Pool fitness is the perfect low impact workout option – and it is not just for seniors.
Not only does pool fitness improve your flexibility, but the water provides enough resistance to allow you to build long, lean muscle. Plus you do not have to worry about falling!
These are just a few of the reasons doctors recommend pool fitness for individuals who suffer from a variety of conditions, as well as to members of the general public.
Looking to test out pool fitness for yourself? We have put together 10 exercises to help you get started.
10 of our favourite pool fitness exercises
1. Water walking/jogging
This is one of the most simple and most effective forms of pool fitness. You can walk or jog both forward and backward, working more muscles. If you want a more intense workout, jog on the spot, bringing your knees up high.
2. Knee tuck
The knee tuck is like a tuck jump on land – and works the same muscles and more. Begin by standing in chest-high water. Then bring your knees up to your chest. Return to standing. Once you find the exercise easy while standing, move into deep water and do your knee tucks while treading water.
This is another perennial favourite of pool fitness. To do it, lean back against side of the pool facing up, spreading your arms out on the pool’s edge. Then stretch your legs out in front of you, so they are floating in the water. Begin circling your legs, as you would if you were riding a bicycle. This exercise works out your core and your legs.
4. Noodle press-down
Take a pool noodle and hold it with both hands, keeping them shoulder width apart. Stretch your arms out in front of you. With arms outstretched, push the noodle down as low as you can. Then raise it back up in a slow, controlled way.
5. Side leg lift
Stand by the wall, holding on to it with one hand, like you would a ballet barre. Raise the leg furthest from the wall straight out to the side. Then bring it back down. Repeat 10 or more times. Turn around and repeat the whole cycle on the other side.
6. Ladder pull-up
Grab the ladder with both hands, with your arms outside the water. Pull your body up out of the water and then lower yourself back in. Just make sure that, before you do this exercise, you wipe your hands so they are dry. This will prevent slipping and potential injury.
7. Underwater speed bag
Just as a warning, this pool fitness exercise is a tough one! Start by treading water with your legs. Once you have your tread set up, start circling your arms as though you are hitting a speed bag or like a disco-era dance move. This adds an extra challenge for your legs to keep you afloat, while working your arms, back and shoulders!
8. Flutter kick
Hold on to the side of the pool facing down, extending your arms and stretching your legs out behind you. Then do a basic flutter kick. What is great about this exercise is that, as well as working your legs, you have to also work your arm muscles to hold you away from the wall.
9. Noodle plank
Put your feet on the bottom of the pool and hold on to a pool noodle with both hands. Lean forward, putting weight on the noodle until you are in a diagonal position. Hold this position for as long as you can before coming upright. This exercise is ideal for those with shoulder issues, who are unable to take the strain of doing a plank on land.
Swimming is one of the best workouts possible. If you do not want to do a full swimming workout, however, use the strokes as exercises to add to your pool fitness routine. If you want to work cardio, do front or back crawl. To work your inner thighs, focus on breaststroke. For the most intense workout of all your muscles, go for butterfly. Butterfly is tough, but worth it for the core, back, bottom and arm results.
Often pools are positioned as just being fun, with pool fitness being overlooked. Your pool, however, offers a number of health benefits. Use this beautiful summer weather to take advantage of them!