All posts by Roger

How To Enjoy The Beautiful Game

Soccer is played and watched the world over, and what makes the beautiful game so popular is the variety of ways that fans can enjoy the sport.

Whether 5 or 11-a-side, playing a match is a great way to enjoy soccer. All you need is a ball and enough space for all the players, and what’s more, you don’t even need goalposts. Who can forget the enduring image from the British schoolyard, the game’s birthplace, with schoolchildren chasing after a ball and their jumpers placed on the ground as substitutes for the goals? Of course, a match with friends doesn’t have to be a formal end-to-end affair, games like three-and-in or heads and volleys are terrific fun while also being a great way to practice and enjoy some of soccer’s core skills such as heading, volleying, and dribbling.

Of course, playing a match with friends is a great way to enjoy soccer, but so too is watching a game on television. Nowadays soccer has never been as accessible with games broadcast live from leagues all over the world, so fans can gather to watch Lionel Messi perform an audacious dribble before switching to another channel to see Cristiano Ronaldo score an extraordinary free kick. And there will always be the die-hard supporters who travel to their local stadium every week, wearing their team’s colors and shouting encouragement to the players as they try to score that all-important winning goal.

Reality is becoming more virtual all the time, and after playing or watching a soccer match, many fans look to emulate some of the game’s great managers such as Alex Ferguson, Pep Guardiola, and Johann Cruyff in testing their tactical awareness using a football manager simulation game.

Soccer is often called the people’s game, and with so many ways to enjoy the world’s most popular sport, it truly is.

Famous Poker Fans

Poker is loved by many. It’s a game that people can really get involved in, the highs and lows of being on top and then crashing back down can be addictive, not to mention the chance to win some money. Who are poker’s biggest fans though? Read on as we take a look at some of the most famous poker players around the world and those who have a sponsorship deal to play the game.

Musicians

There are many famous musicians who are also well-known for their love of the game. Nelly, the rapper, for instance, has competed in a number of tournaments, including the World Series in 2007. Joni Mitchell was also known to be a big fan of the game. She was a regular at Glenn Frey’s Kirkwood Casino and she even made reference to the game in several of her songs. Poker has many VIPs, you can become one too, read how on Free Online Poker Sites.

Sports Stars

Many sports stars also turn to the game, perhaps as a way to replicate the adrenaline rush they feel when they are playing their sport. Boris Becker is known to be a big fan, since his retirement from tennis he has played in some of the biggest tournaments that Europe has to offer. Cricketer, Shane Warne, has also picked up the game after retiring and even had a great run at the 2015 World Series.

Sponsorship Deals

There are many famous sports stars who have used their reputation to help advertise the game of poker, demonstrating their passion for the game by doing so. Usain Bolt, for instance, endorses Poker Stars. They created a special edition of their Zoom poker game, using Bolt’s legendary speed and lightning bolt as inspiration. Neymar, top football player also works hard to promote Poker Stars. He regularly posts on their Facebook and Twitter feed and even turns up to events to play the game alongside other players.

Fun Activities to Engage in on Your Rest Days

Toiling incessantly at the gym just doesn’t cut it when the end goal is to maintain physical fitness. Once in a while, you have to take it easy and give your thews time to recover and develop resilience. However, this shouldn’t be a reason to be indolent on your rest days. Keeping yourself physically active even on rest days helps to prevent muscle soreness and maintains calorie burning. There are some fun activities that you can engage in to keep yourself active as your body recuperates.

Take a Swim

Studies have shown that swimming is a great way of enhancing body healing. It is a light cardio exercise that has a negligible impact on your already hurting muscles and joints. Floating on water reduces the effects of gravity and pressure on your body parts, and this enhances the recovery process. If you are suffering from a knee injury or back pains, swimming helps offload the weight exerted on these areas.

Meditate

Most people tend to overlook the fact that physical fitness and mental fitness are interrelated. When healing your body, remember to cater for your mental health as well. Meditation helps to reduce overthinking and this reduces stress. It also helps with respiration, which improves blood flow.

