Try These 8 Pool Exercises for a Full-Body Workout (Part 1)

If you’re looking for a break from your usual fitness routine, why not dive into aquatic exercise? Exercising in water can provide a great full-body workout without some of the drawbacks of land-based exercises.

Plus, what could be more refreshing in the sticky summer months than being immersed in water while you’re burning calories? And, in winter, a heated indoor pool can keep you comfortable no matter how chilly it is outdoors.

Here’s a look at the benefits of water workouts, along with 8 pool exercises that can work the major muscle groups in your body.

What are the benefits of pool exercises?

Because water offers heavier resistance than air, working out in the pool can make the same exercises that you’d do on land more challenging in water.

The heavier resistance can engage your muscles more fully and also help you burn more calories in a shorter amount of time. Aquatic exercise allows you to get a great cardio workout, while also increasing your:

  • strength
  • endurance
  • flexibility

The buoyancy of water also provides extra support for your muscles and joints. This allows you to work out harder while putting less impact on your body than you would on land.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)Trusted Source, it’s especially helpful for people who have joint conditions, such as osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.

It’s also a gentler form of exercise for pregnant women and people who have:

  • osteoporosis
  • fibromyalgia
  • balance issues
  • joint injuries

Do you need any special equipment?

If you attend an aquatic class at a fitness center, the facility will likely provide any equipment that you need. Some pools may even have water treadmills, ellipticals, and bikes. Remember to bring:

  • a towel
  • swim cap
  • a pair of goggles

If you’re going to work out on your own, you may want to buy some of the following gear:

  • Wrist or ankle weights. These strap-on weights can increase the resistance of your arm and leg movements in water.
  • Foam dumbbells. Lightweight when dry, they become heavy when you put them in water.
  • Hand paddles or resistance gloves. Both types of equipment can boost your strength training in water.
  • A great tool for many drills, it allows you to hold on and stay afloat while doing core and lower body workouts.
  • Buoyancy belt. This can keep your head above water so you can do arm exercises without treading water.

(To be continued)

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