Are you thinking about pursuing new hobbies and recreational activities, but are unsure where to begin?
Besides being a source of entertainment and leisure, hobbies and recreational activities can be a good form of exercise. To stay as healthy as possible, adults should be active every day, and try for at least 150 minutes of activity each week. But just because you’re getting some exercise in doesn’t mean it has to be boring. If you find the right hobbies and recreational activities for you, they won’t even feel like work.
From going golfing to frequenting marijuana dispensaries, the options for hobbies and recreational activities are broader than ever. To help you narrow in on the right one for you, get started by checking out the hobbies and recreational activities on this list.
If you’re like most people, floating freely across a lake or ocean is probably an appealing thought. But you may not have entertained the thought of pursuing boating as a hobby.
If you haven’t had much boating experience in the past, it can seem intimidating to get started. But with the right information, it can be far less prohibitive than people expect. A good place to get started is a nearby boating shop. From fishing lures to custom boat trailers, immersing yourself in this kind of environment is a great way to start warming up to boating as a hobby.
In particular, you should pay attention to the different kinds of boats available. Try to learn as much about them as you can, either through web searches (if you’re browsing the pages of an online store) or by asking a knowledgeable employee. The type of boat that’s right for you will stand out based on what water-based activities you’re most interested in, such as fishing or speedboating.
Of course, you don’t have to shell out the cash necessary to buy a brand-new boat. You can save a lot of money by purchasing a used vessel. You might even be able to rent a boat a few times before you fully commit to embracing boating.
Besides learning directly from boating supply stores, you should also seek out avid boaters in your local area. It might feel intimidating to break into a new community for the first time, but people are generally eager to help a newbie get started on something they’re interested in. If you have a local marina, it should be very easy to find people who are passionate about boating to help introduce you to the hobby.
Depending on what kind of boat you want to use, you may need to get a captain’s license. Licensing requirements vary based on the nature of your boat, how many passengers you intend to carry at once, and where you plan to operate.
Boating is one of the more expensive hobbies and recreational activities, but it’s also one of the most rewarding.
Camping and RVing
Like boating, camping is an incredible activity for taking advantage of the great outdoors. Unlike boating, getting a tent and other basic equipment can be very affordable. It’s also fairly simple: today you could be buying camping gear at the outdoors store for the first time, and tomorrow you could be roughing it on a beautiful nature trail.
If you have the budget and commitment for it, RVing can be even more rewarding than traditional camping. As long as it complies with local regulations, you can park an RV just about anywhere and get a good night’s sleep, without all the hassle of setting up your tent. You also get the added benefit of an HVAC system and electrical appliances, which leaves you with more time for exploring.
While acquiring an RV can be a little on the pricey side, with repairable salvage RVs for sale, the cost doesn’t have to be prohibitive. In fact, restoring an older RV can be an exciting hobby all on its own, as you fantasize about the amazing trips you can take when your masterpiece is finished.
Of course, there are a few caveats to bear in mind when you pursue RVing as a hobby. First of all, as mentioned, you must be careful to observe state and local regulations. This especially applies whenever you’re looking for a place to park overnight. In some states, it’s perfectly legal to spend the night in a Walmart parking lot; in others, you’d better find the nearest rest stop.
Since an RV is an enclosed structure, you have to take care of it in much the same way you would maintain a house. RVs are prone to developing mold and mildew if they’re not properly ventilated or if they develop leaks. While mold remediation is a common and essential part of restoring an old RV, it’s probably not something you should plan on doing every year. Keep your RV in good shape, and it can last without incident for years to come.
Last, don’t forget insurance before you travel. RV insurance and traveler’s insurance are important for protecting your possessions.
Swimming is one of the best things you can do for your health, and it’s also enormous fun. Who doesn’t love the feeling of churning and gliding through the water? It’s also another activity you can take outdoors — if you do your swimming in a clean lake, river, or ocean, it’s a fantastic way to feel connected to nature.
Whether you invest in new pool tiles to renovate your backyard pool or drive to the nearest beach, there’re some things you’ll need to get the most out of recreational swimming. Here’s some of the most common swim equipment that beginners are interested in:
- Swim floats
- Fins and hand paddles
- Pool buoy
- Kick board
Of course, whenever you pursue new hobbies and recreational activities for the first time, you won’t buy everything at once. When it comes to swimming, you should find a local pool that already has this equipment, so you can test it out. Many fitness centers, YMCAs, and public pools have equipment like this on hand.
Not all public pools are created equal, however. Some pools are operated with professionals and serious hobbyists in mind, where you might feel out of place as a beginner. Others are designed specifically for playing and relaxing, such as waterparks.
If you have children you want to teach to swim, you should research nearby pools with infant or toddler-friendly wading pools. You should also call ahead and ask about times that are least busy since your children will likely be more uncomfortable if the pool is crowded when you arrive.