Play Online Casino

While still on the topic of mental fitness, why not take part in an activity that challenges your cognitive abilities. Playing online casinos is a perfect example of such an activity. Engaging in the games on offer helps to improve your focus, problem-solving abilities and sharpness. Research has shown that people who engage more in casino games are usually happier and fell less stressed after participation. However, in order to enjoy and benefit from casino games, one needs to understand the basics and know some tricks they can utilise to their advantage.

Get a Massage

Massages are always relaxing and enjoyable. They help to alleviate muscle soreness and joint pains, and they also enhance blood circulation. Therefore, treating yourself to a massage session on your rest days is definitely a healthy idea.

In order to realise the desired results from your work-out regime, you have to factor in regular rest and recovery days. It is also important to maintain your body mobility even when you are not working out. The above-stated activities are just a few examples of what you can do on those days. Other activities can include spa dates, walks, bike rides and yoga classes.

Exercise your brain: what can you do to give your mind a workout?

Brains. They are a bit of a mystery, even to neuroscientists. However, the connection between mind and body is an incredibly powerful one, even if the process isn’t completely understood. That’s why so many neuroscientists are to be found clad in running gear. Running, they tell us, quite literally makes us smarter. But did you know that it can also work the other way around? If you exercise your mind, it actually makes your body healthier. Sounds like hocus pocus? Read on and see.

Learning a new skill

Gardening is just one of many skills that requires a combination of concentration, repetition, planning, and problem-solving. Knitting, craftwork, and cooking all produce a similar neurobiological effect. These activities build and strengthen neural pathways, improving overall brain function.

However, a remarkable additional effect is that they also force the brain into a state of mindfulness. This has a range of health benefits, such as reducing blood pressure, reducing chronic pain, and improving heart health. This isn’t just because activities such as gardening involve exercise, but mainly because the mental focus that is required sends the body into a state of healthy relaxation.

The more effort that is put into learning a new skill, the more powerful the positive mental effect becomes.

But what about ‘serious’ learning?

Think of serious mental challenges, and games of logic spring to mind. Cryptic crosswords, chess, and poker are the forerunners. All of these work in a similar way. Poker, for instance, involves memorising complex strategies and rules that can be applied in order to predict how the game will unfold. Players also have to be able to perform complex mathematics involving probability and chance, and to apply multiple rules of logic.

Difficult? Yes. However, all of these activities are learned through practice and repetition, and that’s where the secret lies. Learning how to play these mentally complex games builds neural pathways. Due to the constant repetition, these pathways are strengthened until they are hardwired.

The result is a supercharged brain, with enhanced memory, concentration, and dexterity. However, one neural pathway that chess and poker players develop is emotional control. This can have a powerful physical effect: it reduces the physically damaging stress hormone cortisol.

Closing thoughts

When people think about exercise, they often forget that the brain also needs a good workout. Learning is not just something done by students, but something that the brain naturally wants and needs to do in order to keep the body healthy. Next time you’re wondering how to improve your gym workout, consider reaching for the chess set!

Common Injuries in CrossFit and How to Prevent and Treat Them

CrossFit is an increasingly popular fitness option that consists of rapid and successive high-intensity ballistic movements. Even though it was once reserved for tough guys, it seems to attract more and more individuals interested in getting a better physical shape. For you to reap the physical benefits of CrossFit training, you need to safeguard yourself against these common injuries:

Anterior Knee Pain

Knee pain, which can occur during a lunge, squat, or single leg work, is usually associated with strain and overuse, but other times it can mean dislocation or even worse injury. If you experience swelling on your kneecap or observe a dislocation, you should avoid physical impact on the knees and do stretches to keep the knee limber. For minor injuries, just ice your knees.

Lower Back Pain

Lower back pain occurs due to too much stress on the lumbar spine during squats and deadlift exercises. When you experience pain and distress on your lower back, it’s imperative that you halt your training. To prevent this injury, it’s important to first build up your core and glute strength before lifting heavy weights, as well as do the right kind of stretching and strengthening exercises.

