Water is great for your health. From drinking it to swimming in it. It should be part of our daily lives. The health benefits are for all ages, young, old and everyone in between.
Health benefits of swimming
Low impact: less impact through the joints, allowing for greater intensity without the wear and tear on the joints. It is particularly helpful if you are recovering from injury or suffer from arthritis.
Good for your cardiovascular system: swimming with your face under water allows your body to adapt to using oxygen more efficiently. The results can include lower resting heart rates, lower blood pressure and improved performance in other sports such as running.
Improves endurance: the more efficiently your body can use oxygen and the stronger your body gets the more performance your body with have when participating in endurance sports such as running.
Improves flexibility: the swimming strokes can get you moving in ways that you wouldn’t normally do in day to day life. This can make it tough to start with but will soon help improve your flexibility and get you moving more freely.
Reduces the risk of illness: taking up swimming can reduce the risk of stroke, heart disease and type 2 diabetes.
Everyone can do it: as long as you are actually able to swim no one is restricted. Whether you are recovering from an injury, a triathlete, a pregnant or new mum swimming is a great workout.
Stress release: as with all exercise the lift of mood that can come from completing a workout can be hugely beneficial. Boosting your mood and reducing your stress levels.
An exercise for life: swimming is one of the few skills you learn for life (and why it is so important that everyone takes the time to learn) not only could it save your life one day it can open up many experiences in life. Ever wanted to swim with dolphins or go snorkelling or jet skiing? Being able to swim will allow you to try such an experience should the opportunity arise.
It’s never too late to learn
As someone who has taught people to swim I know how important it is. It is a life skill and something that you can pass on to your children. Ideally, you would learn to swim as a child and over all childhood hobbies I believe swimming should be prioritised as it could genuinely save your life one day. If you have reached adulthood and think it is too late I highly recommend you getting some lessons, you will be surprised how quickly you can pick up technique and be a competent swimmer before you know it. Not only would that allow you to work out by swimming it also helps when you are trying to keep up with your children
Don’t fancy doing lengths at the pool
Another way to get fitter in the water is aqua aerobics. You could do a class or even do some moves by yourself. Simply trying to walk in water is a challenge, give it a try next time you head to the pool. The resistance of the water really does create an environment for a great workout.
Opening water swimming can be done all over the country, so if you are looking for a challenge or don’t want to be stuck in the pool go online and find your nearest location.
Don’t forget that the water can be dangerous and should always be treated with respect, something to be aware of and perhaps go through with your children and grandchildren is the WATER SAFETY code.
S pot the dangers, check for hazards before you enter any water and when out and about do not get too close to the edge of banks.
A dvice should be followed. This includes reading signs that are situated around water, swimming only in safe zones, ideally with a lifeguard present and wearing safety equipment when appropriate.
F riends, you should never swim alone and someone else should be aware of where you are swimming, if something should go wrong someone needs to be able to know where to look.
E mergency. It is important to know what to do in an emergency situation, call 999 or 112, shout loudly to attract attention and make sure you never enter the water to save someone.
As always, any questions please comment or get in touch.
Vicki is a Personal Trainer, Coach and Swimming Teacher with the aim of helping others achieve their health and fitness goals.