With the Winter Olympics on the way, you might be thinking it’s time to try your hand at some of the sports as a new way to exercise. But did you know about the health benefits that come with figure skating? Obviously, we aren’t talking about jumping on the ice and skating like an Olympian, but just taking to the ice at all can have some great health benefits and be fun at the same time.
Want to move fast? Jump to the right section below.
- Burns Calories
- Anaerobic Exercise
- Improves Posture
- Improves Endurance & Coordination
- Is a Great Stress Reliever
Simply put, skating is an amazing calorie burner. It doesn’t matter if it’s your first time on the ice or your 100th; one hour on the ice can burn around 600 calories. That’s enough to make it a solid workout and let you have that hot chocolate afterwards.
Figure skating is a great anaerobic workout. Anaerobic exercise involves short, fast and high-intensity exercises that don’t make your body use oxygen, such as HIIT, yoga and weightlifting. Figure skating is an anaerobic workout because it requires a constant state of muscle contraction similar to when you do bodyweight exercises or light weightlifting. Basically, your muscles are contracting all the time to keep you moving and to keep you upright, strengthening your muscles and making them more toned.
When you think about all of the muscles needed when skating, you are using most of your body during the exercise. All of your leg muscles are needed to keep you moving, but your core and arms will be strengthened as they are engaged to keep you balanced.
Another of the many health benefits of figure skating is that it improves posture. We all know how difficult it can be to keep yourself from slipping on the ice, but the more you practice, the more it will improve your posture. This is because you have to balance yourself on two thin pieces of metal on a slippery surface, and keeping your balance means holding yourself up straight. The more you skate, the more this will carry into your daily life.
Improves Endurance & Coordination
Figure skating is usually something that you do over a long time compared to a usual workout, meaning it helps build endurance. Skating is one of the best ways to do this because the whole body is engaged for an extended period of time, building endurance in all of the muscles we mentioned before, as opposed to a small group of muscles at a time.
Improving endurance, posture, and balance means naturally, your coordination will improve. Figure skating requires you to coordinate your body’s movements so that you move in a fluid motion whilst staying on your feet. In addition to this, the fact that, unlike a gym, an ice rink is usually full of other people and improved coordination makes it easier for you to get around others without colliding. All of this triggers pathways in your brain and keeps them open for the long period of time that you are skating for. This means that skating is not only great for your body but your brain too.
Is a Great Stress Reliever
On the topic of figure skating being great for the brain, it’s also an amazing stress reliever just because it’s fun. Whether you can skate or not, it’s the perfect way to destress after a long day or week. Not to mention it’s the perfect social activity. You can go with friends and family for something fun to do, with the added bonus of getting healthy at the same time.
Before beginning any exercise or nutrition program, consult your physician, doctor or other professional. This is especially important for individuals over the age of 35 or persons with pre-existing health problems. Exercise.co.uk assumes no responsibility for personal injury or property damage sustained using our advice.
If you experience dizziness, nausea, chest pain, or any other abnormal symptoms, stop the workout at once and consult a physician or doctor immediately.