Safety Tips

To prevent these CrossFit injuries, it’s important to start training slowly and gradually build up. If you experience any of these injuries, you should consult a qualified sports trainer or doctor. But, if the injuries are serious, lay off the training until you recover to prevent further damage. During your recovery, you can engage in less strenuous games like poker to help you stay busy. Learning a new game and it’s strategies can put your mind off the fact that you can’t workout.

Tennis Elbow

Tennis elbow is caused by overuse of the ligaments and the tendons in the elbow. In case of elbow pain, break off from the activity causing it until the pain subsides, then do some extensor muscles stretches. Wear a compression elbow brace before you start training as it minimizes micro tears, which cause pain associated with tennis elbow.

The Importance of Giving your Body a Rest

The human body requires training to help improve its functions both physically and mentally. Some may think that this is a reserve just for the athletes and those who serve in military or martial forces, but they are wrong. Physical exercise is important even for that one regular person who can only do it once a week. A good routine is important with any exercise, and it must not just be for the purpose of building muscles or losing fat.

What do you do after training?

Many people focus on the diet, training, routines and the long term results. Well, these have been extensively researched. One thing people ignore is what you should do immediately after the training session. According to studies it is important to have some mind relaxation activities to avoid fatigue and over-exhaustion. To this end there are various activities that one may engage in.

Playing Computer Games

One of the best relaxation methods would be to play computer games. Many people like where you can engage in different computer games. A casino is one of the best places people go for relaxation. Doing it online even makes it better because you do not need to move around. If you happen to be in Europe, the environment is well regulated for any player who wishes to play online. You can do this from the comfort of your couch, instead of just sleeping to relax, which is what many people do.

A planned body training and conditioning program can be very strenuous and can affect any body’s performance. Therefore a concrete relaxation program is important, especially for people who do not exercise on a regular basis.

Other Relaxation Activities

One can also relax by watching a movie a particular sport of interest. Another good relaxation choice would be a sauna. Some gyms may also offer swimming facilities for their clients.

The Most Dangerous Exercises in Crossfit

Crossfit is a dynamic and popular way to work out that has swept the world and inspires incredible devotion from participants. A workout methodology that incorporates Olympic-like lifts, cardio training and other whole-body exercises at high intensity, the workouts are carried out at intensity.

Most of the workouts require a high number of repetitions to be completed within a specific time frame, often with a heavy weight load. For some, this is a recipe for fitness. For many, it’s a recipe for injury and there are a number of exercises used in Crossfit workouts which put participants are particularly high risk of injury.

The Kipping Pull Up

The kipping pull up is a signature move in Crossfit and unfortunately one that often results in injury if not carried out properly. Completing a kipping pull up requires a high level of complex technique and poses injury risk even if done properly. Incorrect technique when undertaking a kipping pull up can lead to shoulder, neck and back injury.

High-rep Olympic Lifts

Olympic lifts are meant to be done in moderation and with careful attention to good form. Crossfit takes a high speed, high impact approach to every workout, risking a decline in technique as participants tire. Olympic lifts are also done with significant weight on the bar, increasing the risk of serious injury if not done correctly.

Box jumps

Box jumps require participants to jump from a standing start onto a box and back down again. Gain, the high speed, high impact approach puts participants at risk for significant injury when they begin to get tired and begin using sloppy form. The box jump presents significant risk to the knee, ankle and lower back, not to mention the risk of bruises and scrapes when the box is missed altogether.

The importance of diet in sports

Maintaining a good diet is of vital importance, when it comes to sportsmen and sportswomen being able to perform to their maximum. With often fine margins determining the outcome of a sports event, things such as having the right diet can prove to be the difference between winning and losing.

A Healthy Diet Will Help Athletes During Training And When Performing

Eating and drinking properly will not only be necessary before and after a sporting event. A good diet will be needed to improve the effectiveness of training, too – both before and after training routines. A proper diet serves two purposes. One, it will help give an athlete the right energy levels they need for their particular sport, and, secondly, it will replenish them after a training session or actual performance.

