It’s feeling HOT HOT HOT outside these days! With the Summer sun beating down, there is no better time to break out the sunblock and float in the pool! If you don’t feel like floating around with a nice cold beverage in hand, you may want to consider exercising while you cool down. Check out these top pool exercises below!
Benefits to Exercising in Water
There are a number of benefits to exercising in the water that is appropriate for all activity levels. Pool exercises are a great way to help offload joint stress and allow for pain-free exercise due to buoyancy. Buoyancy is an anti-gravity effect created by water that helps to off-load joints and reduce the stress on limbs. Water that is about waist height helps to reduce body weight by 50%. Being submerged up to your neck takes away about 90% of body weight. Exercising in the water is also a great way to build cardiovascular endurance. Your body is under less stress. Due to the cooling effects of the water, many will find that they can exercise for a longer period of time before fatiguing. This increased duration helps to build the body’s cardio endurance which can transition to improved activity tolerance on land. Exercising in a pool also helps to reduce your risk of overheating. Working out in the Summer months increases the risk of overheating. However, because water helps to disperse heat more efficiently than air, it takes longer to have to overheat. A cool pool allows for you to work out at a more comfortable level longer than being outside or in a non-air-conditioned area.
Top Pool Exercises
- Water Walking: Start by standing in the water with your feet touching the bottom of the pool and the water level at a comfortable level. Walk the length of the pool taking long strides with your legs and swinging your arms through the water. You should feel some resistance from the water. Set a timer and walk for 5-10 minutes as a warm-up.
- March in Place: Standing in the water with your feet touching the bottom of the pool. March one knee up towards your chest and control the lower through the water. Switch sides and performed 3 sets of 20 marches on each side. If you need support, hold on to the side of the pool.
- Squats: Standing with your feet on the bottom of the pool, start by sticking with butt back as if you were going to sit in a chair, bend your knees making sure to keep them facing forward with your toes. Perform in a shallow area of the pool so that your airway is not submerged when you squat back. Perform 3 sets of 10 squats, hold on to the side of the pool for support as needed.
- Leg Lifts: Standing with your feet on the bottom of the pool, stand tall and kick one leg out to the side feeling resistance through the water. Control your leg back in. Repeat on the other side, then bring your leg back behind your, squeezing your butt muscles making sure not to extend your back. Repeat on the other side. Perform 3 sets of 10 for both sides. Hold on to the side of the pool for support as needed.
- Toe Walking: Start by standing in the water with your feet touching the bottom of the pool. Press up onto your toes feeling work in your calf muscles. Staying up on your toes, walk the length of your pool and back. Walk 5 laps down and back in the pool, stay along the edge of the pool for support as needed.
It is important to make sure you are staying hydrated with any activity, despite being in the water. If you find that during any of these exercises you are having an increase in any pain, then consider seeking professional help from a physical therapist or doctor to figure out the cause of your pain. Physical therapy is a great resource in managing multiple conditions throughout the body and can help improve overall posture and body awareness. For more information on how Action Potential can help you, request an appointment today or learn more about how we address pain.
Photo Credit: Pexels Andrea Piacqua