What can snooker tell us about obesity? Yes, it might actually have health benefits part two

If you haven’t already Read Part one of this three part series.

Many people are put off Tennis and other more physical sports because of the physical demands. That’s why so many people feel they can’t lose weight because most people  are convinced they have to bust a gut to lose the weight. They genuinely believe that no pain means no gain and also no weight loss.

Snooker is different. it has a different kind of physicality to the point that it is a relaxing pass time where sweating and showers are not required. Yet since the very top players keep their weight down snooker is an example of how managing your weight can be relaxing and even feel effortless and not full of pain.

This got me thinking along the lines of being fit enough to do what you love and using daily life to make you fit enough. Is it just luck or is there something about competitive snooker that ensures only those with good BMIs can win. 
A quick analysis gave some insights. Competitive snooker requires:
  • constant standing, walking and moving for 8 hours a day: top players train for 8 hours a day
  • a flatter stomach: A paunch would prevent you playing the tougher shots
  • good flexibility for awkward shots
  • exceptional mental stamina to win the 3 day final with repeated sessions of of 2 or more hours in a row 

Suddenly I have a list of useful things that snooker requires and therefore selects for in its champions. All things that require decent training and fitness to achieve. I hadn’t thought much about it but Snooker is all about standing and walking for long, long periods. You have to lug around any extra pounds you are carrying and they will get in the way at crucial points because it will limit your flexibility and reach. 

This is best highlighted by looking at things from the opposite angle. Someone with more flexibility than anyone. Ronnie O’Sullivan because he can play with both his right and left hands. A truly unique game on tour yet, common of course in other sports like soccer.
Tomorrow comes part three

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