Did you know squash was invented in 1830? It is one of the oldest sports, starting out almost by accident when the students at Harrow School in England discovered a punctured Rackets ball, which “squashed” on impact with the wall, produced a game with a greater variety of shots. In 1864 the first four squash courts were constructed at the school and squash was officially founded as a sport in its own right.
Nowadays squash continues to be one of the most socially competitive sports, with squash clubs and squash house leagues still highly popular. There’s no shortage of squash action here at the Barrie Athletic Club. As we watch our squash house league play or oversee squash lessons, there’s some very clear health benefits that shine through. And it’s no surprise that a survey by Forbes magazine ranked squash as one of the healthiest sports. Here are the reasons why:
Improves cardio endurance
Don’t let the small size of the squash court fool you. According to this survey by Men’s Health, squash burns 50% more calories than running and burns more fat than any cardio machine. Running back and forth amidst rallies gets your heart rate up and keeps it there due to the constant, fast action of the game.
During a game of squash, you will lunge, twist and turn. This helps to increase flexibility in the back and abdomen. Flexibility is often overlooked as important for overall health. However, flexibility helps prevent injuries, improves posture, lengthens your muscles and helps with overall sport performance.
Build muscle strength
Extended rallies and almost constant running builds muscular strength and endurance in the lower body, while at the same time you’re building upper body strength by the ongoing action of hitting the ball. Talk about a full body workout!
Low risk of injury
In comparison to other sports, the risk of injury in a game of squash is low. It’s important to stretch before and after to minimize strains or sprains, wear eye protection and drink lots of water.
Burns a ton of calories
All those good rallies mean constant calorie burning. To be precise, a 30 minute squash game burns an estimated 570 calories. Plus, the social element of the game makes it fun and fast. You’ll never be watching the clock as you burn those calories.
If you ready to take on a challenging, social and incredibly healthy sport, it’s time to give squash a try. The Barrie Athletic Club offers squash lessons to help get you started, and then you can join in a squash league or tournament to keep nurturing your squash skills. All ages are welcome…even juniors! Plus, your first lesson is on us. Book your free first squash lesson now!