The Universal Language of Soccer

There are six billion people on the planet, with thousands of things that separate us from knowing and understanding one another. Language, distance and cultural differences are just a few things that build walls and keep us from getting to know our fellow human beings. How are you supposed to forge relationships when you can’t even ask somebody how they’re feeling that day?

Despite cultural and language barriers, there are many things that all people share, no matter where they are. Soccer is one of the ways that we can bridge the gaps between cultures. It’s the most popular sport in the world, and the World Cup, held once every four years, has a viewing audience twice that of the Summer Olympics, according to FIFA.

Soccer – A common ground

The rules of the soccer game are the same no matter where you are. A yellow card means the same thing, whether you’re from Brazil, China, Spain or the U.S. If you’re doing an exchange program abroad, how much better is it to have a sport as an instant common ground?

Unlike your typical overseas trips, soccer exchange boarding school programs provide people with an immediate connection. Even if the players on your team are from all corners of the world, you all know the same information about the world’s best players, the biggest clubs, or World Cup or European Cup facts and tidbits. And of course, players worldwide also share the common rules and traditions associated with the game of soccer. With soccer as a common ground, it’s possible to foster a keen awareness and appreciation for diversity amongst other cultures.

International soccer exchange boarding school opportunities

If you want to go to another country to live and study for an academic year, using soccer as a medium provides you with a number of advantages.

Soccer exchange boarding school programs are unique exchange opportunities designed for aspiring soccer stars that appreciate the benefit of international travel, foreign training, and cultural immersion. Depending on your particular interest, you have a chance to live, study and play abroad in a soccer exchange soccer boarding program in Spain, Italy, France, England, China, Brazil or Mexico.

With soccer exchange boarding schools, not only do you get to immerse yourself in a new country, but you also get the chance to meet other passionate soccer players from around the world. Players also have the opportunity to learn a second language, pursue their academic study, and improve their soccer skills by training daily under accredited professional coaching staff.

Soccer skills last a lifetime

“Soccer skills” don’t just refer to those of the ball-handling variety. As with any team sport, you are learning to think about more than just yourself. You learn to see yourself not as one person, but as an integral part of a team. When all the players do their jobs correctly, the team as a whole succeeds.

These vital skills – learning to interact with others, putting the team before your own …

Developing Soccer Speed – 5 Ways to Use Hills to Run Faster

Using hills to run faster will work if you do it properly. If you go about hill running for conditioning you may end up with overuse injuries. Less is better than more. Any type of hill running should be completed after your warm up and before your soccer training. Hill training should not be done at the end of training when you are tired!

Ideally you want the hill at a 45 degree angle and you need five to ten yards. Remember less is better than more.

Here is the progression of exercises:

1) Crawl up the hill for five to ten yards -do this five times and each time increase the speed.

2) Walk up the hill for five to ten yards with a forward lean from the ankles – five times

3) Walk up the hill for five to ten yards with a lean from the ankle with a partner giving you some resistance by holding you at the waist or using a beach towel around your waist

4) Run up the hill with your partner giving you some resistance. Focus on driving the leg into the ground. Rest for 30 seconds to a minute and repeat.

5) Run up the hill for 5 to 10 yards as fast as you can. Rest for 45 seconds to a minute then repeat.

If you have a partner you can switch up in between runs for exercises 3 and 4.

After the exercise do some light foot work with the ball for recovery and preparation for the day’s soccer training.

These exercises force you to drive the leg into the ground by using your glutei muscles.

This exercise may be put into your training once or twice a week with a 48-72 hour break in between. These are specific strength drills for developing soccer speed.…

Vintage Westinghouse Electric Golf Carts

The predecessor to Westinghouse is the Marketeer Company. A brief history is in order to properly account the history of Westinghouse and their electric golf cart.

Merle Williams started the Marketeer Company in the midst of WWII, when gas rationing wan in effect. He designed and developed a compact electric vehicle for his wife. As other saw his marvelous creation they called for more and so the company was born. It was not until 1951 that he developed the first electric vehicle designed specifically for playing golf. Peggy and Merle sold Marketeer to Westinghouse in 1965.

