5 on the fly: sports and hobbies to try

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Love to keep active but want to try something new? Try one of these new hobbies:

 1. Ballet

With free online ballet classes for ‘Silver Swans’ on offer from the Royal Academy of Dance, it’s time to dust off those childhood ambitions and plié your way to a new hobby. Older learners of any ability are invited to try these exercise classes led by professional dance teachers.

  1. Disc Golf

Played much like traditional golf but with a flying disc instead of a ball and clubs, the object is to complete each hole in the fewest number of throws from a tee area to the disc golf targets; the most common is called a Pole Hole (an elevated metal basket). It’s a fantastic sport for all ages and abilities, and is enjoyed in the great outdoors.

  1. Performing

Have you ever loved acting, singing, dancing, playing a musical instrument, or reciting poetry? There’s no need to give it up in later years – perform in community theatre or open mike nights, join a casting agency for work as a paid extra in TV shows, advertisements and films, or simply put on your own show for family and friends. Flexing our creative muscle has multiple psychosocial benefits including reducing stress and improving self-esteem and wellbeing.

  1. Gaming

The ‘silver gamer’ is on the rise, with technology making gaming much simpler to access. Try ‘Bejewelled’ or ‘Words With Friends’ on your smartphone or ‘Animal Crossing’ or ‘Mario Kart’ on a console like the new Nintendo Switch. Make it social by playing against your friends, either in-person or online. It can also help maintain cognitive abilities.

  1. Citizen Scientist

Did you know that many organisations require the help of ordinary citizens (who have access to a computer) to help observe, analyse and report on the environment? Projects include: monitoring of wildlife or air quality, observation of water levels or birds and their nests, and analysing images of forests. The website Zooniverse is the place to head to take part in people-powered research.

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