These are strange and difficult times, to say the least. Everyone is having to make some adjustments to their daily routine, and no matter how much you might miss your regular exercise routine and favorite sports, it is imperative that we all do our part to limit the spread of Covid-19. That means that all of us need to make sacrifices to some degree and, in the grand scheme of things, cutting back on sports is one of the easier sacrifices to make.
However, if sport and exercise play a central role in your life and you are finding the adjustment difficult to make, we have some good news. Thanks to both modern technology and human ingenuity, the current lockdown doesn’t have to prevent you from enjoying your favorite sports from the comfort of your own home.
If You Can’t Bring Mohammed To The Mountain…
In these trying times, we could all do with some positive inspiration. Some people are choosing to spend their lockdown hunkered down with enough booze and cigarettes to see them through the months ahead; others are on an inexplicable quest to find ways of subverting lockdown and stay-at-home orders (don’t do this!)
But then there are people like 12-year-old Seth Charles. Seth is one of a number of people, and the youngest as far as we can tell, who has replicated the journey to the top of Mount Everest by climbing up and down their stairs at home. In the case of young Seth, this involved making 2,507 trips up his stairs, over a period of 23 hours and 15 minutes.
Virtual sports are nothing new – you only need to look at the evolution of a series like FIFA over the years to see how far the technology involved has come. But as realistic as these videogames can be, they aren’t a patch on the full-blown simulators that professional sportspeople use to train.
While under lockdown, professional cyclist Mirinda Carfrae used one such simulator to compete in the inaugural Ironman VR Pro Challenge for women, a day before her husband – another professional cyclist – competed in the men’s race.
She was in a comfortable second place when a technical issue bought her race to a premature end. Behind every great man is a great woman, and behind every great woman is a clumsy husband who trips over the power cord. Despite the technical issue, the three-time world Ironman champion ultimately jumped back in and finished the race.
These simulators aren’t cheap by any means, but they are becoming more affordable and, if you are really serious about your sports, they are a worthwhile pandemic-proof investment.
Getting Your Fix
From a spectator’s perspective, one of the advantages of virtual sports is that they are easily streamed over the internet. This has been a godsend for bookmakers, who would otherwise be struggling with the shutdown of sports leagues around the world, and for those who like to take a punt on sports betting now and then.
Staying active during lockdown might seem difficult, but there are plenty of options available to you – you just need to get creative. Remember, even if you have no equipment or even access to stairs, you always have your own bodyweight. And, more importantly, you don’t need to breach your lockdown and risk your own and other people’s health in order to keep fit and active.