Swimming has many benefits. Here the experts at Zoggs suggest just a few.
Reduce your disease risk
If you have a health condition, it’s always advisable to speak to your GP before starting a new exercise regime but very few will discourage you from swimming because it’s simply so good for your health.
As you swim, your cardiovascular system gets a real workout much as it would by dancing or taking part in aerobics, but swimming is so effective that it’s recommended by the NHS as a way to reduce the risk of chronic illnesses, such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes and strokes.
Like other types of cardio exercise, swimming works your muscles too. As you power yourself from one end of the pool to the other, your arms and legs will meet gentle resistance in the water and this forces them to flex, tone and strengthen.
That physical workout will help you to feel fitter, stronger and more flexible, but it will also help to boost your metabolism, burn calories and lose those excess pounds that become so easy to gain yet so troublesome to shift as you age.
Low impact exercise
Lots of different types of exercise can improve health like swimming, but none of them give your body the support it needs to be active without risk of injury and this is where a regular dip really has its advantages for those of us over 50.
As our bodies age, joints weaken, muscle mass reduces and bones lose density. This naturally makes us more vulnerable to aches, pains, fractures, falls and loss of mobility. Exercise like cycling or jogging can exacerbate these problems and be especially detrimental for other health conditions like arthritis and osteoarthritis.
Because swimming is not a weight-bearing activity, it’s been shown to actually alleviate and delay the painful symptoms of arthritis and improve bone density, posture and balance to reduce the frequency and severity of falls.
Apart from the feel-good, mood-enhancing endorphins that swimming produces, making new friends at the pool is good for your mental health.
Most swimming pools understand that different age groups have different needs so if you’d like to take part in active water aerobics classes, contact your local pool to find out what they offer.
Alternatively, if you’d prefer to do peaceful laps and switch off from the world at large, you can usually find dedicated sessions for adults, ladies or anyone with disabilities when the water will be free from splashy children.
Swimming is great for body and mind but a little adventure is good for the soul and if you’re a confident swimmer, why not take a dip outdoors?
From organised clubs in private lakes to remote waterfall pools, there are hundreds of beautiful, natural swimming spots to be explored across the UK. You can find out more about swimming adventures from the Outdoor Swimming Society.
You can learn more about the benefits of swimming, get advice on how to start, find ideas for new adventures or simply order everything you need online from Zoggs.