• FUN OUTDOOR GAMES FOR YOUR BBQ
  • This entry was posted in Table tennis on April 11, 2016

  • Barbeque season is here at last! Nothing beats enjoying warm weather with friends and feasting on a scrumptious plate of freshly cooked and perfectly seasoned food. For a surefire way to make new friends in the neighborhood, why not throw an outdoor barbecue?

    After catching up over beers and food, someone often calls for a fun after-dinner activity or game. While you don’t have to plan a detailed schedule, it’s ideal to have a few group activities in mind to keep the party going. Here are some of our favorite games that both kids and adults will want to play.

    Table tennis. Table tennis is loads of fun for all ages. (Plus, arm strength, teamwork, and coordination are just a few of its many health benefits.) Our outdoor table tennis tables invoke just what every BBQ needs – fun, laughter, and a spark of friendly competition!

    Outdoor chess. This will set your party above the rest. Life size outdoor chess pieces made of resin are sturdy but easy to lift. Get swept away with the strategy and smarts involved in this classic game.

    Cornhole. Easy to play with minimal setup required, cornhole is a blast without being too intense or competitive.

    Card games. Sure, you can play these games inside too, but they’re more fun at a BBQ with yummy cool beverages and plenty of sunshine. Here are a few of the most fun card games around.

    Hide and seek. If the adults need a break (for drinks, or just to rest their feet), this is a great one for the kids to play by themselves. Just make sure to set limits for how far they can go and check every few minutes to make sure everyone is getting along.

    Capture the Flag. Divide into teams for this adventurous game suitable for all ages. Capture the Flag is an excellent choice for breaking the ice amongst neighbors who might not know each other well.

    No matter what games you decide on, remember a few basic rules to ensure everyone has a good time: 1) If you choose an active game, make sure you have cards or something more casual and relaxing set aside as a backup for people who don’t want to play, and 2) Keep it friendly! Remember a game is just a game, and it’s more about having fun, bonding, and enjoying the warm weather than it is about snagging a victory.

    Barbeque season is here at last! Nothing beats enjoying warm weather with friends and feasting on a scrumptious plate of freshly cooked and perfectly seasoned food. For a surefire way to make new friends in the neighborhood, why not throw an outdoor barbecue?

    After catching up over beers and food, someone often calls for a fun after-dinner activity or game. While you don’t have to plan a detailed schedule, it’s ideal to have a few group activities in mind to keep the party going. Here are some of our favorite games that both kids and adults will want to play.

    Table tennis. Table tennis is loads of fun for all ages. (Plus, arm strength, teamwork, and coordination are just a few of its many health benefits.) Our outdoor table tennis tables invoke just what every BBQ needs – fun, laughter, and a spark of friendly competition!

    Outdoor chess. This will set your party above the rest. Life size outdoor chess pieces made of resin are sturdy but easy to lift. Get swept away with the strategy and smarts involved in this classic game.

    Cornhole. Easy to play with minimal setup required, cornhole is a blast without being too intense or competitive.

    Card games. Sure, you can play these games inside too, but they’re more fun at a BBQ with yummy cool beverages and plenty of sunshine. Here are a few of the most fun card games around.

    Hide and seek. If the adults need a break (for drinks, or just to rest their feet), this is a great one for the kids to play by themselves. Just make sure to set limits for how far they can go and check every few minutes to make sure everyone is getting along.

    Capture the Flag. Divide into teams for this adventurous game suitable for all ages. Capture the Flag is an excellent choice for breaking the ice amongst neighbors who might not know each other well.

    No matter what games you decide on, remember a few basic rules to ensure everyone has a good time: 1) If you choose an active game, make sure you have cards or something more casual and relaxing set aside as a backup for people who don’t want to play, and 2) Keep it friendly! Remember a game is just a game, and it’s more about having fun, bonding, and enjoying the warm weather than it is about snagging a victory.




  • SIGNS IT'S TIME TO REPLACE YOUR PATIO FURNITURE
  • This entry was posted in Patio on April 08, 2016

  • High quality outdoor furniture can last years if cared for properly. At KETTLER USA, we offer a wide range of patio furniture to suits anyone’s tastes, from aluminum to resin to wrought iron to wicker.

