Showing posts with label Sports. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Sports. Show all posts

Monday, June 14, 2021

Tourna Mini Pickleball Caddy Reviewed

New to pickleball? Thinking of learning the sport? Or have you taken a few lessons and now it is time to practice! The Tourna Mini Pickleball Caddy is here to make learning the sport of pickleball easier, quicker and just more enjoyable.


Learning a new sport can be frustrating and the old adage that practice makes perfect definitely applies. As my friends and I are learning pickleball this little caddy has become a very useful tool and worth the assembly effort (see below on assembly!) But wait, what is pickleball? 

The Popularity Of Pickleball

The sport is over 50 years old, but has taken off in growth in recent years. The Sports & Industry Fitness Association (SIFA) reports a 21.3% increase in participation for 2020.

A mix between tennis, badminton, ping pong is a general description on a court which resembles a tennis court but is much smaller. The paddle does not have strings like a tennis racquet and is closer to a ping pong paddle in size. Take a peek at the video below for a quick overview of the sport.


If pickleball has gained your attention as a sport you'd like to learn then a pickleball caddy will make your journey just a little quicker and a little easier! The Tourna pickleball caddy is a great purchase for a beginner, but does have its' assembly challenges.

Assembly Challenges

It was a challenge to assemble the Pickleball Caddy! The reviews for this product were correct so you are forewarned. I had read the customer reviews which stated:

1. The directions were very poor. Correct!

2. It was difficult and time consuming to assemble. Correct!

3. The directions stated a 10 minute assembly and the reviewers absolutely disagreed. Correct!

4. Once the caddy is assembled, the product works great. Correct!

5. Even though the product was very frustrating to assemble, no regrets on the purchase. Correct!

The caddy arrives in pieces in a flat box. Keep the box! the directions are very poor (even for the most handy), but the photos of the assembled caddy on the box are helpful to assist with visualizing your goal of a completed caddy.



Patience and perseverance are handy when attempting to assemble the caddy.

Practical Pickleball Caddy

The mini caddy holds about 20 outdoor balls or 24 indoor balls. Favorite outdoor ball is the Onyx for crisp and responsive pickleball play.

Once assembled this caddy is very easy to use and very useful for a beginner player. The caddy works like a traditional tennis hopper. The balls are collected by placing the hopper over the ball (or 2 balls) and pressing down on the hopper with a slight pressure so the balls will enter the caddy.

The caddy can then be flipped to stand upright on the court for a waist high basket of pickleballs for easy practicing. Beginner pickleball players can spend a significant time gathering the practice balls and this caddy speeds up the process and saves the back from constantly bending over to pick up practice balls.

The mini caddy is slim and a space saver. It is light weight and can be easily stored in the trunk or interior of the car. 

Recommendation

Despite the challenging assembly - once the caddy is assembled- the reviews are very positive for a practical caddy and an affordable price point. If you are learning the game or just like to practice with a basket of balls the caddy is a recommended purchase.






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Wednesday, January 6, 2021

The Carry-All Wagon That Will Make Life Easier For Everyone in 2021! A Product Review

We have always been on the look out for something that will make our chores easier!  After all we are seniors! 

The wonderful thing is that when searching for things that will make senior life easier, we sometimes stumble on things that are useful to everyone!  

We are in an apartment and so when doing our grocery shopping, we often take a bundle buggy with us, so that bringing up our purchases can be done in one trip.  Hauling groceries to the elevators 2 or 3 bags at a time just doesn't appeal to me or my other half.

grocery shopping, carts, shopping carts



Sometimes though, that bundle buggy just doesn't cut the mustard, so to speak, and we are left tripping up and down the elevators ad nauseum.

There has to be a better way!

Well, I think I have found it.  Bundle buggies take up a lot of space in the trunk of the car.  When shopping is the order of the day though, you need to find that space.  No questions asked, you will need a way to get those groceries to your doorstep as easily as possible.

Now I have found that there are these really great collapsible wagons that can do the job as well or better than a bundle buggy.  They are compact, take up little room in the car, and open up to reveal a substantial amount of space to place all your groceries and any extras you might have picked up.

What I really like about this wagon is that it is not just for groceries or for older folks.  This wagon is useful for everyone. 

