Swimming Health Benefits
There are many swimming health benefits that come from regular participation. An individual does not have to be an Olympic swimmer or hard-core enthusiast in order to reap the rewards of the sport. Casual or regular participation at the novice to intermediate levels can provide enough health benefits to have an overall impact on an individual's physical condition.
- Improved cardiovascular endurance. As with most forms of physical fitness, swimming increases the heart's capacity to take in oxygen. Repeated training strengthens the heart's ability to be experience less strain when under stress.
- Increased muscle strength and flexibility. Regular physical exercise conditions the body's muscles, reducing the risk of atrophy. As the muscles get used more often, they respond by growing and developing strength, which can result in a more toned and lean appearance.
- Weight loss. Physical exercise can help the body balance its daily caloric intake. As the body exerts more energy than it is taking in and adjusts its resting metabolic rate accordingly, weight loss often incurs.
- Overall body conditioning. Swimming works all the major muscle groups in the body at once. This reduces the risk of overdeveloping muscles in one particular area such as the legs. Toning and weight loss occurs at a more even distribution with swimming.
- Low-impact exercise. Swimming is considered to be a low-impact exercise in the sense that it does not put a lot of strain on your bones and joints. This means that there is less chance for immediate or repetitive motion injuries.
- Lower blood pressure. Regular exercise reduces overall blood pressure, which reduces the risks for cardiovascular diseases, strokes and heart attacks.
- Stress reduction. Routine exercise provides a means of relaxation and a physical outlet for the body to release stress. Swimming is especially helpful in stress reduction since water has a calming and soothing emotional effect.
- Pain reduction. Swimming can help chronic disease sufferers, such as those with arthritis alleviate pain and increase joint flexibility.
- Enhanced mood. Regular physical exercise can help alleviate mild depression and anxiety.
- Bone health maintenance. Swimming can help post-menopausal women maintain their bone density.