Lifetime sports translate into lifetime fitness

Do any of you still use the sports you learned during school? Did any of those sports activities stay with you after you turned 18?

Physical-education programs in some schools have been designated gym time for lifetime sports, the type of programs that can be integrated and used as an active adult.

There are small courses in square dancing, lap swimming, aerobics, tennis, soccer, golf and bowling. There are courses in volleyball and basketball for both boys and girls. Schools provide a chance for all levels of ability to find the right type of physical program.

Soccer, basketball, golf, swimming and volleyball are high on my list for good lifetime sports for kids. They keep the student in constant motion for long periods of time, giving good cardiovascular conditioning and wide muscle usage.

The age varies of the child who can handle these types of sports. If you have a child with small- or large-motor problems, these sports will help develop coordination and hand-to-eye coordination.

Some children prefer exercise to music. Dancing, ballet, tap, aerobics and gymnastics are some of the sports that the young enjoy and usually continue as adults.

Lifetime sports are limited to available areas. If you were a lap swimmer as a child then find yourself in a town without a swimming pool, or a pool with very little usable time, then you have lost the use of your lifetime sport.

Tennis taken up in college can be lost if no courts are available or are available only in clubs. If you have taken up golf, only to find yourself in an area where golf is a prohibitive expense, then you slip away from fitness and often do not return.

It is hard to fit today's nomadic lifestyle into lifetime fitness habits. The schools are doing their best, and they deserve credit for keeping ahead of the changing fitness fields.

• Jerry Vance is owner of The Sweat Shop/Wet Sweat. She offers classes through Carson City Recreation and Aquatics Center and is a fitness instructor for the Carson City Senior Citizens Center.


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