Whether you are a regular at your local indoor pool or prefer the wild wash of lakes and oceans, swimming is an excellent hobby for both your mental and physical health. The evidence behind this is undeniably clear and is also the reason why there are many types of swimming too, with some enjoying the practice of open or cold water swimming in particular.
If you are considering an activity that will help with your physical fitness or mental health, then it may be worth considering a dip in the water. Alongside the numerous benefits, which we will be sharing below, it is also an accessible and low-impact activity, meaning that individuals with a wide range of physical abilities can get started easily and comfortably.
Whole Body Workout
Swimming is an activity that exercises your entire body. For this reason, it is a well-celebrated workout by many, helping to tone muscles and burn body fat. Those who want to work on specific muscles can also choose to focus on certain swimming strokes, isolating physical demands on various parts of the body, such as the torso or shoulders.
The workout of swimming is known as low-impact, which means that no significant degree of stress is placed on any part of the body, certainly not in the same way running can challenge an individual’s knees for example. This means that even those without confidence in their physical abilities can find swimming to be a great way to begin training.
While there are a great many low-impact exercises, such as yoga and walking, it is swimming that remains one of the most effective ways to burn calories. Depending on an individual’s pace in the water, as well as their body mass, some individuals can burn over 1,000 calories in an hour while swimming
Swimming is considered to be meditative in the same way that running is. Just like running, swimming can also be enjoyed outside and among nature, with many individuals now seeking to take a break from their routine for a wild swim among their favourite landscapes.
Finding a tranquil lake, for example, can be the perfect way to meet up with friends and spend a morning relaxing, helping individuals to connect with each other and nature simultaneously.
Improves Blood Pressure
Cold water swimming in particular has been shown to have several benefits on the cardiovascular system. Blood is drawn away from extremities and directed toward vital organs, increasing muscle recovery and stimulating the body’s vessels. This activity, when practiced regularly, has also been demonstrated to improve white blood cell numbers, boosting immunity.
Alongside sunlight, which regulates an individual’s circadian rhythm, swimming can also improve the quality of sleep. There are a number of reports of individuals noting a more thorough sleep pattern when swimming regularly, while many elderly individuals, those who commonly suffer from insomnia, attribute swimming as a key part of their recovery.