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20 Affordable Hobbies To Enrich Your Life

20 Affordable Hobbies To Enrich Your Life

We all need a hobby. It’s what gets us out of the house, and whether it is stamp collecting or paragliding, everyone loves to escape from the humdrum of work and let their mind escape into something they love.

But of course it’s not always feasible to do the things we love. It’s impossible to be a skiing fanatic living in Texas, without travelling thousands of miles and spending hundreds of dollars to touch the snow. Just as you’re going to have to spend hundreds to even reach China before playing the tables of Macau.

But never fear, you can find viable alternatives, and they won’t break the bank either. Below, you’ll find 20 hobbies we have compiled to keep you busy while not going broke.

Physically and Mentally Active Hobbies

1. Indoor Skiing

Of course we’ll start with all those skiing fans. The skis themselves will set you back upwards of $700 and that’s without boots, salopettes, jackets, and slope fees, but you can enjoy your hobby for much, much less. Ski hire is the obvious option, while you don’t have to travel to the Alps to enjoy a black run, but rather visit your nearest dry or indoor slope.

There are hundreds across the world, from Dubai, to Manchester, to Lynchburg, Virginia with facilities for both boarding and skiing, alongside ski hire and plenty of classes so you can learn to cut through the snow with not a flake in sight.

2. Rock Climbing Inside

Like snow, mountains are not easy to find – particularly ones that are safe to climb. But climbing centers? Well, they’re a little easier. Of course you don’t get the stunning views, but you also don’t have to brave the elements either.

You can stay dry and wind-chill free while sampling lead climbing, boldering, and top roping without the need for specialty shoes, which alone can retail up to $250. This is in addition to the savings you enjoy from not having to purchase a rope, harnesses, and other protective gear.

Not only is a climbing center a great place to develop a hobby, but also the perfect location to keep in practice between trips away to the mountains.

rock climbing

    3. Yoga and Meditation

    Not only are yoga and meditation hobbies that will improve your physical and mental fitness, but they can also be practiced with little investment. Knowledge and time are all that are required to learn the fundamental basics of each, while you may also need to purchase a simple, $20 yoga mat to optimize comfort during daily workouts.

    These disciplines have a noticeable impact on your outlook and physical well-being, making them enjoyable and soothing past-times that actively improve your quality of life.

    4. Hike and Ramble in the Great Outdoors

    There are numerous types of cardiovascular activities, and your preferred option will depend a great deal on your level of fitness. Less intense forms of cardio are often considered to be gentle and recreational past-times, with hiking a relevant example.

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    Simply by investing in an affordable pair of hiking boots and independent layers of clothing, you can tackle some of the UK’s most picturesque and challenging trails at your leisure. This can cost as little as $100, depending on your existing clothing and the footwear that you own.

    Chamonix Hiking View of Valley

      5. Jogging in your Local Park

      In the UK market, the cost of joining a gym can vary between £50 and £60 per month nationwide. Those who select a daily membership plan can pay as much as £5 per day, and regardless of your preferred option you will be required to pay a considerable sum over the course of a year.

      Gym membership is not a pre-requisite of a healthy lifestyle, and those who wish to remain active in their leisure time should instead consider jogging at their local park. This is far more effective and even more challenging than using a treadmill, while your body also benefits from an intake of fresh air and running along variable terrain.

      6. Volunteer

      If you are keen to develop your philosophical outlook and learn by embracing new cultures, you may want to consider volunteering your time to participate in a host of overseas projects. Western nations like the US and UK offer a wide variety of overseas community programs, with the latter’s government currently managing an estimated 150 projects across 25 countries all over the world.

      This can help you to further your personal development, expand your mind and discover a purpose without having to spend heavily or outside of your means.

      Online Hobbies

      7. Online Gaming

      The same principle of fees can be applied to bricks and mortar casinos, which often charge a premium for membership, drinks and food. While you won’t find the glamour of Las Vegas and Macau anywhere else in the world, you can still enjoy the thrill of the green felt with relative ease.

      Whether you’re a high roller or just learning the game, you could visit your local casino, or better still, fire up your laptop and bring the casino to you. Playing a few rounds in an online casino has become incredibly popular over the last few years with the likes of Full Tilt dealing to millions of members.

      You can play roulette, blackjack, and poker without even booking a flight to McCarran, and better still you don’t even have to play for real money. Practice your craft before playing for real stakes, and you never know – you might build up a bankroll big enough to get you to the Bellagio.

      Casino

        8. Social Gaming

        If your preference is for traditional video gaming, you may very well balk at the cost of individual platforms and titles. If you are willing to swap your console for the type of social gaming experiences available online and through your mobile devices, however, you will be pleasantly surprised to find a diverse and thrilling range of titles.

