The Many Benefits of Swimming – A Guide To Pool Exercise

When it comes to owning a swimming pool, one of the biggest advantages you have is a healthy workout. Swimming burns many calories and is a viable alternative to running or cycling. In fact, an hour of swimming can burn upwards of 600 calories! Swimming also works most of your core muscles, so it does a job that you would often need to be done through many different workouts. However, not only does swimming have many benefits, but it’s just plain fun.

Today on Pool Calculator we’re going to take a deep “dive” on swimming. This includes the health benefits of swimming, what it actually does for your body, and specific workouts you can do to maximize the time you have in the pool.

Health Benefits of Swimming

Swimming is a cardio workout. This means that It offers many of the same benefits of running and biking. The main focus here is that you get your heart rate up and moving, which in turn burns fat and keeps your body in shape. This can help you lose weight or maintain your current fitness level. Another benefit of swimming is that it takes a lot of the impact off your body while you work out. Running and other cardio workouts are hard on your joints and your body as a whole, but swimming isn’t. Swimming almost has no rough impact on your body and allows you to get your workout in but not wear your body down.

On top of the heart health workout and the decreased wear, swimming also works your muscles hard. These workouts tone your muscles in a healthy and efficient way. This is because most of your muscles are used while swimming. This, in turn, builds a lot of muscle strength and works your whole body. This means that swimming categorizes as a “all body” workout. Swimming builds the health of your heart, lungs, and your whole body’s fitness level.

The Other Benefits to Swimming

On top of being super healthy and building your fitness level as a person, swimming offers many other benefits. The first of which is that it is often seen as relaxing. Many view swimming as a peaceful way to relieve stress and provide a carefree workout. On top of this fact, swimming builds good posture and coordination. This is because you need to have good form to swim well. The best way to swim is to build a rhythm of motion, which improves the coordination of your mind with your body. You also build “all-around” muscle like previously stated, so this can build muscles that are key to maintaining balance and good posture.

These other benefits are paired with another benefit to swimming workouts. A swimming workout doesn’t give you the “overheating” sensation that other cardio workouts provide. Running and cycling are not only physically tough, but also have a mental roadblock because of this feeling. Swimming is a good way to “cool off” while still getting a workout and building a healthy lifestyle. While swimming you still sweat out the toxins and burn calories, but it is masked by water that keeps you refreshed. Overall, it shows that swimming is not only a great workout for your physical health, but it can provide benefits to your mental health and your coordination as a whole.

Great Swimming Exercises to Try

Like previously stated, swimming for an hour can burn upwards of 600 calories. Here are a couple workouts that will provide you with a great workout, whether you’re a beginner or an expert:

Kick-board Swim Drill

All you need for this workout is a swimming pool and a kickboard. The key to this one is that you hold the kickboard out at arm’s length, extending fully. You then will “flutter kick” (swimming only using your legs in an up and down fashion) down and back in the pool you have. If you make sure to hold the kickboard out, you will be flexing your entire core and building muscle. Another key to the workout is to keep your foot flexing past 90 degrees, maximizing the benefits of this workout on your body.

Note: You can perform this workout with many other swimming forms, including the frog kick and the butterfly kick.

Water “Running”

This exercise is exactly like you think it would be. With the water up to around your neck level, you simply run in the water like you would outside. This provides you with resistance and difficulty but lowers the impact that the running has on your body. This is a high heart rate exercise that will work your body in a similar manner to how an actual outdoor run would, minus all of the negatives that running provides. 

Tip: Split your running into short bursts while going full speed. We recommend splitting the workout into 3 sessions of around 5 minutes. This will allow you to work hard while still being under control. It is important to maintain proper form, and very long sessions of the workout will drain your energy quickly.

Breaststroke and Butterfly Drill

One of the best ways to workout is just doing two of the most popular swimming forms; breaststroke and butterfly. These workouts are great because they work your whole body and up your heart rate. The “sweet spot” with these strokes is to split them into 25-meter intervals. We recommend completing 10 25-meter swims, while taking breaks between each swim. This keeps your heart rate high but gives your body the chance recharge and regain control before starting again.

More Tips About Swimming Exercises

  • Make sure you know how to swim. Swimming incorrectly or without full knowledge can be harmful to your body and dangerous overall
  • Stretch and prepare for your body for a pool workout. While less rough than other workouts, you still need to make sure your body is ready.
  • Don’t overdo your workout. Stay under control, and especially if you’re new to pool workouts, pace yourself.
  • Have plenty of fluids on hand. Swimming is done in water, but your body will still become dehydrated if high level workouts are completed.
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