether he was going to pass it to one of his Hall of Fame partners or draw up for a constantly automatic jumper.

John Stockton

All that he did was by the book, with the exception of when he played defense. In spite of the fact that he was scarcely caught in the act, he was known to be one of the dirtiest players of his day. He would claw, kick, and bother his rival persistently. At the same time that will to win by all methods is the thing that made him the unequaled pioneer in steals and assists.

Magic Johnson

Whoever thinks Magic Johnson isn’t the best point guard is insane. The Lakers landed Kareem after the Big O resigned, yet they didn’t win until they drafted the kid out of Michigan State with the huge grin. Magic Johnson genuinely cherished the game. He greatly improved the situation and won a title in his rookie year, including the Finals MVP. In those 1980 Finals, Kareem ran down with a gravely sprained ankle and the 6’9″ Johnson was asked to venture in at center in Game 6 with LA who was up three to two. Magic reacted with 42 points, 15 rebounds, and 7 assists. His competition with Larry Bird spared the NBA from being a bit of hindsight. Johnson amazed fans with his passes, steals, clutch shots, and, obviously, that irresistible grin.