7 reasons you should start swimming
Swimming is the fourth most popular sports activity in the U.S, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and offers numerous health benefits, including decreasing risk for chronic illnesses like diabetes and heart disease.
- Swimming is a unique form of exercise because you are doing cardio and strength training at the same time. The cardio simply comes from continuing to swim back and forth. The strength comes from having the resistance of the water against your arms and body.
- It works a wide variety of your muscles.
- It is easy on your joints since there’s no contact with the ground.
- It works your brain too, because you have to focus and multi-task while working your different body parts.
- It forces you to focus on your breathing, as well.
- It increases your core strength. In order to keep your hips and legs up, you need to use your core to stay high in the water.
- You can swim every day. Running is a form of cardio that shouldn’t be done daily, but since swimming doesn’t affect your joints in the same way, it is a great activity for every day exercise.
If you’re interested in adding swimming to your routine, but haven’t had much time in the water, Heinz suggests beginning with two times per week. “Start with a half hour, and slowly work your way up. Once you have built up endurance, you can increase your days,” says Heinz.
“It’s also a good idea to have someone with experience or certification look at your swimming technique,” she adds. “Swimming is a great form of exercise, but if you are swimming incorrectly, it could lead to injury.”
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About the Author
Natasha Taylor, health enews contributor, is a public affairs and marketing coordinator at Advocate Condell Medical Center in Libertyville, Ill. She has over 10 years of communications experience working for various nonprofits throughout Chicagoland. Outside of work she spends her time working with teens and young adults with developmental disabilities through Young Life Capernaum. She also enjoys all things food related, attending concerts, and being active through running, biking and snowboarding with her husband.