Sport Aerobics is a competitive sport that has a unique combination of aerobic choreography and gymnastics elements. This sport creates an opportunity for adolescents, and adult individuals to compete in a sport that requires less risk than gymnastics while keeping the artistic quality and fun of aerobics.
The definition from the Code of Points 2001-2004 defines the sport as: "Sports Aerobics is the ability to perform continuous complex and high intensity movement patterns to music which originate from traditional aerobic dance. The routine must demonstrate continuous movement, flexibility, strength and utilization of the seven basic steps with a high degree of perfectly executed elements of difficulty."
Sports aerobics is a recreational and competitive sport that involves performing agile movement patterns to fast paced music. It is a sport that is less strenuous than gymnastics but it has the fun and artistic quality of aerobics.
The competitive form of sports aerobics began in 1984. Whether it began in the United States or Japan is still a matter of controversy. However it was only in 1995 that the Federation International de Gymnastique (FIG) adopted Sports Aerobics as the 4th discipline of Gymnastics. The 1st world championships hosted by the FIG was held in Paris ,France. With every passing year the World Championships boast of more individuals and nations participating. Today, over 45 nations worldwide host national competitions that qualify athletes for numerous International and World Championship events such as:
- Suzuki World Cup
- FIG World Aerobic Championships (rotating European countries)
- World Aerobic Championships (USA)
- World Games (rotating countries)
- Pan American Championships
- Brazilian Grand Prix
- Adidas World Cup (Korea)
Sports aerobics has five main categories which include , Individual Male, Individual Female, Mixed Pairs, Trio and Group. The performing athletes have to do a two-minute floor routine to music, which demonstrate stamina, strength, flexibility, power, and artistic qualities. The judges assess the athletes on aerobic content, choreography, musical interpretation, co-ordination, intensity, execution, and difficulty of the routines.
Every routine is judged based on three basic components which are Artistic, Execution and Difficulty. Artistic is the composition of the routine, creativity, variety of movements to the music and expression, lifts in pairs, trios and groups. Execution is the perfection of each movement. Difficulty is the number of required gymnastic elements demonstrating strength, flexibility, power and local muscular endurance.
Advantages of Sports Aerobics
- Builds strength and flexibility
- Develops agility, co-ordination and self confidence
- Is modern, fast paced and intense
- Is exciting, creative and aesthetically pleasing to watch
- Develops aerobic endurance within fun and entertaining environments
Disadvantages of Sports Aerobics
- As it is a new activity, it takes time for your body to get used to the change. There may be soreness or stiffness during the first few days.
- There can be injuries if the exercise is not done properly, that it is done without care.
- It is not suitable for everyone as it can at times be too taxing and straining for some people.