An adult should be doing between 150 minutes of moderate activity or 75 minutes of vigorous activity every week. Swimming is a great way to exercise the whole body and particularly the cardiovascular system. Swimming also does not have the negative impact on the body that running for example does.
Great for Cardiovascular System
Swimming increases heart rate without placing stress on the body, tones muscles, builds muscles, strength and endurance. Each stroke in swimming concentrates on different muscles. Swimming also helps to increase endurance for other types of sporting activities such as cycling or water paddling. Swimming aids in a better lung capacity which allows for better endurance for longer without becoming out of breath.
Even though swimming does not give as much stretching as yoga or Pilates the varied range of movements when swimming will lengthen the muscles that help to make joints more flexible and aid with recovery. Swimming also does not put undue stress on the joints.
Other Health Benefits
Swimming offers a workout for the cardiovascular system as swimming strengthens the heart and lungs and some researchers have even gone as far as to say that it may even reduce risk of death and lower blood pressure and helps control blood sugar.
For people who suffer from arthritis or who have injuries, disabilities or other issues that make it difficult to exercise swimming is a good option. Swimming can even reduce pain and aid in recovery from injuries. Sufferers of Multiple Sclerosis (MS) may find that swimming helps them to exercise, as the water is a gentle resistance. A study done showed that those with MS had more energy, were less depressed and had more mobility.
Swimming is a calorie burner and a swimmer can burn as much as 423 calories each hour while swimming at a moderate pace. For those who can endure a more rigorous pace they can burn as much as 715 calories. Compared to other low impact activities such as yoga or an elliptical trainer these figures are good.
Improved Sleep and Mood
A well-balanced sleep pattern is the key to fitness performance and swimming can aid in better sleep, and give you more energy for doing daily tasks or having fun in gaming or playing sports. A study was done of participants and they said after swimming they were able to sleep better which results in a better quality of life. Many people suffer from insomnia so swimming is a great way to prevent this.
Research has been done which shows that swimming definitely helps with improving moods. Being in the right frame of mind for a fitness programme is an important aspect and having a balanced mood is key. Almost everyone suffers from some sort of stress and a survey done on a group of stressed and mildly depressed people was done. For many of them swimming helped them to feel less stressed.
Swimming is an excellent way for people to enhance their fitness performance by improving a range of factors which contribute to better performance all round.