Tag: leisure in retirement

6 Reasons Why This is a Perfect Retirement Activity

6 Reasons Why This is a Perfect Retirement Activity

What will you do in retirement? Many hard-working boomers are uneasy about how they will ‘fill their time’ when retirement comes. Yet, retirement gives you the opportunity to try new things, meet new people, and develop new skills. Here’s an activity that checks a lot of boxes for a fulfilling Next3rd.

The Sport That Has it All

It’s social, requires new skill development, fires different neurons in your brain, and provides exercise too. Yup, that’s curling. It’s up to you if you want to wear crazy pants! Don’t judge yet, there’s more to this sport than “Hurry Hard”!

1. It offers a sense of community and connectedness

When we retire, our social circles change. We may be in social limbo for a while, especially if our friends are still working. Yet, study after study indicates that social connectedness is key to aging well.

Curling is a social sport. You play on a team, socialize with your opponents after the game, and can hang out with friendly folks by joining your local curling club. People who share the common goal of having fun, developing skills, and being active. Our club has potluck Sunday dinners, fun bonspiels (and competitive ones), social dinners and dancing for all.

Curling gives you the opportunity to belong to a community of active people of all ages, skills and backgrounds.

2. You can play it at any age

You don’t have to be young and flexible to take up curling. There are excellent “Learn to Curl” programs across the country for people of all ages and zero or minimal curling experience. All it takes is an open mind and a bit of practice.

Curling is an adaptive sport enabling you to continue playing even as old age may place restrictions on your body. You can get down low like the pros, or use a ‘stick’ to push the curling rock and stay standing up. There go all your excuses of bad knees and hips!

My great uncle curled until the ripe old age of 98!

3. You develop new skills

Critical skills like balance, eye-hand coordination, and observational skills. It’s one thing to aim the rock at the skip’s broom, it’s another to actually get it where it’s supposed to go! And then there’s ‘reading the ice’ – observing how the rocks slide on the ice and thus adjusting your ‘throw’ or ‘sweeping’. Curling is a sport where you can continually develop your skills!

4. It’s a thinking game too

There’s strategy to consider, physics and geometry. Like billiards, you’ll learn to understand the angles and how much force you’ll need to ‘take out’ your opponents rocks. How will you play the game – and what game plan will your opponent follow? What are the strengths of your team versus those of the opposing team? Lots of things to consider, and thankfully that’s for the ‘skip’ to figure out, and not so much the beginner!

5. You have an opportunity to contribute

Looking for a way to share your talent? Your curling club provides many volunteer opportunities. There are bonspiels and leagues to coordinate, facilities to manage, membership to develop, skill development clinics to provide, social activities to plan and more. You can join the board, a committee, or just help out here and there. Your club can feel like a big family where everyone helps out!

Volunteering for your curling club is way to contribute your skills, feel relevant and build a sense of purpose.

6. It’s exercise too!

Moderate exercise and sometimes vigorous, depending on how much sweeping your are doing. You’ll need strength and balance to push yourself out of the ‘hack’. More strength and even cardio fitness to provide the sweeping essential to the game. The bottom line? Curling keeps you off the couch and away from that unhealthy sedentary lifestyle.

There you have it! A sport that provides social connectedness into old age, skill development, brain work and an opportunity to contribute. Plus, its a great way to get through that long cold winter!

Care to share?