Football, baseball, basketball, and hockey: these are the organized team sports we played as children. We dreamed of becoming good enough to make the big leagues, land a college scholarship, or at the very least, get laid in high school. Unfortunately for those of us who haven’t made it big in one of these sports yet, it’s probably too late. Now that we’re a little bit older, it’s time to look into sports that will lead to more modest benefits, such as maintaining some semblance of physical fitness and having a reason to leave the house. You aren’t going to see highlights of these sports featured on “SportsCenter,” but they can keep you in shape and give you something fun to do in your spare time.
Softball is the slutty cousin of baseball. It’s easier, drunker, and has been known to flirt with lesbians from time to time. Most softball tournaments I have played in resulted in the consumption of alcohol before, during, and after the actual games. The entire sport is basically an excuse to drink outside with other like-minded individuals. Fortunately, softball is simple enough to play that getting shitfaced by the fourth inning probably won’t have a significantly negative impact on your performance. As long as you are still somewhat in shape, you should be able to contribute, regardless of your BAC.
For reasons that I do not fully comprehend, squash is probably the second best networking activity behind golf (if you’re not already into golf by your early 20s, you’re doing it wrong). It’s not that squash isn’t an enjoyable activity–it most certainly is. However, the dynamics of the game do not seem to be a natural fit with social interaction. Squash is physically demanding, which makes it difficult to carry on much of a conversation during play. Additionally, it doesn’t lend itself to alcohol consumption and it usually results in uncomfortably awkward amounts of sweat. That being said, many downtown health clubs have squash courts, making it easy to find time to play, and I can see how the game would attract A-type personalities with busy schedules. From my experience, as long as you’re in decent shape, you should be able to work yourself up to an “I can play without making a total ass of myself” level relatively fast. A quick game of squash is a fun and convenient (and potentially lucrative) way to get in some physical activity once you get the hang of it.
Sailing is a difficult sport to master. However, the upside is that sailing is a sport many people don’t take up until their adult years anyway. You shouldn’t feel the least bit out of place taking “beginner” level sailing classes. Learning to sail in your twenties is a solid investment because it’s an activity that you can partake in until you are literally 90 years old. In some cases, a person’s ability to sail will outlast his or her ability to walk. Sailing also possesses many of the same social benefits (read: alcohol consumption) as softball. Most sailors I know are borderline alcoholics and are typically in the mood for a good rip following an afternoon on the water.
Long Distance Running
This one is mostly for physical fitness and personal sanity. At some point, you have to break free from your mostly sedentary lifestyle and actually burn some calories. You’re never going to build an Adonis-like body by going for a run four to five times a week. However, it should be enough to steer you away from a lifestyle of outright gluttony. A long run also does a good job of relieving stress. After about the fifth or sixth mile, you will probably be too exhausted to care about whatever was bothering you when you left work.