Families when they are going on a picnic, or to a sporting event with their children, can load this wagon with chairs, extra toys for the children that aren't on the field, snacks, drinks, blankets and any other possible need to keep the kids out at the park for the duration.  No need to be running back and forth to the car for extra things.  It's all in the wagon, ready for you!

Going to the cottage would be a fantastic time to use this wagon as well.  Just think of unloading the car, with blankets, food for the week, drinks, water toys, bathing suits and the like.  Pile it all into the wagon and I'm sure you will have fewer trips back and forth.  Even the children can pull the full wagon without too much difficulty.  Help is on the way in more ways than one.

Gardeners and garden lovers, can use this cart to move around new plants, soil, compost, tools and so much more.  All of it just goes into the wagon and it goes where you need it.  How wonderful is that?



 

Collapsible wagons come in a variety of sizes and styles.

There are a few things that you should discern before you purchase one of these wagons!  What is the ultimate use for the wagon going to be?  If you are using it for transport from one location to the next, you might want to check out the specific size and weight of load  the wagon can handle.  

Are you going to use it just for carting things from the car to an apartment, or are you going to walk to the store and use it to carry your purchases on the way home?  You might think this is a silly idea, but let me tell you, some of the "attributes" of the wagon you choose could make the difference between a good hike home or not.  Do you need brakes on your wagon?  How about an adjustable handle?  For our purposes, the adjustable handle is a must have.  I'm 5'7" and my other half is 6'5",  My arms and his are not the same and our ability to grab that handle and go with it would need adjustment.  There are a few different options on these wagons as you might expect and it's good to think about that before you buy one.

If you are going to use this wagon year round, you might want to go with wheels that are a little larger to get you through snow easier.  Some have rotating wheels that makes it easier to move it about!  You can either pull it or push it.  

These wagon/carts can be opened up with one hand and it can collapse with one hand too!  Their footprint is small so that your trunk isn't all taken up with the wagon in it's storage position.  But it is there when you need it.  You can also purchase a tarp to carry things that might overflow the body of the wagon.  

Just imagine a coach of a soccer team with 24 or more soccer balls.  They would all fit into the wagon with the tarp overlay keeping everything secure!  How's that for a time saver and trip saver too!  


As I get used to having this new tool at my disposal, I will keep you up to date on more uses for this handy wagon.  I know I will make good use of it especially on the days that I walk to the grocery store or those days when recycling needs to be disposed of.  No more trotting back and forth, it will get done in one trip!








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Wednesday, April 22, 2020

New Balance Running Shoes Review

New Balance Running Shoes Review

Many years ago, I needed to get into shape and lose some weight.

A good friend of mine suggested that I should start exercising. By exercise, he meant running. Well, I haven't done any running since high school.

After thinking about it, I decided to give it a try. So, I put my tennis shoes and sweat pants and drove to the school track.

I couldn't even make it around the track one time, and it was only 1/6 of a mile track.

I'm not one to quit, so I stayed with it and before long I was running 5 to 6 miles a day. I lost some of that weight and I was getting in really good shape.

It wasn't long before I started to feel some aches and pains. My legs, shins, and back started to bother me. I thought maybe that I was overdoing it by pushing myself so much.

My running partner; who was the same guy that talked me into this wonderful world of running suggested that I really needed a good pair of running shoes.


New Balance Running Shoes:


Now, I was off to investigate running shoes. I found New Balance to be the perfect running shoe for me. I wear a 9-1/2 wide and New Balance seemed to be the only running shoe that I could find in half sizes. I find the support and comfort to be superior over other shoes that I tried on.

My friend was right because soon my aches and pains vanished, as I continued to run, (No not like Forrest Gump). Every day when I came home from work, I changed into my running gear and it was off to the park for my 5-mile run. Rain, snow or sunshine I was out there running.

Okay, maybe I was a jogger and not a runner, but it was a good aerobic workout. I would welcome anyone to tag along with me running an 8 to a 9-minute mile for 5 miles.

The New Balance shoes made all of the difference in the world, they have excellent cushion and support and I felt like I was running on clouds.

Fast forward to today. I really don't run anymore. But, I do a lot of walking and I'm wearing my New Balance walking shoes. New Balance is the only sports shoe that I'll ever wear.





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Saturday, March 16, 2019

Review of Spring Training in Baseball

Source: Pixabay
Spring Training is a period of training and exhibition play beginning in late February and lasting up to Opening Day of Major League Baseball.

For about four weeks, experienced players and rookies alike train and play at small parks in Arizona or Florida, getting ready for the beginning of the baseball season.  It is a unique baseball experience for fans, giving them up-close access to favorite players and a chance to see blossoming prospects who could go on to be the next big star. 

For me, the Baseball Contributor here on Review This and a huge baseball fan, Spring Training is a sign that the long, cold winter is nearing an end and warm weather and the joys of baseball season are about to begin.  I believe in the quote:




Spring Training



Spring Training is nearly as old as baseball itself, although it was not the big business it is today with designated parks just for Spring Training games and winter excursion packages to games in Arizona and Florida for snow-weary fans. 

In bygone days, training games were held locally to save money, training indoors in inclement weather. Later, teams began training in the south, but there were no organized training leagues until after 1910.  Today it is as much a marketable enterprise as the regular baseball season with two distinct leagues, one in Florida and one in Arizona.


Cactus League in Arizona


Source: Pixabay

The Cactus League holds spring training in the desert for teams from both leagues (American and National). These teams are generally located around Phoenix and include:


  • Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim
  • Arizona Diamondbacks
  • Chicago Cubs 
  • Cincinnati Reds 
  • Cleveland Indians 
  • Colorado Rockies 
  • Chicago White Sox 
  • Kansas City Royals 



Grapefruit League in Florida


Source: Pixabay

The Grapefruit League holds spring training in various parts of Florida, both the Gulf coast and the Atlantic coast. This league includes the following teams: 


  • Atlanta Braves 
  • Baltimore Orioles
  • Boston Red Sox 
  • Houston Astros 
  • Miami Marlins 
  • Minnesota Twins 
  • New York Mets 
  • New York Yankees 
  • Philadelphia Phillies
  • Pittsburgh Pirates 
  • St. Louis Cardinals 
  • Tampa Bay Rays 
  • Toronto Blue Jays 
  • Washington Nationals 


Following is a famous quote by Roger Hornsby, the well-known second baseman for the St. Louis Cardinals (1915-1919), that definitely says how I feel when there is no baseball.




Summary


Will  you be attending any Spring Training games this year, or have you done so in the past? Leave me a comment telling me where you went and what team you got to see. 



Mary Beth Granger
*Blog Note:  Mary Beth Granger, our own MbgPhoto here on Review This, travels with her husband to Jupiter, Florida each February to attend their beloved St. Louis Cardinals Spring Training games.


For the rest of us, join me in welcoming the beginning of the Major League Baseball season and the fact that this represents an end to winter and the return of the 'Boys of Summer'. 




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Lets Play Ball! 








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Saturday, February 9, 2019

Reviewing Prepare & Endure by Phytosport - A Vegan Pre-Workout Supplement

Arbonne Phytosport Prepare & Endure - a non caffeine, vegan pre-workout drink
Phytosport Prepare & Endure
When you're training for an event or just working out the one thing you don't want to do is find your energy flagging partway through.

Enter the world of the pre-workout supplement, there are basically two different types of pre-workout those with caffeine and those without.

Arbonne's Phytosport Prepare & Endure is a non-caffeine pre-workout, so how does it give you energy?   

Basically, this formula includes the amino acids arginine, glutamine and carnitine for optimum performance as well as B12 for energy and their own patented botanical formulation of cayenne, ginseng and tumeric.

My Personal Thoughts on Arbonne's Pre-Workout Supplement


I do like the Phytosport range although I didn't initially use the Prepare & Endure, but I have decided to take up running at the age of 49 (yes, probably a little crazy!) and so gave myself 5 weeks to go from not running to doing a 5km event.   I thought it was time to see what the Prepare & Endure was all about.

After 2 weeks I can honestly say that the day I forgot to take my Prepare & Endure was the only day I didn't manage to finish what was on my program to do.

