Diary of a teenage diver cont..

Have you ever wondered how diving is scored? When someone talks about their DD or mentions a rip entry?

Entry #5  The scoring-the chase for the elusive 10. We have all seen those scores flash up at the Olympics and wondered why what looks like a perfectly good dive only scores 4. Trust me the score baffles all of us but here’s how it basically works. Divers are awarded according to the complexity and accuracy of their skills and the judges give scores from 0 to 10 for each dive, the two highest and the two lowest scores are dismissed(when there are seven judges) and the remaining scores are added together and multiplied by a difficulty rating, which is assigned to the dive beforehand-the aforementioned DD(degree of difficulty). The judges scrutinize all five components of a diver’s performance: approach, take-off, elevation, execution, entry. Your whole career is spent upping your DD as the more “tricks” attempted in a dive, the greater the rating on the dive and therefore the greater the potential for scoring more points-that is if you don’t smack (see entry #2).

Entry # 6 The Rip entry.  So have you ever wondered how divers launch themselves from towers or springboards and disappear beneath the water with almost no splash?

To rip an entry means to enter the water so swiftly and so vertically that there is virtually no splash. It is a major goal for a diver. It is like the barometer of how well the dive went and certainty leaves an impression on the judges. There are three basic ingredients that work together to pull off one of the most important parts of a dive: the flat hand, arm position, and body alignment…..it is actually quite technical and takes years of practice and fine tuning. But when you do align everything and hit that water creating a turbulence that somehow pulls air in with you, and sucks the splash underwater, leaving only bubbles on the surface it is an awesome feeling. The smaller the splash the bigger the score…well hopefully when you resurface that’s what you see.

Until next month,

Jade xx

Boxercise

Are you ready to try the hottest new workout trend of the year? Take a break from the pool and start boxing! Whether you are a lover or a fighter, this is the perfect workout for you. And, don’t worry, nobody is going to punch your lights out.

If you’re looking for something high energy and fun, this is the perfect way to get in better shape. Burn calories, improve your coordination and learn some self-defence tactics with one of our favourite new ways to get your heart pumping.

The Boxercise trend started way back in 1992 when Andy Wake started his first class in the UK. His goal was to create a class that everyone, of all fitness levels, could enjoy without having to worry about walking around with a black eye.

Before you go to your first boxercise class, you’ll want to know what to expect. First things first, you should know that there’s no boxing ring. You won’t need a mouth guard or headgear. Leave your Rocky dreams at the door and great ready to sweat.

Boxercise classes are based on the training techniques that boxers use to stay in great shape. The classes typically involve skipping rope, shadow-boxing, kicking punch bags, hitting pads and doing sit-ups. Most beginner classes are a mixed group of men and women of all fitness levels.

In most Boxercise classes, you will work in pairs to develop speed, agility, balance and power while mastering all of the important punches like jab, cross, head hooks, body hooks, and uppercuts. Of course, it’s all contact-free. To practice your moves, you’ll be punching pads.

During your Boxercise session, you will keep your body constantly moving. By skipping, punching, weaving and ducking during the entire session, you can burn up to 1000 calories in a single class. If you are bored with sitting on gym equipment and not seeing results, this is the programme for you.

If you’re looking for a fun way to lose some weight, this is the ticket. Because Boxercise is based on High Intensity Interval Training (HITT), you’ll be burning fat at a maximum rate. In fact, according to the latest and great fitness science, you can burn nearly 20% more fat with HITT than tradition workout routines.

Boxercise fanatics are always bragging about much they have transformed themselves through the programme. It’s a great way to release your aggression, de-stress and develop a sense of discipline. Of course, on top all the stress release that it provides, you’ll also improve your fitness level, increase your muscle tone and strength and become more flexible while increasing your coordination and stamina.

So, what are you waiting for? Boxercise is perfect for any fitness level so don’t be shy. Even if you feel totally clueless about boxing moves, you will definitely have a good time trying your hand at boxing.

As Boxercise becomes more popular, there are classes popping up all over the globe. Why not check out a local session and start boxing your way to fitness!

Cupping Therapy & Why Elite Athletes Love It  

There is one question that so many people had on their minds while watching the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro: why are those athletes covered in circular bruises?

The answer is cupping therapy. This ancient treatment from the east is suddenly taking the western world by storm. With so many world-class athletes jumping on the bandwagon, the cupping therapy trend is pretty intriguing. Thinking about trying it out? Here’s everything that you need to know about getting this crazy new body art and a potentially game changing boost.

What Exactly Is Cupping Therapy?

Cupping therapy is an import from Asia. For centuries, it has been popular across China, ancient Egypt and in cultures throughout the Middle East. In fact, it is so old that one of the oldest medical books on the planet, the Ebers Papyrus from ancient Egypt way back in 1,550 B.C, features instructions on how to do cupping therapy.

