There is an endless amount of activities out there to partake in, each offering their positives and negatives depending on just what you are looking for. For many, the desire to find an activity that is both fun and physically beneficial is one that is high.
The fact is that not all activities that are physically good for you are fun. Being able to find those that are will help make the entire experience all the better and will give you the desire to want to partake as much as possible.
One of those activities? Water sports, which are becoming a more popular way to get outside, enjoy the sun, get a great workout, and have some fun. The term is a bit of a vague and unknown entity, so it is important to know what water sports are and how to take part in them, whether alone or with friends and family. After reading this guide, don’t forget to check our hot SCUBA & Snorkeling Deals deals!
Water sports – the great underwater world
There are so many activities that are classified as “water sports” that there is no way to cover them all in one article of this size. When it comes to activities in the water, you might think of things like diving, synchronized swimming, aqua jogging (this is big among athletes as a workout method), swimming, water aerobics, snorkeling, water polo, and so much more.
There are even more on the water. Things like water skiing, boating, kayaking, fishing, surfing, rafting, rowing, and about a hundred other things. Simply put there is a near limitless amount of activities that you can partake in that are classified as water sports.
Water sports achieve a few different goals. The first is simply getting outside and enjoying the outdoors as well as the sun. In the warmer months of the year, it can feel wonderful to get outside, feel the warmth of the sun on your skin and the counteracting cool of the water.
Partaking in water sports can also build relationships. Maybe you like to go kayaking with a friend or family member. Maybe you go on big canoeing trips each year. Whatever the activity, you can share them with those close to you and build camaraderie along the way.
Getting your gear ready
Depending on which of the aforementioned water sports activities that you decide to partake in, you may or may not need gear beforehand. This can range from one small piece of gear to a few things and can range greatly in terms of cost.
For instance, if you like to go scuba diving, you will need several things: goggles, flippers, and an oxygen tank. This can run you quite a bit of money and it also takes time to properly prepare these items. On the flip side of that, for snorkeling, you can sub out the expensive oxygen tank for a snorkel. The differences aren’t huge, but the functionality and cost can be.
It is imperative that you are prepared before you get outside. Despite how fun water sports are, it is important to keep in mind that being in or on the water does present an element of danger to those who are careless. Drowning is a serious risk to anyone who ventures into the water and a level of safety should always be exercised.
Different water sport products
What kind of gear is available and what might you need to partake in your particular chosen water sport? While it is impossible to go over every single piece of gear ever, these are more of the popular options among those who participate in water-related activities.
We will go into the overall functionality of the wetsuit later on in this post, but let’s focus more on the gloves for the moment. Generally speaking, your wetsuit gloves are there for warmth and a thin layer of protection.
The water temperature where you plan to dive or snorkel can make a big difference in the type of wetsuit and wetsuit gloves that you choose. You might not find yourself in need of wetsuit gloves in warmer waters, but in the colder areas, wetsuit gloves will help keep your hands warmer than they may be without.
Ultimately, the use of wetsuit gloves depends on how you handle the different water temperatures and just how long you plan to be in the water.
You might be asking yourself “what is the difference between wetsuit gloves and diving gloves? They’re just gloves” and you could not be more wrong. Whereas the wetsuit gloves are more generally used to keep your hands warmer in colder waters, the diving gloves are much thicker.
This is because there are so many things in the water that can hurt your hands, especially when diving. Shells, coral reefs, and so many other things can be dangerous to hands that aren’t properly protected. With these thick, padded gloves, you can touch and grab things without having to worry about any damage to your hands.
Being able to explore without having a fear of hurting your hands can make the difference between an okay dive and a wonderful, great dive.
Full body wetsuit
The two big differences in wetsuit types are flexibility and warmth. As mentioned previously, there are instances where the water might be far colder than you think and you need that additional warmth when going on dives or doing a little snorkeling.
Generally speaking, if you are valuing warmth over flexibility, the longer full-body wetsuit is what you want. This not only covers your core but your arms and legs as well down to the wrist and ankle. This provides you with a greater amount of warmth than the short wetsuit which can be quite beneficial when doing extended dives in colder waters.
While the short wetsuit, which comes to mid-thigh and mid-bicep while still covering your core, is not meant for withstanding colder temperatures for longer periods of time it does have one major benefit: flexibility.
