Dive Deeper into Wellness: Unveiling the Benefits of Swimming

The Joy of Owning a Swimming Pool

When you decide to install a swimming pool in your backyard, you are probably thinking of having an oasis conducive to relaxing with your family and entertaining friends. You might even picture yourself using the pool for swimming laps, to improve your physique and perhaps help you lose a few unwanted pounds. What you may not realize, though, is that swimming is beneficial to both your physical and mental health, in a myriad of ways.

Physical Benefits of Swimming

Experts tell us that we should engage in about 150 minutes of exercise each week, preferably moderate-intensity aerobic exercise. If you are new to exercise, this can seem daunting, but swimming is a wonderful way to ease into exercise because it is fun! You can get exercise by swimming while enjoying yourself in the cool water of the pool, and it probably won’t even feel like work. You might wonder if it’s as beneficial as other exercises that might feel more strenuous, like running. The answer is a resounding yes. Swimming is one of the best exercises you can do, for several different reasons.

  • Swimming is a great full-body workout. Swimming engages multiple muscle groups, requiring the use of arms, legs, torso, and stomach to propel the swimmer through the water. When you swim regularly, you increase your aerobic capacity, strengthen your muscles, build your endurance, and improve your cardiovascular fitness.
  • Swimming is a low-impact exercise. Because it is not weight-bearing, it supports joint health as well as overall fitness. For people with arthritis, exercising in water, whether swimming or doing other water exercises, can improve the use of affected joints and decrease pain. It is also a great option for people who are overweight because excess weight puts pressure on the joints, but the buoyancy of water alleviates this pressure and lessens the impact of body weight on the joints. Additionally, there is research to show that people with fibromyalgia can find relief from their symptoms by swimming.
  • Swimming is something that just about anyone can do. regardless of body type or ability, and people can generally swim for longer than they can do other types of exercise. It can help burn calories and build lean muscle, supporting weight management and helping you reach your fitness goals. Even during pregnancy, swimming is a safe and effective exercise that can promote health and alleviate discomfort.
  • Swimming boosts immunity. Swimming in cool water has also been shown to stimulate the body’s natural immune system, increasing resistance to illness and disease.
  • Swimming supports healthy aging. Research indicates that swimming can help reduce blood pressure and improve arterial stiffness in postmenopausal women. Further, swimming has a positive impact on bone health, increases bone density, and can even help prevent osteoporosis.
  • Swimming makes the lungs stronger. Not only does it improve lung strength and capacity, but it helps the body to use oxygen more efficiently, making it a great exercise for people with asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) to try, with permission from their doctors.

How Swimming Can Boost Your Mental Health

The benefits of swimming for mental health are just as significant as its benefits for physical health. Just as swimming engages multiple muscle groups, it also engages almost all of the senses. In our technology-driven world, it provides a rare opportunity to disconnect, occupying our senses of sight, sound, touch, and smell, distracting us from the stress and bustle of our everyday lives, and clearing our minds. While you swim, you experience the massage-like sensation of passing through water, and tension releases from your body, allowing you to relax and be more mindful of your surroundings while encouraging your mind to think creatively. Here are some other effects swimming has on your mental wellbeing:

  • Swimming nurtures our natural attraction to water. “Blue Mind” science shows that humans are naturally drawn to blue space, which gives us a feeling of peace and wellness. It makes sense that our minds would respond positively to water since water makes up 70 percent of our bodies and covers about 75 percent of the earth. Being in, near, on, or under water increases our sense of well-being, lowers our heart rate and breathing rate, and reduces stress and anxiety. Increasingly, water therapy is being used to treat conditions like PTSD, anxiety, addiction, and even autism.
  • Swimming releases feel-good neurochemicals. It is well known that exercise causes the release of endorphins, hormones produced in the pituitary gland to address stress or pain. Endorphins work with serotonin to create a sense of positivity, happiness, and overall well-being. Because of our primal connection to water, swimming induces a flood of neurochemicals to make us feel better. Regularly releasing these chemicals through exercise helps the body respond better to stress and deeply benefits mental health.
  • Swimming helps us regulate our breathing. When we’re stressed, we tend to breathe shallowly, and this can lead to hyperventilation or even a panic attack. If you swim regularly, you learn to regulate your breath, because you must take long, deep breaths in order to breathe between strokes and hold your breath when your head is immersed. This exercises the lungs, helps lower blood pressure, removes toxins from the body, and helps you relax. For people who have trouble breathing properly when stressed, this kind of workout can help.
  • Swimming boosts blood flow to the brain. Even the act of immersing the body in water causes an increase in blood flow to the brain, improving memory, mood, concentration, and overall cognitive function. Additionally, this increase in blood flow that occurs during swimming can even reverse brain damage from stress. This is because this kind of exercise leads to neurogenesis, the creation of new neurons in the hippocampus, the part of the brain involved in memory.
  • Swimming creates community. Whether you are entertaining friends and hanging out with your family at your backyard pool, participating in a group class at your gym, or meeting people at a community pool, something about being in and around the water fosters camaraderie and a feeling of community. Since connecting with other people is also good for mental health, this is another way in which swimming benefits us.

Look to Aaron Pools and Spas for Improved Wellness in Your Own Back Yard

When you are ready to enjoy all the benefits a swimming pool has to offer, there’s no better company to install a pool for you than Aaron Pools and Spas. We’ve installed countless swimming pools and hot tubs since our company was established in 1972, and this family-owned-and-operated business has a dedicated, award-winning team with over 400 years of combined experience. We love to help improve the quality time that families spend together at home, which is why we provide pools and spas with exceptional craft, bringing your vision to life with the best, materials, layouts, and styles available. We also offer pool cleaning products to make sure your pool looks beautiful, feels amazing, and is safe. For the best possible service from our highly experienced installation team, call 508.996.3320 or contact us today.

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