Swimming is a great exercise which you can enjoy at any fitness level, and as it’s good for people of all ages, it’s an activity you can enjoy with your family too. With waterproof technology making it easier to manage your progress and enjoy music while you swim, it’s a great time to take it up. There are many health benefits of swimming, some of which we outline below in a bid to encourage you to get in the pool and boost your fitness.
Health benefits of swimming
It combines both strength and cardio training
There aren’t many forms of exercise you can do easily that combine both strength training and cardio. Unless you want to sweat it out doing HIIT sessions with weights, you may find it difficult to find an exercise which combines these elements. Swimming means you have to move constantly, as well as fight against the resistance of the water, providing you with a much more effective workout for targeting your whole body.
It’s low impact
Swimming is an exercise which has low impact on your joints, so if you’re recovering from an injury or are overweight, you may want to start with swimming to help build your strength back up. Unlike running, which puts a lot of pressure on your joints, swimming supports your body, allowing you to exercise more comfortably and won’t leave you feeling it in your joints the next day.
Swimming is a sociable
According to Swimmer’s World Magazine, swimming is a very sociable sport, with people swimming together in groups or pairs as well as working with coaches and instructors. If you’ve never swum before or you’d like to improve your technique, then swimming classes could be a great way to enjoy the social element of swimming. Meanwhile, new parents and children can benefit from the opportunity offered by taking part in swimming classes to meet new people and socialise from a young age.
It helps develop strong lungs
Swimming can help to improve the way your lungs work, as they need to adapt to deal with being under the water. Swimming regularly over a prolonged period can help to boost how much oxygen you take in when you breathe and get rid of carbon dioxide more effectively. It’s also been found to lower your resting heart rate, which can lower blood pressure and prevent the risk of heart disease and other cardiovascular conditions.
It can boost your performance in other areas
A study published in the Scandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sports found that runners who took up swimming boosted their endurance for running by as much as 6%. As swimming helps to strengthen your shoulder, back and glute muscles, adding swimming to your training regime could benefit your running, as well as other sports that require a lot of running including football, hockey and rugby.
It helps to ease stress
Being in the water can have a calming effect for many people. The restful sensation of being in the pool can help you to relax and enjoy yourself, easing the stresses of the day. Visit the pool at quieter times or visit spas which tend to have less children for a chance to really indulge in some quiet time.
Swimming is the ideal all-round exercise, and if you’re within easy reach of your local pool, you can make it a regular part of your routine and enjoy the health benefits of swimming. Find your nearest pool in Richmond with Swimming.org’s pool finder. Don’t forget, if you suffer an injury whilst swimming during the evenings or weekends, you can visit our Richmond GP Out of Hours Service, providing you are registered with one of these GP surgeries.