As an Arbonne consultant, I have held a couple of taste testings of the Phytosport range at my gym and the Prepare & Endure is a popular choice as far as the flavor goes.  Personally, the flavor isn't my favorite as it's orange and pineapple, but what I do like is that it doesn't taste overly sweet like some of the pre-workout drinks are.

It does include some sugar in the form of cane sugar and there's a very good reason why cane sugar is used as it contains electrolytes.   

I mix my sachet up with 500 ml of water (it's recommended to use between 250 - 500 ml) and I usually start sipping it about 30 minutes before I start working out and continuing to drink it throughout my run.

More Details on How Prepare & Endure Works


When you combine the amino acids arginine & glutamine in a pre-workout you'll find it helps to increase your performance if you're using weights and attempting to build muscle and strength.   There have been some detractors over recent years, but a study by the American College of Sports Medicine showed that not only were they able to train longer before becoming exhausted they were also shown to recover quicker between workouts.

As far as athletic performance (aka my running) carnitine is the winner in my opinion.   This amino acid has been popular with both athletes and weight builders since the 1980s and for lots of good reasons.  When I first heard about carnitine it was in the 90s when I managed a health food store and we sold it as a fat burner to weightlifters.

There are lots of different ways in which carnitine is invaluable as a pre-workout supplement - 

  • Fat metabolism
  • Increases athletic performance
  • Aids in recovery
  • Protects your brain from stress while also increasing adrenaline levels so that your motivation levels stay high while exercising
  • Improves cardiovascular health
  • Improves your skin
  • Burns visceral fats
For more information about carnitine - Fitness and Power

More Phytosport Products


I use the Prepare & Endure in combination with Phytosports After Workout.   There is also a third supplement called Complete Hydration which I also love.

But I NEED A Pre-Workout with Caffeine!


If you feel that you really need to have a caffeinated pre-workout then you can try what I used to use which was combining Phytosport Complete Hydration with an Arbonne Fizz Stick in 1 litre of water.  I found this worked really well (although I'm now preferring the Prepare & Endure).   

The Fizz Stick contains caffeine derived from green tea and guarana, the added bonus with this is that it's a more alkaline caffeine (as opposed to the acidity found when it's derived from coffee beans) and it's more stable so that you don't experience the caffeine crash.





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Saturday, January 26, 2019

How to Keep Post-Workout Soreness At Bay - The Easy Way!

Phytosport After Workout Supplement to reduce post workout soreness
Arbonne's Phytosport After Workout
2018 was my year of rebooting my body and building up strength again.   I joined a gym halfway through the year and go every second day.

Now if you are a gym-goer you'll know that after a particularly good workout you can feel quite sore  over the following days!   I remembered that when I was a couple of decades younger and was 'gyming it' I would take BCAAs to help reduce and/or stop the soreness.

I was really happy when I found that Arbonne had a Phytosport range that included their After Workout - guess what one of the ingredients were?  BCAAs!  I knew this would help and the fact that it's a sachet that you mix with water to make a drink is even better because you need to keep your water intake up.

What's in Arbonne's Phytosport After Workout?


So what exactly is in this product and how do they help is probably what you're all wondering.

Arbonne's Phytosport After Workout Sachet - an easy to use way to reduce muscle soreness after a workout
Phytosport After Workout Sachet
Branched-chain amino acids, commonly known as BCAAs are one of the key ingredients.  To explain how they work let me tell you what happens when you work your muscles.   The muscle fibres actually pull apart, when you stop exercising they have to go back together.   It's actually this action that causes people to develop bigger muscles, but the time when they are knitting back together is when you can experience muscle soreness.

Where BCAAs come in is that they help the muscles to knit together faster thereby supporting muscle repair while also alleviating muscle soreness.

Now a side effect of exercising is that your body produces something called free radicals.  Free radicals can cause aging - I once heard someone talk about them with this analogy; if your body was a car, free radicals would be the rust!

This is why when people exercise a lot they're encouraged to increase the intake of anti-oxidants either through their diet or supplementation.   In After Workout there are also anti-oxidants formulated from pomegranate.

Also included are calcium, magnesium and vitamin B12. 

