Summer is here and cooling off in a pool is definitely tempting. Swimming is not solely a recreation for the younger generation but provide many benefits for Seniors as well. Whether wanting to join a community swimming program for Seniors or take a dip in a friend’s pool, enjoy the advantages of swimming this summer.
Physical BenefitsIt is easier to exercise in water than land. Consider the physical benefits that swimming offers for Seniors as listed below.
- Joint stress relieved - Bodies are more buoyant in water, meaning less pressure and impact is placed on bones and joints. As body weight is lifted, there is less physical stress. Seniors will find moving in water less difficult, making water aerobics a perfect choice for fitness programs.
- Flexibility increased - If muscles are tight and reaching above shoulders or pulling weeds in the garden is difficult swimming may help loosen sore but important muscle groups. A gentle, low impact water workout enhances flexibility and body movement, both important for balance and preventing injury.
- Muscles strengthened - Every move in the water involves a muscle group. Swimming is an excellent form of resistance training and as it improves muscle strength it also creates long and lean muscle tone formation.
- Balance improved - All forms of exercise are critical when the goal is to improve and maintain balance. Building a strong core (the abdomen, middle back, lower back, hips, and sides) is key to maintaining balance and critical when wanting to minimize the chance of falls and injuries. Swimming, with the built-in resistance of water, works body cores harder when moving and helps stabilize balance.
Health BenefitsIt is no secret exercising is good for your health. Bodies benefit when the lungs, heart, and bones are strong.
- Make hearts happy - Swimming and other water activities boost cardiac functioning. Normal aerobic exercise builds endurance and strength, helps to lower blood pressure, and stabilizes a healthy weight. An increase in heart rate while exercising improves blood flow and lowers blood pressure. In the same fashion swimming exercises designed for Seniors provide the same benefits.
- Prevent Osteoporosis – Swimming improves bone mineral density (BMD) and fights osteoporosis. A third of women over the age of 50 and a fifth of men experience a bone fracture due to osteoporosis.
- Strengthen lungs - Swimming expands lung capacity. As strength and endurance are built through swimming and water exercise, many find they are not as winded or out of breath when exercising or walking. Increased lung capacity and body strength help Seniors feel stronger and more confident in everything they do.
Mental BenefitsSwimming silently benefits mental health, an important topic for Seniors. Tension and stress are decreased simply by enjoying the tranquility of water.
- Release tension - Swimming relaxes and defuses tension. The weightlessness experienced while floating in a body of water helps muscles relax. The sense of weight being lifted off your shoulders has been proven to strengthen mental health.
- Elevate moods – Swimming is fun! Body movement impacts moods positively and refocuses concerns. Social interactions may additionally be increased as swimming is rarely participated in alone. Seniors in a swimming class have a healthy dose of social interaction, which helps avoid feelings of social isolation and loneliness.