The best kind of pool for learning how to swim yourself is one that’s open year-round and offers lap lanes or lap times. Lap lanes are special pools designed specifically for allowing swimmers to swim laps back and forth in a straight line. If you’re interested in swimming as a form of exercise or swimming competitively, this is the kind of pool you want to find.
Visiting Antique Malls and Pawn Shops
Not all hobbies have to involve a lot of activity. Antique shopping and browsing the local pawn shop are just two examples of easy ways to pass the time.
If you haven’t been to a pawn shop before, it may not seem like an obvious place to visit. But pawn shops and even resale shops are often goldmines of fascinating objects. Even if you don’t plan on buying anything, it can be exciting just to see what knickknacks and oddities people have pawned off. And if you do find something valuable, you can typically buy things at way less than their market value, saving you money in the end.
Antiquing is a similar activity to treasure-hunting at pawn shops, and it can lead you to some of the same places. Antiques are incredibly interesting, as each object you find comes with its own long history. You may not always find out where the antiques you find came from, but there’s something awe-inspiring about handling pieces that you know were handed down through generations.
If you want to get serious about antique shopping, you’ll need to do your research. Unless you’re shopping with an antique expert, you should try to give yourself a quick course on period styles. Combining antiques in a room’s decor is an entire art form of its own. It’s also important to be educated when you shop for antiques so you have a sense of what things are really worth, and notice when something’s not right.
Whether you’re shopping for antiques or simply browsing pawn shops, vision is an important element for making good purchases. You should try to see things not only for what they are, but for what they could be once you took them home. Things can be combined, altered, and upgraded to fit a variety of uses.
Restoring Classic Cars
Between hunting down genuine Mercedes parts and learning about old vehicles, restoring salvage and classic cars is an exciting pastime. If you happen to come across a run-down vehicle to buy for cheap, or if you have one sitting in your shed, it might be just the recreational activity for you.
The basic elements of car restoration are engine work, bodywork, paintwork, and trim and moldings. Each area is its own specialized discipline, with different skills to learn.
Most salvage vehicles won’t have a fully-functioning engine, which means you will have to learn how to make repairs and swap out parts. An important part of classic car restoration is making the finished project look as much like it did brand-new as possible, and that includes the parts you use on the engine. The market for classic cars offers a wide range of parts that are designed to be true to those of the original cars they’re made for. You can even find racing parts and more with the original company branding on them, making them look especially authentic.
After the engine, the biggest task you will encounter with car restoration is probably the bodywork. This makes sense since it covers the entire exterior of the car. In most instances, the bodywork on old cars will have at least a few areas that are badly corroded. While smaller areas can be treated with acidic rust treatments, larger areas will need to be removed altogether for new metal plates to be welded in. Dents are another major problem for classic cars, but these can usually be repaired using a flip, hammer, and dolly. Any low spots that remain can be filled in with body filler, which can then be sanded down to perfectly match the smoothness of the original bodywork.
Before you begin on hobbies and recreational activities like this, it’s a good idea to consult an expert about what it’s likely to cost you. Car restoration can be pricey, and it’s good to have an estimate ahead of time so you know what you’re getting into. Fortunately, by spreading the work out across several weeks or months, you shouldn’t have to spend too much at once.
Getting Your Pilot’s License
Did you know that just about anyone can get a private pilot’s license and learn to fly small aircraft? Many people fly airplanes over farm fields and across entire states just for fun, taking off and landing in small regional airports. While it’s definitely one of the more unusual hobbies and recreational activities out there, it’s still one you should consider if you’ve always secretly wanted to fly a plane.
Being able to fly a private plane is more than just a hobby. It’s also a serious transportation method, allowing people to get from place to place much faster than they would by car. Not only that, but having a license to fly small aircraft is a stepping stone to much bigger and potentially lucrative opportunities. Skilled pilots aren’t that common, and if you become one of them you could find yourself in high demand.
To become a pilot, you must first of all be able to read, write, and understand English. Of course, since you’re reading this you probably already have that down. But you must also hold either a student, sport, or recreational pilot certificate; have at least a third-class medical certificate; have received proper ground instruction and flight training; and pass aeronautical knowledge and practical tests.
If you’ve only just begun looking into flying, and don’t yet know the difference between Sikorsky parts and jet engines, the easiest place to begin is to get a student pilot certificate. This isn’t as complicated as you might think: it’s often as simple as passing an online certification class. However, if you go for a sport or recreational pilot license, it might make the overall training easier, as you’ll get more experience right off the bat.
Getting a medical certificate is simply a matter of having a doctor verify that you’re in sufficient health to fly an aircraft. After that, you will participate in ground and flight schools, and then you will pass your private pilot license test. There are two parts to the test: a practical skills test, and a written knowledge test.
This is only a handful of the many hobbies and recreational activities available to try. Hopefully, you’ve found this article entertaining and inspiring as you learn more about hobbies and recreational activities.