How to Use Phytosport After Workout


When you buy this supplement it comes in a box full of sachets, you add the contents of one sachet to approximately 500ml of water and mix.   The drink is a mixed berry flavor and has a pink color as you can see in this photo of me.

Louanne with Phytosport After Workout Drink in tow!
Louanne with her After Workout Drink

I have just finished my usual circuit PLUS started a running program when this photo was taken so I knew I needed to have something to stop myself from feeling sore the next day!

It even tastes nice, which is true of all three of the Phytosports range (yes I use all of them!).

What Isn't In Phytosport After Workout?


Sometimes what makes a product great is just as much about what isn't in it as what is in it!   This sports drink is certified vegan and also has the BSCG certified drug-free stamp of approval.

All of Arbonne's products are also gluten-free.   The After Workout contains no artificial colours, flavours, or sweeteners.


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Saturday, August 4, 2018

Baseball and the Star-Spangled Banner

Baseball Sports Decor Wall Hanging
Reviewing how the Star-Spangled Banner became associated with sports. 

September 14, 2014, marked the 200th anniversary of the “Star-Spangled Banner”.  

It originally was a poem called "Defence of Fort M'Henry" written by Francis Scott Key 0n 9-14-1814 after witnessing the bombardment of Fort McHenry during the War of 1812. Key was inspired by the American victory and by seeing the American flag flying over the fort.  The poem was later set to music and published under the name “The Star- Spangled Banner”.

The song gained popularity throughout the 1800s and was played by bands during public events.  On July 27, 1889, Secretary of the Navy Benjamin Tracy made it the official tune to be played at the raising of the flag. 

In 1916, President Woodrow Wilson ordered that "The Star-Spangled Banner" be played at military and other appropriate occasions. 

And on March 3,1931 President Herbert Hoover signed a law officially adopting “The Star-Spangled Banner” as America's National Anthem.


How Did Our National Anthem Become Associated with Sports?



The National Anthem
So, how did the song become associated with baseball?  It happened during the 1918 World Series between the Chicago Cubs and the Boston Red Sox.  A band had been hired by the Red Sox owner for each game in the World Series and, as a tribute to enlisted players and other soldiers in Europe during WWI, they played “The Star-Spangled Banner” during the seventh inning stretch.  The song was many years away from becoming our national anthem, but players still stood at attention and saluted the flag during the performance.  Servicemen in the crowd found themselves cheering and everyone burst into applause at the end of the song.  

Near the end of that World Series, the tune was played before the first pitch at Fenway Park and it was the beginning of a tradition that became a baseball game standard during World War II.  Eventually the playing of the American National Anthem became a custom adopted by other American sports and continues to this day.

This reminds me of that oldest of baseball jokes: "What are the last two words of the national anthem? Play ball!" 



Baseball Dad Flag T-Shirt on Etsy 





(c) Wednesday Elf, the Review This! Baseball Contributor





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Saturday, March 31, 2018

Baseball Facts & Favorite Moments Review

Image Source: Pixabay
Hello once again from the Baseball Contributor here on Review This!  It's Springtime, which means the thoughts of baseball fans everywhere turn to the start of the new MLB season.

Anyone who knows me knows that I LOVE baseball. It consumes my time from Opening Day to the last moment of the final game of the World Series every year.  During the season, the first thing I do every morning is check the baseball listings on TV ~ then plan my day around the times the game(s) are broadcast. I am a died-in-the-wool FANatic, and proud of it. 

In the winter I 'pine' for baseball season and spend my free time reading baseball books and watching baseball movies

My very favorite quote is by Bill Veeck:

There are only two seasons – winter and BASEBALL

Therefore, as we enjoy Opening Day and all the baseball games this year, I'll share some baseball moments and a few baseball facts to get you in the mood for the Major League Baseball season and any Minor League games you might be fortunate enough to be able to attend.


Baseball Honors Number 42 on Jackie Robinson Day


Jackie Robinson (Wikimedia)
April 15th is known as 'Jackie Robinson Day' throughout baseball, celebrating the life of Jackie Robinson and the retiring of his number 42. April 15, 1947 was the date of his MLB debut for the Brooklyn Dodgers.

