The Benefits of Aqua Aerobics

My friend Jenny has been bugging me to try an aqua aerobics class. Jenny has gotten me into some mischief before, like that time in Florida – but that’s another story. Suffice it to say that when Jenny suggests a new adventure, I check it out. So I did some research, and found some excellent resources about water workouts:

A gentle workout. The first thing that intrigued me was the low impact element. With water you have to factor in the buoyancy – it apparently allows the body to only support about 50 percent of its weight. For me that translates to not having my feet hit the ground hard like on the treadmill. The other thing that I had to adjust to was the resistance. A simple exercise, like a jumping jack, that wouldn’t seem to be that hard, becomes more of a workout when you have to push through the water. From the reading I did, it was a substantial force, and one of the biggest benefits of workouts in the water.
It was so much fun. When Jenny and I got in the water, what my research hadn’t prepared me for was how much fun everyone was having. The people in the class all seemed to know each other, and when the instructor would call out a new exercise, most of them already knew what it was, and would laugh as they lined up for it. The instructor had to stop by and tell me what we’d be doing next. I thought the whole class was a blast, and when I told her, Jenny just nodded and smiled.
A lot of options. I never imagined you could be so creative in the water. Right after the class we went to, there was an aqua kick boxing class. I found out the gym has a whole class schedule for the pool. There are classes for aqua yoga, tai chi, and that new craze, Zumba. (I haven’t tried that one on the land, much less in the water.) You can do a weight workout in the water, as well as doing surprisingly robust cardio workouts, by using aqua jogging when the lap lanes are open at the pool. I like a lot of variety in my workouts, so this was a real plus for me. If I have different options, I’ll stay more engaged with exercise. That means I’ll actually do workouts more often.
I felt the effects. I think I was just having so much fun that when the instructor escalated the workouts, I didn’t notice. But a few hours after the class, I could feel my arms, shoulders and legs in a way that let me know I had performed a substantial amount of work. But it was once again the gentle part – it didn’t feel like a harsh workout, so I didn’t mind being a little sore. With the water, it was a whole different experience. I slept like a baby that night, and woke feeling really refreshed the next morning. It was so cool.
Utilize the home pool. As I got into the whole water workout experience, I realized that it didn’t all have to be in a class at the gym. That wonderful pool in our back yard has begun to get more use. I even tried treading water – the instructor suggested it for cardio work. It was so simple – I just swam to the deep end and began to tread water. I quickly saw what the instructor meant as my breathing escalated and I could feel my arms and legs working. Now I have more options for workouts.
Alright – I admit it – Jenny was right this time. Aqua aerobics is a great exercise choice, and I’m glad she showed me how much fun it could be.

Kaitlin Gardner started to further her passion for a family friendly, green living lifestyle. She is married to her best friend and lives in Pennsylvania. In her spare time, she loves to go hiking, biking and enjoy nature. She just started her first book about living an eco-friendly, healthy, natural lifestyle.

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