10 Most Dangerous Fish to Eat

The area of the East Coast of Florida where I live is currently being polluted by a vile blue/green algae that is killing the local fish and stinking to high heaven. It has the consistency of guacamole and is caused by runoff contaminants flowing from Lake Okeechobee. This algae is not only getting the fish sick, but also the people exposed to it. This is a reoccurring problem seems to happen every year that south Florida gets above average rainfall levels. Whatever the cause is, it is certainly not good for our fishery, our health and may result in millions of tourism dollars that will be lost if the problem is not resolved soon.

This pollution problem got me to thinking about the various fish that may live through the pollution in their environment and pass those pollutants onto us fish loving, seafood eating enthusiasts.

Some time on the internet allowed me to come up with some of the most toxic fish that are swimming in our local area. The main contaminant in the fish mentioned below is mercury. Mercury is very poisonous to humans and accumulates in predatory fish as they prey upon other contaminated species of fish. As we eat the contaminated fish this mercury accumulates in our bodies as well.

Mercury has many deleterious effects upon humans. The 3 most serious are:

• Brain damage
• Liver damage
• Kidney damage

The fish that tend to have the most mercury in their tissue are listed below. These fish include:

• Kingfish (king mackerel)
• Cobia
• Sharks
• Albacore tuna
• Spanish mackerel
• Marlin
• Swordfish
• Bluefish
• Tilefish
• Amberjacks

There are still some delicious fish out there that typically do not have high mercury levels. These fish include:

• Dolphin (mahi)
• Flounder
• Vermillion Snapper
• Tripletails
• Triggerfish

The fish mentioned in this article are not necessarily bad to eat in moderation. Just like with most things in life moderation is the key to health. This article was meant to be looked at as a public service notice to those of us that eat a lot of fish. If you love to eat king mackerel, you still can but maybe eating it every day would be a bad idea.

Another thing that should be taken into consideration is that fact that fish are typically high in selenium. Selenium actually breaks down mercury in the body. This is probably why eating high mercury fish in moderation typically doesn’t cause too many health problems for most people.

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How To Choose A Badminton Racket

racket-balance-pointOf all racquet sports, badminton has the thinnest, most lightweight of all rackets. As such, the sport which features singles or doubles games to drive a “bird” or shuttlecock over the net is considered the fastest game all over the world of sports. Therefore it’s imperative that you choose the right kind of racquet based on your skill level so you don’t ruin the experience of playing the game. To choose the right kind of racquet, here are some factors you need to consider: frame construction, grip size, balance and string configuration.

Step 1
First up is frame construction. According to Hart Sports New Zealand, the most affordable types are made from steel but they do come heavy. Lightweight aluminum rackets offer more control while graphite models are the lightest and should give off excellent speed, handling, and control. Experienced players will find graphite rackets fit for them while beginners ought to start with steel or aluminum.

Step 2
Grip size is also an essential element to the game. Make sure your hand fits around the handle of your racquet choice perfectly by trying it out before you make the purchase. Some shops will give you size measurements advice and letting you try different grip sizes of the same racquet. When in doubt, go for a smaller grip size that you think you need. This is because you can simply add overgrips to increase the size overtime if you find the handle too small for comfort.

Step 3
Balance as well as comfort and fit are also of prime importance. Make sure you visit local badminton clubs to try out several racquet brands to see how you and your racquet fit each other.

Step 4
For string tension, new players need relatively low tension ranging from 15 to 22 lbs. This amount of tensions gives in to every strike, giving you more power. More advanced players who already have their wrist-power already developed will like a 22 to 28 lbs. racquet which gives more accuracy and control.

Step 5
PVC-coated steel strings are the strongest type of strings by their responsiveness is sometimes too low for experienced players. Nylon strings are more likely to break but they do have a higher level of response which allows for more control.

Step 6
The shape of the racquet head is also a factor. KK Racket Exchange Company says that isometric heads feature a relatively square shape thereby increasing the racket’s “sweet spot”. Oval heads have a smaller sweet spot but they do pack more power for seasoned players.

Step 7
Finally, match shaft flexibility to your skill level. Stiff shafts provide better performances via control so they are fit for more advanced or professional players. Flexibility adds speed to every swing, creating more power so new players will definitely need more flexibility from their rackets to generate more speed and power while they are still on the learning curve.

Now, you know how to choose the best badminton racket for your game.

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Ultimate Tips for Safe Summer Swimming

Swimming is the ultimate summer activity and you have likely already discovered that your kids turn into little fish the moment that school lets out for break. While they only notice the fun involved with a splash in the pool, you know that their safety is the first priority. As your kids don their goggles and swimsuits, use these tips to ensure that everyone stays safe in the water this season.

