- Exercising in the water not only reduces the risk of injury but also activates the brain, blood circulation and has a mental factor that also encourages activity.
- “In the water you don’t fight against gravity, so you can move more easily,” recalls a mobility expert.
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Exercising in an aquatic environment is a fairly widespread recommendation among experts. In fact, swimming is one of the most repeated sports in the lists of recommended physical activities because it is considered to work with the whole body. However, there is a wide range of possibilities with water activities such as aquafitness, aquabox and other derivatives such as aquaHIIT . For example, footballer Karim Benzema is one of the athletes who takes advantage of the pool for his cardio work .
In addition, this fluid medium can also be used for rehabilitation, recovery or complementary sessions beyond the gym because it reduces the chances of some injuries even when impact activities are carried out (especially in shallow pools).
These are some of the reasons why it is good to exercise in the water and that many are unaware of:
Water as a support element for physical activity
Being liquid, water can be used in different ways as support . First, as a safety net for people with balance problems or with weak muscles to support themselves (hence why it is so useful for rehabilitation). Falling will not cause the slightest pain and there is no risk of serious injury.
In addition, it also serves to work on balance in any person since movement must be managed in different conditions. This is very useful for any type of athlete because it helps to exercise the lower part of the body .
On the other hand, physical activities in the water reduce the chances of some injuries . This is another factor that can be used to develop muscles thanks to the fact that a certain resistance is maintained when applying the exercises but without the risks derived from being exposed to gravity. In fact, exercise on a treadmill submerged in a small pool has been successfully tested at the University of Tennessee . It has given especially good results to patients with multiple sclerosis.
Exercising in the water is refreshing
Swimming in a pool or doing aquabox, aquafitness, etc. it can be a very intense activity for which you have to expend a lot of energy and burn calories. Everyone can set their intensity, frequency and training time. The advantage is that the body temperature will never rise too much due to the ability of this fluid to maintain temperature. The bonus is the sensation of refreshment in these situations.
However, there is another little-known effect that must also be added. Yasser Salem, professor of Physical Therapy at the University of North Texas , has developed research that ensures that aquatic activity helps recovery thanks to certain reactions. “Exercising in the water stimulates sensation receptors and improves neural connections with the brain ,” says the expert.
Exercising in the water helps blood circulation
The risk of fainting while doing physical activity decreases in water thanks to its effect on blood circulation. According to Dr. Sandra Stevens, the force applied to the body through water pressure would be similar to that of a compression stocking.
Exercising in the pool increases the amount of blood that passes through the heart and this improves blood pressure . In addition to the corresponding physical benefits, it expands the possibilities, since it increases exercise tolerance, according to experts, and this in turn expands the scope to continue training.
Exercising in the water is easier
There are a number of physical activities that can pose a risk for certain profiles of people. For example, those who want to return to exercise after having a cardiac event or have lost mobility for certain reasons. Or they have simply been sedentary for too long and could injure themselves with sudden lifestyle changes.
Returning to activity in the pool has the advantage that the progression is more gradual. “In the water you don’t fight against gravity, so you can move more easily,” he recalls.Barbara Giesser, Professor of Neurology at the University of California.
It will also help regain confidence. “Starting by taking steps in the water can improve the way you walk on dry land,” says Dr. Sandra Stevens, who has published research pointing to benefits for patients with a spinal injury after eight weeks of walking on a treadmill. to run submerged.
Water makes physical activity more fun
Another aspect for which physiotherapists and experts in physical activity recommend exercising in the water is because of the mental component. Although for some people going to the gym or playing sports may be considered as part of a mandatory routine that does not encourage going to the designated place, there is a recreational component in swimming pools that helps change attitudes.
“Swimming or jumping in the pool is fun, so people may think it’s more recreational than exercise ,” says Sandra Stevens, who has also looked at this factor in her research on water exercise. So with the hurdle of mind compulsion gone, you can start a day of rewarding physical activity in the pool.
And there is a detail that can encourage beginners: swimming will not leave memory soreness at any time because it is developed with eccentric movements and these do not cause those micro-tears that are so annoying for beginners in the sport.