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Which sport suits you best?

You can’t count the times you’ve been told that practising sport is good for both body and mind. But which sport best suits your personality? And how do you go about practising it to achieve the best results while saving time and staying injury-free? 

Practising sport is healthy. Both people and science say so. One of the most authoritative studies on the relationship between sport and health provides data that will make you sit up and listen:

  • Doing a little sport every week reduces the risk of death by 40%.
  • Every minute of physical activity can give you seven more minutes of life.
  • Your average life expectancy can be extended by up to five years if you practice sports regularly.

However, despite a great deal of research, the type of sport you should be practising is still not clear. There's no easy answer, because it depends on what you are like, on your bodily requirements, your daily routine, etc., and especially on your personality.

We join you in exploring an efficient and practical way for you to start getting active right away in an injury-free and healthy manner without wasting time while burning as many calories as possible. 

"Every minute you spend doing sports gives you seven more minutes of life."

Which sport burns the most calories?

People often focus on burning calories, although this is not the most appropriate approach. Firstly: the number of calories you burn while practising a sport will depend on your weight (the more you weigh, the more you will burn). Lastly: the number of calories you burn will depend on how you practice the sport (the higher the intensity, the more you burn. As your technique improves, you become more efficient and burn less calories). These two factors make any average of calories burned approximate and, therefore, never personally adapted to you.

That said, estimated figures do exist which, all things considered, give an overview of those sports that, in general, burn more calories:

  1. Running: between 500 and 700 calories per hour, although with huge variations depending on your technique and on how used you are to covering long distances. 
  2. Cycling: about 600 calories per hour.
  3. Swimming: approximately 700 calories per hour. This varies a lot depending on the stroke you use (butterfly burns the most while backstroke burns the least). 
  4.  CrossFit: about 500 calories per half hour session. Due to its high intensity, it is neither usual nor advisable to perform longer sessions. 
  5. Football: 900 calories for each 90-minute game, although in this case the average is especially inaccurate since not all players make the same effort and there are periods during which play stops. 
  6. Basketball: about 300 calories for every half hour of play.
  7. Tennis: approximately 400 calories per hour.
"Running, swimming and cycling stand out as the sports that burn the most calories if we are constant and dedicate enough time to them."

How do I choose a sport?

There's no point in going for a sport just because it apparently burns more calories. The most important word when practising sports for health reasons is: connection. What does that mean? That you enjoy it enough to practice it regularly over a long period of time without throwing in the towel.

The rule where health and sport are concerned is: start slowly, but never stop. In what sense?

  • Well, if you’ve been inactive for a while, you should not jump headlong into a very intense sport since you could injure yourself and/or get discouraged due to the great effort involved.
  • If you feel especially tired, you must take breaks, days off, but without giving up the sporting activity for good.

To answer the question of how to choose a sport clearly and directly, choose one you are passionate about and are good at. And don't be afraid to try one after another until you find which best suits you.  

5 important tips when taking up a sport

  1. Do not start with the maximum intensity: first build a foundation, get your muscles used to the new activity and take at least 48 hours off from sporting activities. As the muscular twinges begin to disappear and you begin to enjoy yourself more, you can gradually increase the intensity and frequency until you feel comfortable. 
  2.  Don’t be scared by tiredness: if you have been leading a sedentary lifestyle, it is perfectly normal for you to notice a particularly fast heart rate the first few times you exert yourself, as well as severe stiffness over the next two or three days. The key is to ration your tiredness: it’s a good thing for you to always feel a little, but not too, tired.
  3. Be consistent: get used to doing a little every day, but be sure to establish a certain routine. One huge effort once a month is bad. Several moderate efforts per week is good.
  4. Set yourself a goal: if your priority is to lose weight and "feel fit", as well as to make the most of the health benefits physical exercise offers, focus on aerobic-type sports (running, cycling, swimming, etc.). If your priority is to develop muscle mass, you will have to combine an aerobic warm-up with anaerobic exercises (mainly lifting weights, be these gym machines or loose dumbbells or even your own weight, as in the case of CrossFit).
  5. If you lack the time, don’t drop the sport: once you have reached a certain level of physical fitness (it is essential to acquire it little by little), if you don’t have the time, you can resort to especially efficient formats. For example, HIIT training, which combines short breaks (about 10 seconds) with very intense exercises (20 seconds), each interlinked until an increasing number of minutes is reached (first workout 4 minutes, then 5, etc., and so on as your body adapts).

And don't forget the most important tip of all: be mindful and enjoy yourself. What’s the use of adding minutes to your life if you’re not going to use them to be happy. 

"It begins little by little and with patience. It continues with perseverance and the desire to excel in each training session."

Share your experience

Have you just started practising a sport and it’s going well or badly ... or just so so? Are you practising a little-known sport you would like to recommend? Have you discovered any short cuts to getting in shape quickly? Share your experiences and join the debate on our social media channels:

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