        These can often be accessed for free through either social media outlets or mobile app stores, and you retain the autonomy to decide how and when you spend your money during game play. Players usually have the choice to progress through levels either by paying real world money or completing in-game challenges, and those who are willing to invest time into the endeavor can access titles regularly with a minimal investment.

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        9. Blogging

        While Google’s aggressive drive to improve the quality of online content may have made it increasingly difficult to earn a lucrative living out of blogging, this remains a cost-effective and potentially satisfying past-time that enables you to indulge your creative side. This is especially true for those with a flair for website design, as broad templates and domain names can be purchased for a minimal cost before being transformed into a responsive and attractive blog.

        Not only does blogging represent a cost-effective hobby that exercises your creativity, but it can also deliver some remuneration in terms of paid advertisements and sponsored posts once your blog has been established.

        10. Sell Unwanted Goods Online

        On a similar note, embracing e-commerce and selling goods online also represents an affordable and engaging hobby that can also deliver a financial return.

        It is also relatively easy, as you simply need to register an account on e-commerce sites such as eBay and Amazon, before listing your items and completing transactions. The main benefit of this hobby is that it can consume as much or as little of your time as you want, while costs can be kept to a minimum if you simply choose to sell recycled or second-hand goods.

        You can also easily scale your e-commerce operation over time, although it is important to retain a keen sense of perspective and enjoyment when selling items online.

        ecommerce (1)

          11. Online Community Projects

          As we can see, the thrift market has exploded recently, thanks primarily to a combination of increased environmental awareness and a gradual fall in the average rate of disposable income. Beyond creating an opportunity to save and make money, however, the burgeoning online thrift market has also developed entire communities of people who wish to share and swap items in the local area.

          Take Freecycle, for example, which represents a non-profit movement that promotes the virtues of reusing and recycling unwanted items. Participating in such a community movement can be extremely worthwhile, as it occupies your time and also enables you to make a positive contribution to the environment.

          12. Trace your Ancestry

          As of late, software and websites have been developed to help individuals trace their family history back to its origins. This has emerged as something of a hobby for some, especially those with a thoughtful nature and an innate passion for history.

          The growing interest in genealogy underlines how engrossing this past-time can be, while there are also a rising number of online communities that can help you to trace your family history and indulge your passion. This is also extremely affordable, with outlets such as Ancestry.com offering competitive rates and membership discounts.

          13. Connect with an Online Pen-pal

          The online revolution and the development of remote communication techniques has made it possible to connect with people regardless of their geographical location. This has revolutionized traditional hobbies like connecting with an international pen-pal, as this is now more affordable, and enables you to connect with these individuals in real time.

          While you may be able to cut costs by saving money on stamps and stationary, you will need to identify viable websites through which you can connect with like-minded pen-pals. This enables you to identify free or low-cost resources, while also targeting individuals with similar interests.

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          Arts and Craft Hobbies

          15. Create Personalized Travel Mementos

          Regardless of how or where you travel, it is nice to keep mementos that fill you with warm and pleasant recollections of your adventures. The only issue with this is the cost of traditional souvenirs, which are often sold at a premium to capitalize on the lucrative tourism market.

          You can create your own mementos for a relative pittance, however, while also developing a passion for art and photography. Simply by enlarging your photographs and transforming them into beautiful canvases, you can enrich the visual appeal of your home while also creating low-cost and everlasting memories of your many travels.

          16. Knitting and Crocheting

          Knitting and crocheting have to be two of the cheapest and most versatile of hobbies. You can pick up knitting needles, crochet hooks and all kinds of wool from most craft supply, thrift and charity stores.

          What’s more, if you cannot quite find the color that you like, you can always dye it yourself using Kool Aid. You can then weave the wool into pretty much anything – clothes, decor for your home or even toys.

          The best part is that you can find a whole host of free patterns on knitting forums on the internet, or commit to an affordable monthly subscription with a crafts magazine that supplies materials and inspiration.

          Knitting-51

            17. Embroidery

            Once you have knitted or woven fabrics into garments and accessories, you may want to embellish them with needle, thread and yarn. This is a past-time known commonly as embroidery, and it is renowned as an extremely affordable and enjoyable hobby.

            Embroidery is the process of decorating fabric with colored threads and patterns, although it can also incorporate materials like metal strips, pearls, beads and even sequins. It is most commonly used on clothing and garments, and those with a passion for this past-time can reduce costs by embellishing their existing clothes to create a unique new look.

            A basic sewing kit can cost as little as $15, while yarn can be purchased in bulk from thrift or charity shops for just a few dollars.