Westinghouse continued to build electric golf carts and other electric vehicles till the they sold the business to Nordskog Industries in 1978. The most popular Westinghouse electric golf cart is probably the four wheel 436 series

Today’s current economic situation is not that different that the times of William Merle, we are in the middle of fighting a war, gas may not be rationed but it is getting so expensive that the average man can’t afford it. And the current hot phrase, is to “go green”. And everyone is singing the praise of going electric. You would think it was a new concept .The truth is that there is nothing really “new” about electric vehicles at all. They have gone by the wayside with the advent of gas powered machinery, lost like the Stanley Steamer, electric carts where discarded from a very long time, but they are making a come back. And in fact in small, but growing circle, they never really left.

Many vintage Westinghouse golf carts are still available and there are quite a few collectors, enthusiasts and admirers, still today. Following is a comprehensive list of a few supplier of vintage electric golf carts and their parts and service.

Fairway Golf Carts in Palm Harbor, Florida USA.

Jerico Enterprises in Montrose Minnesota.USA

Kenfield Golf Cars Austin Texas USA

Vintage Golf Cart Parts Port Townsend Washington USA

New England Golf Cars Seekonk Massachusetts USA

Fairway Golf Car Corp Medford New York USA

Kenfield Golf Cars Austin Texas USA

Golf Carts Of Texas Kemah Texas USA

Vintage Golf Cart Parts Port Townsend Washington USA

Carts Plus (division of AutoPlace) Kelowna British Columbia Canada

There are also a good many classified available on line and the prices found range $600.00 to $1,200.00 and up depending on year and condition.

There are also a few clubs and newsletters that allow vintage Westinghouse electric golf cart enthusiasts to connect and share stories, ideas, trade parts and more. Most electric batteries contain 8 volts and last about eight hours on a full charge. A great economical way to get around and a wonderful collector’s item as well.…

How to Survive Your First Kick Boxing Class

The most important part of all exercise of course is being prepared. The best way to prepare for your first class is to dress appropriately. You will certainly want to be in loose fitting clothing and comfortable footwear. Try and avoid the big bulky clothing such as hoodies because they will make you far too hot. Plus the pull strings for the hood will swing wildly and hit you in the face. I recommend a simple T-shirt and shorts that are not too short) or some simple sweat pants. Be sure the shorts of pants of choice have enough room to stretch as you raise your legs to the side or the front.

The other things you will want to consider are food and water. Be sure you have a water bottle with you so you can stay hydrated. While you won’t really need food during class, the high level of muscle use in a kick boxing class can take some people by surprise who are used to more traditional cardio. So stay away form that steak and potato dinner right before class to avoid cramping. If you eat a couple of hours before class, keep the foods light and moderate in protein. Something like a granola bar or some fruit usually fits the bill. Other people have good energy and stamina with the classic PB&J sandwich.

Finally, remember to have fun. Leave your ego at the door and simply relax. Too many people will walk into their kick boxing class trying to be the next Chuck Norris. This usually brings about an excessive amount of power in your technique which often leads to injury (for yourself or your partner if you are working with someone) and fatigue. Remember that everyone knows you are new and no one expects you to be perfect or even to know what you are doing. So it’s always okay to make mistakes and look like you are new to kicking and punching. Everyone in that class started out exactly where you are, so they understand. So go easy, have fun and keep the ego in check. You will have much more fun if you simply play around with the techniques rather than try and impress everyone and yourself.

Extra tips:

o Also be sure to arrive early to class to say hi to the instructor and introduce yourself. This will make you feel like less of a stranger and the instructor will feel more comfortable helping you when they know a little bit about you.

Be fit and live free,…

Snowboard Tips for Beginners With Select

When it comes to skiing or snowboarding having the right equipment is vital for your safety and enjoyment of the sport. Along with possessing the correct gear you should also be trained in their basic usage, otherwise you risk a nasty fall on the slopes.

Your snowboarding experience will be shaped by what equipment you use. The top priority for anyone new to snowboarding is to get the right board. Novices will be overwhelmed at the choices available; boards come in a variety of sizes and designs, so it pays to do your homework before taking the plunge.