In 1997, the 50 year anniversary of Robinson's debut, his No. 42 was retired across all of Major League Baseball. Only one player at the time was wearing that number (Mariano Rivera) and he was 'grandfathered' in and was the only active player allowed to wear No. 42 until his retirement in 2015.  Since then, no other active player will ever again be assigned number 42.  Instead, on April 15 each year, all players and teams throughout baseball wear number 42 on their uniform honoring Jackie's major contribution to baseball, which was that of breaking the color barrier.  In addition to the honor, celebrations are planned at many stadiums.

Jackie's 'legacy' lives on through 'Jackie Robinson Day' each April 15. Number 42 was special. 


The Shift – in Baseball


Normal baseball positioning
I've been watching baseball games all my life, yet there are still terms I haven't heard and/or don't know what they mean.  Most baseball terms have been coined over the years by sports writers and announcers as they reported the action on the field or the results of the game.

Baseball has its own ever-changing language, so its not surprising that even long-term baseball fans still have to look things up in order to understand what the broadcaster said.

The term 'shift' has been part of baseball terminology for many years, yet I can't recall it being used as often as it has in most recent years of baseball.  “The Shift is on”, the sportscaster tells us.  All of a sudden it seemed to me as if it was happening in every game I watch.  Finally I got out my trusty Baseball Dictionary and looked it up!


The 'Shift' means “to change fielding position;' to move defensive players from their traditional positions in the field to defend against a particular batters' way of hitting, or to be in a better position for a double play.”

All individual players move left or right to step into the path of the ball for fielding, But the shift in most recent years seems to involve half the players on the field moving to another position all at the same time before the batter even hits. I've begun paying closer attention to this move now that I know what they are talking about. My baseball education continues..... 


Doubled Off First Base


I watch a lot of baseball, following the games and players and listening to the announcer's descriptions of the action on a regular basis.


Derek Jeter at Bat  (Wikimedia)
On a Saturday afternoon in August 2014 I was watching the Red Sox-Yankees game being played at Fenway Park. Derek Jeter was on first base and took off for 2nd base when Jacoby Ellbury hit the ball into the outfield.  Unfortunately, the ball was caught and Derek was too far off base to get back safely.

The announcer stated that Jeter had been 'Doubled-Off'.  I basically knew what it meant, but even though I've heard the term often, I never really thought about the definition.  Suddenly quite curious, I got out my Baseball Dictionary to look up the exact meaning.  


To be 'doubled-off' means 'caught off base and put out before tagging up after the batter has flied out, resulting in a Double Play!'   


This 'doubled-off' double play was a most unusual happening for Derek Jeter.  Not to worry, his two-run double in the third inning sparked a 4-run inning, and the New York Yankees won the game 6-4.


Minor League Memories


Rochester Redwings Frontier Statium (c) Personal Photo

My family are fans of the Rochester Redwings, the top Triple A minor league baseball team for the Minnesota Twins located in Rochester, NY, and we go to their games often.  A long ball was hit one night directly toward where my family was sitting.  Everyone is jumping up & down hollering "I've got it, I've got it", except my mother who remained sitting down.  Like a 'heat-seeking' missile, that ball headed straight for my mom and hit her right over the heart. She wasn't badly injured, but had a huge bruise for weeks.  My brother really wanted to have the baseball, but mom wouldn't give it to him, saying she had the badge of honor proving she'd caught it.



Source: Pixabay

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Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Have you heard of the Newest Fitness Craze for all Ages?

Pickleballs
By Stephen James Hall (Own work) [CC0], via Wikimedia Commons
It is Fall and many people are wondering what they are going to do to keep fit during those months that are not conducive to Jogging or other outdoor sports. Today I will review a new craze that is sweeping the nation from one coast to the other. It's a relatively new game that combines tennis, badminton and table tennis all into one game and it's lots of fun for all ages.


Have I got your curiosity yet?


What if I told you that you can play this game indoors or out and that there are clubs all over just waiting for you to join them?


So now do you want to know more?


Okay, the game was started in 1965, by a family and friends who were bored at the cottage. They were given some table tennis paddles and a whiffle ball.  The instructions to the kids were, "get out of our hair and have some fun.  That was the beginning of Pickleball!  Everything after that was tweeking the game.   In 1972 it became a recognized sport, with rules and regulations.  Today this sport has over 2 million players world-wide and is one of the fastest growing sports of all time!