Why Carbohydrates Are Important For Athletes

An athlete’s energy intake should be broken down into three main types, with carbohydrates, at 55%, being responsible for most of an athlete’s energy intake. Up to 15% of energy intake should come from protein, and this figure shouldn’t be less than 12%. Finally, under 30% of energy intake should be from fat. There will be exceptions to these guidelines, and the level of carbohydrates could have to be raised to between 65 and 70% if an athlete exercises strenuously for over an hour a day. Carbohydrates are essential for athletes, because of how they not only provide an athlete with energy, but because of how they help an athlete’s recovery, too. Food rich in carbohydrates, such as wholegrain breads and cereals, should be an important part of any athlete’s diet.

Protein For Vegetarian Athletes

Though athletes are recommended to eat food that is rich in protein, which may include meat, fish and eggs, vegetarians can still build up their protein levels with beneficial food. Types of food rich in protein for vegetarian athletes can include a pasta-based meal, that includes pasta, tofu, vegetables and rice.

Stem Cells to help with Sports Injuries

Although stem cell research is still just that, research, there are numerous potential applications to aid those recovering from injuries. Sports injuries are identified as one area that might receive great benefit from stem cell research since about 45% of sports injuries are related to the musculature system; strains and pulls etc. Injuries to cartilage are also common and these two types of tissue have been receptive to stem cell research.

Stem cells responsible for repairing muscles are called satellite cells. under the course of normal exercise, the tissue of the muscles wear and tear. The satellite cells then initiate repair by dividing themselves to create new satellite cells as well as creating myoblast cells that are integrated into the damaged muscle tissue. Through this process muscles are built up and become stronger with use.

With the case of an injury, of course, the damage is more extensive than normal exercise and research into using stem cells to accelerate muscle repair is the focus of most stem cell research in the area of sports injury. Cartilage is a relatively simple (but important!) type of cell, and as such is a prime candidate accelerated healing. typically, the simpler a cell is, the easier it is to replicate or repair, much like anything else.

Other applications for stem cell inspired rapid healing techniques range from tendons and bones to head trauma and neurological diseases. Since stem cells are responsible for much of the body’s regeneration after any injury, stem cell research can apply to almost any injury suffered during the course of participating in a sport. Obviously these applications are not limited to sports injuries, but breakthroughs in one arena definitely cascade into other similar applications. And there are several companies that are leading the charge in respect to research and furthering the field.

By using cell cultures from companies like BioLamina, researchers are given the tools that they need to progress in their research and further the field. BioLamia offers excellent and high quality cell culture products complete with support. Companies like BioLamia are furthering the vision of creating a future where stem cell therapy is a proven and accepted medical process to help athletes as well as others. Achievements gained in sports medicine will advance the medical field in general.

The Best Alternatives to Crossfit

Crossfit is a fitness phenomenon which has exploded in popularity around the world. It definitely gets results, but it is not for everybody. There are alternatives to Crossfit which achieve results just as good as those Crossfit achieves.

Body weight workouts

Body weight workouts are simple and easy to complete, but this doesn’t equate to easy. Using only body weight resistance, put together core movements such as squats, push ups, sit ups, hamstring thrusts and plank holds. This creates a whole body workout that will be surprisingly challenging.

Running

Running is an all-round workout that has the added bonus of an outdoor setting. Starting out slowly for beginners, running is easily adaptable as conditioning improves. Running is an appropriate activity for all ages and fitness levels and can be done in a group or alone.

High Intensity Interval Workouts (HIIT)

HIIT workouts are designed to include strength and cardiovascular conditioning into one workout. Short, sharp exercises that push your body to the limit are combined with active recovery. HITT workouts will increase the foundation that your fitness is based on so you can perform better in other areas of your life.

Kettlebell Workouts.

Kettlebells provide an alternative to traditional racked weights. Designed to be swing, pushed, pulled, cleaned and jerked, Kettlebell workouts will combine cardiovascular, strength and flexibility training into one workout. Kettlebells engage the whole body in almost every move, providing a whole body workout every time.