Horseshoes – A Great Way to be Active and Socialize!

It really is!  The great thing about them is that they are easy to play and makes you socialize.  When it comes to elders, it has the added benefit of not being strenuous yet a lot of fun.  You can find a good set of rubber horseshoes or you can go hardcore and get some made of steel.

Image result for Horseshoe game

What is Horseshoes about?

The idea behind using horseshoe to socialize is rather simple.  You can establish your own rules where you stick a stake in the ground and people take turns throwing a horseshoe inside the stake.  Whoever makes more hits, wins.  Simple, right?

Now, if you want to take it to the next level, you might be interested in horseshoe pitching.  The rules of the game vary depending on the area.  Sometimes rules even vary among pubs.  But these are the general ones:

The horseshoe pitch is a six-feet square marked on the ground.  Each pitch contains a smaller rectangle;  approximately three time six feet.  This smaller square is referred to as the pit.  This pit is usually filled with sand and is oriented so that its longest side runs along with the longest side of the pitch.

In the middle of the pit, a metal stake is placed, with 15 inches coming out of the ground.  The area of the pitch that is not the pit is on the left and right.  This is where players are allowed to stand to make a throw.  Both feet must remain behind the pit line whenever making a throw.

After a coin is tossed, the first player throws two horseshoes to one stake, one after the other.  The second player does the same thing.

Any horseshoe that completely surrounds the stake is known as a “ringer” and is worth three points unless it is canceled by another player.  Now, there are some specific rules for how to decide if a ringer is actually valid or if another player has genuinely canceled it.

Since those rules are beyond the scope of this article, we will not stop to discuss them.

Benefits of Horseshoe for Elders

Let us now talk about how elder are benefited with this social game.

  • This is a social game, which allows elders to interact with each other.  This has a great impact on the feeling of loneliness they usually get.
  • Takes away boredom.  There are too many elders out there that, since they no longer perform a job, feel bored all the time.  No TV show or Internet entertainment will make it go away.
  • Promotes healthy exercising.  The game, without being physically demanding does require certain muscle and bone expenditure.  This provides a moderate amount of exercise to keep those muscles active.
  • The game helps keep cognitive functions on check.  The game requires some reasoning, mostly when it comes to counting the number of points made.
  • Exposes elders to situations where they might have to rely on each other.
  • Emotionally, it helps elders to keep their judgment sharp.  During the game, there will be episodes of frustration and even fear.  These are part of horseshoe just like in any other game.  This can be good also for the cognitive area and even the emotional area.

A Great Learning Tool

If teams are allowed to pair up, elders can enjoy been on a team.  Just like the old days when they had to give themselves down for a team, they will probably enjoy that.  Elders who play strategy games more often are less likely to have memory problemsi in the futur.  So, let´s get those stakes and horeshoes and let the action begin!

How to Create a Retaining Wall For Your Garden

The main source of life in your backyard after the sun is the soil.  This is the one that provides the nutrients for plants to grow tall and strong.  Therefore, it is important to protect it and keep the rain from washing it away.  Retaining walls are built to protect your garden soil from eroding.

Before creating a retaining wall for your garden and how important it is, you should know the basics of what this construction is about.

What is a Retaining Wall?

A retaining wall is built over an excavation or to make a soil bank.  It provides support to the soil, preventing it from eroding or collapsing altogether.   They can be erected to fill earth or to give strong support to terraced gardens.

A retaining wall can be built out of many materials. You can build one of concrete, concrete blocks, timber logs, stones, or bricks.  The choice will probably be more esthetical than practical.  A retaining wall provides a nice look to a backyard.

If you are planning on building your own wall, consider some esthetical aspects before building.  Make sure you gather all the materials that you need, and that you get a professional finish.  More on this below.

The Importance of a Retaining Wall

It is easy now to see the importance of retaining walls.  These actually provide effective support to the entire structure of your garden.  They are usually thought of utilitarian structures that keep your garden from falling apart.

However, since you already are in the building of the wall, you can create it in such a way that it provides a nice outdoor sight.

How to Make One

The following are the materials that you will need to build a retaining wall:

  • Shovel
  • Landscaping stones and fabric
  • Level
  • Tape Measure
  • Wheelbarrow
  • Gravel
  • Work gloves
  • Safety goggles
  • Soil Tamper

Step 1

Plan the design and basically establish the outline of your wall using wooden sticks and string.  You can then use paint to make the outline.  Get yourself your load of stones before getting started so that you know that you have enough.

Step 2

Start digging on the line that you made on the floor.  This trench should be a little wider than the largest rock.  This whole can be around 6 inches deep.  Make sure the bottom of the trench is perfectly layered.  Drop in the sand and stone dust.  Level this sand by tamping down the bottom of the trench.

Step 3

Throw in the stones and make sure this layer ends  up as straight as possible.  If it requires adjustment, use a hammer.

Step 4

For the first course of bricks, break one in half and try to interlock it with the first rock on this course.  For the next layer, you start with a full brick since you want the edges to offset.

Step 5

Before laying the second course, use a level to verify that your construction is upright and leveled.  If it is not, make sure you make the necessary adjustments.

Step 6

Lay the second course of stones interlocking them with the first set of stones.

Step 7

Fill in the trench with the dirt you excavated to provide a firm foundation.

Step 8

Continue placing stones in layer and interlocking them with the top row.

Step 9

When you are done piling up the stones and have the desired height, lay landscaping fabric on the back of the wall.

A Professional Look

Once you have built your retainin wall, it is important that you give it a professional look.  Hire someone to take a look at what you have done and make some adjustments.

We recommend centuria landscapes, who specialize in landscape design in Vancouver.  We are pretty sure you will be delighted as well.