  Well it's called PICKLEBALL!


 I first heard about this on my latest trip to Myrtle Beach,  South Carolina.  We happened to be staying at a resort where there was all kinds of people, young, old and in between.  They were all interacting with each other and having a great time!  We found out that this was one of the places where the East Coast Pickleball Tournament had just been held.  The winner was a young lad of 17 and the runner up was and older gent ( I think he was in his 70's).   So when I say it can be played by anyone, I really mean anyone. Where a tennis racquet and balls can already set you back quite a few dollars, Pickleball is inexpensive and until you really become hooked, you can play with a minimal investment.

 


But just a word of caution as always, if you have been sedentary for a long time, have a check up just to make sure you are alright to play this game.


What I really like about this game is that it combines several games that I no longer can play.  I'm just not as fast as I once was.  It is a combination of tennis, badminton and table tennis too!  Because of the type of ball that is used, the speed part of the game has become much less of an issue.  Pickleballs are similar to whiffle balls and because of the holes in the balls, they don't move as fast as a tennis ball.  That for me is a great bonus. But the game still gives you a great workout, without tiring you in 5 minutes.

There are Pickleball Associations and Clubs all over the world.  So I'm sure you can find one in your area too.  But, if there are no clubs near you, start your own.  The game is easy to play without a myriad of rules and regulations (until you become a pro). Even then the rules are easy to follow.  I bet once you start to play, you won't be able to stop!

If you have a flat area 20 feet by 44 feet long, you can map out your own Pickleball court.  Get a set of paddles, balls and a net and you are ready to join the 2 million others who are enjoying this game.  I just saw a great info graphic on the number of people and the demographics of age who are currently playing Pickleball.  The largest number of people playing Pickleball are 60+ at a whopping 70%.  Participants 40-59 make up 24% and 6% of players are under 39.  How's that for a wrap up?  70% of the players are over 60!  There is hope for us who are older and still want to play.

As the saying goes, "You don't grow up until you stop playing!"




learning to play pickleball, Olivia post, new game for everyone regardless of age


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Friday, July 7, 2017

Review of Women's Keen Targhee II Mid Hiking Boots

The author with her best hiking buddy, Toby.
When it comes to high adventure in the mountains I call home, there is nothing more important than gearing up my feet for action.  Having just purchased my fifth pair of women's Keen Targhee II Mid boots, I think it's pretty safe to say I am very keen on these hiking boots.

Four-Wheel Drive for Your Feet

When climbing Colorado's 14ers (peaks over 14,000 feet in elevation), it is easy to spot the rookies.  These are the hikers in flip-flops (no-wheel drive) who are heading back down the trail with painful blisters and major regrets.

The difference between an exhilarating day on the mountain and a day that will go down in infamy is, for me, the difference that is made in wearing what Keen refers to as "four-wheel drive for your feet."




Let's Get Real

First, let me confess that I have the world's most sensitive feet.  Before discovering Keen hiking boots, I experienced the most epic blisters and endured heel pain that can make a grown woman cry.  When you add weak ankles to the mix, I wasn't exactly extreme hiker material.

Why I Need Keen Boots in the Rocky Mountains


The Nitty-Gritty Details  

These Keen boots work for me in several critical ways:

  • They are comfortable from day one.  Unlike other hiking boots, there is no extended break-in period.
  • The mid height of the boots provides my ankles with much-needed support.
  • Waterproof leather uppers and breathable mesh lining make blisters a thing of the past.  Dry feet are happy feet.
  • Lug soles offer up confidence-inspiring traction in even the most challenging terrain.
  • Given that every ounce matters while hiking and backpacking, I find the weight of these boots to be just perfect (significant enough to protect my feet, while light enough to keep my legs fresh all day).
  • Have I mentioned that the price is right?  Many hiking boots will set you back a few hundred dollars.  With the Keen Targhee II Mid hikers, you are getting a quality boot for far less.

Not a Mountain Mama?

Crossing a slippery log bridge over rapids in my Keen boots.


