Swimming For Fitness Guide
Swimming for fitness doesn't beg much from your wallet for tools. A towel, pair of goggles and swim trunks sum up your needs. Kickboards are also useful, but most important is bringing a will made of iron. Drills aren't for sissies. They're demanding and pitiless. Don't let that worry you if you're just getting into fitness. You'll get where you're going by consistently meeting and setting new goals.
- The most obvious and crucial first step to your swimming regimen needs no mention, but here it is just in case: Have access to a pool. Relying on a friend's pool releases your control over the session schedule. If you miss a week of sessions because of impromptu poolside galas, you'll feel it when you regain access to the water. Using the pool at your local community center will offer consistent availability, especially if you're paying.
- You can usually obtain a membership to a community pool for under 50.00 a month. Take time to check their schedule. There won't be enough room in the pool for laps during toddler power hour, but you can probably find a good slot in the evening. Be sure you have guaranteed pool access for your sessions, before you lay out any cash.
- Eat no sooner than two hours before your swim session, and focus on foods that are easy on digestion. Fruits, salads and light wraps make good choices. You can afford carbs as well, but take in the healthy ones. Hydrate in advance to compensate for the water you're going to lose in the pool. Get down 32 ounces, if you can. It helps.
- Decide on the day's swim challenges before your session, and stick to it. Be it zen exercise or swimming for power, you will tone your muscles and strengthen your heart with this approach to fitness. For the latter, power swimming is most effective. Work on the art in your swimming regimen as a method for increasing muscle control and sculpting your physique.
- Stretch and start with a few warm-up laps to get your blood flowing and loosen your limbs. If you're a beginner, work with three to six laps at 25 yards each. Increase speed for the middle laps to raise your heart rate. Build your endurance from there.
- Inhale and exhale evenly. Maintaining breath control will keep your head in the swim and your energy circulating.
- If you're intermediate, you can likely handle eight to twelve laps of 25 yards. Focus on speed laps after your warm-ups. Push yourself, but do it wisely. Use backstrokes to maintain the workout without over-exhausting yourself.
- Improving technique and building capacity go hand in hand. Use swimming drills to gain mastery over your form. These are exact movements, practiced repeatedly.
- The basic drill is the freestyle, or 'front crawl'. Practice this with a focused side, pointing the area spanning shoulders to hips in the direction of the pool bottom before alternating and pushing forward. Take in a good amount of oxygen when you roll your body to work the opposite side. An additional approach to the freestyle drill requires you to swim with one or both hands clenched in fists. Incorporate small movements with hands and kicks for an added challenge.
- The 'catch-up' is another useful discipline-builder. Swim it like the freestyle, but keep one stationary arm pointed ahead of you while the other handles the stroke. Alternate arms at the end of the stroke or after a preset number of strokes. Hold a kick board in your stationary hand for a variant of this drill.
- Cool down with three to eight leisurely-paced laps to bring the heart rate back to normal before you end your session. Swimming for fitness works the whole body without placing excessive strain on the joints. You'll burn about 500 calories per session and definitely carve muscle during drills.