These days there are a few different ways to do cupping therapy and they all make use of these odd looking little cups made of earthenware, bamboo, glass or silicone.

Cupping therapy can be done on wet or dry skin. The basic idea is that a small fire is lit inside of each cup and then that cup is immediately placed upside down on your skin. By quickly getting it attached to your body, a vacuum is created. This vacuum creates suction and makes the cups adhere to your skin.

What Does Cupping Therapy Do?

Cupping therapy is said to work in a manner similar to deep tissue massage and is able to reduce pain and inflammation while increasing blood flow. According to the official Cupping Society, this treatment is able to help with conditions like anaemia, haemophilia, arthritis, fibromyalgia, eczema, acne, high blood pressure, migraines, anxiety, depression, allergies, asthma and varicose veins. Of course, that is a very wide array of conditions and the degree to which each is helped by cupping therapy isn’t all that clear.

Does Cupping Therapy Really Work?

The medical community is divided on the effectiveness of cupping therapy. While many see it as a cure to whatever ails you, others think it is a waste of time. Extreme views aside, the majority of experts believe that there is not enough information yet to make a decision of the effectiveness of cupping therapy.

Needless to say, no valid scientific studies were done while practising the art of cupping in ancient times so age doesn’t necessarily give an added credibility to cupping therapy.

However, there have been a few more recent studies showing that it could be a good treatment for a range of conditions. Teams of Australian and Chinese researchers recently reviewed 135 different studies on cupping therapy. Their conclusion is that it could be effective for a range of diseases and conditions when used in conjunction with other treatments.

What Are the Side Effects of Cupping Therapy?

Cupping therapy is generally considered to be quite safe however there are always some risks to any treatment. Possible side effects include bruises, burns, skin infections and discomfort.

Is it time for a Digital Detox?

Did you know that most of us spend more than half of our waking hours staring at a screen? It’s having a major impact on the way that we see the world and how we interact with each other. The Digital Detox is an international programme to get us to turn off our laptops, TVs, and phones so that we can remember what life was like in the pre-internet age.

So, what are about you? Are you spending more than half of your day starting at a screen? If that sounds familiar, it’s time to join the club! While you might love watching your favourite TV series, chatting with friends and reading the latest news, there is a whole world out there waiting to be explored!

What Is Digital Detox?    

The Digital Detox movement aims to connect people with the wider world and remind them of life’s simple pleasures. Whether you are chilling on the yoga mat or laughing with friends and family around the dinner table, there is life away from the warm glow of the screen. There are tons of different official Digital Detox programmes to help you disconnect. Ultimately, you don’t really need anything though. Just close your computer (but read these tips first!).

How Can I Do a Digital Detox?    

If you are social media crazy, it’s best to disconnect slowly. Rather than throwing yourself head first into a full weekend offline, take small steps. One of the best ways to get started is to introduce offline time one hour at a time.

Did you know that staring at a screen before bed interferes with your sleep? While you might feel well rested, the interruptions slowly add up. Start your digital detox by shutting down one hour before bedtime. Not only will you sleep better, you’ll suddenly find you have a lot more free time.

Make the most of that last hour before bed! Create a list of books you’d like to read. You will be surprised at how many pages you can get through in an hour a night. Rather than wasting time on Facebook, chat with family or housemates in person. Having real conversations and reading actual books will make your evenings a whole lot more memorable.

What If I Get Bored Offline?

One of the toughest things about a digital detox is that most of us have a pretty limited number of hobbies. While you might love to go swimming or head to the cinema with your friends, do you have any hobbies that you can do at home?

It’s good to have something fun that you can do anytime, anywhere. Think old school hobbies like puzzles and crafts. Try a few things and see what you like. Be creative but keep it relatively simple. Master classical oil painting if you want but also make sure you’ve got hobbies that take minimal time and supplies. Jump on the therapeutic adult colouring book trend. Try Sudoku. There are a lot of days when you’ll be too tired to run around so look for fun hobbies that you’ll always have the energy for.

Clean Eating: How to stick it through

Excuses, excuses, excuses. Everyone has a million of them when it comes to eating healthier.

Forming lifetime habits of healthy eating is no easy task. It requires constant strategising to help get you through those tough days when you want to dive head first into a bucket of fried food.

The following tips can help you stick to your goal to eat healthier.

Learn That Food & Emotions Need Not Go Hand in Hand

Life is tough. Food is one thing many of us have been programmed to enjoy as a treat. Between holidays, birthdays, pizza parties and all the rest, society has trained us to think food, especially unhealthy food, is a reward.

