This morning as I was paddling out through the surf, I was thinking how fortunate we are as a country to be able to enjoy getting out in the great outdoors and trick up our summer workouts. I don’t go too many days at the moment without dipping my toes in the water/ocean and the question I asked myself…(yes I often talk to myself), is there a better way to stay cool than to include water fitness this time of the year?? Win, win, all round I say.
Water has great workout benefits: one of it’s best is resistance power: you can work opposing muscles at the same time. For example kicking with a kick board or water aerobics. Another plus is its buoyancy. It reduces your load (bliss) therefore putting significant less stress on your joints, bones and muscles and this is music to your ears if you suffer from injuries or are pregnant.
Water fitness engages your core and overall body – parts that are neglected as we age, and with other forms of isolation exercises.
There are so many ‘cool’ ways to stay fit in the water. Most obviously would be to swim laps at your local pool. Aim to build up your workout to be at least 30-40 mins, then alter your sessions to include something like 15 x 100m on 1.40min or 20 x 50 m on 50 secs (or a time that leaves you breathless).
Kicking with a kick board is one of THE best butt and thigh workouts. Once you have mastered the technique of keeping your hips high and actually going forward, again add in sets working off the clock. Add fins for to work a whole new group of muscles. You can even take a snorkel and kick with fins without a board, which is gentler on your shoulders and allows you to remain in a correct alignment with shoulders back. Hart Sport
has you covered for all aquatic fitness equipment needs.
Deep water running is always something athletes can do if injury rears its ugly head, but can also be something you can do in your own backyard pool. Pop yourself in a buoyancy vest or stick a noodle under your armpits and run on the spot in the deeper water. Wear a watch and do intervals of 1 minute hard, 30 seconds easy for 20-30mins. Get in the pool while the kids are playing and kill two birds with one stone…no excuses!!;)
Take your cross training to the beach and include wading through the surf to tap into muscles you have possibly forgotten exist or complete a set of soft sand beach runs/dunes with a cool off in the ocean between sets.
Even though you may be kept cool in the water, remember to keep the fluids up (water, not Christmas cheer preferably) it can be deceiving as to the amount you lose in sweat.
Working out in the water is easy but for obvious reasons it should never be done alone. Once summer ends, you don’t have to stop including water fitness as part of your routine. Find an indoor pool, or wear a wetsuit and keep it up. Most of all have fun and enjoy the ‘spiritual bath’ that water gives and it’s abilities to wash away our stresses of the day.
In what ways do you include the water in your workouts?
This post was bought to you by Hart Sport, although all opinions and words are my own