We at Seniors Helping Seniors® in-home care services love seeing our clients trying new things, especially when it comes to staying healthy! This month, we’re highlighting the advantages swimming provides for both the body and mind. With summer just around the corner, incorporating water fitness into a complete exercise plan will not only help seniors stay fit, but can also provide a nice way to keep cool while still feeling the burn.
Whether you or a senior loved one are already a pro at the backstroke or are just dipping into the idea of incorporating swimming for a total body workout, it provides countless benefits that help seniors remain active and independent. Let’s dive in!
5 Reasons To Soak Up The Benefits Of Swimming
- Low Impact
High impact activities, like aerobics, running, or jumping rope, provide an excellent workout but can be tough on seniors’ joints and often increase the risk of injury. Swimming, however, is a low impact exercise that also gets the heart pumping and helps to build strength and endurance.
Because the body is submerged in water while swimming, it creates a “weightless” feeling and takes the pressure off joints. It can help ease symptoms of arthritis and fibromyalgia as well by stimulating blood flow, relaxing muscles, and increasing joint flexibility.
- Build Strength & Regulate Weight
Water exercises provide a full-body workout and are a wonderful way to strengthen muscles and increase overall body function. The strength that’s built by swimming is also linked to a reduced risk of falling for seniors. In fact, a recent study found that seniors aged 70 and older who swam regularly reduced their risk of falling by 33%!
Swimming is effective at burning calories as well. Depending on the intensity of the session, just 30 minutes in the pool could burn up to 900 calories.
- Improve Heart Health
Because swimming is an aerobic exercise, it strengthens the heart and improves its ability to pump blood throughout the body. In turn, water exercises are linked to lowered blood pressure and increased circulation. Additionally, swimming helps reduce stress, which plays an important role in good heart health and can decrease the risk of heart attack.
- Boost Mood & Brain Function
Swimming is good for more than just the body – the mind benefits from it as well! The act of swimming increases blood flow to the brain, which forms new brain cells and helps improve cognitive function. A dip also releases endorphins, or the “feel good” hormone, which brings about a sense of positivity, wellbeing, and happiness.
- Stay Social
Seniors Helping Seniors® in-home care services always encourages our clients to remain socially engaged, as this has a long list of its own advantages for senior health. Water exercises are the perfect activity to do with a caregiver, friend, or family member!
Many community centers offer group exercise programs like lap swimming, water aerobics, and aquatic training. In addition to benefiting senior health, group exercises have a lasting effect on wellbeing and can help you or your senior loved one stay committed to fitness goals.
Ready to make a splash? A Seniors Helping Seniors® caregiver is happy to help you or your special senior find the perfect aquatic fitness routine. With the hottest part of the year fast approaching, a dip in the pool instead of a hot walk around the neighborhood is sure to be a refreshing new challenge!