Selecting the board size is fairly straightforward. Simply pick one that is appropriate for your height, weight and age group. Choosing the style of the board, unfortunately, is not as simple. Snowboarding boards have different designs that are geared towards a particular style or terrain. These include freestyle boards, free ride boards and alpine boards. Here is a quick description of each:

Freestyle Boards

If you are a beginner you probably will want to start with a freestyle board. Unlike other board styles, both ends of a freestyle board are the same, meaning there’s not differentiation between the front of the board and its back. The board’s uniform design and short, wide shape makes it ideal for novice snowboarders still finding their balance. Freestyle boards require soft, short shoes.

Free Ride Boards

The most popular type of snowboarding board, a free ride board has a directional shape with a narrow, thin tail and a thicker, wide tip. Unlike the uniform design of the freestyle board, free ride boards are meant to move in only one direction. Their more rigid design also means that free ride boards are great at handing a greater variety of ground-snow conditions.

Alpine or Race Boards

Narrower than both freestyle or free ride boards, Alpine boards are ideal for high speed runs and sharp turns. Their thin design and increased stability makes them popular with professional snowboarders taking part in competitions. Unlike freestyle or free ride boards, Alpine boards require a hard ski shoe.

After you have selected your board, you need to brush up on a few snowboarding basics. The most important thing to remember when it comes to snowboarding is to keep your body relaxed. Your legs should be slightly bent at the knees to handle all the bumps and jolts you will experience as you traverse the slopes. The key to snowboarding is to stay loose and flexible at all times- if you remain tense and stiff you will never learn to properly manoeuvre on a board.

Snowboarding gear can be expensive. Consider borrowing a friend’s board for your first time on the snow. If you don’t have any friends who are into snowboarding and don’t want to spend the big bucks buying your own equipment, then you may want to check out the many excellent rental shops that hire out skiing and snowboarding equipment at great prices. What’s more, they can also help select …

How to Choose a Martial Arts School – Considerations For Making the Right Decision

Martial Arts Houston: How To Choose A Martial Arts School – Considerations for Making the Right Decision

Whether you are a parent wanting to sign your child up in martial arts classes, or you are interested in training yourself, the basic principles in choosing a martial arts school are the same. You first have to decide what you want to gain by taking martial arts, and then you have to find the best school and instructor that best matches that need. Let’s take each step one at a time.

STEP 1: DECIDE CLEARLY WHAT YOU WANT YOU OR YOUR CHILD TO GAIN FROM MARTIAL ARTS TRAINING

This is a crucial step that is sometimes overlooked. People have different but very good reasons for wanting to take up martial arts training. There are quite a lot of benefits that martial arts training has to offer – here are just a few:

  • Self defense
  • Develop an overall sense of well being and self confidence
  • Lose weight
  • Gain flexibility and coordination
  • Acquire more discipline
  • And more…

Why do you want to train in martial arts? Maybe your reasons include all of the above, and that’s fine, but try to find the one or two reasons that are most important to you. For example, are you looking for just a little light recreation? Then a community center program may suffice. However if you want all of the benefits martial arts has to offer, like self-defense or personal development, then you are going to need a full-time professional school. Deciding what you really want is a very important step in choosing the best school for you.

STEP 2: PICKING THE SCHOOL AND INSTRUCTOR THAT BEST MATCHES YOUR NEEDS

After you have decided what you want from your training, the next step is to find the right place. There are several factors you should consider in choosing a school. You will want to consider things like; finding the right instructor, the cleanliness and distance of the school, the price for classes, finding a suitable style of martial art, and safety considerations. Let’s look at each of these factors a little more closely.

What is your impression of the instructor?

You should realize that a big factor in choosing the right school is really choosing the right instructor. Here we are talking about the instructor’s personality and teaching style. It’s tough making an informed judgment about a person in a brief meeting, but usually you are going to have to trust your gut here. Intuition and first impressions, while not always correct, often turn out to be true. Be sure to visit the school, meet the instructor and have a look around.

How does the instructor greet visitors and how do they treat the students?

A professional school will have a friendly atmosphere, lots of smiles and be well kept. You’ll feel comfortable with the personnel and the facility. While this may not end up being the closest school to your house, when it comes to your …

Adding Or Changing Golf Cart Parts Is Not As Difficult As You May Think

People that own golf carts and use them often, put wear and tear on the various golf cart parts such as tires, batteries, seats, brake lights, and mats. Many people who are not mechanical-minded assume that changing a part on their cart is beyond their scope of knowledge. However, replacing parts on a golf cart is not difficult, particularly since there is so much less to them mechanically than an automobile.

