Health Benefits of Swimming and Why It’s So Good for Stress Relief – Swimming is especially good for stress relief because the strokes you take involve regular breathing, which helps trigger the part of your nervous system that controls rest and relaxation.
Swimming is also a wonderful method to burn calories. In 30 minutes, vigorous strokes like the butterfly can burn 400 calories.
1. Swimming is a great way to get a full-body workout.
When you swim, you use a lot of your upper and lower body, according to Brian Wright, an associate professor of kinesiology at DePauw University. Different strokes target different muscle groups, so you’ll get a well-rounded exercise if you mix them up. Some instances are as follows:
• The freestyle or crawl stroke works your shoulder and chest muscles while also engaging your thighs and back.
• The backstroke strengthens the posterior shoulder muscles and the upper back, improving posture.
• The biceps, triceps, pecs, lats, deltoids, and inner thighs are all worked out with breaststroke.
2. Swimming helps you burn calories.
Moving all of those muscles takes a lot of energy, which means you’re burning a lot of calories. The higher the intensity of your workout, the more calories you’ll burn.
Swimming, for example, burns roughly 220 calories in a 155-pound person every 30 minutes. More forceful strokes, like the butterfly, have been shown to burn more than 400 calories in 30 minutes.
The number of calories burned, however, is dependent on your swimming ability.
“A strong swimmer can glide through the water with ease, but a poor swimmer would burn many more calories,” says Lori Sherlock, associate professor of exercise physiology at West Virginia University and coordinator of the school’s aquatic therapy program.
3. Swimming is good for your heart and circulation.
For optimal health, the American Heart Association recommends two and a half hours of moderate-intensity exercise per week. Swimming can be just as effective as land-based activities such as biking, walking, or taking a dancing class in terms of providing a solid exercise.
Hydrostatic pressure, or the force a fluid exerts on an item, is another factor to consider. The water pressure on the body forces blood to the heart, which promotes circulation. The pressure increases as you go further into the water.
The perceived effort scale, which evaluates physiological signals like muscular tiredness, is a good way to figure out how much of a workout you’re receiving. Heart rate monitors are usually a helpful tool for determining the intensity of a workout, but they are less reliable in the water.
“My greatest advice is to work at all intensity levels, assuming that’s medically appropriate,” Sherlock adds.
4. Swimming is a low-impact exercise.
Health Benefits of Swimming – When a person is submerged to chest level, the body is buoyant, which reduces body weight by around 90%.
“Because the activity is less weight-bearing, it is appropriate for some groups of people who want to stay active. In contrast to weight-bearing activities such as running, it can be done well into old age “According to Wright.
People who have difficulty, such as joint pain, when exercising on land will find that they have more freedom of movement in the water. Furthermore, hydrostatic pressure can aid in the reduction of joint pain sensitivity. People with arthritis, neck and back problems, fibromyalgia, and obesity may benefit the most from water-based exercise, according to studies.
5. Swimming is a stress reliever
Swimming, as well as other forms of physical activity, has been associated to reduced psychological stress and enhanced mood.
Swimming strokes, when done correctly, entail regular breathing, which can activate the parasympathetic nervous system, the part of our neurological system responsible for rest and relaxation.
Many individuals find the water pressure calming, “like a hug,” according to Sherlock, who adds that warm water is especially relaxing.
6. Swimming is a fantastic option for asthma sufferers.
Health Benefits of Swimming – Swimming may be a safer sport for asthma sufferers. Swimming, unlike an activity that demands heavy, repetitive breathing, such as long-distance running, encourages steady, moderate exertion unless it’s a competitive event. Indoor pools provide a warm, humid environment with fewer allergens than outdoor pools.
Swimming, as opposed to outdoor activities such as biking or hiking, is less likely to cause asthma attacks, according to Wright. Swimming has been shown in several studies to enhance lung function, particularly in children.
Swimming safety tips
Swimming, when compared to other kinds of exercise, has a low injury rate. A swimming pool, on the other hand, must be clean, well-ventilated, and have enough chlorine to sterilize the water. However, too much chlorine can irritate the skin, eyes, and respiratory system.
“Turn around and go out if you walk in and are smacked in the face with a chlorine sensation, such as burning eyes and nostrils. That’s a telltale sign that the water’s chemistry is off “According to Sherlock,
Wear shoes on the pool deck to avoid slipping or picking up fungus, which can grow on poorly maintained pool decks. Wear a life vest or belt if you are unsure of your swimming abilities.
Above all, never swim by yourself. A sudden illness, injury, or cramp, as well as overestimating your swimming abilities, might result in drowning.
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