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Five Commonwealth Sports to Try This Summer

The Commonwealth Games kick off this Thursday the 28th.

More than 5,000 athletes from over 72 nations and territories are heading to the host city, Birmingham, to participate in 11 days of  back-to-back sport.

To get everyone geared up and in the sporting spirit, we’ve put together a list of some of the activities you can try yourself.

Swimming

Swimming is a great low-impact form of exercise. With up to 90% of your body weight supported by your body, swimming is ideal if you’re recovering from an injury or illness but still want to keep active.

Use swimmersguide.com to find your local pool.

It’s never too late to get into swimming. Most leisure centres offer adult swimming lessons, so if you’ve never tried it before or need advice on your stroke form, you’ll be able to find help there.

Badminton

If you’re looking for something a bit more competitive, badminton might just be for you. Grab a racket and prepare for this fun, fast-paced full-body workout.

Always keeping you on your toes, you’ll soon work up a sweat as you try and score against your racket-wielding opponent.

If you’re in England, you can find nearby badminton courts and professional coaches over on badmintonengland.co.uk.

Cycling

Got an old bike gathering dust in a garden shed? Why not show it some love this summer and give cycling a go.

Pedalling on a bike will improve your stamina and cardiovascular health while working out your major lower body muscles.

Even if you don’t have the time to cycle regularly, you can try squeezing in some exercise by using your bike to commute to work each day.

Cycling has also been proven to delay the development of type 2 diabetes, with a study in Finland finding that people who cycled for more than 30 minutes per day had a 40% lower risk of diabetes.

Running

While the streets of Birmingham will come alive with runners taking part in the Commonwealth Game’s marathon, you don’t have to run that as long as that to get a good workout in.

Scientifically proven to lower blood pressure and help glucose control, running is also a great way to relieve stress and can be done practically anywhere.

Join a local running group if you want to socialise and get support from fellow runners, or make some time just for yourself and run solo.

Lawn Bowls

Despite its slower pace, bowls is still a sport chock-full of drama, with teams competing against each other as they try to get their bowls as close as possible to a target.

Bowls is not as physically demanding as the other sports on this list and most people should be able to have a go.

The sport is also a great way to socialise, with the number of bowls clubs in England second only to football clubs.

Use bowlsclub.org to find a club near you.

Didn’t spot something you like? Take a look at our comprehensive sports guides or head on over to the fitness and exercise forum to find out how other members of the diabetes are community keep fit. 

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