Swimming is something a lot of people don’t do often, something reserved only for the summer time or vacations. When we think of swimming, it is reminiscent of times we had as children during swimming lessons, or lazy days at sleep away camp.
What many of us forget is that swimming is one of the best exercises out there that we can do, it is a fully body workout that is easy on the joints, and comes with all the health benefits of cardio exercise as well.
Increased Cognitive Functioning
Swimming makes you think more clearly, and generally makes your mind function better overall. Swimming has shown to help facilitate and increase blood flow to all areas of the body, including the brain.
Our blood carries the necessary oxygen that our brain desperately needs to do so leading to better memory, alertness and cognitive function.
Swimming Will Help Improve Your Mood
A study published in the International Journal of Circumpolar Health shows that people who swam not only in summer months, but through the year in to winter months experiences numerous positive health benefits as a result.
Swimming was shown to improve fatigue, tension and memory loss among the participants within this study. This indicates that swimming can help to improve these ailments for the general population.
Lower Your Blood Pressure With Swimming
Studies have shown that swimming reduced the risk for hypertension in individuals who regularly swam over the course of a 10 week period.
There are other exercises out there that can help fight hypertension and high blood pressure as well, but swimming is unique.
People who are obese, have bad joints or are injured can both train and rehabilitate better in the water as well, giving it that added benefit.
The properties of water make it so that when someone is swimming in it, the forces of gravity on them are reduced through buoyancy. This means that there is much less stress and force exerted on your body through swimming as opposed to running, walking or even cycling.
Reduce Back Pain Through Swimming
If you suffer from back pain, either from a temporary injury or if it is long term chronic pain, swimming may help to alleviate it.
Studies have shown that doing aquatic exercise only 2-3 times a week and 90% showed significant improvement in their back pain in only 6 months.
It is believed that the reduced pressure on the spine as a result of being in the water relieves the disks which act as padding between our vertebrae.
We feel pain when these disks are too compressed to the point where our vertebrae are touching which can be reduced through swimming.
Reduce Risk of Heart Attacks and Heart Disease
Reduced risk for heart disease and exercise go hand and hand. There becomes a problem though for people with heart problems who also have osteoporosis.
Doing exercises like running, jogging or walking are usually a good idea when considering cardiovascular health but they can do damage to our joints and bones when we are elderly.
Swimming is a great alternative for people who are looking for a great cardiovascular exercise that also is easy on the joint and bones. Swimming helps to reduce inflammation which helps combat arthritis pain and also is beneficial to our health overall.
Swimming Uses Muscles Your Normally Don’t Use
Depending on your routine and what strokes you incorporate, swimming has the potential to help you improve on every muscle group in the entire body.
Swimming is very effective in helping to develop and maintain the stabilizing muscles we don’t normally use in our routines and tend to be under developed anyway. These muscles tend to be the ones that run closely along the spine like our hip flexors and other ones along our legs found around the pelvis.
People Who Swim Tend To Live Longer Lives
Everyone has heard that cardiovascular exercise like long distance running, walking or jogging can prolong their lives, however swimming bests even these exercises when it comes to longevity.
One study conducted in 2008 showed that men who ranged in age from 20-90 increased their lifespan by 50% when compared to others who didn’t exercise, walked regularly or were runners.
When concerned with living a healthy long life, swimming is one of if not the best ways to do so.