Have Safety Equipment Available

Life jackets are a must when your kids go swimming. However, many parents overlook other essential pieces of safety equipment that should be near every body of water. At a new swimming pool, make sure reaching and throwing equipment is easily accessible along with a well-stocked first-aid kit. Supervising adults should also have a cell phone nearby to contact emergency services if a need arises.

Watch the Weather

Summer storms are unfortunately common in many parts of the country, so it is important to keep an eye on the forecast. Teach your kids to exit the pool immediately at the first sign of lightning. Your kids should also understand to never go swimming in natural bodies of water during a storm since water levels can quickly rise to dangerous levels.

Protect Delicate Skin

Kids love summer but a nasty sunburn can ruin their fun for several weeks. Unfortunately, they will likely forget to reapply sunscreen periodically during their swimming sessions without a reminder. Set a timer if necessary and follow the instructions on the sunscreen regarding how often to apply it after exposure to water. For extra protection, try to minimize swimming sessions during the hottest part of the day, and shower after swimming to remove chlorine from skin since it can cause a rash on sensitive individuals.

Practice Swimming at Summer Camp

When it comes to swimming, professionally taught lessons are essential for your child’s safety. At summer camp, kids get the opportunity to swim every day and sometimes even twice a day. They also have the ability to swim in either a heated indoor pool or a natural lake so they are comfortable in different types of swimming conditions. Since lifeguards and coaches at camp are trained in CPR and First-Aid and are always there to supervise the kids, this is one of the safest ways to learn to swim.

Follow Posted Safety Signs

Whenever your child visits a new swimming facility, take a few minutes to help them become familiar with the safety rules. For example, signs warning not to dive should be taken seriously because the water may be too shallow for head-first diving. At water parks, kids should follow the posted guidelines regarding age and size limitations before playing on slides and other aquatic rides.

Swimming offers many benefits for kids including the opportunity to engage in physical activity while socializing with friends. In all the excitement, however, kids can sometimes lose sight of safety as they splash and play in the water. By making sure to review the safety rules with your kids, and maintaining their skills through supervised swimming opportunities, you can be certain that your kids are safe as they enjoy their favorite summer activity.

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The Benefits of Portable Backstops for Baseball Teams

As a team owner or recreational facility, time and money are your biggest concerns – well that, and a great record for the season. You may have looked at every angle for ways to save on time and money for your baseball season, but have you considered the saving potential that comes from portable backstops for baseball teams? The use of this field accessory is a growing trend in youth and collegiate level baseball and for good reason: it helps you save big!

What About the Cost Upfront?

Yes, it is true that a portable backstop will cost you an upfront investment, but that is the point: it is an investment. As with all investments, it is about the return and long-term savings, not the initial cost. Backstops, especially the ones you can move around, yield higher savings than fixed units.

Here are some ways a portable backstop can help you save:

  1. Balls stay in play and on the field. Regardless of where your team practices, you need a way to catch the balls and keep them in play (or at least on the field). Portable units do just that. Without this barrier, foul balls could easily go over the backstop and be lost. Your expensive balls are also damaged by striking concrete or asphalt at fast speeds. With these units, regardless of where you practice, all balls stay in play.
  2. Players stay at practice. While it might not seem like a big deal, players having to run out and chase balls takes up a chunk of practice time, and that time could be spent working on things to make the players better at their game. With a portable backstop, you turn any grassy area into a batting practice area and players can stick to the game instead of chasing foul balls!
  3. Versatility. Permanent backstops offer limited to no versatility. However, with a portable unit, you can use it for team practice, schools, and sports complexes.

How to Pick the Right Portable Backstop for Your Baseball Team

The type of backstop you need will depend on the baseball team, where you practice and what you need it for. The good news is, however, these barriers can quickly be folded up, stored and taken to your next location. A few things to look for when you are purchasing portable backstops include:

  • Tires -These Backstops are heavy, so it is very important to have high quality pneumatic tires to help make it easier to adjust and relocate the backstop.
  • Netting – You need a high quality fiber for your netting. Cheap netting will often wear down with regular use, and also with the exposure to UV rays, wind and rain; making your investment a short-lived one that needs to be frequently replaced.
  • Quality Frames – Stick to frames that are rust-resistant, durable and often made from steel rather than plastic. These are more likely to withstand the elements, and also less likely to dent when struck by fast pitched balls or fouls.

Whether you want to improve a little league team’s practice or you need to make your school’s field more versatile, consider investing in a portable backstop for your team practices. You will find that your unit pays for itself quickly and your team’s efficiency and practice times improve dramatically.

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How to Box – 15 Boxing Tips

Boxing involves mostly punching and defense. It may not sound very complicated, but training to knock an opponent out requires complication and sweating off those muscles to a huge extent. Here are a few tips to help in training, improve your punch and develop your defense.

