If your kids love their scooters, investing in a quality adult version not only gives you a ticket to join the fun on the school run, but also provides a host of additional benefits.
1: Scooting can increase core strength
How often do we find time in our daily routines for the planks and sit-ups that aid core strength? Scooting is excellent news for core strength, as you balance a scooter you engage your tum. The need for stabilising whilst standing on a scooter places a positive demand on muscles that we all too often take for granted. In particular, having a good foundation of the muscles around the stomach, back and pelvis, can protect against back problems that affects as many as half of us in adulthood.
2: Aerobic and anaerobic fitness systems get a look in
Scooting on the flat provides an opportunity for gentle aerobic exercise by elevating the heart rate. On even ground, you’ll spend the majority of your scoot-time in the aerobic ‘fat burn zone’, but you’re never far away from an anaerobic challenge, especially if you live near any steep inclines. The moment you hit a hill on a scooter is where anaerobic capacity comes in – hills will challenge you more than on a bike. By challenging yourself in bursts and then giving yourself a break, you’ll give yourself a high intensity interval training (HIIT) session, which is known for greater post-workout benefits including elevated metabolism, for longer fat-burning effects. Scooting up hill also means one thing – there will be a down hill!
3: Say hello to your new bum and thighs
We’d forgive you for thinking that it’s only the kicking leg that gets a workout on a kick scooter. Whilst it’s true that propelling yourself along by pushing off the ground provides a powerful workout, it’s your supporting thigh and glute muscles do the majority of the stabilising work. If you want to go that little bit further for a really good conditioning session, think about engaging your bum whilst in action, and ‘squeezing’ the glute on the kicking leg. Don’t be surprised if you glutes and quads ache for a few days after scooting for the first time, and always remember to swap legs for an even work out!
4: Challenge your stability after pregnancy
Overall stability from top to toe is so important for everyday activities. When we talk about stability we’re referring particularly to even strength in the abdominal muscles and pelvic floor, the areas that gets stretched and weakened in pregnancy. It’s important to get those muscles working again for your long term physical well being, and especially so if you enjoy high impact sports like running, where any imbalances are accentuated and can lead to injury.
We all have a stronger and weaker side, yet don’t often have a chance to discover which is which. Scooting can improve your stability as the neurological messaging between your brain and muscles improves when challenged. It’s really important to use alternate legs for an even work out. Try 3 kicks with the left, swap and 3 kicks with the right, once you get into the rhythm, any imbalances should even out as you feel your core muscles engaging.
Exercise: If you aren’t sure which is your weaker side, stand on one leg and bend your knee, then straighten it again keeping as still as possible. One side will feel more stable than the other. For a real test — do this with your eyes shut! Use this awareness in your training.
5: Mental wellbeing
It’s joie de vivre for all ! It’s hard to resist a smile on a family scoot, and that’s good for the heart and the mind. What’s more, getting involved in an activity that your children already love enables more family ‘togetherness’ time. There aren’t many activities that us grown-ups and young children can share, equally enjoy and you’ll feel the benefits too.