Benefits of Aquatic Exercise
It’s summertime and that means fun in the sun. Many of us look forward to being in, on, or around the water on a hot summer’s day. Following are some ideas for incorporating aquatic activities and exercises into your summer routine.
Unique Properties of Water
Exercising in water provides many benefits due to the unique properties of water. Buoyancy is the upward pressure exerted by water that causes you to float. Viscosity is the tendency of water to resist flow. It can also be described as thickness. Consider how water is different than honey. Honey is much thicker (viscous) and resists flow; however, water is also resistant to flow but to a lesser extent.
- Buoyancy reduces joint impact. Exercising in water can be beneficial for people with arthritis of the low back, hips, knees, ankles or feet. It allows them to engage in exercise while protecting their joints from stress.
- The viscosity of water means that the faster you push against the water the more resistance you will feel. This type of exercise in water can help strengthen muscles and is a great way to cross train.
Aquatic Exercise Options
There are many different types of water-based activities/sports depending on your needs and interests. Below are some ideas.
- Aquatic based arthritis classes
- Aquatic aerobics classes
- Stand-up paddle boarding
- Lap swimming
- Water polo
- Fly fishing
- Water skiing
- Wake boarding
Whatever you choose, have fun and remember to wear sunscreen!