Let’s agree that many of us love splashing in a pool for fun, if not for workouts. And swimming is undoubtedly one of the favourite exercises among fitness enthusiasts for its immense health benefits.
Water always served as a ‘best tool’ when it comes to workouts, as it offers full resistance to the body sans gravity, offering great fitness levels. Besides swimming, water exercises or aqua sports have become popular in recent years. Aqua-based workout routines offer immense benefits for sculpting your muscles, get your heart rate going and improve your overall physical condition. Moreover, due to its inherent buoyancy, water exercises help in losing weight and significantly reduce your chances of getting injured.
Water activities can help you burn calories faster, improve your agility and the benefits of swimming are well-known. And what’s more, you don’t have to be a seasoned swimmer to take up these activities. There is beginner, intermediate and advanced sports levels available, choose an activity that works out for you.
Water Exercises To Boost Fitness And Stamina:
Water aerobics are done as a group. It comprises simple and steady hand and leg movements, done waist-deep in water, grooving to the peppy music that helps in boosting metabolism and improve the levels of energy. Some popular forms are aqua Zumba and water yoga.
Lap swimming is quite a common practice. One lap consists of going down the pool (25 meters long) and coming back from where you started, covering a total distance of 50 meters. Swimming for merely five to seven laps a day can help you lose belly weight particularly around your waist, improves lung function and build your endurance levels. Some routine swim strokes are freestyle, backstroke and butterfly.
This type of routine is usually organized in a scheduled class, where a group of people wear a flotation device and run till the deep end of the pool, in brisk and steady motions. Aqua jogging is very beneficial for those recovering from an injury or having mild joint pain conditions, to improve flexibility and range of movement.
Although this is a rigorous Olympic sport, you can always motivate your family members to join you for a friendly pool game. Each team can have three members, and one goalkeeper and the objective is to pass the ball skillfully and score a goal on the opposite side of the pool. This improves your hand-eye coordination and also provides resistance against the force of the water, thereby strengthening your physique.
This technique only sounds complex but is, in fact, a very basic breathing exercise and consists of holding your breath, with your body fully under the water and moving forward with gentle kicks and wide sweeping strokes of the arms. This is extremely useful for augmenting cardiovascular health and strengthening core muscles in your shoulders, arms and legs.
Health Benefits Of Water Workouts For Improved Physical Fitness:
Aids In Weight Loss
According to fitness experts, a steady water workout for 30 minutes to 1 hour helps shed between 500 to 1000 calories. This is because the temperature at which the water in swimming pools is maintained is generally mildly cool to lukewarm, which is relatively lower than the normal body temperature of humans of 36.5 - 37.5 degrees Celcius. Thus, during a water workout, the system tends to burn extra calories in order to maintain warmth within the body, in addition to stretching all the core muscle groups, for a toned physique.
Ably Supports Heart Functions
Swimming and aqua sports such as water polo confer excellent health benefits not only for uplifted physical fitness but also for augmented heart health. The water flowing across the pool is maintained at a certain pressure and while moving across this stream, it helps stimulate blood circulation to all parts of the body. In this manner, instances of high blood pressure, damage to blood vessels are averted and the heart muscles do not endure any undue strain, thereby becoming stronger and pumping blood at a normal pace.
Ideal Low Impact Exercise
The inherent buoyancy of water assists in keeping the body afloat while engaging in aqua training routines, by applying a considerable force. It also provides ample fluidity of movement and a sense of being lightweight regardless of actual body weight, for extending all the muscle groups in the arms, legs, shoulders, neck, hips, abdomen and thighs. Since there is almost no risk of injury or falls while performing water workouts and aerobics, they are a great low impact fitness regime to fortify bones, muscles and joints.