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5 Low-Impact Sports that Make it Easy to Stay Fit

July 25, 2019

Physical activity is a key component of a healthy lifestyle. However, that doesn't mean you have to hit the gym every day for an intense workout. There are loads of great ways to stay active without putting a ton of stress on your body. Many low-impact sports provide a fantastic workout--and they're a great way to socialize. Check out some of the best low-impact sports that you can play right near (or at) your home in Naples.

1. Pickleball

Pickleball has taken the nation by storm in recent years. This sport continues to gain popularity because it's competitive, fun, and easy to play. Pickleball combines tennis, badminton, and ping-pong on a badminton-sized court with a tennis net. Players use paddles (larger than a ping-pong paddle, but a similar shape) to hit a plastic ball (much like a whiffle ball) across the court. The game can be played as doubles or singles, and it's a great alternative to tennis because it's easier on the joints and requires less running. 

There are plenty of places to play pickleball around Naples. Outdoor courts can be found at East Naples Community Park, Veterans Community Park, and Fleischmann Park Community Center (Fleischmann also provides equipment if you don't have your own). The Greater Naples YMCA offers four indoor courts with open play for beginners every Monday and Wednesday (free for Y members and $5 per day for guests). For residents of Moorings Park, there are pickleball courts available onsite at Moorings Park Grande Lake. 

2. Tai Chi

Tai chi is an effective exercise for your health; both for the mind, body, and spirit. The art of tai chi originated from ancient China and offers a variety of different techniques and styles. Studies have shown tai chi improves muscular strength, flexibility, fitness, immunity, pain relief, and overall quality of life. Make it a social event and invite your friends or family. It’s a relaxing and enjoyable way to be social and exercise with others in your community.

At Moorings Park, a Tai Chi class is offered to help participants acquire better balance, improved breathing, lower blood pressure, and to relieve the pain of arthritis and fibromyalgia. Open to all skill levels, the class can help participants find self-awareness, peace, and tranquility at Moorings Park.

3. Bocce 

Bocce is a sport with roots that date all the way back to the ancient Egyptians. The sport has evolved throughout the years, but the basic concept remains the same--you throw balls toward a target to earn points. Ideally, bocce is played on a long, narrow court made of sand or crushed shells, but a casual game can be played on a grassy surface at the park or in your backyard. 

Bocce is a great low-impact sport that involves plenty of movement without a lot of stress on the body, and you can play at your own pace. There are bocce courts at Cambier Park, Veterans Park, and Pelican Bay Community Park. For those interested in league play, you can visit the Southwest Florida Bocce League and the Naples Italian American Foundation. 

There are bocce courts on all three of Moorings Park’s campuses for residents to join in on the competition.

4. Swimming

Swimming is an excellent activity for nearly everyone. Not only does it provide exercise, but it also has many therapeutic benefits. Swimming is a low-impact sport that strengthens muscles without the risk of joint injury. It can reduce stress, which will improve your overall mood and lead to more restorative sleep. If that's not enough, swimming increases your endurance and helps you maintain a healthy heart!

Looking for great places to swim in Naples? If you live in Moorings Park, you won't even have to leave home -- check out an awesome aqua fitness class or take a few laps around one of our beautiful community pools right here on our campuses. If you prefer to feel the sand between your toes, take a swim in the stunning water just a few miles away at Naples Beach.

5. Cycling

Riding a bicycle is a wonderful way to exercise while taking in the beautiful sights of the city. The smooth, circular movements of cycling are easy on the joints, unlike jogging, which can be tough on the knees. Research also suggests that cycling can help slow the loss of muscle mass and strengthen the immune system. 

Naples is full of scenic spots to ride your bicycle. Try the paths at Gordon River Greenway Park, Freedom Park, or Clam Pass Beach Park, or find your own special place to enjoy a delightful bike ride in Naples.

Staying physically active can be a lot of fun. These activities are a great opportunity to spend the day outdoors in the warm sunshine and enjoy all the natural beauty of Naples. Please feel free to contact us to learn about more ways to stay fit near your home at Moorings Park. 

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