Even if you’re not training to be an Olympic athlete, swimming can be one of the best additions to a training regimen. Putting on a bathing suit and taking a dip can be a little uncomfortable, especially if you’re not where you want to be fitness-wise; but, the advantages of a good swim far outweigh those concerns. In this blog we’re going to take a look at a few reasons why you might want to start taking a few laps in the water.
- Longer, Leaner Muscles- Swimming lends itself to developing length and more even strength across the surface of a given muscle. This means more strength across an entire range of motion and more definition in your physique. Longer muscles mean more fat is burned, even when you’re not actively exercising. Swimming doesn’t bulk you up like weightlifting can, it’s a full body workout, marrying resistance training and cardio. Speaking of cardio…
- Low Impact Cardio- Knees, ankles, elbows, feet and shins, these are some of the first areas to suffer stress during a run. For many, recurring issues in these areas make a lengthy workout on the treadmill a challenge, not in a good way. Swimming doesn’t put nearly as much stress on bones and joints. This means that you can challenge yourself to a heavier-duty cardiovascular workout without reactivating a chronic bone or joint issue.
- No Sweat- Well technically, you will sweat a bit during an intense swim but you’ll emerge from the water damp from the pool, not from your own body moisture. You might smell like chlorine, but once you’re dry you won’t suffer any pit stains or sweat marks from your energetic cardio workout.
- A Better Core Workout- Swimming is great at developing core strength. You use your entire body to propel yourself through the water, but your core is engaged in keeping you afloat. Your core stays engaged virtually the entire time you’re in the water so it’s typically a slow, but long-lasting, burn.
- Build Flexibility- Swimming is kind of like a full body stretch, it’s not the same as our yoga classes in South Jersey, but it increases your range of motion, particularly in your shoulders and lower body. In a heated pool, muscles are further stretched and relaxed, draining the body of lactic acid, the main culprit of muscle soreness
The upcoming spring months present a perfect opportunity to make swimming part of your workout regimen.