Needless to say, swimming is one of the most efficient sports out there, whether it’s for its irrevocable fitness and performance outcomes or its lack of injury. We’ve all read it somewhere or experienced it ourselves! But if you don’t swim, here’s a reminder why you should reconsider that from CBS Baltimore!
A recent article in the April 2014 Women’s health magazine stated an “8.4% increase in the number of people swimming for fitness over the past year, making swimming one of the fastest-growing workouts. (Source: sports and fitness industry association). It really should not be a surprise that it is a growing activity for fitness. There are many health benefits associated with swimming including cardio-vascular improvements, improving muscle strength, and overall endurance are a few of the reasons swimming is becoming a popular source of exercise.
Swimming for exercise allows you to do an activity that works out your entire body, including your lungs, arms, and legs at the same time. Using a variety of strokes also increases the muscle groups being used. Some of the more popular strokes for swimming laps include the Front crawl, Backstroke, and Breaststroke. Most aquatics centers and pools have qualified staff able to teach and coaching on these techniques. Having proper form and technique can definitely make your swimming workout more enjoyable and effective.
Swimming has also been shown to be a good cross-training tool for other workout activities. Many activities like running or combat sports take a toll on your body’s joints and bones.
These high impact activities can cause injury over time. Swimming has been a useful tool to lessen the pressure on the joints for runners who could use a day off from the impact of running but still want to exercise and get a cardio-vascular workout in. The water provides 12 times the resistance of air, so water resistance can be used to strength major muscle groups like hips, shoulders, arms, and back muscles. This resistance requires 12 times more power to be exerted.
As either a primary source of exercise or as a cross training tool the water offers a great full body workout. It has been estimated that swimming can burn up to 3 calories a mile per pound of bodyweight; making swimming a great exercise for those looking to lose weight. If you are looking for help in your swimming technique or help getting started, many health clubs have aquatic personal trainers that can assist in implementing a training plan with you.
Above content provided by Merritt Athletic Club