National Fitness Day – On The Ball

It might have been a while since you ran around a playing field hitting or catching a ball, but those energetic sports you did as a teen have many fantastic health benefits – plus they’re so much more fun as an adult, even if you hated PE!

Read our pick of the best ball sports in the October issue of Top Santè – here’s a taster!

Video: Plank with fitness ball - Mayo Clinic

Netball

This is a seven-a-side game in which goals are scored by throwing a ball into a hoop. The player receiving the ball must stand still until they have passed it to another player.

‘Often seen as an easy option, netball can actually be fast, engaging and challenging, so don’t underestimate the fitness gains and enjoyment you can get from it,’ says fitness coach Kim Ingleby. ‘Netball requires a great deal of flexibility, core control and good throwing skills, all of which are fantastic for building physical strength.’

Balance and co-ordination are key in netball, as you need to remain still after catching the ball. It also requires a lot of stopping and starting on the court, so it really helps to boost your speed and agility.

Not only this, netball can help to build strong joints and bones through the impact of jumping – though you should ensure you have no underlying joint issues to start with. You can also burn almost 600 calories in a 60-minute session, if you put in the effort.

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