Whether you’re in search of a healthy new activity to add to your regimen of physical therapy in Arizona, or simply looking to improve your overall physical fitness, there are many benefits to be enjoyed by taking to the water. Along with adding variety to your everyday gym routine, lap swimming offers a number of lifestyle, health, and fitness advantages for athletes and patients undergoing AZ physical therapy.
Top 5 Reasons to make the pool your second gym:
1. You can swim for a lifetime.
Simple lap swimming is one of the few activities that is truly accessible to all ages. When submerged up to your neck in water, your body carries less than 10% of its total weight. This allows older people, who may have less resilient bones and joints, to reduce stress on their bodies while working out core muscle groups. Freestyle swimming can help build and retain strength in your legs, arms and core muscle groups. These muscles are critical for standing and performing basic movements as you age.
2. Pool workouts offer full-body resistance exercises.
Swimming with your body fully submerged, engages your entire body in a resistance training exercise against the water. Along those same lines, water aerobics is great for anyone exploring ways to incorporate low-impact exercises into their physical therapy routine.
Walking, running, or practicing forms of conventionally land-based activities, underwater, can help you improve your athletic performance outside of the pool. For example, practicing your golf swing form, slowly, while partially submerged in the water, can help you pinpoint weaknesses in your downswing and follow-through.
3. Lap swimming promotes cardiovascular health.
Light to intermediate lap swimming for 20-30 minutes, 4-6 times daily, can be the key to a healthy heart and lungs. To strengthen your cardiovascular system, set personal fitness goals and track your progress. If you are able to swim 4 laps on day 1 of your swim routine, you may want to try swimming 6 laps by day 4.
Continue to set small goals for yourself as you train. Because swimming is a cardio-intensive activity, it is important to remain conscious of your breathing and heart rate. Pace yourself; find and maintain the most sustainable speed, while continuing to push yourself to improve over time.
4. Lap Swimming can relieve stress and its effects.
Very few activities can provide the same level of calm as lap swimming. Finding your body’s natural rhythm while swimming increases feelings of well-being and reduces anxiety. These psychological health perks translate directly into physical health benefits by helping relieve neck pain and soften tension in the neck and back.
5. It’s fun!
At Foothills Sports Medicine Physical Therapy in Arizona, we invite everyone to enjoy themselves on the road to recovery. Water has a way of maximizing fun. From traditional lap swimming, to water running and aquatic Tai-Chi, water sports offer exciting training conditions you cannot experience on dry land.
When considering activities to promote your general fitness or enhance your AZ physical therapy, swimming and other aquatic exercises may be a great addition to your workout routine.
Image by: Brisbane City Council