When learning to eat cleaner, you essentially want to rewire the brain from thinking food is a reward to food is form of nourishment. This is a huge adjustment to many people!

Shop Smart: Don’t Keep Bad Habit Foods Around

One of the best shopping tips out there is to not shop in the aisles of a grocery store, because this essentially helps you avoid 100% of junk food. Chips, cookies, cereals, and all the processed stuff is your enemy. Don’t let an enemy sleep inside of your pantry!

Clean eating takes a little more effort than junk food. You often have to chop, slice, clean, cook, etc. rather than just open up a bag or microwave something for immediate gratification. To avoid caving into the temptation of how convenient and tasty quick, unhealthy meals are, just don’t keep this type of food in your house.

Seek Clean Foods You LOVE

I legitimately can say I have a guacamole problem. All I do is use avocado, lime, garlic, cilantro, onion, tomato and a dash of cumin. All of this is super healthy! It is a food I will take over a lot of junk food any day of the week. In fact, I have to be careful about not eating TOO much guacamole, because even in the world of clean eating there is too much of a good thing. I digress though.

To really able to stick with a lifelong habit of clean eating, it requires finding ways to love what you are eating. Seek out recipes that make cleaning eating sustainable rather than just chomping down some bland form of food.

Never, Ever Give Up

It is so easy to get discourage when embarking on anything new in life. Eating clean has to be one of the biggest challenges which it can be very easy to waiver on.

Even if you accidentally falter and binge on a whole box of Oreos, there is always tomorrow to start your efforts fresh. Stick to your guns, and we promise the way you feel with a body fully nourished by healthy, whole foods will make all of the difference.

Diary of a Teenager Diver continued

There is not a lot of equipment a diver needs but there are two things I can’t live without – my chamois and a good swimsuit.

AMANZI Girl Jade Sweeney

The Chamois — otherwise known as an aqua-towel or shammy — a small (usually tie-dyed) water absorbent towel that you will often see draped over our bodies. This tiny towel is capable of holding 10 times its weight in water and dry out almost instantly after you ring it out. Seriously we rely on this small piece of poly-vinyl cloth as a source of comfort (squeezing and biting on this really does relieve stress) and practicality: It dries us off in between dives, and when you are often gripping your legs or other body parts, wet legs raises the possibility that your hands will slip, and slipping can mean losing control mid-dive and we all know that that leads to the previously discussed splat (remember entry # 2).

The Swimsuit – comfortable, functional, durable, unique – what I look for in my swimsuit-so I can’t go past AMANZI as my swimsuit of choice. When you are diving off 10m towers at speeds of up to 60km/hour you want to know that your swimsuit will stand up to the test – oh and still be there when you resurface. The thin shoulder straps on the AMANZI swimmers allow for maximum freedom and ease of movement around my shoulders whilst I am diving and as a fashion forward athlete I love that AMANZI understands that swimwear is not just something you swim in but is a reflection of your unique style and personality. With such a wide variety of prints, wearing AMANZI ensures that I always look and feel great at training.

Until next month,
Jade xx

Read Jade’s first diary entry here.

8 Reasons to Skip the Gym

Never feel like going to the gym? Forget about it! There’s a whole world out there to use for exercising. Run the streets, swim the seas and climb the mountains! Who needs a boring gym to burn calories and get fit?

AMANZI Girl Tamsyn running in the Giza Bikini

AMANZI Girl Tamsyn running in the Giza Bikini

Here are eight reasons why you should use the great outdoors as your private gym.

#1 It Will Boost Your Mood

By exercising outdoors, you can improve your mood and get an added boost from the sunshine and fresh air. Just taking a deep breath of air outside will flood your brain with those feel-good serotonin chemicals. Not only will your workout get you fitter, it’ll instantly make you feel awesome.

#2 You Won’t Be Distracted

While reading and watching TV might make workouts more enjoyable, it can also make them less effective. So many people go to the gym and completely zone out. The problem with this is that you might not be working as hard as you think you are. On top of that, studies have shown that “passive” exercisers develop less hand-eye coordination.

#3 There’s Always Something New to See

When you are running around outside, your scenery is always changing. Rather than staring at the clock or watching the same old TV shows, you’ll always have something new to see outdoors. People watch when you’re doing step-ups on park benches. Scope out new neighbourhoods when you are out for a jog. No matter where you live, there is always a new area to explore. Whether it is a vibrant cityscape or the beautiful countryside, it’ll give you a lot more stimulation that just looking at the same room every day.

#4 It’s Free

There are so many fun things to do outside that’ll serious kick your butt. From running up hills to rock climbing to swimming in the sea to running laps around the park, there are countless ways to break a sweat without even having to open your wallet.

