Miss the sun, salty skin, and sand in between your toes? Tired of the treadmill and elliptical? Everybody into the pool! It might be time to try an alternative style of exercise, like swimming! I can't promise the sun, salty skin, or sand- but hey, we can fantasize about summer all year round.
Indoor swimming offers something no other aerobic exercise does: the ability to work your body without harsh impact to your bones. The pool is an ideal place to work stiff muscles and sore joints, while toning muscles and increasing muscle strength. (Plus, that Spring Break body isn't going to magically appear without a little hard work.)
Don't believe it will be the intense workout you're looking for? Keep reading.
Resistance. When a runner takes a few laps around the track or a jogs a few minutes on the treadmill, that runner is only moving their body through the air. A swimmer, on the other hand, is propelling themselves through the water -- a substance about twelve times as dense as water! So, every kick and every arm stroke becomes self-inflicted resistance, which just so happens to be the best way to build muscle tone and strength.
Flexibility. Exercise machines typically isolate one muscle at a time. Swimming puts the body through a broad range of motion that helps your body stay loose and flexible - wide arm movements, engaged hips as the legs kick through the water, and a twisting core.
The Burn. Swimming has become known as one of the biggest calorie burns around. Even though the number of calories burned ranges from swimmer to swimmer, it's safe to say that for every 10 minutes of swimming: the breast stroke will burn 60 calories, the backstroke burns 80, the freestyle burns 100, and the butterfly stroke burns 150.
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