Fitness · Health

Swimming: Style and Substance

3082435608_8aee570889_zPhoto by Flickr user David Clow. (Creative Common License)

Summer is the best season to work on your swimming. Getting into the pool, ocean, or lake is a great way to cool down on a hot summer day. And, it’s a great form of exercise. Some of the many benefits of swimming include:

  • Improves cardiopulmonary health (good for your heart and your lungs)
  • Burns significant calories
  • Low impact on body
  • Works core muscles (abs)
  • Improves overall muscle strength and tone
  • Helps recover from hard workouts better than straight-up rest
  • Helps reduce inflammation
  • Improves range of motion, especially in feet, ankles, hips, and shoulders
  • Reduces stress, physically and mentally

The last benefit is one I can attest to. All exercise releases endorphins, which help stave off depression, but swimming relaxes and rejuvenates me in a way that feels more like I’ve taken a great yoga class. Similar to yoga, you focus on deep rhythmic breathing, and move your body in long, flowing movements. The whole idea is to move efficiently through the water in as smooth a way as you can. For many, this produces a meditative effect.

If you haven’t yet learned to swim, or don’t feel confident in your swimming ability, I recommend you check out your local YMCA or JCC for adult swimming lessons. They are usually low cost and they have decades of experience offering these programs.

If you already know how to swim and are interested in a more structured workout, on the next page is a simple routine that anyone can try.

Read More »

Start the conversation

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.