            Multicolored-embroidey

              18. Upcycle

              Upcycling is an excellent and thrifty hobby to undertake because you can get started simply with the materials and DIY tools that you already have at home. You can pretty much transform anything, including mirrors, dressers, television cabinets or cupboards.

              It is amazing how simply adding a lick of paint, some new handles or even a little stenciling can give an old piece of furniture a whole new life. As your confidence grows you could even try combing furniture to alter its use and create something unique.

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              Your imagination and sense of adventure really is the limit to what you can achieve, while you can also use your passion to participate in upcycling business start-up and non-profit collaborations.

              19. Origami

              Learning the art of origami, the ancient Chinese paper craft, is another versatile hobby that you can do anywhere. And you don’t even need to devote considerable amounts of time or money to it.

              You can pick up the basics in an hour or two using an online tutorial on YouTube or in a book borrowed from library. You can then go on to fold and crease paper into all sorts of wonderful creations that can be used to amuse, decorate or even store your household items safely and securely.

              An engrossing and low-cost hobby, origami can also wow others and become a unique party trick.

              origami-decorations-3

                20. Loom Weaving

                Despite its recent popularization in modern culture, loom weaving is not just for kids. It is also a relatively ancient art. These versatile little loops are also extremely versatile, and can be weaved into pretty much anything, not just bands.

                Patterns are available on the internet for how to weave them into rings to wear, sleeves to decorate the arms on your glasses, toy animals or even clothes. They come in a huge array of colors, including some that are quite luminous, and they are even available in glow in the dark, so there is enough diversity to interest those with a real passion for arts and crafts.

                20. Decoupage

                Decoupage is a deceptively easy and diverse craft, and one that some have turned into a visually stunning art-form. It is also extremely engaging and affordable, as you can simply utilize colorful tissue paper that has either been discarded or left at the back of your cupboards.

                By cutting this fabric into a host of shapes and decorating it, you can create everything from a trinket box cover to a unique piece of artwork.

                decoupage-techniques-8

                  Featured photo credit: Freelance it Labs via freelanceitlab.com

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                  Last Updated on March 25, 2020

                  How to Live Longer? 21 Ways to Live a Long Life

                  How to Live Longer? 21 Ways to Live a Long Life

                  When it comes to living long, genes aren’t everything. Research has revealed a number of simple lifestyle changes you can make that could help to extend your life, and some of them may surprise you.

                  So, how to live longer? Here are 21 ways to help you live a long life

                  1. Exercise

                  It’s no secret that physical activity is good for you. Exercise helps you maintain a healthy body weight and lowers your blood pressure, both of which contribute to heart health and a reduced risk of heart disease–the top worldwide cause of death.

                  2. Drink in Moderation

                  I know you’re probably picturing a glass of red wine right now, but recent research suggests that indulging in one to three glasses of any type of alcohol every day may help to increase longevity.[1] Studies have found that heavy drinkers as well as abstainers seem to have a higher risk of early mortality than moderate drinkers.

                  3. Reduce Stress in Your Life

                  Stress causes your body to release a hormone called cortisol. At high levels, this hormone can increase blood pressure and cause storage of abdominal fat, both of which can lead to an increased risk of heart disease.

                  4. Watch Less Television

                  A 2008 study found that people who watch six hours of television per day will likely die an average of 4.8 years earlier than those who don’t.[2] It also found that, after the age of 25, every hour of television watched decreases life expectancy by 22 minutes.

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                  Television promotes inactivity and disengagement from the world, both of which can shorten your lifespan.

                  5. Eat Less Red Meat

                  Red meat consumption is linked to an increased risk of heart disease and cancer.[3] Swapping out your steaks for healthy proteins, like fish, may help to increase longevity.

                  If you can’t stand the idea of a steak-free life, reducing your consumption to less than two to three servings a week can still incur health benefits.

                  6. Don’t Smoke

                  This isn’t exactly a revelation. As you probably well know, smoking significantly increases your risk of cancer.

                  7. Socialize

                  Studies suggest that having social relationships promotes longevity.[4] Although scientists are unsure of the reasons behind this, they speculate that socializing leads to increased self esteem as well as peer pressure to maintain health.

                  8. Eat Foods Rich in Omega-3 Fatty Acids

                  Omega-3 fatty acids decrease the risk of heart disease[5] and perhaps even Alzheimer’s disease.[6] Salmon and walnuts are two of the best sources of Omega-3s.

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                  9. Be Optimistic

                  Studies suggest that optimists are at a lower risk for heart disease and, generally, live longer than pessimists.[7] Researchers speculate that optimists have a healthier approach to life in general–exercising more, socializing, and actively seeking out medical advice. Thus, their risk of early mortality is lower.

                  10. Own a Pet

                  Having a furry-friend leads to decreased stress, increased immunity, and a lessened risk of heart disease.[8] Depending on the type of pet, they can also motivate you to be more active.

