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  • Published: Feb 19th, 2012
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Cricket, Lovely Cricket

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All over the globe, there are aspects of life that can make noticeable contributions to the very identity of a particular location, and in England it’s the game of cricket. The sport is popular in various pockets of the world such as Australia and New Zealand, South Africa, the Caribbean and the Indian sub-continent, but in many countries it’s rarely played and sometimes barely even understood. But if you have never really seen what the appeal of it is, perhaps it’s time to try a little harder.

Cricket has been around for centuries, and it’s a huge contrast of a sport. It can be slow-paced and cerebral, yet it can also be wildly exciting and abandoned. On some occasions it rewards patience, yet on others it requires throwing caution to the wind. It has always been thought of as a gentleman’s game, but it produces occasional bouts of ill-temper and gamesmanship that will hit the headlines all over the world.

The rewards in the professional game are plentiful if you get to the top of the tree, but no-one has ever played the game just for the money. Fast bowlers from Pakistan, all-rounders from West Indies and opening batsmen from New Zealand will all tell you it’s the love of the sport that drives them on, not the promise of a hefty pay packet when the game has finished. It’s truly a purist’s pursuit, and that’s why so many people enjoy it.

To be in England when the sun shines

In England, the love affair with cricket goes right back to the birth of the game, and many legends of the sport have become household names over those years. From WG Grace and Jack Hobbs to Ian Botham and Kevin Pietersen, the game has always created superstars, yet it remains a true grass roots phenomenon, and a drive through the nation’s rural backwaters is enough to convince you of its importance.

From Cornwall in the south-west to Northumberland in the north-east, there are hundreds, maybe even thousands, of village cricket clubs which play throughout the summer. Organised matches have been around for hundreds of years, and wherever you are in England on a weekend in July, the chances are you won’t be far away from a local game, so why not stroll over and take a look at what’s going on?

At one time, cricket was the preserve of the very wealthy, but that all changed many moons ago. These days, a village side is likely to feature accountants and gentleman farmers playing alongside bricklayers and electricians, all brought together by the love of this intriguing sport. Next time you visit England, be sure to head for a cricket match and see why this passionate affair continues.

David Rice is a UK writer and a keen fan of cricket. He often attends matches at the Rose Bowl in Southampton. Car hire in the area is affordable, and so is hotel accommodation.

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  • Published: Aug 23rd, 2011
  • Category: Extreme
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Prepare for An Amazing Adventure Outdoors

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When you are looking for an adventure outdoors, you can try out many different things. An adventure can be a hiking voyage you have set out to complete for yourself or perhaps an adventure for your children that you have planned.

Ideas of activities that you can enjoy for yourself of a group of people would be a backpacking hike, a venturous voyage through a traverse canyon or a set out to reach a mountain peak  adorned in wilderness. These types of activities can seem like your own adventure.

Other ideas of an adventure outdoors might be trekking over a vast region to reach the other side; though if you choose this type of adventure you should be well prepared to avoid any tragedies. The feeling of accomplishing an adventurous goal in the wilderness will leave you impressed.

Take your kids on a fun adventure in the woods or a nice hiking trail where they can walk at their own pace, yet enjoy what nature has to offer. Many times, this can be an adventure all on its own. You can also think of many types of other ideas that your kids would enjoy outside.

Examples of other activities you can do for an adventure outdoors might be to help your kids build a tree house or club house that they can play in to help them stay active. Kids always enjoy a clubhouse as a way to have their own adventure outdoors.

Whatever you choose for you adventure outdoors, remember that there are many different types of activities that you can join in on and enjoy. When adventuring, make sure to play it safe and prepare beforehand. Don’t forget to bring healthy snacks to munch on and plenty of fluids to keep you hydrated. When you set out on your adventure outdoors, keep in mind that it is always about fun in the end.

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  • Published: Jun 2nd, 2011
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How to Find Swim Leagues in your Area

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Now that the summer has arrived, it is time to get your little ones involved in the local or community swim league. Swim leagues are often associated by county, so if you want to get your kids enrolled in a swim league for the summer, be sure to look online, as most of the county websites will have information regarding swim leagues. Another way to find a swim league for your children is to visit your local or community public pool. More often than not, the public pool will have a swim league for children of different ages.

Adult swim leagues also exist. Your best bet to find a swim league for yourself is to research online. Similar to swimming leagues for kids, each county will provide information regarding adult swim leagues in which you can participate. Aquatic centers and health and wellness organizations like the YMCA may have adult leagues for you to join. If you live in a small district or county, it may be harder for you to find adult leagues, as most leagues will cater to more heavily populated cities and areas. Do not let that deter you, all it really means is you may have to drive farther than anticipated to find a swim league, but if you are passionate about swimming, then this should not bother you.

Be careful, as swimming injuries can occur, especially if you are older or have not participated in swimming activities in quite awhile. For children, common swimming injuries result in “swimmer’s ear” which is a term for a type of ear infection. For adults, joint and muscle pains can occur, usually around the shoulder, elbow, back and neck regions of the body. It is recommended that you consult a doctor to make sure you are in the right physical condition for a swim league, and if you are given the green light, then enjoy yourself to the max.

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