    There’s nothing quite like outdoor dining – the cool breeze, the fresh air, the openness among friends sharing a bottle of wine against the backdrop of a lovely summer evening’s illuminant sky...

    Try as you may to stay on top of your outdoor furniture maintenance, life and its inevitable accidents happen. Don’t let rips and damage to your furniture go ignored. Here are a few surefire signs it’s time to look into purchasing new patio furniture.

    There’s been a big spill. Nothing ruins the elegance of tapas outdoors like red wine stains on your guest’s chair. If food or drinks have left irremovable stains on your patio furniture, it’s time to upgrade. To avoid this, clean up spills as soon as they happen. Don’t wait until after dinner.

    The furniture is unstable or rickety. Wind and bugs can make outdoor dining a nuisance, but there’s no excuse for unstable dining surfaces. If you have an outdoor table that won’t sit still, look into getting it repaired, or purchase a new one.

    Slings are ripped. Obvious but worth noting, ripped slings on outdoor furniture hinder their aesthetic and safety.

    Your cushions are moldy. Don’t hold onto cushions with mold developing. Clean your cushions on a regular basis to prevent this. Regular cleaning aside, cushions that have been outside during rainstorms are very prone to mold, so make sure to bring them inside if you’re expecting rain.

    Disastrous weather has hit your area. Tornadoes, hurricanes, intense storms, etc. If your area has been hit by hard weather, make sure to do a thorough check of your patio furniture to make sure everything is still in place and safe to use. Even better: move what furniture you can inside before the storm.

    Don’t let maintaining your patio slide. Your outdoor space should be just as wondrous as your indoor one. If you need a refresher, here are a few tips for how to care for and repair your outdoor furniture.

    If we raised any flags for you with our guidelines above, check out our extensive patio furniture selection. We’re sure you’ll find a set worth inviting the whole neighborhood over to enjoy!

     




  • ALL THE WAYS EXERCISE CAN MAKE US HAPPY
  • This entry was posted in Fitness on April 08, 2016

  • Experts have been proclaiming physical fitness as the cure and a means of prevention to all kinds of illnesses since the beginning of time. From toning your muscles to losing the extra weight around your belly, to reducing your risk for fatal diseases, there are numerous physical benefits to staying active and incorporating exercise into your daily routine.

    But did you know that exercise can play a significant role in the way we view the world and ourselves? Did you know it can turn a bad or mediocre day into a great one? Exercise has powers beyond its physical ones.

    Here are a few ways exercise can benefit your mental health and improve your quality of life. You’ll be aching for a jog before you know it.

    Happy (and safe) chemicals. Exercise gives you a natural, 100% safe high. When you exercise, your body increases its production of serotonin or norepinephrine, low levels of which have been linked to depression.

    A better response to stress. People who live active lives often have bodies that are better equipped to handle life's everyday stresses. Do you want to be a better friend, spouse, boss, or overall person? Reduce your stress through staying active.

    Self-confidence. When you feel good in your body, that confidence often transfers over to your personal and professional life. When you’re in shape and toned, you carry yourself in a more assertive and positive way – making people admire and want to be around you. One of the most attractive qualities you can have is confidence.

    Better sleep. People who get 150 minutes of exercise a week are said to sleep better and be more alert when awake. Nothing helps your mood more than a solid night’s sleep – no sleeping pills needed.

    Challenges are put in perspective. When you’re training for a marathon, irritable coworkers seem like a breeze. Working your body hard and keeping it constantly challenged gives you a “can do” mindset, making you eager to tackle any problems that come your way. Physical fitness can ensure you get and stay goal oriented.

    Life is short – don’t make it shorter and less vibrant with a sedentary lifestyle. There are so many reasons to start incorporating exercise into your life. It can grant you better-fitting clothes, give you greater overall happiness, put a smile on your face, and reduce your risk for cancer, heart disease, diabetes, and more. What more reasons do you need to cut back on the couch time and get moving?




  • USING LOW IMPACT EXERCISE EQUIPMENT
  • This entry was posted in Fitness on March 23, 2016

  • Low impact or high impact? What’s the difference? What’s best for me? Many people don’t know what to make of low impact vs. high impact workouts.