If you are going on a shorter dive, interacting with animals like dolphins or whales, or are in warmer waters, having that added flexibility can be very beneficial. There are some full suits that have improved flexibility, but they will run quite a bit higher in cost.
Know what kind of waters you are headed into and you can pick the right suit for your needs.
Full Face Snorkeling Masks
When snorkeling, it isn’t the same as getting one of those cheap snorkels that you might use in your swimming pool. Sure, you could use those, but it might greatly hinder your experience and leave you focused on the tool instead of the snorkeling experience.
A full-face snorkeling mask is just that: instead of the goggles and snorkel being separated, they are encased in a full mask. This helps to keep everything sealed and prevent water from getting into the snorkel or the goggles.
Nothing can derail snorkeling quicker than persistent leaks in your goggles or snorkel and the full-face snorkeling mask helps eliminate that.
These are your standard snorkeling masks. They are not the kind that are fully-sealed, but instead, are goggles with the snorkel attached. The downside is that if you don’t get a proper pair, you can experience leaks into the goggle or water that gets into the breathing tube with regularity.
It is important to note that you probably should not go snorkeling with a cheap snorkel mask. You want to enjoy your time and not worry about leaks; a cheaper pair will almost certainly have this setback and you will spend more time worrying about the leaks than anything else.
There are some snorkels that have different features built in to keep your snorkel from taking in water even when you are submerged. A dry snorkel has a purge valve system that will help to ride the snorkel of water should you take it out of your mouth while submerged.
These are greatly helpful for preventing the intake of water when you go snorkeling, which can be a huge pain and something that you find yourself subconsciously thinking about instead of the actual experience.
I can already hear the question: why on earth would I need socks underwater? The simple answer is that while wearing the flippers if you have a pair that fits improperly, it can lead to chafing and irritation over a long period of time.
With the snorkeling socks, this is no longer an issue as your feet are protected and covered through the duration of the experience. It might not seem like a big thing until you have sore and irritated feet and ankles and find yourself wishing that you had snorkeling socks instead of red feet.
If you fancy yourself a swimmer, you might not have known about swimming paddles and the impact that they can have on your speed. Swimming paddles fit over your hands and help you generate the necessary pull that is required for high-speed swimming.
They increase the surface area that you cover which means increased resistance. This is great to have if you swim to stay in shape as that added resistance can increase the strain on your muscles and generate more of a workout.
These are generally meant to be used by those who have a good technique otherwise they might be a bit difficult to use for the amateur swimmers out there.
Much in the same vein as the swimming paddles, swimming gloves will come with webbed fingers in order to create more drag when swimming. This is to increase the resistance of the water, creating a greater workout for the arms, shoulders, chest, and back. It makes for a great workout for those looking for different ways to tone their bodies.
With swimming gloves, the surface area covered isn’t as large so you won’t get the kind of resistance that you would get out of swimming paddles. On the other side of this is the fact that you might not need much technique to use swimming gloves successfully.
Enter the trolley
Transporting your equipment from place to place can be a bit more difficult if you have a lot of gear to bring along. Carrying it is certainly an option, but that can be painstaking and a bit difficult depending on just how much gear you have.
The dolly trailer tote trolley makes transporting any of your gear easier than ever. This is a simple dolly that you can load up with your equipment and drag along with you wherever you are going. Never worry about being able to fit everything in your hands or under your arms again when you can make the whole situation easy to deal with. Check our site for dolly trailer deals!
Water sports make for a great indoor activity during the winter months
There are many of us who do not quite appreciate the colder months. It limits the number of times we can get outside comfortably without having to wear a ton of gear simply to stay warm. It might also be something of a drag for those who love water sports, but the good news is that you can continue to participate in a number of different water activities even throughout the winter.
If you have access to an indoor pool, you can bring the family with you to get in a workout with your swimming paddles or swimming gloves. Or you can play a game of water polo, go for a few laps, partake in some diving, or any other activity that can be done in an indoor pool.
In most communities, there are likely recreation centers that will offer free access to an indoor swimming pool and it is recommended that, if you love the water, you partake during the colder months. There are nicer community centers that will have membership requirements; depending on the cost, this might be worth it as well.
Ultimately, even in the coldest months of the years, there are ways that you can enjoy the water with friends and family while staying active. Just being in the water can generate a great physical effect on your body, so it is important that you get into the water with some regularity. It can help to tone your body and keep you in great shape while enjoying the activities that you would have taken part in any way.