Written by Kaya van der Horst
Beach volleyball is not only a fantastic way to take advantage of the summer sun and California’s beautiful beaches, but also requires a serious workout. Harvard Medi- cal School reports that a 125-pound person can burn 240 calories during a 30-minute game. The instability of the sand calls for players to fully utilize their agility and co- ordination, which improves aerobic ability. Players are required to set, squat, hit, serve, block and dig the ball during the course of play, which also builds muscular strength. Aside from toning muscles, beach volley- ball is a fun, interactive team sport that can further hone a player’s interpersonal skills.
Ultimate Frisbee is an excellent way to get your body in shape while being socially present. The goal is to work your way down the field by passing a Frisbee disc back and forth to teammates, trying to score in the end zone. The quick turns, pivots, throws and jumps work to increase agility and re- quire players to be quick on their feet. But beware—ultimate Frisbee requires lots of sprinting and endurance running, so be prepared to quickly be out of breath. The Bay Area Disc Association offers many camp opportunities for youth during the summer, such as the Nike Ultimate Camp in Hayward.
73 days of summer is plenty of time to unwind, and find a new outlet of relaxation like yoga. You will see huge improvements in flexibility and balance after only a few classes thanks to the physically demanding poses such as the warrior and tree pose. Yoga encourages you to relax, slow your breath and focus on the present, shifting the concentration from the sympathetic nervous system to the parasympathetic system. It can also prevent cartilage and joint breakdown because yoga takes them through their full range of motion. Aside from the multitude of health benefits, the many different yoga styles such as Jivamukti and Bikram offer a style for everyone. Palo Alto has plenty of yoga studios such as Yoga Source in Downtown and Avalon located on California Avenue.