Snowshoes Urbandale IA

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Bulldog Soccer Academy
2507 University Avenue
Des Moines, IA
 
Sports Authority
(515) 226-9700
Water Tower Place, 4100 University Avenue
West Des Moines, IA
Services
Golf Day Shop, Golf Hitting Cage, Golf Trade-In Program, Hunting and Fishing Licenses, Delivery & Assembly
Hours
Monday - Saturday: 9:00am - 9:30pm
Sunday: 10:00am - 8:00pm
Holiday hours may vary.

Luther College Soccer Camps
700 College Drive
Decorah , IA
 
Dick's Sporting Goods
(319) 743-3066
4601 1st Ave Se
Cedar Rapids, IA
 
Dick's Sporting Goods
(563) 557-6130
Kennedy Mall
Dubuque, IA
 
Des Moines Menace Soccer
6400 Westown Parkway West
Des Moines, IA
 
Bass Pro Sports
(515) 957-5500
1000 Bass Pro Drive NW
Altoona, IA
Hours
Mon-Sat 9:00am - 10:00pmSun 10:00am - 7:00pm

Bulldog Soccer Academy
2507 University Avenue
Des Moines, IA
 
Des Moines Menace Soccer
6400 Westown Parkway West
Des Moines, IA
 
Dick's Sporting Goods
(319) 287-5722
Crossroad Commons
Waterloo, IA
 

Big Shoes, Small Footprints

Big Shoes, Small Footprints

Snowshoeing lets you burn calories
amid nature’s winter glory.

by Sascha Zuger

February 2009

Some historians trace the origins of snowshoes back 13,000 years, when our ancestors used broad, flat boards to help them cross the great land bridge from Asia to North America. The quest for easy transport while hunting and gathering through rough winters created the forerunner to one of the hottest new calorie-burning winter sports for nature lovers.

“There aren’t too many other environments likely to be as beautiful, serene and tranquil as the woods in winter under snow cover,” says Declan Connolly, PhD, program director of physical education at the University of Vermont, who adds that the sport is similar to jogging in terms of calories burned. “Snowshoes offer you the opportunity to blaze your own trail. ”

Modern snowshoes bear little resemblance to their wood-and-rawhide forbears. “One of the appeals is that there is a very small learning curve. In fact, if you can put them on, you’ve gone from beginner to advanced or intermediate snowshoer,” says Ray Browning, PhD, assistant professor at Colorado State University. “There’s really little skill involved and it opens up a lot of terrain that many people, unfortunately, think of as off-limits in the winter time. It’s a nice, easy, out-your-door activity that most people who have close proximity to snow can do.”

Trekkers can touch base with the environment and enjoy the peaceful serenity of the white-blanketed woods—concentrating on spotting wildlife instead of attending to equipment woes—thanks to innovations in the sport. Lightweight aluminum frames and woven decking (think of the neoprene-like material used in wetsuits) ease muscle strain. Gender- specific frame shapes allow for a more natural stride for men, women and children. Shock-absorbing bindings make snowshoes as simple to don as stepping onto the decking in everyday winter boots and tightening a single strap.

Exercise, Watch Wildlife
Snowshoe devotees say that an outing on groomed trails can be as easy and relaxing as a winter stroll—and kinder in terms of impact, thanks to snow’s softer, more forgiving surface.

Enthusiasts range from people looking for some exercise by walking at a comfortable pace to those who use snowshoes specially designed for running. Racing or running shoes are shorter and narrower, with tapered tails. They are lighter weight and, to keep the shoe from loosening during quick strides, have a more secure binding than regular recreational snowshoes. People who run with snowshoes “are serious about getting a significant cardiovascular exercise session,” says Browning.

Connolly says adding a set of poles to the outing will give you “a great full body workout” in which you’ll burn anywhere from 500 to 1,000 calories per hour.

The recent addition of Nordic poles to the sport has not only helped snowshoe buffs burn more calories but has made ...

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