#5 You Will Stick to It          

Studies have shown that people who work out outdoors are more likely to stick with their exercise routine. Thanks to the instant mood boost that we get outdoors, exercisers simply enjoy their workout routines more and are more likely to want to do it again the next day.

#6 You Have to Work Harder

Did you know that running outdoors is actually harder than running on a treadmill? Exercise equipment like elliptical machines and treadmills always do some of the work for you. This is on top of the fact that you will never have to fight against wind resistance which can have a major impact on the total amount of energy that you expend.

#7 You Can Ditch the Weights

Unless you are a serious weight lifter, you are probably better off just using your own body weight for workouts. Rather than risking injury with weights that are too heavy or wasting your time with light weights, use your body! Did you know that those squatting machines at the gym are less effective? Stand up and use your balance for the ultimate workout.

#8 You Can Spend Your Time Working Out

Who wants to spend more time commuting? Skip the trip to the gym and just step out the front door. While it might not seem like a huge timesaver, those minutes definitely add up!

7 Habits of Highly ACTIVE People

We all know someone who has a non-stop lifestyle. It seems like they can do it all and never burn out. Ever wonder how they keep their energy levels going 365 days a year? It is easier than you might think!

Check out these seven habits that we nabbed from the most highly active people around and get inspired to get moving.

#1 Active People Get Up Early

Swimming at sunrise

The early bird catches the worm. Photocred: @laurawood21

Sorry, night owls! It has been proven that the early bird really does get the worm so get up and get moving early in the morning. Working out first thing in the morning means that you’ll never have an excuse to skip the gym. By getting your blood pumping and your heart racing at the start of the day, you will get a boost of energy to keep you going all day long.

#2 Active People Know When to Chill

Rest days are so important! Whether you need a break from studying, working or training, giving yourself a day off actually means that you’ll get more done in the long run. Do whatever you need to do to make sure that you have at least one day each week that you can call your own – even it means saying “no” to a few things!

#3 Active People Know How to Set Goals

How many times have you made a New Year’s resolution only to forget about it before February? Goal setting is about so much more than just writing down wishes. If you really want to accomplish something, set a series of mini goals that you can monitor on a daily basis.

#4 Active People Stay Hydrated

Water is essential! Forget about energy drinks, coffee and soda. Good old fashioned H20 is actually the best thing you can drink to keep your energy level stable all day long. Keep a bottle of water on hand all day, every day. Investing in a refillable water bottle is one of the best health accessories you’ll ever buy.

#5 Active People Keep It Moving

When you’re ultra-busy, it’s easy to get stuck in front of your computer for hours on end. Unfortunately, spending too much time sitting is terrible for your waistline and your heart. The best thing that a serious student or dedicated worker can do is set a timer to get up for at least a couple minutes of every hour.

#6 Active People Plan Their Meals

Ditch the fast food and convenience store snacks. If you plan out your meals in advance, you won’t have to search around for healthy food or be stuck with so-so junk food. Pack your lunch the night before and keep easy snacks like bananas, nuts and baby carrots ready to go.

#7 Active People Get Their ZZZs

The single best thing that you can do for yourself is to get enough sleep! While early mornings can be great for your productivity level, late nights will crush your energy level. Stay energised and feel great all day long by getting a good eight hours of sleep each and every night. Not only will it keep you feeling great, it will have a major impact on your long-term overall health.

Jade’s Outback Experience

Lightning Ridge, home of the unique Black Opal, is where School Sports Australia National Diving Championships were held this year. At the Ridge, we toured underground mines, experienced the Artesian Bore Baths and had a great time mixing and mingling with all the other athletes from around Australia.

AMANZI Girl Jade and synchro partner Liv

AMANZI Girl Jade and synchro partner Liv

One of the highlights of the trip for me was visiting one of the most unusual and unique tourist attractions ever- Chambers of the Black Hand Opal Mine. Set forty feet underground, images are actually carved and painted in the sandstone walls and pillars. There were over 500 wall carvings in this amazing underground chamber created by artist Ron Canlin with tools ranging from a jackhammer and small pick to cutlery from his kitchen!

My next favourite thing in the Ridge was the bore baths. At the end of a hard day diving there was nothing quite like a long soak in the naturally heated thermal baths. Natural pressure sends the water to the surface through an artesian bore and it maintains a constant temperature of 41.5 degrees. Bliss! This was pretty much the popular meeting place for us all to relax and socialise.

Lightning Ridge, a place where there are car doors instead of street signs, a house made from 14,000 coloured bottles and a church that has never even been used as a church, who would have thought that this little outback town would have so much to see and do!  Oh and I picked up a couple of my own little gems by the way of two gold and a silver medal too.

Until next month
Jade x