Exercising in Water

Have you ever considered including water fitness into your exercise routine? This can be a great way to increase strength, flexibility and cardiovascular health. Plus, during the months of summer heat, what is a better way to keep cool?

Water has great properties; one of the best for working out is its resistance power. You can work opposing muscles at the same time. For example, if you are doing curls underwater, pulling up will work the biceps, while pushing down will build up the triceps.

Another great feature about water is its buoyancy, which is simply the tendency or capacity to remain afloat in a liquid. It reduces your weight, therefore putting significantly less stress on your joints, bones and muscles. Compared to other exercises such as running, there is no impact on any of your joints. It is estimated that body weight is compounded up to five times during the heel strike when running or jogging. This is avoided in water. Water fitness requires use of your core as well, that is, utilizing your back, abdominals and obliques. This muscle group is often ignored during other exercises.

There are many ways to get fit and stay cool in the water. Most obviously, perhaps, would be to swim laps or tread water. But you can also jog in the water. Additionally, there is a variety of products available that can increase the resistance in your workout, including buoyancy belts and dumbbells, gloves and noodles. You can actually lift weights underwater.

While exercising in water is totally different from exercise on land, your approach to water exercise should be the same. Continue to warm up and stretch before you start the workout. Maintain the same amount of repetitions you would for exercises out of the water. Also, continue to mix up the exercises you do. Your body needs a variety of exercises, regardless if it’s on land or in water.

Another bonus to water exercise is its usefulness during special circumstances. Ask any professional athlete and they will tell you water exercise is essential when dealing with an injury. It allows you to continue exercising without putting any stress on your injury, thanks to its buoyancy discussed earlier. Also, because your body is supported by water your heart rate is slightly lower, meaning aquatic therapy is relatively safe for obese individuals, pregnant ladies and those suffering from hypertension and heart disease.

Exercising in the water is easy, but for obvious safety reasons it should never be done alone. It’s easy to find someone to exercise with though. Look into classes at your local health club. If none are available or fit your tastes, just grab a buddy and find a pool. When summer ends, you don’t have to stop including water fitness as part of your workout routine. Find an indoor pool and keep going. Have fun enjoying the benefits of a refreshing workout.

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Member Comments

thanks Report
Great Article! Report
My favorite exercise! I cut pool noodles down to make hand held ‘dumbbells’ and I walk and jog in the water with them. Report
Swimming is much easier on me. However, if I want to burn calories I have to swim invigorating laps. When I can I do. TY Report
Swimming in the pool every day for an hour. However the weight is still stubborn. Any ideas why? Report
Thanks Report
I can't wait till the pools open back up Report
Ive always loved water and swimming of any kind. I started an H20 class last August and then swam laps and in January 2021 joined the polar bear swim challenge (just a lot of lap swimming). In 10 weeks, I swam 57 miles and lost a total of 30 lbs since August. I had a torn shoulder labrum and skipped the suggested surgery. Now my range of motion is almost normal without pain. Swimming tones you so much. Thanks for this article. Report
The hardest workouts I ever did were in a pool! The toll on joints is lessened so much! Report
Exercising in water is so good! Report
I love water aerobics and working out in the water. Report
Looking forward to when pools are open again. Report
Pool laps, weather you swim or walk them, is a great way to move with less joint pain. Report
Great article. Report


About The Author

Liz Noelcke
Liz Noelcke
Liz is a journalist who often writes about health and fitness topics.