Athletic Accessories

Written by Sierra Rein
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Whether an athlete is a professional sports player, dancer, rock climber, sailor or weekend golfer, it takes hard training and a lot of help to bring him to the top of his game. Along the way, he may hire an experienced fitness coach to point out problems along the way and to suggest newer and better exercises and diet plans to follow in the coming weeks or months. He may also employ a few athletic accessories to enhance his performance, protect him from injury, and inform him of his progress over a period of time.

The most underrated kind of athletic accessory is a pair of sunglasses. Few amateur athletes realize how much damage and strain they place on their eyes when they work out or play under the bright sun without proper eyewear. When the eye has to focus on specific elements on the field--such as a tennis ball, defending players, a break in the green, or a goal--it has to work hard to concentrate whenever there is harsh or glaring light. It does not matter if the light comes from above (the sun's direct rays) or from below (reflected light from the snow, water or ground); without glare and UV-reflecting sunglasses, an athlete can cause damage to his eyes and put himself at risk for injury if he cannot see where he is going.

Another type of athletic accessory is the heart rate monitor system. This typically consists of a small sensor unit (usually no larger than a pager) strapped to the underside of the rib cage by a comfortable elastic band. This sensor can transmit the heart rate to a receiving machine like a compatible treadmill or elliptical trainer. A special heart rate monitor wristwatch, one that can be taken on the field, on vacation, to the gym or used at home at any time of day, can also be purchased to receive this kind of transmission. The information from these HR (heart rate) monitors can be instrumental in losing weight, increasing the heart's stamina, and maintaining a strong and progressive training plan.

Other Types of Athletic Accessories

The serious athlete may purchase a few more obscure kinds of accessories to boost his overall performance rates. A stretching machine could help him increase his flexibility and reduce the possibility that he will injure himself during a game. He can buy a body fat scale at home or in the gym to see how much weight and body fat percentage has been gained or lost during the past week. If the athlete is actively pursuing a sport that requires a lot of breath support and strength (like swimming, jogging, soccer or basketball), he might purchase a lung capacity trainer to help make his breathing powerful and full. All of these accessories are a small investment for a healthy, resilient and happy athletic career.

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