Swimming pools and spas, increasingly widespread in our cities, are added to stays by the sea to offer us many opportunities to practice physical activity in the water. These activities do not have particular contraindications; they are simple, light, and bring various health benefits.
Physical Activity In The Water
Swimming is desirable for many, especially in the developmental age, but it requires technique and training. Physical activity in water is instead simpler; it is very pleasant, it does not require knowing how to swim, and it gives particular advantages compared to the action that takes place on land. Suppose it is true that gymnastics and land-based activities that contrast the force of gravity allow you to gain health in all senses and are, therefore, fundamental.
In that case, it is also true that practicing physical activity in water produces many benefits and has no particular contraindications. It can be practiced by everyone unless otherwise prescribed by a doctor. It is particularly suitable for those suffering from the spinal column and joint problems, obesity or overweight, and vascular issues. It is also recommended for pregnant women.
In general, it is suitable for all those who wish to benefit from movement by removing the risk of injury and muscle pain as much as possible. In fact, on the one hand, activity in the water cancels gravity by lightening the body weight. On the other, it “dampens” the blows, which avoids causing damage to the musculoskeletal system and joints. Like all activities that increase the heart rate, even moving in water or swimming improves the cardiovascular system.
Water Aerobics, Fitness, And Health Without Too Much Difficulty
Aqua gym, also known as water gymnastics or aqua fitness, is a valid form of physical activity in the pool, at sea, alone or in a group, and at any age, with possible but not essential use of specific equipment and music. It is a complete activity, not only sporting in nature but also recreational, social, aesthetic, therapeutic, and rehabilitative, capable of relieving stress, entertaining, and improving muscle tone and joint mobility.
It brings about a caloric consumption of around 4-5 Kcal per minute, based on the person’s weight and the intensity of the exercise, thus also representing an instant ally for those who want to keep fit. By now widespread in its many variants (from the hydro-gag to the Zumba water), the fundamental tool of this type of activity is water, which exerts a resistance about 12 times greater than air, forcing the muscles to “fight” against its friction even when they have to return to the rest position.
As a rule, the water level for water aerobics is around 1.20 cm, a group which, however, can vary based on the person’s height: in general, around one meter and twenty from the ground, with the aid of floating, it is possible to carry out many exercises in the complete absence of gravity, which would not be possible on land, going to work muscles not normally exercised.
The Benefits Of Physical Activity In The Water
Whether it’s water aerobics or another form of activity, including walking in water, if practiced continuously and regularly, for example, 40-50 minutes or more (depending on your physical possibilities) 2-3 times a week, it can bring various benefits, above all benefiting the cardiovascular and skeletal systems. In general, physical activity in the water helps to:
- Improve blood circulation.
- Tone muscles and tissues.
- Promote weight loss.
- Improve the respiratory system.
- Reduce skin imperfections, such as cellulite.
- Relieve stress and improve mood.
Walking In Water Fights Circulatory Problems And Blemishes
Walking in water promotes circulation and helps counteract venous disorders of the lower limbs, such as a sense of heaviness, swelling, and pins and needles, but also blemishes due to visible capillaries, which are often only the most evident effects of non-optimal blood circulation, but which if neglected can lead to much more serious diseases such as venous insufficiency. The imperfection of cellulite, which can become a real disease, is due to various factors, including bad circulation. Improving peripheral circulation is the basis of anti-cellulite therapy, and movement in water can do a lot.
In Spas, But Also By The Sea
Some routes can be taken to alleviate or prevent circulatory problems at the spa, at sea in thalassotherapy establishments, and in the city in SPAs or wellness centers. Among the best known are the vascular walkways with alternating temperatures, which consist of walks of about 20-30 minutes inside different pools, where the temperature goes from 20-22° degrees to about 30-32°. The temperature variation due to the passage from one tank to other forces the capillaries to dilate and shrink, an exercise that helps keep them active and elastic.
In some thermal establishments, the same thermal water contained in the tubs, the sulfurous or salso bromoiodic water, exerts an anti-inflammatory effect and promotes venous circulation. Some walkways at a constant temperature are equipped with “whirlpool” water flows where the pressure and the “wave” action of the water increases the beneficial effect on the venous circulation and, in some cases, can also favor the drainage of liquids, thus alleviating blemishes such as cellulite. A dozen days without interruption, at least once a year.
Those who do not have the opportunity to go to spas or wellness centers can take advantage of a beach holiday and walk in the water every day, even several times a day. Choose the morning, when the water is cooler, or even when the sea is slightly rough, as the action of the waves can exert a natural beneficial message (in addition to that produced by the movement of water due to sign).
Start walking for 5 minutes with the water up to your calves to gain confidence, then make sure the water reaches your waist (about 80cm deep). Walk continuously for at least 30-40 minutes, depending on your health and training. The walk to the sea has many advantages similar to the spa’s (circulation, blemishes, etc.). Under the beneficial effect of the sun, you can also produce vitamin D!
Swimming, A Sport With Many Advantages
Everyone knows swimming promotes health, weight loss, longevity, and physical and psychological well-being. Practicing swimming consistently, such as 30 minutes or more at least 2-3 times a week, allows you to tone lean mass and reduce fat mass, which helps to gain a harmonious, toned, and slim body. From a healthy point of view, the type of exercise performed ( aerobic ) induces significant beneficial effects on the cardio-respiratory system and therefore helps to prevent various problems or pathologies such as diabetes, stroke, obesity, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, etc.
Swimming helps burn fat and calories (8 to 11 calories per hour for every kilo of body weight) based on the style you practice (dolphin, backstroke, breaststroke, freestyle) and the speed of movement. In the different strokes, the table below indicates the calories burned in 60 minutes of continuous swimming by a 50 kg woman and a 70 kg man.
Is This The Sport For You?
Swimming is a sport open to all people in good health and with sufficient knowledge of at least one style of swimming, but it requires precision and is best practiced under the guidance of an instructor; even while swimming, you can have postures that in the long run can cause problems with the spine, especially in the cervical tract.
Swimming is also indicated for the elderly or anyone suffering from non-severe pathologies of the musculoskeletal system. Still, those with osteoporosis must remember that they must also practice physical activity on the ground (resistance to gravity) further to promote blood circulation towards the bones and calcium absorption. Suppose you choose swimming as a sport, especially after a long sedentary lifestyle.
In that case, it is important to undergo a medical examination and rely, as mentioned, on a qualified instructor. We must also remember caution: always swim in the presence of a qualified lifeguard, even in the pool, and avoid being alone. At sea or in other open waters (lakes, rivers, etc.), it is recommended not to venture into deep waters unless you have the necessary experience, always with all the necessary precautions, and never alone.
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