Let me conclude this product review by saying you don't have to be a mountain mama or an extreme hiker to enjoy these boots.  I wear mine every day just because I find them to be my most comfortable footwear.  

And besides, it's pretty awesome to have four-wheel drive boots for extreme grocery shopping.  I have been known to summit the fresh produce aisle in record time.  There's no stopping me now!







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Thursday, August 11, 2016

Review of a Tour of a Major League Baseball Stadium

Busch Stadium View
If you are looking for an interesting place to take children on a tour, I would suggest a major league baseball stadium.  In July my granddaughters, age 10 and 12, were visiting us and it was a hot and sticky July summer in St. Louis.  I was looking for an interesting place to spend some time with them when someone suggested a tour of the baseball stadium.

Busch Stadium in St. Louis opened in April of 2006.  This huge stadium has seats for 43,975 people and offers a beautiful panoramic view of the downtown skyline.  Fellow Review This author, Pat, wrote about her visit to the stadium in this article

I went online and found information about the tour of Busch stadium and was delighted to find out that tickets  included a tour of the stadium and a visit to the Cardinal Hall of Fame and Museum.

Tour of Busch Stadium

Our tour of Busch Stadium started just outside Gate 3 of the stadium.  This gate has a statue of baseball great Stan Musial just outside the gate and the entrance to the gate is a tribute to the Eads Bridge with a large bridge-like structure arching over the entrance.  The Musial statue is often a meeting place for fans coming to the ballpark.  Here is a photo of my granddaughters and myself by the statue.  You will also note part of the bridge entrance in the background.

The tour of the stadium took about an hour and we visited The Redbird Club, the Champions Club, the broadcast booth and the Cardinal dugout.  Here are some photographs from each of those areas.


 In this photo my granddaughters are sitting in the Cardinal dugout.  It was fun to sit where the Cardinals sit during the games.  It was also fun next time we watched a game on TV to say we had sat there too!









The Redbird Club is an area where fans can buy tickets and enjoy food in an indoor glassed area.  Their tickets also include seats in front of the area to view the game from outside.  It is a nice way to enjoy the game, but also be able to get in from the heat.  One of the walls in the club was very interesting.  It was covered with replicas of oldtime Cardinal baseball cards.
View from the Broadcast Booth

The girls enjoyed seeing the broadcast booth and they were able to sit in the same seats the announcers sit in when they announce the games.



The Champions club is another indoor seating area.  In this club are several of the world series trophies that the Cardinals have won over the years. 














Ballpark Village

Across from Busch Stadium is the newest dining and entertainment district in St. Louis.  This area houses several restaurants along with the Cardinal Hall of Fame and Museum.  The area is being built in stages and in the future there will be more retail along with a hotel and residential opportunities.  There will also be more parking.  Ballpark Village is a "happening" place to be, both during home and away games.  Many fans gather to watch the games on the big screen TV's and enjoy food and drinks in the area restaurants.  We stopped at Cardinal Nation and had lunch before we went to the museum.  We found the food excellent and very reasonably priced.  The photo below shows the girls in Ballpark Village.

Cardinal Hall of Fame and Museum

The Hall of Fame and Museum has something for everyone.  This 8000 square foot museum is packed with over 16000 items of baseball memorabilia and thousands of archived photographs.  My husband really enjoyed looking over all of the memorabilia and the girls enjoyed some of the interactive displays.
Display from Museum

Two of the displays that the girls really enjoyed were the mock broadcasting booth and the display where they could hold actual bats from former and present Cardinal players.

In this photo the girls are trying enjoying trying out their broadcasting skills. They would first watch and listen to a broadcast of an exciting play at a past game, then they would be able to see the play and they would record themselves giving the play by play. When they were finished it would be replayed for them to see how they did. Both girls enjoyed this display.

In this photo, Ella is trying her hand at batting. The display held several bats from Cardinal greats both past and present and a docent was there to hand you one bat out of the case that you chose. You first had to put on plastic gloves before handling the bat. Ella decided to try out a bat from Ozzie Smith.

Postcard from my Photograph

This postcard shows the St. Louis skyline from inside Busch Stadium.
St. Louis Skyline
St. Louis Skyline by mbgphoto
Look at St louis arch Postcards online at Zazzle.com



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