6 Ways Swimming Is One of the Most Beneficial Exercise Routines
Swimming is a great team or individual sport. In most areas across the country, it is easy to find a place to swim, whether it is outdoors or at an indoor sport’s center. Each year, more people recognize the numerous benefits of swimming as an exercise. In fact, these seven facts show the top six reasons why swimming is one of the most beneficial exercise routines for all ages.
Decreased Pressure on Joints and Bones
Swimming’s top benefit is usually seen as the lack of pressure that it puts on the body. Most other exercises put a great deal of stress and weight on joints, bones and muscles. For example, running and even walking can negatively affect the hips, knees and ankles. Tennis, weight-lifting and football place pressure on the shoulders, elbows and wrists. However, in swimming, the only real contact that the body has is with water. The reason for this is water’s natural buoyancy. A body feels lighter in water than it would on land. For example, a person who is submerged halfway in water will feel 50 percent lighter than he or she would on land. This takes pressure off aching joints and particularly protects the hips and knees while decreasing any risk of injury while participating in this sport.
Perfect for Those with Injuries or Arthritis
Because of water’s buoyancy and low pressure to joints, swimming is often seen as one of the best sports for people with injuries or arthritis. Joints feel more flexible here. Many people who suffer with stiff joints participate in hydrotherapy programs, which are water-based workouts. The CDC states at http://www.cdc.gov/healthywater/swimming/health_benefits_water_exercise.html that hydrotherapy is an excellent choice for people with rheumatoid arthritis. A warmed pool is particularly beneficial in this case.
Many Muscle Groups Are Strengthened Simultaneously
Swimming benefits numerous muscles at the same time. Of course, swimmers use their arms to make strokes and their legs to propel themselves. Different arm muscles, including the biceps, triceps and deltoids, are used to make different strokes. Therefore, it is important for swimmers to use a variety of strokes during their workout. Swimmers also use their gluteals and their abdominals, which improve their core strength and muscle tone. Not only are numerous muscle groups used, but also each muscle faces greater resistance in water that it does in air.
Helps with Weight Loss
Because of water’s increased resistance, swimming can help with weight loss. Of course, the actual number of calories burned per hour depends on the person’s weight and the speed and effort that the individual puts into swimming. However, the average number of calories burned per hour is about 500 to 600 for a 150-pound individual. Swimming burns so many calories because it is an aerobic exercise, providing more fat-burning effects than anaerobic exercises do.
Benefits the Heart
As an aerobic exercise, regular swimming can benefit cardiovascular, or heart, health. In fact, the heart is a muscle itself. Therefore, regular aerobic exercise will help this muscle become stronger and will help the heart beat more efficiently. This can lead to decreased blood pressure and a decreased heart rate.
Relaxes the Mind
Swimming is a fabulous exercise for decreasing stress and calming the mind. Individuals participating in this sport will find that much of their concentration first goes to perfecting the strokes and getting a great rhythm in place. Even when the individual improves his or her swimming ability, each stroke will continue to require a great deal of focus and muscular coordination. This, combined with the amount of effort that needs to be put into the exercise, can help swimmers to rid their minds of stressful concerns and can help them become more in tune with their bodies. While swimming is a workout for the body, it gives the mind a welcome break.
Swimming is a great activity for young and old and for people of all fitness levels. As an exercise, it can help strengthen the muscles, joints and heart and can improve strength, endurance and flexibility. Many people see swimming as one of the least dangerous sports, and that makes it perfect even for young children and for those recovering from injuries.
Bob Quigly is a landscaping and family fun enthusiast who contributes to many blogs on the greatest outdoor trends and great pools tips on behalf of Backyard Ocean. Quigly suggests visiting top Intex pool filters at BackyardOcean.com to explore the Summer Escapes pool filters on sale.