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Health Benefits Of A Pool

Exercising is always the last thing most people worry about. Finding the time to exercise is usually the biggest complaint. We are all busy working to make a living that we forget that in order to live life to its fullest, we have to be healthy.

You’ll always notice that shortly after the holidays when we’ve eaten at all those dinner parties and loaded up on plenty of sugar from all those homemade pies and desserts that we have this immediate desire to hit the gym and get rid of the holiday weight. By January we have gym membership and an attitude of a true athlete but usually around March people fall back to their normal old habits of life and by the end of the year we’ve packed on another 5 lbs.

We need to really look at exercise as an activity that we can enjoy. Whether it’s riding a bike, playing Frisbee at the park or just taking a walk with friends, exercising can be enjoyable. Swimming is one example of exercising that most people love to do. If you were to ask most people if swimming was more fun than exercise, most would agree, that swimming is great fun. That’s because most are having a good time swimming in their pool that they don’t associate it with exercising. There are many benefits to owning a pool that you may not even know about.

If you are a persistent runner, exercising in a pool is a great alternative to give your body a break from the constant pounding on the joints from running and jogging. If you have injured a certain part of your body and need to build up strength, a pool is a great place for rehab. Conditioning for a sport is another benefit to having a pool. You can build up stamina by utilizing muscle toning and lung strengthening.

Working out in the pool is an opportunity to tone muscles and bring the heart rate up. Resistance is a key element in the water that plays a major factor in a pool workout. Water has 12 percent to 14 percent more resistance than air. This is similar to having weights all around the body making every movement count.

In addition to traditional lap swimming, vertical water workouts have 75 percent more resistance than swimming horizontally. Vertical workouts can consist of kicking or jogging, focusing the workout on the lower half of the body.

Colleen Poole, aquatic director at Cabrini, has witnessed many triumphs at the pool. Last year a community member, who was a roadrunner, injured his knee severely and was not permitted to put pressure on it. For four months he could not run, and jogged in the pool instead to keep in shape while he was going through physical therapy. After four months of working out in the water he went back on the road and was running the same times prior to the injury."He was so amazed by the results that he continues to incorporate the pool into his daily workout," said Poole.

Poole is also an instructor of water aerobic classes for those with arthritis. Many members of her classes do not have any other option for exercise because of health reasons. Dixon Center members use their time in the pool to rehab from hip replacements or other injuries.

"For the elder crowd it is more of a social atmosphere, and they are a support group for each other. They don't always come to exercise; they come to chat," said Poole.[1]

There are lots of ways to get in shape. Having a pool is one great way to facilitate your exercise and fun. Remember to drink plenty of water when you are outside in a pool. Believe it or not when you are working out in the water it can be difficult to notice the signs of dehydration

Article by Anita Winter

[1] Nina Scimenes/The Loquitur Cabrini College