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OT - Tone-up Tuesday

Aniki-Moderator's picture

Who likes being in/on the water? Well, tt’s that time of year when water sports and activities can be outdoors – woo hoo!!!

There are many benefits to aquatic exercise, including physical and psychological. Swimming and other aquatic activities can be valuable to a person’s overall physical and mental health. People who are recovering from an injury, have a disability, or experience stress would benefit highly from aquatic therapy.

What many people are not aware of is the fact that aquatic rehabilitation can relieve chronic pain simply because of the unique properties of water. Water is relaxing to most people but can also produce efficient workout results. Individuals with disabilities or who might have recently suffered an injury can reap the benefits of aquatic therapy by utilizing a swimming pool chair lift in order to access a pool.

Here are the benefits to participating in aquatic exercise:

Whole Body Workout
Aquatic exercise conditions the entire body. Swimming can provide you with the best aerobic workout for your body – it can tone your body and it works to condition almost all of the muscle groups. Swimming freestyle, breaststroke or backstroke are all aquatic exercises that work to condition your body. Swimming also improves flexibility and endurance.

Prevent Overheating
Water disperses heat better than air. Pool water can cool you off easier than if you were to run outside for an hour in the sun. Aquatic exercise is simply cooler on the body and much more comfortable.

Low Risk of Injury
When exercising in the water, there is a much lower risk of injury. Aquatic exercise does not put stress on your bones or joints due to the water’s buoyancy. People also weigh 1/10th less in the water, meaning you can support your body weight easier.

Taking part in aquatic therapy also has low-impact results, meaning swimming can prevent future injuries as well. Aquatic exercise is recommended for women who are pregnant because swimming strengthens the shoulder and abdominal muscles which are areas pregnant women experience the most strain. Elderly people or people who might have suffered from a recent injury might also turn to aquatic therapy because of its low-impact. Swimming can help relax stiff muscles and increase circulation.

Prevent High Blood Pressure
Aquatic exercise can lower blood pressure. According to the American Journal of Cardiology, elderly swimmers had better overall blood pressure results. Because of its low-impact on joints and muscles, aquatic exercise doesn’t raise blood pressure easily. In fact, swimming lowers blood pressure because of the water’s relaxing qualities.

Decreases Risk for Diabetes and Chronic Heart Disease
People with diabetes and chronic heart disease will need a lot of lifestyle changes to keep their overall health in check. Water sports or even just simply floating on water and doing some light exercises will help lower stress levels and keep you relaxed, which is good for the heart and the body in general.

Beneficial for People with Arthritis
The fluidity of water is gentle and naturally soothing to achy joints. Water activities like snorkeling and swimming will facilitate the use of the affected joints without exacerbating the symptoms. Hydrotherapy is a preferred treatment for people suffering from rheumatoid arthritis.

Improves Bone Density
Working out muscles on a treadmill may not be the best option for older people and post-menopausal women. Water sports like canoeing, water bikes, paddling and the like are a much preferred form of exercise that helps increase bone density.

Stress Relief
Additionally, aquatic therapy can benefit you psychologically. There are meditative and healing properties of water which can promote stress relief and enhance your overall attitude. Even a quick swim before work can provide you with clarity to start your day. Getting in the water is simply a fun activity, which is why it’s recommended to boost mood.

All of this is a result of oxygen flowing throughout your body. As mentioned, swimming promotes blood circulation, so more oxygen is flowing to your muscles, forcing you to regulate your breathing.


Which do you prefer? ON the water or IN the water? Count me IN! Biggrin


advice.only2's picture

Yay Aniki is back!!!
I love swimming or just floating, I love the water and can't wait for it to warm up enough so I can go jump in our pool and do a few laps Smile

Aniki-Moderator's picture

Advice, when I'n in the water, I can practically feel the tension flowing out of my fingertips.

Some people think Lake Superior is still too cold for swimming. Wimps. Dirol

advice.only2's picture

Lol Lake Tahoe is too cold for me, but I wade into it and suffer, yes I'm a wuss when it comes to that.

ProbablyAlreadyInsane's picture

All things water!!! I need to find somewhere to swim nearby! We have the lake. But it's surrounded by rich and stupid people.

I can swim in anything cold. Just being in the water is the most relaxing thing. It's like I can focus and breathe (without breathing, in the expression way).

Aniki-Moderator's picture

The nerve of those poopie heads, being in your lake space!

I once went to the beach with my psycho exh and he freaked out because he couldn't see me in the water. I was vertically floating, so the only thing above water was from my mouth up.

young_step_mom's picture

Hi Aniki!! Not sure if you already have a "Tone-up Tuesday" for people JUST starting to tone up. I've never been very active and want to get started but can't seem to find a routine I can stick to. Any tips or videos/links you can recommend for beginners?

So far yoga has been the best, but I don't know how much "toning" I'll get out of it...

ProbablyAlreadyInsane's picture

You can start weight lifting, just start light :) 

Running, run slow. My rule when I was getting back into was just no-walking, sometimes that meant that my run was literally slower than my walk, but it helped get me in a mindset.

Anything is absolutely better than nothing. No matter how light you're lifting or how slow you're going, as long as it's your best, it leads to improvement.

Yoga is a great start, it helps with strength and balance and typically has some easy modifications for when you're just starting that too!

Aniki-Moderator's picture

Welcome! Tone-up Tuesday is nothing formal. In fact, it is sometimes Tubby Tuesday! Biggrin

Yoga is great for beginners AND is excellent for toning! Here's a link to a previous TuT discussing yoga:


Here's a link to a TuT with exercises you can do at your desk. Great when you're stuck on a conference call!

young_step_mom's picture

Thank you both so much!!! I wish I were a runner, but it is PAINFUL for me and I just could NOT get into it. But maybe i'll try the slow jog thing and I'll definitely check out the links. Thanks!!

Aniki-Moderator's picture

Admittedly, I am no longer an advocate of jogging/running. I joined the school track team at the tender age of 11 - I could run like the wind! Until I hit high school, I ran the 200, 400, and 800 and ran 200 hurdles. In my 20s, I trained for triathlons.

But all of that running takes a toll. On your feet, your knees, your breasts... And it's damn hard on your joints. Instead of running, try walking. And I mean walking for exercise, not sauntering down the block. You can probably walk in several (many) different places for a change of scenery. Set goals for distance and time. A walking partner keeps you motivated with conversation and accountability.


BTW, if you want to run, here are lacing styles to consider: