Can Water Aerobics Really Help Keep You Fit?
Contrary to popular belief, water aerobics are not reserved for the elderly and are by no means boring. In fact, water aerobics are an excellent alternate method of exercise. They are especially effective for those who are overweight or suffer from inflammation, joint pain, or injury. Aerobic exercises, paired with swimming, make for a very good low-impact but high-yield workout. They're also an excellent way for pregnant women to maintain a low-stress workout routine.
What Are Water Aerobics?
You may have seen water aerobics classes at your local gym or pool, but never knew fully what they entailed. Water aerobics, or aquatic fitness, is the performance of aerobic exercise in shallow water. It's a type of resistance training. Water aerobics are typically done in shallow pool water, waist deep or so. Most water aerobics take place in group classes ranging from 30 minutes to one hour. There are all kinds of water aerobics — ranging from yoga to zumba as well as aqua walking and jogging. They are typically held in classes led by trained professionals and are often set to music. But don’t let that put you off. You can practice water aerobics all by yourself, provided you know what exercises to do. The good news is that you don’t necessarily have to have equipment to enjoy water aerobics, just access to water.
Some Benefits of an Aquatic Workout
Water aerobics are a great fitness option for a wide variety of people. As a low impact exercise, they provide much needed relief to worked on joints. With water aerobics, the buoyancy of the water in the pool softens the impact we would normally be placing on our joints. This makes them especially effective for the elderly, those with injuries, or those who are overweight. Water aerobics have many positive impacts on one’s health, including –
Increased muscle strength - Water creates resistance. In fact, resistance in the water is four to 40 times greater than in the air, guaranteeing a great workout for your muscles.
Improved endurance - Water resistance is the perfect for endurance building. It's a more natural resistance, which causes the human body to strain through the water rather than against it, allowing for more activity.
Better flexibility - Water resistance also contributes to increasing your body’s flexibility. This happens because your joints, pushing and pulling through the water, are forced to increase their range of motion. Flexibility keeps your muscles healthy and strong long into old age.
Helps with joint problems - Water aerobics is possibly the #1 type of exercise for sore joints, or for those with arthritis or similar conditions. They are scientifically proven to relieve pressure placed on joints in normal wear-and-tear. Hydrotherapy is well worth pursuing.
A Few Basic Exercises
Signing up for a water aerobics class would be a great place to start. At the very least, try to attend a few classes to get a sense for how a typical workout goes. Then, if you wish, you can branch out on your own. In the meanwhile, here are some routines to get you started on your journey into aquatic exercise:
Water Jogging - To ‘water jog,’ simply pump your legs to pedal through the water as if you were jogging. You should keep yourself in a vertical position while simultaneously propelling yourself forward. This can be done both in the shallow and deep ends of the pool, though deeper water requires greater effort and consumes more energy. You may want to consider a flotation device when you first tread into deeper water.
Water Arm Circles - This is just like an arm circle on land. Stand in shoulder deep water. Bend your knees slightly. Rotate your arms in forward circles while keeping them straight. Make sure you use your whole arm, but gently.
Water Push Ups - The classic push up is applicable everywhere! This one makes for a great upper body workout. To do a water push up, face a pool wall and place your hands on the pool’s edge, shoulder-width apart. Use your upper body to straighten your elbows and push yourself up and out of the water.
RX Fitness Equipment is Here to Help
If you're looking for a great selection of fitness equipment and accessories, we carry the top brands to fit every age group, fitness goal and budget and we're here to make your fitness routine more productive. If you'd like some guidance getting started on a water aerobics program, we work with hundreds of personal trainers, coaches and fitness professionals and we're happy to offer a referral to one that can help you get started.
Stop by our store in Thousand Oaks or give us a call. RX Fitness is here to help with your fitness goals and accessories wish list, whatever they may be. Come in and let us help you find exactly what you need. And don't forget to check out Tim's best-selling book, Fitness Equipment – A Shopper's Guide, on Amazon and other online book sellers as well as in our store.
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