Let's assume as an example, your brake light goes out on your cart. You head to the dealership you purchased the cart and they of course can replace the bulb. They charge you for the bulb plus the cost to install it, and you end up paying much more than the bulb is worth. If you have a screwdriver and can unplug a light bulb and plug in a new one, you can save several dollars. In this case, you simply need to go to a cart parts store and purchase the correct bulb for your model, which costs a few dollars. Installing it takes only a few minutes.

Additional cart parts can be used to accessorize your cart, including seat covers, painting, bumpers, and dashboards. These also are not difficult to install, but when it comes to batteries or replacing a complete dashboard, many people shy away from doing it themselves if they are not confident in their abilities.

If saving money is your ultimate goal when adding parts or returning parts on your cart, you can easily learn how to replace them. If you know of someone that is handy, have him or her show you systematically how to replace or add specific parts to the cart. Another way to learn how to change out parts or accessorize is read through your owner's manual. You can gain a wealth of information by simply reading through the various parts that the it has. In addition, the owner's manual probably has the part numbers of commonly replaced parts such as bulbs and tires.

Taking the time to learn how to replace specific parts or customize your cart with accessories will not only save you money, but give you a sense of pride in knowing your did the work yourself. Additionally, you will have saved yourself an allowance amount of money by replacing parts on your own because you only have to purchase the parts and do not have to pay someone to install it, which is referred to as labor costs. Most people that learn to install parts quickly find out that replacing or adding parts to a golf cart is nothing like an automobile. They find that the process is not as difficult as they thought. …

Soccer Fitness – Leg Extensions and Hamstring Curls Are Poor Choices For Building Leg Strength

In any type of strength training for soccer players, building a solid foundation from the ground up is imperative. Exercises that have a player sitting on a seat and extending their leg or lying on their stomach and curling their hamstrings are with out both functional and preventative value.

Unfortunately there are still misinformed coaches giving the wrong information about soccer fitness and building leg strength. In particular the leg extension exercise is given to improve kicking strength.

Here are three reasons why leg extensions and hamstring curls are poor choices for building leg strength.

1) The game of soccer is mostly played on one leg while either foot is in contact with the ground. Neither the leg extension or hamstring exercise provides this opportunity. When in a game does a soccer player lie on the ground and bring his/ her buttocks to the ground or sit on the turf and straighten his /her leg? These exercises isolate either the quadriceps muscle group or the hamstring muscle group and places unwanted tension at the hip.

2) Sitting or lying on either of these machines minimizes avoids the integration of the deep abdominal core muscles as well as the buttock muscles. As you know a strong “core” and strong buttocks leads to strength and power in the lower body.

3) The ligaments that support the knee either get stressed inappropriately (too much stress on the ACL) or not at all. Remember these exercises were designed for body builders to isolate these muscles. These guys and girls do a lot of posing and do not have to stop, start and change direction.

Here are three exercises to build leg strength to run faster and kick harder:

1) Any form of the single leg squat. This exercise may be done several different ways. You may squat with the air borne leg either in front or behind you.

2) Moving kicking action with resistance. Stand with feet shoulder width apart. Place a band above or below the knee of the kicking leg. Make sure the band is anchored behind you. Now take one step forward with the plant leg then follow through with the in a kicking motion with the other leg. This exercise stresses both the kicking leg for resistance and the plant leg for single leg strength and balance.

This type of exercise closely relates to the kicking action in a soccer game.

3) Stability Ball Curl. Lie on your back and place your heels on the stability ball. Raise your hip in the air then curl the ball towards you and away from you. Keep your buttocks tight. This combines the stomach core muscles and the buttocks muscles along with your hamstring muscles.

Keep in mind a couple of things about these exercises;

A) They include the both the abdominal and buttock muscles.

B) The actions closely relate to the movements in a soccer game.

C) They protect the knee joint.

So there you have it. Be well informed before …

Taekwondo Marketing Ideas for New Instructors

Even after two decades of teaching Korean martial arts, I still remember what it was like to be hurting for good taekwondo marketing ideas. If you’re a new instructor reading this article, I suspect you found it searching Google for ideas because you’re in the same boat. And because I know what it’s like to be a new school owner with little or no idea of how to get new students, I’m sympathetic to your plight and happy to share a few tips with you.

