Few things can feel more refreshing than a good swim. Whether it’s a trip to the beach, tubing on a river, or running laps in a pool, immersing ourselves in a body of water can feel so liberating. The weightlessness and buoyancy of water is the next best thing to anti-gravity. Not only is swimming fun and relaxing: it’s also an incredibly effective way to exercise.
A Whole Body Workout
One of the reasons swimming is such an effective form of exercise is how it engages your whole body. Each of the different strokes you can do (breaststroke, backstroke, sidestroke, butterfly, and freestyle) impacts a different muscle group. Even just lightly kicking across the pool like an otter can use up a fair amount of your muscle groups. This is also why swimming is good for toning muscle and building strength.
Low Impact Exercise
Whether you’re getting back into working out or needing to take it easy due to injuries or other health issues, swimming is a great way to work out while going easy on yourself. It’s a low-impact exercise, which means it can get your heart rate up slowly and cause less pressure on your joints than more intensive exercises.
While swimming is a low-impact exercise it can have a huge impact on your health! Swimming burns a considerable amount of calories because of the resistance of the water. When you’re swimming, your body is burning up a lot of energy to struggle through that water, energy that burns through your reserve of calories.
Studies have found that people who participate in aerobic exercise (including swimming) reported an improved sleep quality in their daily lives. Swimmers can also experience more time in restorative deep sleep states due to the relaxation the body experiences after it exhausts itself in physical activity.
Boosted Brain Power
Speaking of studies: there’s research that links swimming with improved cognition. Study participants who engaged in swimming on a regular basis displayed an increased aptitude for processing visual information and responded faster to cognitive tests after going on a swim.
Older swimmers can benefit from spending time in water because it can help manage their chronic pain. Conditions like arthritis and fibromyalgia can be positively impacted by swimming, which can help ease joint pain and stiffness while improving muscle strength. The buoyancy of the water goes a long way toward helping people deal with reduced mobility issues.
Article by Austin Brietta
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