• While training the most important thing to remember is to drink lots of water. All that sweat that is getting dispensed from your body makes you dehydrated and you will not have the energy to workout. So, stay hydrated.

• Make friends and be humble. Do not hesitate to ask anyone for boxing tips. The more you know about another’s technique the more you learn about your weaknesses.

• Do not push yourself to the limit from day one. Start from the bottom and increase your capacity one day at a time. Make your training fun and worthwhile. Pushing yourself over the edge could make you quit quickly.

• Punch light and sharp! Make your workout more valuable by following these two simple rules. This will allow more bag time and you will also have the energy to do so. Putting a show by breaking a sweat and huffing and puffing will get you nowhere.

• Breathe! Most end up holding their breath! Remember to breathe out while punching. Looking at your opponent can be motivating in most angles. Do not look at the floor but watch how your opponent crumbles before your eyes.

• Keep hitting and punching no matter what. Let your opponent know that you are no quitter. A boxing speed bag can help while training to punch in a continuous manner. Use your whole body to your advantage. Throw your body at every punch, this way you do not sacrifice any form of power.

• Use Short hooks, short rights and short uppercuts combined with long jabs. You earn more time and strength.

• Keep calm and throw combo punches of both hard and light order. Always keep your opponent guessing, thinking and wondering what your next move might be.

• Utilize the opportunity to land your punches in every part of the body. Keeping his head at bay work on how to encounter the rest of his body.

• Practice 3 to 5 combos for each opponent. Trying out every combo can be a waste of time and energy.

• During training if you are out of breathe, calm down, inform your trainer and take a breather.

• Always remember, hands high, elbows low and head movement. You will find a lot of boxers moving all around the ring for no reason going off the fight. Focus on your opponent and attack at every given chance avoiding your opponent’s blows at the same time. Using boxing focus mitts can help during training.

• Also do not wait for your opponent to finish his punch, if you have a gap, take the chance even if it does not land.

• While in the ring, there’s no room for relaxation. Always focus, focus and focus. A small distraction could be the chance your opponent was waiting for.

• Above all, have fun. Make boxing a fun sport and make the most out of it while training. Be serious while training but do not make it boring.

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Top 5 Inflatable Water Games To Have A Fun On A River

As you might know, inflatable water games have been around for years on the market, and these games are mainly intended for the swimming pools. They are suitable for both kids and adults. However, not everyone can play with these games in the pools, as he may not have a personal swimming pool in his yard or it is prohibited to use such games in a certain city public pool.

Luckily, there are rivers all around us. So, you can use inflatable water toys on these water areas. Why not? You will not be prohibited by anybody, and the rivers are spacious, so a large number of people can enjoy playing with these items at the same place. Make sure to use a quiet part of the river because you cannot fix these toys to the water surface like on the land.

In the following text, you can read about the following five inflatable water toys for the rivers: the walking water ball, inflatable water slide, flying fish boat, large air tube, and the inflatable water polo field.

Walking water ball

Have you ever seen an inflatable water walking ball? Many people find that it is very amusing to play with such a ball on the river. These balls are made of transparent inflatable materials and there is a special zipper in their construction that allows entering the ball. How to use this ball? As you may assume, you should open the zipper, get into the ball, close the zipper, and someone else (who is out of the ball) needs to inflate it by using an appropriate blower – a kind of electric pump. When you are moving inside the ball, it rotates around its axis, and you will “walk” on the water surface. A bit of training is necessary for this action!

Inflatable water slide

There is a wide range of inflatable slides on the market, and some of them are designed for the water areas while the others are intended for the land. When it comes to the river water slides, the inflatable slides are the best option. What’s more, some of these slides come with polls in their composition.

Flying fish boat

If you have seen a flying fish, you will notice the great similarity between this inflatable boat and the aforementioned fish. Powered by a motorboat, this boat can fly over the river like the real flying fish. It is an amazing experience!

Large air tube

For this large tube, you will need to find rapids on the river. It is designed for up to seven persons to sit on it and to enjoy sailing on the river. If you don’t like the adrenaline activities, you can use it on calm water areas as well.

Inflatable water polo field

This is the best water game for those who like playing water polo. An inflatable water polo field consists of a few air tubes that serve as the frame of the goal and the border of the field. You just need to inflate it and put it on the river.

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Spear Fishing & Sharks

It seems logical that sharks and spear fishing don’t mix very well together. Something about the fact that a dead fish at the end of a spear or hanging from your belt that just may attract a shark that is looking for a meal.

Considering the shark’s senses are highly attuned to thrashing fish and dead fish for that matter makes the spear fisher a possible unintended target. Years ago when I used to spear fish a lot in Long Island Sound, NY we didn’t have the danger of a possible shark attack because back forty years ago there were only sand sharks to deal with.

Now with global warming I really don’t know what type of sharks migrate into Long Island Sound during the summer months. What we had to deal with were currents, fishing line and boats all of which could cause injury or death.

