Without affecting your bones and joints, an hour of swimming burns almost the same amount of calories as running. It also combines muscle and cardiovascular workout, making it the best activity to get an entire body workout at the same time.
But before we get into the benefits of swimming, how does one get started on doing their laps at the pool?
If you are a beginner, fortunately, many gyms have swimming services. Because of swimming’s intensity, however, it is better to start with a pool near your residence in order to access your home easily to rest after a swimming session.
Preparing the muscles
Get a trainer if you need help getting started.
You may want to warm up your muscles by starting at the gym for strength training to wake your muscles before hitting the water.
Strength training includes squats, deadlifts (bodyweight or overhead for half bodyweight), pull-ups (assisted or unassisted) and double-digit reps.
Abide by the pool rules and ask for help where you think you might need it.
Caution and safety
As with any other workouts, swimming requires that you get a greenlight from your doctor in case of injury or medical issues.
Swim within designated areas.
Bring a friend along if the swim area does not have a lifeguard.
Take swimming lessons if it is your first time.
It is recommended to swim when the sun is not high up in the sky.
Carry lotion to protect your skin.
Drink plenty of water, the exercise causes dehydration even if you will feel cool from the water. Avoid caffeinated drinks and alcohol when you are going for a swim.
1. Full body work out
It spikes your heart rate without straining the body, builds muscle endurance and strength while toning them.
All swimming techniques focus on various muscle groups while the water makes for gentle resistance. The techniques include breaststroke, backstroke, sidestroke, butterfly, freestyle. No matter which one you try, it will work a set of muscles.
2. Cardiovascular workout
Swimming improves your heart and lungs function and makes them strong. Research at the TrustedSource shows that swimming lowers blood pressure and regulates blood sugar.
3. Safe for injures and other bone conditions
Swimming is appropriate exercise for people who have injuries, arthritis, People with Disabilities (PwDs), among other conditions that might prohibit high-impact exercise.
It also provides pain relief, reduces stiffness and supports recovery for those who have injuries.
4. Safe for asthmatics
Swimming involves breathing exercises that require holding one’s breath. These are great practice for boosting lung capacity and gaining control over breathing. However, indoor pools are recommended and a greenlight from the doctor is required since some studies suggest that chemicals used to treat pools might aggravate the condition. If possible, find a pool that uses salt instead of chlorine.
5. Burns calories
A person of 72 Kilograms burns approximately 423 calories within an hour of swimming at a leisurely pace. At a vigorous pace, the same person can burn up to 715 calories.
In comparison to walking at a leisurely pace, the same person would burn 183 calories in an hour while a trained person might burn about 365 calories in the same time.
6. Improves your sleep
Swimming offers relief from sleep disorders like insomnia compared to cycling, walking and Stairmaster. For people limited by one issue or another and can’t get into high-end exercises, swimming is the best and safest option.
7. Safe during pregnancy
One study from TrustedSource indicated that expecting mothers who swam in the early trimesters had a reduced risk of going into preterm labour and sustaining congenital defects.
Ask for permission from your doctor first before taking up swimming or any other exercise programme during pregnancy.