Benefits of Water Exercise

If you’re looking for a fun, easy way to ease back into an exercise routine, try water aerobics. Kelly Geppi is a certified exercise specialist. Kelly, what are some of the benefits of exercising in water? First, the buoyancy of water causes heart rates and blood pressures at rest and during exercise to be lower than on land; and then that means that people with high blood pressure, cardiac or circulatory problems, and seniors can greatly benefit from a safer workout in the water. In addition, there’s not as much risk of heat illnesses when walking in 83 degree water versus walking on land with 83-degree temperature because the water can cool your body temperature more efficiently. Even though water aerobics may not be weight bearing, impact exercise, it still has some benefits for bone strength and bone density. People with joint problems and arthritis can benefit from workouts in warmer water that is 85 to 88 degrees, because joints can become more mobile and flexible. What are some effective ways to exercise in water? You can begin by just swimming laps. You can use a kickboard and just work your legs with different types of kicks. Or you can use a pulley placed between your thighs to anchor your legs and only use your arms for the pull portion of the stroke. Water jogging or walking can be done with or without equipment. You can benefit from walking back and forth in the shallow end of the pool. If you would like to jog, you can use a jog belt to keep your head and shoulders above water in the deep end. Any special tips or precautions? You should be able to pass a simple swim test and perform strokes easily before you begin any type of water exercise. Also, as with any type of exercise, warming up and cooling down are essential portions of your water workout. Check with your local swim club or ymca for a list of water exercise classes nearest you.

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