Since the sound was quite shallow for the most part a short spear gun was needed because of it’s maneuverability around the rocks where the black fish and stripped bass lurked. The spear gun was powered by three surgical rubber bands that propelled a steel shaft approximately twelve feet underwater.

It was a dangerous weapon that needed to be treated with respect. One of the problems was missing a fish and having your shaft hit a rock and bend which drastically affected future shots. I used a detachable tip because a large stripped bass will bend a shaft if it hits a bony area and the fish then struggles to get free.

Nowadays there are six foot spear guns for open water diving whereby a spear fisher free dives fifty or more feet and shoots ocean going fish. Truly the top of the sport in terms of athletic ability, endurance and guts. If you have ever dove into the nothingness of a deep ocean you will know what I mean. You look down and you not only can’t see the bottom but it all goes dark beyond a certain depth. It can be unnerving to say the least.

One point I would like to bring up is that spear fishing with scuba is for people that have no ability and like to shoot helpless fish that can’t escape. There is absolutely no skill involved and in many parts of the world this practice is outlawed.

Anyway, sharks are attracted to fish that have been speared and will attack a spear fisher if the opportunity presents itself. There are safeguards that you can take to help minimize the danger of such encounters.

One, As soon as you spear the fish return to shore or your boat and deposit the fish and then go back into the water. Do not drag the dead fish on a stringer hanging from your waist.

Two, If this is not possible then make sure you have a inner tube with a visible dive flag with you. The center of the inner tube is a great place to attach a heavy duty plastic bag so when you put the fish inside the bag the blood will no longer act as a lure for sharks.

Three, This seems quite obvious but if there are sharks in the area that have been sighted then it would make sense not to spear fish in that area!

Four, If you do encounter a shark of any size while you are spear fishing then do the smart thing and give the\ shark what he wants. He does not want you because you are not his preferred food source but if you don’t give him what he wants then you may become an accidental meal.

Five, It the unlikely event that you have disregarded all these prudent suggestions and find yourself face to face with a shark then use your spear gun as a prod to keep the shark at bay. Always face the shark as you retreat to shore or your boat and keep the spear in its face. Jabbing it’s nose or eyes may work but no guarantees. If you do get safely to your boat or shore then call it a day because you just dodged possible death.

It’s a great sport but as with anything that involves the ocean it has its inherent dangers that can be mitigated by using common sense. As a plug for a shark deterrent product using shark bio barrier on your fins, belt, inner tube may just help keep the sharks away!

Spear fishing is a dangerous sport if you are the in an area where sharks are, feed in or migrate to. Since spear fishing involves shooting fish which causes their deaths this will cause the shark’s to consider the fish as a food source and since the spear fisher is close to the fish then he or she may be attacked.

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Badminton Rules: Getting the Perfect Serve

When it comes to racket based games everyone knows that one of the most crucial offenses is a good defense. That’s why when you are truly trying to win a game- you have to make sure that you do the best when it comes your turn to serve.

A solid serve can help to ensure that you don’t have to end up defending yourself when it comes time to truly play the game. One of the tricks to a good serve is to make sure that you are completely aware of the service rules and can adhere to them. Service errors are costly and in a game like badminton where anything can happen, you want to make sure you are leading during your service and not defending. Here are some of the crucial service rules that you will have to follow in badminton.

1. Don’t delay – The service form in badminton consists of a position where you raise your back foot. The moment your back foot is raised you cannot go back and forth but have to serve immediately. Failure to do so will result in the point being awarded to the other side

2. Positioning – Service in both badminton and tennis involves both players being on the opposite diagonal side of the court. If you serve right in front of your opponent, the point will again be given to your opponent. Positioning is also important in doubles badminton. In the case of doubles badminton you cannot block the view of your opponent to the server. In addition, both feet must be touching the court

3. Racket rules – In badminton it is required that the racket hit the bottom or base of the shuttle cock. It is also important to note that the racket shaft only be pointing downward. This means that the head of the racket must be pointing upward. It is also important to remember that during a service the racket only starts from the back and continues forward. You cannot move the racket back and forth once it starts to move forward.

4. Shuttle cock rules – During service the shuttle cock must always be below the waist of the person serving. In addition, during service, the shuttle cock should never be hit in a downwards motion but always in an upward one to end up on the other side of the court. Missing the shuttlecock during service is considered a point for the other side and a service error for the server

5. Etiquette – The server shall not make an attempt to serve if the opponent isn’t ready. However, should the opponent try to hit the serve, it will be considered a good service.

Service rules are created to ensure that there is always an element of defending your side during the badminton game. Ensuring that you have a solid serve means that just about half the battle of the game is in your favor. Of course, this is also dependent on how good your opponent’s service is and how good their return is.

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