Choose swimming for physical activity

Swimming isn’t just for kids; swimming is fun for people of all ages and the health benefits are unmatched by almost any other sport or physical activity.

Did you know the human body is made up of nearly 60 percent water? It seems only natural that some of us would be drawn to the water. If you are trying to incorporate more physical activity into your life, why not consider swimming? The health benefits of swimming are unmatched by almost any other sport.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), swimming is the second most popular sport activity in the U.S. Swimming is not only fun, but it also provides many other benefits:

  • Aerobic exercise with muscular toning and strengthening

Swimming works the entire body, including the cardiovascular system, without putting increased stress on the body’s skeletal system, joints and muscles.

  •   Helps people with chronic illnesses

Regular water-based exercise can have a positive effect on those who suffer from arthritis, asthma, heart disease and diabetes. Swimming helps keep joints and ligaments stay loose and flexible, increases lung volume, strengthens the heart and burns calories.

  • Improves mental health

Exercise helps release feel-good chemicals in the brain, called endorphins. The stretching and flexing of the muscles used while swimming can help the body relax, which in turn, can assist in decreasing anxiety and depression.

  • Appropriate for all ages

Kids love spending time in the pool or at the beach, but swimming isn’t just for children. Adults (young and old) who regularly swim are healthier than those who live a inactive life.

If you’re not into traditional swimming, there are many other water-based exercises that can have a positive effect on the body. Try the following:

  • Walking or running in water
  • Treading water
  • Using the walls of the pool or a kick board for kicking and/or doing leg lifts

If you are an older adult, or suffer from a chronic health condition, make sure to consult with your physician before incorporating any new physical activity into your routine. As with any other sport, it’s important to learn about and follow all safety rules associated with swimming.

For more information about the health benefits of swimming and water based exercise, check out the following websites:

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