    Low impact exercises have one or both of your feet staying touched to the ground while you move. Walking and roller-skating are two examples of low impact exercise. Low impact often also describes activities in which a piece of equipment or water supports the body (using an elliptical, swimming, etc.). High impact exercises involve both feet leaving the ground. Examples of high impact exercise are jump roping and running.

    Both forms of exercise offer many benefits, but low impact exercise is best for beginners, people who are obese, or anyone with joint issues or an injury. Pregnant women and older individuals are also advised to stick with low impact over high impact workouts.

    Below are a few at-home machines you can use to get an efficient low impact workout that won’t risk injury or overuse.

    The elliptical machine. Tried and true, the elliptical machine is one of the most popular low impact choices around. Burn fat, get your heart rate going, and strengthen your lower body without the impact that comes from running on the treadmill. Elliptical machines are a great cardio choice for people beginning exercise for the first time or who may be suffering from injuries.

    The rower. The rower is a full body workout machine that strengthens muscles, improves endurance, and increases flexibility. Several of KETTLER USA's innovative rowers even allow you to do up to 16 different exercises.

    The exercise bike. Biking frequently can help you build strength and stamina, reduce the risk of heart disease, and lose weight. And with one of our exercise bikes at home, you won’t even have to leave the house to do so.

    Your body! One highly effective way to get a low impact workout is to go for a brisk walk. Walking is a form of exercise almost anyone can find a way to fit into their day, from first thing in the morning before work, to on your lunch hour, to with a friend or significant other in the evening after dinner.

    Low impact exercises are a great way to ramp up your fitness routine in a safe way as a beginner. Once you’re at a higher level of fitness, feel free to experiment with high impact exercises that can have a tremendous effect on bone health.




  • 4 EXERCISES TO WORK YOUR CHEST
  • This entry was posted in Fitness on March 22, 2016

  • A strong chest can make everyday movements like pushing a shopping cart or tossing a basketball to your kid easier. Chest training should be a part of every full-body workout, and 10-20 quick push-ups aren’t enough.

    The chest is often neglected during beginner workouts focused primarily on cardio, but chest training can help everyone reach their optimum level of fitness, from fitness novices to pros. Here are a few fantastic exercises to make your chest – and you – stronger. Note: these exercises are best performed on a bench.

    The chest press. Lie on your back with your knees bent in front of you. Holding two dumbbells in your hands, with the front of your thumbs facing your head, keep your arms at ninety-degree angles, with your elbows by your sides. Slowly (with control) lift your arms up until they are only slightly bent. Hold for 1 second and then carefully come back down with control. Do not let your arms lower without resistance – coming down is just as important as going up. Repeat 10-15 times. If you’re up for it, pause for 30-40 seconds, and then do another set.

    The chest fly. Lie on your back again with your knees bent in front of you. Hold two dumbbells up with your arms at a ninety-degree angle again. This time your elbows should be raised just slightly above your chest. Slowly push your arms out to the side, aiming to make a cross with your body. Hold for 1 second and then move your elbows back in so your weights touch. Repeat 10-15 times, with the option to take a 30-40 second break, and then do another set.

    Around the world. Lie on your back, knees bent in front of you, with a dumbbell in each hand. Your palms should be facing the ceiling. Keeping your arms parallel to the floor, move your arms in a semicircle until the weights are above your head. Hold for 1 second, and then bring the weights back down to your original position through another semicircle. Repeat 10-15 times. If you can, pause for 30-40 seconds, and then do another set.

    The push-up. It shouldn’t be the “be all, end all” to your chest routine, but it should certainly be included. For the classic push-up, your hands should be placed firmly on the ground directly under your shoulders. Tighten your abs and keep your back flat. Slowly lower your body until your chest almost touches the floor. Make sure your butt doesn’t stick out. Slowly push yourself back up with control. How many push-ups you do depends on your fitness level. Beginners should aim for 15-20.

    You should be working your chest around two to three times a week. Remember to always keep form in mind to prevent injury and achieve the best results you can. Working your chest is a mandatory part of having a healthy, strong, and capable body.