Beat the chill: 5 parkland exercises for winter

Looking for winter exercise inspiration? You’re not alone. Join Active Southern WV and the National Park Service for free guided exercises in the New River Gorge!

Burn off those calories with:

1. Tai Chi
Feb. 17

Graceful and meditative, this ancient discipline once had military uses. It’s now popular as a gentle exercise. Over time, the slow, low-impact motions pay off with improved balance and muscle tone.

Tai chi is also relaxing. It’s a contemplative form of exercise, so you learn how to meditate and breathe deeply while stretching. Now that’s a two-for-one deal!

If you’re interested, the Sandstone Visitor Center in Sandstone will have tai chi classes throughout winter. Contact them for more details.

2. Winter Hike
Jan. 13

Go on a refreshing ramble through the woods! This year’s Winter Hike will be on Long Point Trail, one of the New River Gorge’s most breathtaking paths. Much of the 3.2-mile (total) walk goes through hardwood forests. Then comes the grand finale: a jaw-dropping overlook of the canyon, New River Gorge Bridge, and surrounding mountains.

Long Point Trail is mostly flat. However, it gets somewhat tricky towards the end— hence the “moderate” rating. You’ll have to step over boulders and climb some steep sections. The dramatic ending is worth the effort, though!

3. Hike for Health
Jan. 27

Feeling ambitious? Try the Hike for Health, a 10.5-mile outing through the New River Gorge. Everybody starts at the Park Loop Trailhead in Fayetteville. From there, you’ll cover Town Loop Trail, Craig Branch, and Kaymoor before heading back to town.
It’s a lot of ground to cover, but imagine the satisfaction afterwards! Reservations required.

4. Yoga Chi
Jan. 27 and Feb. 9

The name pretty much says it all! Combine yoga with tai chi, and you get an exercise that maximizes both disciplines. Just about anybody can do it.

The Sandstone Visitor Center will have lessons in late winter. Contact them if you have any questions.

5. Community Hike
Feb. 10

Here’s a worthy goal for 2018: hiking Endless Wall Trail. Named by USA Today readers as America’s top trail in 2015, it’s a national and local favorite. Seemingly endless sandstone ridgelines stretch towards the horizon— a showstopper nobody should miss!

The Community Hike is your chance to try this wonder for yourself. Expect moderate difficulty and 2.4 miles of walking. Reservations are required.

Let the calories burn! Which activity are you going to try?

The post Beat the chill: 5 parkland exercises for winter appeared first on Bridge Day.

Where to get fit and have fun, too!

With ActiveSWV, burning off winter calories isn’t too grueling! Join the party with tai chi, yoga, and more this month.

Indoor Fitness Bootcamp

With a name like this, you might be thinking of military training. Not so! These body-weight exercises are for everyone, from former couch potatoes to Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Join PE coach Kate Miller at Ansted Middle School every Tuesday and Thursday until March 23. Classes are from 3-4 p.m. For the latest details, follow ActiveSWV on Facebook.

Tai Chi Program

This ancient form of martial arts helps reduce anxiety through gentle exercises. Movements are self-paced and flow from one to the next. That way, you’re always moving. Tai chi is appropriate for any fitness level, and it’s a great way to increase flexibility and strength.

Joe Jett, a tai chi instructor, will guide you through 2-3 postures in each class. Lessons are every Thursday from 5:30-7:00 p.m. at SALs Historic Oak Hill School.

Gentle Yoga

Just as its name implies, this course focuses on low-impact stretching. Sit or stand through a variety of exercises that promote relaxation, proper breathing and posture. Yoga also increases your range of motion— a benefit anyone, regardless of age or ability, can appreciate.

Meet your teacher, Lori Keller, at the Robinson Annex conference room at the New River Health Whipple location. Lessons start every Tuesday at 5:30 p.m., although the next class is March 28.

Sunset hike, Endless Wall Trail

A rim of unbroken sandstone cliffs extending into the golden sky— it’s one of the most remarkable views in the New River Gorge. Who would have guessed that exercise could be so beautiful?

Hit the trail on March 28 with Levi and Rene Moore, community captains. They’ll meet you at Fern Creek Trailhead, which lies north of the Canyon Rim Visitor Center. The hike will last from 5:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.

This is just a sampling of the group exercise events Active Southern West Virginia is putting on! For a full list, check out their event calendar.

Which exercise are you going to try?

The post Where to get fit and have fun, too! appeared first on Bridge Day.