For starters, you should understand that your market as a Korean martial arts instructor is going to be different from say, a mixed martial arts school. Even so, there is also going to be some definite overlap between your target market and the target market of the MMA school down the street. The reason? Your target market is families and kids, and savvy MMA school owners are quickly figuring out that’s where the stable income is to be found.

Your Marketing Advantage as a Taekwondo Instructor

However, don’t let this intimidate you, because you have a major advantage over many MMA gyms. That advantage is your image. Think about it – MMA has a very negative image and culture, whereas taekwondo and karate have a very positive image and culture in comparison. If you were a parent, where would you rather have your child training?

  • At a taekwondo school where the adults and instructors were all clean cut and respectful, where no cursing or undisciplined behavior was allowed, and where the value system is based on such values as honor, discipline, courtesy, and respect –
  • Or at an MMA gym, where many of the adults and instructors are tattooed and rough-looking, where the language can sometimes be loose, and where the environment is undisciplined and the value system is based on “only the strong survive –

It’s not even a question in most parents’ minds; that is, if they know the difference between traditional martial arts and mixed martial arts. So, my first bit of advice to you is that you emphasize that difference in all your advertisement and marketing. And, the best place to emphasize and contrast your programs with other schools is on your website, which brings me to my next tip…

Make Sure Your Martial Arts Website Is Professional and Designed to Get Leads

Although the type of marketing that we do as martial arts schools owners is direct marketing, most of our sales follow a two-step or even a three-step sales process. That is to say, we use offline or online marketing to get a lead (someone who calls or who leaves their contact information via our website so we can call them), at which point we follow-up with that lead to set an appointment for some sort of introductory lesson. Then, our goal is to enroll that student during or after the initial lesson.

Leads are the lifeblood of your taekwondo school. And, your website is the linchpin of …

Starting Your Own Aerobic Boxing Class

I began teaching aerobic boxing in 1988 at the local Y.M.C.A. Aerobic dancing was the rage those days and instructors were more often than not former dancers. Being a physical education major with a masters in exercise physiology I always chuckled when someone told me they were an aerobic instructor. The definition of aerobic means the catabolism of energy substrates with oxygen so that could mean that particular individual was a “walking” instructor. Fortunately for me I had a background in boxing and taught physical education before becoming a firefighter and fitness instructor.

Since dance wasn’t my forte I decided to incorporate boxing into a group class. Fabulous footwork and the strong upper body movement that develops from punching in combinations catapulted my 60 minute sweat box to the top of the charts. My class was featured on “The Today Show”, “Good Day N.Y.” and “Fox Five News”. Your class will always be evolving to keep up with the competition but I’m going to lay out the basics for a starter class, and if I can do this anybody can.

Provide each class with a five minute orientation for proper stance, footwork and punching. Warm your class up to music of about 135-150 beats per minute. You don’t have to stay with an 8 count because boxing is too fast but it is wise to punch to the beat or use double time. Shake them out to get loose and warm by moving around, throwing punches and stretching the entire body. The key is to incorporate as many functional boxing moves as possible in your warm-up. The music you use for the class body should be recent and upbeat at about 150-175 beats per minute. Begin with footwork and lead by example. All rooms are fully mirrored so you are able to keep an eye on the participants. Move them in and out, lateral and as if circling an opponent. After five minutes (one song) begin with basic punches. Have the students throw the punches from both sides for muscle balance sake. Remember, most are there for a workout and not to become boxers. Taking a gander at my face might derail those thinking of a fight career but I do teach defensive maneuver’s (slipping, weaving, parrying and rolling with a punch) to prevent anyone from looking like me.

The beauty of this class is to learn a skill you will be able to use the rest of your life (self-defense) while receiving top-notch exercise. All students hands are wrapped before the class because each will have an opportunity to spar with me while I operate the focus mitts. (wear mitts on my hands they can punch at my direction. I will put the class in a working mode e.g. left right hook and duck) while I personally spar with a student. I keep changing the boxing modes until I have sparred with every student and we have covered at least six combinations. We do have a sprint session where …