Starting a new sport can be intimidating, especially if you’re not a natural athlete. For those wanting a gentle introduction, the below should have you covered.
The reality is that all sports, by definition, require effort. Even those that may appear easy at first may become far more strenuous than you think. Just because something may not involve hurtling around a pitch for hours on end doesn’t mean it isn’t mentally taxing. The other key thing to factor in is a sport can be as easy or as difficult as you choose to make it. Cycling for 15 minutes a day at a leisurely pace is a very different beast to taking on the Tour de France, arguably the most difficult sporting event in the world.
With those factors in mind, there are still certain sports that could be more appealing to those looking to stay away from from pushing their bodies to the absolute extreme. That’s not to say that they are easy, but they could be a great way to get involved in sport if you aren’t already.
A sport that stretches back hundreds of years, bowls has the reputation of a game for older generations, given its sedate pace. Similar to bocce, boules or pétanque, it involves hitting a target with balls, but here they’re rolled rather than thrown. Each ball is weighted on one side so that it curls (inward or outward, depending on the shot you’re trying to play) on it’s way to the target ball, or the jack, as it’s known. The game is played on pristine lawns and its association with summer days has made it a quintessentially British past time.
For many, darts is the go-to answer for ‘lazy’ sports, primarily because of its association with pubs and drinking culture. It’s true that pubs and working clubs were where the game developed and became popular, but it has grown into a worldwide spectacle that attracts thousands of fans. Being good at darts requires huge amounts of skill and judgement, but not amazing physical fitness – and the best part is that there are versions of the games that are easier, making it more accessible for beginners.
Another target sport, and one where you don’t even have to go and get your arrows after you’ve fired them. The objective is also a lot clearer than in darts, with no complex mathematical solutions to work out on the cuff, and requires archers to fire their arrows as close to the middle of the target as possible. The drawback is access; there aren’t many bows and arrows lying around. Having said that, there are a good amount of archery clubs and experience days that offer introductions to the sport.
There aren’t many sports in which you can sit back in the sunshine (assuming the weather has been kind) and wait for success to come and take a bite. OK, so it’s not as straight forward as that, but with the right kit and equipment it can be an immensely enjoyable experience. Competitive fishing is extremely popular, with competitions held all over the world. But, assuming it’s legal to fish in an area (different places have different laws regarding the types of fishing allowed), you can take up this sport with very little fuss and, once your line is cast, very little effort.
While archery and darts may have a stationary target to aim at, shooting or clay pigeon shooting, asks competitors to hit a target as it flies through the air. Like archery, it’s an Olympic sport, making its debut in 1896. In competitions, shooters stay stationary, tracing the moving targets with their gun before taking fire. As a sport it’s split into a number of different events depending on distance, the firearm used and the amount of targets to hit. Anyone wishing to give it a try should head to a firing range – lots of farms have outdoor ranges where you can have a go without any prior experience required.