                  11. Drink Coffee

                  Studies have found a link between coffee consumption and longer life.[9] Although the reasons for this aren’t entirely clear, coffee’s high levels of antioxidants may play a role. Remember, though, drowning your cup of joe in sugar and whipped cream could counter whatever health benefits it may hold.

                  12. Eat Less

                  Japan has the longest average lifespan in the world, and the longest lived of the Japanese–the natives of the Ryukyu Islands–stop eating when they’re 80% full. Limiting your calorie intake means lower overall stress on the body.

                  13. Meditate

                  Meditation leads to stress reduction and lowered blood pressure.[10] Research suggests that it could also increase the activity of an enzyme associated with longevity.[11]

                  Taking as little as 15 minutes a day to find your zen can have significant health benefits, and may even extend your life.

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                  How to meditate? Here’re 8 Meditation Techniques for Complete Beginners

                  14. Maintain a Healthy Weight

                  Being overweight puts stress on your cardiovascular system, increasing your risk of heart disease.[12] It may also increase the risk of cancer.[13] Maintaining a healthy weight is important for heart health and living a long and healthy life.

                  15. Laugh Often

                  Laughter reduces the levels of stress hormones, like cortisol, in your body. High levels of these hormones can weaken your immune system.

                  16. Don’t Spend Too Much Time in the Sun

                  Too much time in the sun can lead to an increased risk of skin cancer. However, sun exposure is an excellent way to increase levels of vitamin D, so soaking up a few rays–perhaps for around 15 minutes a day–can be healthy. The key is moderation.

                  17. Cook Your Own Food

                  When you eat at restaurants, you surrender control over your diet. Even salads tend to have a large number of additives, from sugar to saturated fats. Eating at home will enable you to monitor your food intake and ensure a healthy diet.

                  Take a look at these 14 Healthy Easy Recipes for People on the Go and start to cook your own food.

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                  18. Eat Mushrooms

                  Mushrooms are a central ingredient in Dr. Joel Fuhrman’s GOMBS disease fighting diet. They boost the immune system and may even reduce the risk of cancer.[14]

                  19. Floss

                  Flossing helps to stave off gum disease, which is linked to an increased risk of cancer.[15]

                  20. Eat Foods Rich in Antioxidants

                  Antioxidants fight against the harmful effects of free-radicals, toxins which can cause cell damage and an increased risk of disease when they accumulate in the body. Berries, green tea and broccoli are three excellent sources of antioxidants.

                  Find out more antiosidants-rich foods here: 13 Delicious Antioxidant Foods That Are Great for Your Health

                  21. Have Sex

                  Getting down and dirty two to three times a week can have significant health benefits. Sex burns calories, decreases stress, improves sleep, and may even protect against heart disease.[16] It’s an easy and effective way to get exercise–so love long and prosper!

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                  Featured photo credit: Sweethearts/Patrick via flickr.com

                  Reference

                  [1] Wiley Online Library: Late‐Life Alcohol Consumption and 20‐Year Mortality
                  [2] BMJ Journals: Television viewing time and reduced life expectancy: a life table analysis
                  [3] Arch Intern Med.: Red Meat Consumption and Mortality
                  [4] PLOS Medicine: Social Relationships and Mortality Risk: A Meta-analytic Review
                  [5] JAMA: Fish and Omega-3 Fatty Acid Intake and Risk of Coronary Heart Disease in Women
                  [6] NCBI: Effects of Omega‐3 Fatty Acids on Cognitive Function with Aging, Dementia, and Neurological Diseases: Summary
                  [7] Mayo Clinic Proc: Prediction of all-cause mortality by the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory Optimism-Pessimism Scale scores: study of a college sample during a 40-year follow-up period.
                  [8] Med Hypotheses.: Pet ownership protects against the risks and consequences of coronary heart disease.
                  [9] The New England Journal of Medicine: Association of Coffee Drinking with Total and Cause-Specific Mortality
                  [10] American Journal of Hypertension: Blood Pressure Response to Transcendental Meditation: A Meta-analysis
                  [11] Science Direct: Intensive meditation training, immune cell telomerase activity, and psychological mediators
                  [12] JAMA: The Disease Burden Associated With Overweight and Obesity
                  [13] JAMA: The Disease Burden Associated With Overweight and Obesity
                  [14] African Journal of Biotechnology: Anti-cancer effect of polysaccharides isolated from higher basidiomycetes mushrooms
                  [15] Science Direct: Periodontal disease, tooth loss, and cancer risk in male health professionals: a prospective cohort study
                  [16] AHA Journals: Sexual Activity and Cardiovascular Disease

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