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stress? Get a paddle!

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It has long been known that exercise is good for both the body and mind, and that certain types of exercise are particularly good for calming the mind. It’s the usual suspect we think of when looking for ways to move the body and improve muscle tone. When please calm down.

But growing evidence suggests there’s a newcomer on the scene.Kayaks—yes, kayaks—are double-paddle superstars when it comes to stress relief.

What is a kayak?

One of the most popular water sports, kayaking is relatively easy to learn and, contrary to popular belief, does not require much athleticism or strength. The basics of kayaking are very simple. Take a small boat and paddle a double-edged oar. Most kayaks can only carry 1 person, but there are models that can carry 2 or 3 people, as well as pets. A clear bottom kayak allows you to see wildlife in a whole new way.

We have kayaks designed for fishing, whitewater adventures, recreation and touring. The kayak can be inflated with air and the seat can be placed directly above or below the recess called the cockpit. After a quick tutorial, people of all ages can get the hang of kayaking.

Why kayaking is good for your heart

Nature. Spending time in nature is fun and refreshing. According to the American Psychological Association, being in touch with nature is associated with many benefits, including increased attention, reduced stress, improved mood, reduced risk of mental illness, and even increased empathy and cooperation.

Less stress. To kayak well, you need to focus on your paddle stroke and surroundings. If you’re focusing on these things, your brain has to stop focusing on stressors like work and life pressures. Less stress means more happiness.

endorphins. Aerobic exercise triggers the release of feel-good chemicals such as serotonin, dopamine, endorphins, and norepinephrine in the brain. These chemicals interact with the brain’s receptors to minimize your ability to perceive pain.Endorphins also cause stress relief and a feeling of well-being. Sometimes called a “runner’s high,” the rush of endorphins after strenuous exercise can create a highly euphoric (yet short-lived) state.

reflection. And we don’t mean we see ourselves underwater. Social time is good for mental health, but so is alone time. Spending time in quiet contemplation helps you reconnect with yourself and feel grounded.

fun. For your information, play and fun are just as important for adults as they are for children. Paddling glass lakes, seeing birds and wildlife up close and exploring the shores is just plain fun.

It’s a break. Getting away from what’s on your mind and spending a few hours a week on the water can be a great mental break. You can come back with concentration.

Kayaking is also a good low impact workout. Kayaking is not something you do by force. It’s definitely cardio (an hour of kayaking can burn over 350 calories, depending on how hard you’re paddling). Water adds resistance and strengthens the upper body and core.

kayak tips

Please dress for the water. This is important to remember. It may be hot outside, but you’re basically sitting in the water, so it’s cool. Wear layers and consider investing in a wetsuit or drysuit if you plan to kayak in the fall or winter.

Coast Guard Approved Personal Flotation Device (PFD). Type II and Type III PFDs are suitable for calm waters where rapid rescue is likely. Type III PFDs tend to be more comfortable. Type I PFD is for rougher water.

Please bring these: Sunscreen, snacks, first aid kit, sun hat, non-cotton clothing, plenty of water, a watch (ideally with GPS) and a dry bag to keep things you don’t want to get wet. Consider a lesson. Kayak lessons include how to load the kayak into the car to avoid injury, how to empty the kayak in case of a tip-over, how to slide the kayak to shore, how to spray his skirt (e.g. how to escape). will be of it if you cant). If you are a good swimmer and would like to swim without taking lessons, choose a quiet lake or pond and swim.

find your place Choose a pond or lake with public access. Beginners don’t want to start in rivers or oceans. has an interactive map that can point you in the right direction. Of course, if you don’t own a kayak, you’ll probably start from the dock or marina where you rented your gear.

Please select a day of the week. Kayaking is a sport for at least three seasons, but watch the water temperature. Wetsuits or drysuits must be worn if the water temperature is below 59 degrees Fahrenheit. If it’s below 55 degrees, choose a dry suit.

how to row. First, decide where you will hold your paddle. To do this, grab the paddle with both hands and bend your elbows to his 90 degree angle and place it over your head. That’s where you want your hands to go. Make sure the concave side of the paddle is facing you. This gives you optimum paddle power. Place your kayak on the shore right next to the water and get in (or ride). Use the paddle to slide the boat into the water and push it off the ground. Here’s the fun part: Just beside the kayak, make a small stroke parallel to the kayak and set off.

turn and stop. Use “Sweep Stroke” to turn. Here is a nice and clear description of this maneuver from SHAPE Magazine. Take a paddle and do big arc strokes away from the boat. Right is clockwise and left is counterclockwise moving the paddle from front to back, but in an exaggerated arc to the right it turns left and vice versa. To stop, reverse the paddle (back to front in the water).

Recover from capsize. Until you’ve mastered what’s called an “open water rescue,” you’ll either have the skills to put the boat back together with the help of others and get back into the boat, or self-rescue (turning the kayak upside down and back in place). stay near the coast until you have mastered the That way, if you capsize, you can swim the kayak to shore, dry it off, and try again.

There are also many online tutorials with helpful videos and step-by-step narration. For more health and wellness content, visit INTEGRIS Health. For you blog.