Swimming is a truly remarkable form of exercise.
It is rare that a sport can boast such a diverse group of participants. People of all ages, shapes, sizes, backgrounds, and fitness levels can participate in, and benefit from, swimming.
Swimming can help the most pregnant and uncomfortable mother stay fit and enjoy a measure of relief. It can help badly injured athletes heal, strengthen, and rebuild. No matter where you are in life, swimming can be for you.
Like many people you may wonder where to start.
If you don’t know much about swimming, it can be intimidating to jump into the pool and get going. Fortunately, in the age of technology, there are unlimited resources to teach you how to get the most out of your time in the water.
Also, don’t forget the importance of good music in any workout, being sure to pick the music that suits you best to help you focus and get in the zone. Music can be one of the most valuable motivational tools in exercise. A little Bon Iver as the sun rises always does the trick for me, but some might prefer something a little more upbeat. Thank goodness for waterproof iPods!
There are three vital components to any workout that will change everything for the better: proper form, warming up, and cooling down.
No matter what you are doing, proper form is vital.
Warming up and cooling down are also instrumental in preventing injury, and they are also incredibly easy to neglect, probably because they take time. But when you remember to pay attention to slowly prepping your body and slowly cooling it down your workouts will be more effective and your body will grow in strength and resilience.
Warming up your body will help you maximize your workout and keep you from hurting yourself. A warm up doesn’t need to take more than 5 minutes, but it can save you months of rehab. Some great ideas for warm ups are:
Outside of the pool:
In the pool:
We all know the inevitable soreness that follow exercise, especially if we are just starting.
Taking the time to do some cool-down stretches will significantly reduce your soreness and prepare you for your next workout.
Some easy cool down activities are:
Swimming is a sport that can fit everyone. Getting started doesn’t have to be scary or hard, and getting better – if you’re already a swimmer – can be the click of a mouse button away. So come on in… the water’s fine.
Johnny found a love for swimming a little later in life. He really didn't know how to swim too well when he first started...