Swimming is not only fun, but it’s a great way to stay in shape, as well as make new friends. Swimming is the fourth most popular activity for United States citizens. Swimming is a great healthy activity that you can start at a very young age and continue on for the rest of your life. Swimming is so popular because it doesn’t require much gear and it’s a wonderful way to work your entire body and cardiovascular system. Just one hour of swimming burns almost as many calories as running, without all of the impact on your bones and joints. Even though swimming is a very low-impact activity, it has many mental and physical health benefits. Here are the health benefits of swimming.
Works your whole body
One of the greatest things about swimming is that it really works out your entire body from head to toe. Swimming increases your heart rate without putting a ton of stress on your body. Swimming also tones muscles, builds strength and endurance, and helps maintain a healthy weight, heart and lungs. There are different stokes you can use to add variety into your swimming workout and those strokes including breaststroke, backstroke, sidestroke, butterfly, and freestyle. Each stroke focuses on different muscle groups and the water provides a gentle resistance. No matter what stroke you choose to swim, you’re using most of your muscle groups to move your body through the water.
Swimming is one of the best ways to burn calories. Your weight and metabolism are both key factors that determine just how many calories are burned during a swimming session. Research shows that a 130-pound person swimming freestyle for one hour will burn as much as 590 calories swimming at a fast pace and 413 calories swimming at a slower pace. The estimates are not only based on freestyle. Normally, swimmers will burn the same amount of calories doing backstroke than they will doing a slower freestyle. If you really want to up your calorie burning, try swimming an hour doing butterfly stroke. A 130-pound person will burn about 1,024 calories doing so.
Improves your sleep
Getting a good swim in really allows you to have a better night’s sleep. Because swimming relaxes the mind and body, it allows you to fall asleep easier and stay asleep. Studies show that about one in three adults have difficulty sleeping at night, and swimming is a great and safe way to combat this issue. Swimming is definitely a healthy activity to do in the morning, but swimming at night will definitely help you with insomnia.
Improves your mood
Because swimming relaxes the mind and body, it has been known to boost your mood. Any type of physical activity can greatly improve your mood, but swimming especially, since it can lower the chances of depression and anxiety, and increase the overall satisfaction in your life. Also, swimming gives you much more confidence since it can give you a nice, toned body, and in return that increases your well-being and makes you much happier. The contact with water also improves your mood especially when you’re feeling tired or down.
Great stress manager
Physical activity such as swimming stimulates the brain to release neurochemicals that make the body feel good which reduces stress. When swimming, the added effect of the water moving over the body creates a massaging sensation, promoting relaxation. Swimming after a bad day or stressful week can leave you feeling mentally refreshed. Swimming is the ideal ‘feel good’ exercise and it is encouraged to get in the pool after a busy way simply to unwind.
Safe during pregnancy
Pregnant women and their babies can also benefit from swimming. Swimming while pregnant has been shown to protect babies against a type of neurological issue called hypoxia-ischemia. Swimming can be done in all three trimesters during pregnancy, and because swimming is low-impact, it is completely safe and encouraged for women to take a swim while pregnant. It can help with strengthening your heart and making it more efficient at pumping blood. It also improves circulation and boosts oxygen levels which is just what pregnant women need.
For everyone, what they do to pass the time and improve their health varies. Personally, I really love biking and spinning the reels online from time to time. Even though playing games isn’t improving my health, it is something I thoroughly enjoy and anything that relaxes you has a great impact on your health. Biking, however, just like swimming, is not only a great pastime, but it is extremely good for your health. Whether you’re an inactive person or a person who loves to get out and move their body, you will enjoy swimming. Not only will it improve your health, but it won’t even feel health-related, because who doesn’t love to take a dip in the pool?