Sailing to get fit and healthy!

Let’s start this interesting article with a thought-provoking quote – ‘It’s never too early or too late to work towards being the healthiest you.’ 

We all agree that it’s important to maintain your health and fitness, no matter how old you get. Staying healthy is not just about your physical fitness, it’s also about your mental and emotional fitness too. Eating healthy food, living an active lifestyle and avoiding harmful substances are all contributing factors to good health. 

How can sailing help you lead a healthy lifestyle? 

Imagine yourself maneuvering a sailboat in the open waters, feeling the breeze, enjoying the smell of saltwater, away from the stress of your everyday life… a picture-perfect moment, isn’t it? Well, sailing is more than just an experience and a fun activity. It’s a great way to challenge your mental and physical fitness. Sailing always involves a certain amount of physical activity. Manning the sail is not an easy task, but it’s a physical activity that can help you gain muscle strength and endurance. There’s a certain sense of achievement through inner peace, which is important for your mental health. Let’s take a close look at some of the health benefits that the activity of sailing can bring in your life. 

  1. Pulling and hoisting sails are some of the physical activities that are involved in sailing. These activities can be fun and fitness-oriented, they help build muscle strength shoulders and back. 
  2. As per recent research, it was indicated that an estimated 1.13 billion people worldwide have hypertension and about 1.9 billion people are affected by obesity. These are serious health concerns that one must not ignore. While aboard sailing, you are engaging in intense physical activities that are fun. These not only help tackle the risk of hypertension and obesity but also help you work towards improving your cardiovascular health. 
  3. Another important factor of leading a healthy lifestyle is to take care of your mental fitness and lower your stress levels. There’s something soothing and equally calming about the waters and the deep blue sea that can affect your brainwave patterns positively. Scientifically speaking, it’s the saltiness of the sea air which consists of charged ions that helps improve the body’s oxygen absorption. It’s critical to balance your serotonin levels that impact your mental fitness. 

Apart from these health and fitness benefits, sailing also improves your flexibility and agility. As a part of mental and emotional fitness, this engaging activity improves your capability to communicate effectively and creates a deep sense of concentration. 

Everything you need to know about sailing and injuries 

We have spoken all things good about sailing in the first half of this article. But we want you to also focus on the potential injuring this activity can cause. 

Over the last few years, sailing has gained some interest amongst health professionals. There are some interesting researches and studies conducted to understand the significance of sailing on health. They have also closely analyzed the injury patterns, fitness and training techniques, and physiological and psychological demands that are specific to sailing. From acute injuries to overuse injuries, sailors do have to face the risk of illness and injuries. As a highly technical sport, it’s imperative to have core strength and be trained in agility before you decide to set out on sail. This activity is all about making quick decisions and movements. Hence, injuries and illness related to sailing are not unusual. Physical actions around a sailboat are often awkward, resulting in rotating, hyperextending, locking, or twisting of joints. Lifting poses a particular risk, with difficulty maintaining proper form on a moving vessel. Add to that, postural problems and musculoskeletal issues. They are all often caused due to inadequate fitness training and a lack of knowledge in sailing. 

Repetitive strain on your back can be caused due to recurring motion while sailing and positional issues. It’s important to be well prepared for your sailing excursion. Ensure you are aware of all the possible injuries and are trained to intentionally avoid them from occurring. Lack of warming up, stretching, and cooling down surrounding a race may also increase the risk of injury.

Sailing is a working adventure in a constantly moving environment and sailors must assess their surroundings as well as actions to avoid injury. Before you get started with a sailing adventure, strength training and core conditioning are important and must be considered to avoid potential injuries.

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