It is interesting to know that a new sport could sprout out of a small rubber ball and racquets. I am talking about the sports Squash. It was discovered by school boys at the Harrows School in England in the 1860s. The mechanics is fairly simple, just hit the ball to the wall. Well, there are some technicalities to that, of course. It is a serious sports and well-loved by many. It is being even lobbied to be included in the Olympic Games.
I remember one time we upgraded to a roll off dumpsters for rent to better manage our disposals. We were so happy about it then my nephews thought of another purpose for it. They started throwing all sorts of thrash and called it the dumpster dunking challenge. Not sure if that can be lobbied for the Olympics, but it sure does sounds a lot of fun.
Before we trail off further, let us talk about the good. These are the health benefits you can get from playing squash. It is not dubbed as the “World’s Healthiest Sport” for nothing.
It provides high-impact Cardio Workout
You will run, leap and dive when you play this sport. It is a fast-paced so you can get a good cardiovascular workout, helping you to develop your endurance and stamina.
It sharpens hand-eye coordination
You need to always keep your eyes on the ball and hit it. Keeping this exercise will help you practice your hand-eye coordination. As you know, this simple but important skill, tends to decrease if we do not expose ourselves to activities that practice hand-eye coordination.
It develops agility and flexibility
Imagine the smooth but swift movement of cats when they try to chase something. You are doing exactly that when you play squash. It is not only about running, leaping, and jumping. You need to maintain control of your movements toward sudden stops and go while keeping your balance. You also need to bend and twist when you hit the ball. These are big movements done in a high-speed. Now, you will be amazed that your body can do all that in one sport. It’s like honing your ninja skills while having fun.
It makes your mind healthier
The sports require you to focus and strategize. That is mind exercise in itself. The sport can also improve your social skills because you meet like-minded people each time you play. The “squashing” is also a good way to release your stress. Imagine the balls as your stressors and you hit them to the wall.
These are just few health benefits you can get from playing the sports. Now, let’s talk about the bad. While you can reap a lot of health benefits, you need to watch out for injuries. Always remember, safety first.
Here are the common injuries from playing this sport.
- Acute or traumatic events – falling on the court or getting hit by a racquet
- Strains and pains on the lower back and the limbs
- Ankle and Knee Injuries
- Eye injury and head injury
These injuries can be minimized through the following safety tips.
Preparation is key
Always warm up and stretch before and after the game. I cannot over-emphasize the importance of this. You will embark on a monstrous feat so you need to warm up those muscles. You also need to maintain an adequate fitness level. Perform training exercises to condition your body and seek help from a qualified coach to guide you on proper movements and techniques.
Wear proper protective equipment
Get a proper protective eyeglass for the sport. Your regular eyeglasses and work safety glasses are not suitable. Seek professional advice on proper footwear, too. You can also protect your joints by taping or bracing.
Use the right equipment
Always ensure that your racquets are in good condition and appropriate for your age and skill level.
Maintain environment safety
Inspect the squash court that you will use. Make sure that the floor, walls, roof and lighting are in good condition. Never enter a squash court during play. Knock and wait for the players to acknowledge you.