A workout in water is not only fun, but also rewarding!
Does the flab in your body make you think of hitting the gym, only to realise that your weak joints cannot take the pressure of the treadmill? You’ve tried brisk walking as an option, but it makes breathless. Have you ever thought of a possibility of doing aerobics under water? Yes, aqua aerobics could just be key to all your problems.
The name ‘aqua aerobics’ is self-explanatory; it means performing aerobics in water. What difference does that make? Research shows that water offers at least 12 times more resistance than air. This helps to strengthen muscles, heal injuries, and lose weight.
“Water-related exercises increase your cardiovascular fitness, and improves the overall strength and flexibility. Aqua aerobics tones your inner thighs, waist, stomach, and hips simultaneously, and not in isolation. Since the effect of gravity gets reduced in water, it makes it easier to move joints through a wider range of motions. As it’s a low impact exercise, the risks of injuries are close to zilch,” informs Soham Negi, who has been training people in aqua aerobics for seven years now.
No wonder, this form of aerobics has been helplful to those with specific health problems, or those recovering from injuries. “Though this is a relatively new concept in India, it is becoming a popular fitness alternative. Any activity that is done from 20 minutes to an hour has an impact on your joints. However, if the same activity is carried out in water, like aqua aerobics, the impact on the same joints is less. Instead it tones up the muscles, and strengthens the back,” states fitness expert Leena Mogre.
The buoyancy in water is used to added advantage in this form of aerobics, making it suitable to all. Explains aqua specialist Deepali Jain, who has bee training people for around 10 years now, “In water you weigh 10 per cent of your actual body weight, making it possible to exercise without any stress on your joints. Instead the experience leaves you completely rejuvenated. Here you can burn upto 700 calories in an hour.”
Jain recommends this form for all types of cases – overweight, senior citizens, those suffering from arthritics, osteoporosis or someone recuperating from injury or surgery, and even pregnant women. She also believes that people suffering from cardiac problems too can resort to aqua aerobics, “Though your heart works twice as much in water than on land, water helps pump blood easily to your heart because of its buoyancy.”
Typical moves are common to land exercises like stretching, bending knees, running, kicking, jogging, walking underwater in a pool with special foam dumb-bells, tubing noodles, mitts, floatation belts and kickboards.
If you worried about staying afloat in water, or about not knowing how to swim, then this exercise negates all those fears. “Aqua aerobics does not require you to be a trained swimmer. It’s only done in pools that are waist deep, and so you can stand tall. It is an excellent variation to the normal exercise routine that people opt for,” Leena adds.
Who says you have to be a swimmer to stay afloat, and have fun in water?
Why Aqua Aerobics
– It burns high calories
– Renews your energy level as it’s an effective stress-reliever –
– Water works on your senses, and is calming.
– No delayed onset of muscle soreness. It’s like an acupressure on your body. creating a massaging effect.
– No impact on back or knees.
– Minimises risk of injuries.
– You don’t need to be a swimmer.
– Can be done throughout the year.