Sports guide to alternative sports for kids aged 8 and above

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In this last series of sports guide, we search high and low for alternative sports that children 8 years old and above can take part in.

So your kids are more or less able to do some real exercises now.  At 8 years old and above, they are definitely open to more choices in sports. In this last chapter of sports guide, we are not delving into the conventional sports such as soccer, basketball or racquet-based games. Instead, we will zoom into the various alternative sports that are just as effective in giving the children a good workout.

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"It's like chess at 300 miles per hour", says American Fencer Marshall.

Indeed, fencing is not a sport for the faint-hearted, you must be quick witted and be able to think on your toes fast. Fencing also hones the hand-eye coordination as much emphasis about fencing is on precision and flexibility; having fast reflexes is key. Furthermore, the distinctive fencing stance will add strength in your quads and hamstrings. The pulsating intensity of fencing is sure to give you a good cardiovascular workout.

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Ever felt like conquering air and water at the same time? Arguably the most exhilarating water sports of all, wakeboarding lets you do so!

Wakeboarding per se is a very young sport and made a rather late entrance to the sporting scene. It was not until the 1980s that the advent of wakeboarding begin to grab attention and interest from the public.

Amateurs are encouraged to get boards with large surface areas as they are known to be much stable than those smaller ones. This not only prevents you from tumbling over in the first place, but make it more effortless for you to get back up and stabilize yourself.

This is certainly one extreme sport for the young daredevils out there!

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Gymnasts and canoeist aside, climbers have one of the best-looking male physiques I have ever come across. Rock climbing offers a dynamic body workout thus extended strenuous stretching should always be done prior to climbing.

In this sport, your body will be forced into awkward positions it may never have experienced previously. Rock climbing is made up of a sequence of reaches with your hands and feet. Newbies are hit hardest, often with sore forearms, hands, fingers, and calf muscles.

For beginners, they typically are unable to view the entire route in which they intend to take on, as a result their progress is on a step-by-step, hold-by-hold basis. On the other hand, the veterans will tend to plan ahead before they actually climb. Each grip on the handholds and footholds is important as it will hinder or expedite your progress through the course. Rock climbing is like an enormous puzzle which requires careful assessment before you decide to choose the best route available to suit your difficulty level.

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Admittedly, from time to time, I do envy those charming ice-skaters as I watch them stream down the skating rink and perform their acrobatic manuovres with ease. Apart from looking cool, ice-skating confers many benefits as well.

Focusing largely on lower-body movement, ice-skating provides fine exercise to build up the leg muscles. Initially, it is common for beginners to struggle to stay upright on the slippery surface. The good news though, is that it does not take too long before you are able to master the art of balancing your body on the ice. Hence if your kid is the clumsy sort, then ice-skating might just be the perfect sport for him/her!

It must be forewarned that ice-skating is a dangerous sport as falls onto the concrete ice can be very damaging. Therefore novices are to wear helmets and learn the appropriate way to fall to protect vulnerable body parts before they take to the rink in full flight.

As much fun as the aforementioned exercises brings, parents should take note of the safety aspects of these sports and always be extra cautious. It is paramount not to let zeal cloud out the precautions and protocols that ought to be followed when your children engage in these high-octane sports.