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Healthy Competition

The Summer Olympics Games bring together thousands of Athletes to participate in a variety of competitions and consequently is considered the worlds foremost sporting events.

Although “Noodling” is not an Olympic sport, we can utilize the noodle to create many fun yet challenging exercises to provide not only entertainment to our programs –but added challenge and excitement.
Realize the noodle may be utilized for assistance or resistance – and the exercises that follow are suggested only for participants who are sufficiently skilled and comfortable in the water.

Some of these exercises will take the intensity up a notch.
Additionally, not all noodles are equal – a closed cell noodle provides much more resistance than a flimsy noodle with a hole in the middle.

If there are new partrons or not so skilled patrons in the program be prepared to modify the exercises.

Here are some ideas that may be incorporated into your programs.

Swimming : Kneel on the noodle (the noodle is in a swing position) and use arms only upright breast stroke to the other side.
Be sure not to internally rotate the shoulders or to impinge the shoulders.
Assume the “thumbs up” position and pull back the water as if hitch hiking and squeeze the shoulder blades together.
This will not only improve rhomboid strength but maintain proper shoulder alignment.  
The first person across the width of the pool (or distance you have pre-determined) is the gold medal winner.

Synchronized Swimming:  Sitting on a noodle (swing or bicycle position) Pull one arm back ( upright breaststroke as described above) then do other arm, then pull with both arms.
Then do two single leg cycles on one side then two on the other. Repeat this sequence in unison at different tempo’s and changes in range of motion.
Utilized slower speeds for bigger range of motion and faster speeds for less range of motion. Typically, WaterART doesn’t choreograph routines;
however, this exercise may help your patrons to understand how range of motion may create more power and be more intense than speed especially if the tempo is too fast and range of motion too small.
Be creative and add a variety of combinations to also challenge co-ordination. 
Everyone wins when you can stay together and be synchronized.

Gymnastics: In the deep end or suspended, with one leg standing on the noodle the other leg will go front and back.
Try to touch the ankle front and back with the opposite hand towards the ankle. This will challenge balance and you will feel the like being on a balance beam.
 If this is too challenging for your group, have them wrap the noodle behind the back (holding with both hands at the ends of the noodle). With one foot on the pool bottom or
in shallow water, touch the noodle to the same ankle in front then behind the body. Again, balance is challenged. The person to touch the ankle in front &
back the most times in the time allotted is the gold medal winner. Count front “one” and back “two”. Give this exercise one minute each side.
Allow everyone to count their own number of ankle touches.

Basketball: Stand with both feet on the noodle in deep water and let the noodle float up and bend the hips and knees.
Extend the knees and hips and push the noodle down so the body is vertical and pretend to shoot a basket ball.
Reference this month’s video fit tip clip. We are saluting but you may throw a basket ball or baseball.  
You may create a noodle basket (wrap or pretzel a noodle) and the person to hit the floating target the most times is the Olympic gold winner.
Be sure to give them an exercise such as cycling to retrieve a ball to throw.
Everyone can count their own baskets in a 5 minute time frame or count how may squats and salutes they can execute (without the noodle flying) in a 1 minute time frame.

Equestrian: Ride on your noodle horse (like a bicycle ) and utilize circular leg patterns.
Then change positions ( instructor calls this out) to a swing position and “ride the horse” ,
Keep changing the noodle position to challenge balance and work the abdominals with the change of body positions.

Boxing: Sitting on the noodle, “box” a small splash ball across the pool.  Be sure to alternate arm punches or jabs so that the muscles are trained in a balanced manner.
The first person across is the gold medal winner.

Kayaking: Create a slalom course by utilizing noodles in a pretzel or even rubber duckies (choose something that floats).
Lay horizontal on a noodle. The feet have to squeeze the end of the noodle to secure the noodle and the core has to work to balance on the noodle. 
Sit up in an L position and use the arms to kayak or pull to one side then the other. Keep the hands together in a prayer position.
Try to have the people weave in an out of the floating obstacles so that there is a sense of a slalom course.

Synchronized Walking:  Find a partner of approximately the same height. In  pairs or partners working in same depth or depths – walk across the pool.
Both face the same way both holding one end of each noodle and walk “synchronized” using correct arm-leg swing for walking forward across the pool and then backwards (no stopping). 
First pair to return to start position get the gold medal. If the pool changes shallow depth – start at the buoy line and walk towards the shallow end wall – touch - and back to the buoy line.
Try backwards and sideways walking for added challenge.

Pairs Chariot Race: Noodle position as above but both people keep the noodles held and tucked with elbows on top and pressed into waist line.
Front person is walking forward while the back person is the “chariot rider” (in seated position facing backwards). The Chariot Rider must keep knees together in line with hip and feet in line with knees.
Work to use the pool in the same depth as mentioned above – once across the pool or from buoy line to shallow end wall. First pair gets the gold medal.

Paddle boarding: In the deep end, for the more adventurous,  try standing on a  noodle or a kick board,  
 then, use the noodle to pole once across to the other side of the pool. If the noodle goes flying, then this is disqualification.
The first person across wins gold.

Other sports to create some exciting and creative  drills
are : Volley boll, hurdles, 100 metre dash, relay wrestling, Marathon,
Triathalon see link , rowing, cycling,  badminton, trampoline, table tennis, diving, sailing , water polo, archery, judo, taekwondo, sailing, pentathlon, to name a few.

For more intensity programs try our new Sports Conditioning Specialist Certification

Click here for complimentary video streaming  Fit Tip of the Month

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