Why the Pool May Be the Best Exercise As You Age

Swimming Fitness Pools


Posted on 08 Oct 2019

As we head into our twilight years, it is important to keep the body and mind active. The benefits are well known, a healthy routine will:

  • Boost your memory
  • Let you live longer
  • Help you maintain (or lose) weight
  • Keep you flexible and mobile

And at the heart of this: sleeping, eating, and exercising right. But this doesn’t always mean long hours pumping iron, avocado-only diets, and 18 hours in bed (as nice as that last one may sound!). Sometimes it means a quick session of low-impact exercise in the pool.

We have narrowed down four ways (some obvious, some surprising) you can use the pool to stay active, alert, and healthy as you age.

Swimming

Swimming is the obvious answer to: “how do I get fit in the water?” But for those of us in our true prime, swimming often gets forgotten. Many of us never learned to swim or feel uncomfortable at the thought of a swimsuit.

At Adelaide Aquatic Centre, we have social classes for adults of all ages, where you can get accustom (or re-accustom) to the water in a safe and welcoming space.

And once you’re back into the swing of things, the pool is the perfect place to knock out a few laps. Because there’s nothing better than reaching your personal best or finding that consistent time lap to lap.

Flotation

Ah yes, floating on the water – bright sun, Piña coladas in coconut shells, and a shore of stunning palm trees.

While not all mainstays of the pool experience (Hawaiian vacation anyone?) the pool is a great place to kick back, relax and enjoy yourself. After all, a positive attitude is a strong contributor to a healthy lifestyle.

But it’s not all about the emotions. Flotation encourages you to stretch out your arms and legs and improve your flexibility. It’s also a great way to strengthen your core muscles and build up your body.

Aerobic Movement

When people say ‘exercise!’ this is the thing that first comes to mind. Think jogging, stretching, cycling, running, and anything that moves oxygen through the body. Aka, it’s cardio.

“But those are all land exercises,” I hear you cry! And they are. But cardio has a lot of fantastic water equivalents as well.

For something active, try out water aerobics in a group fitness class. Or for something to improve your flexibility, try yoga and Pilates – all water-based versions of their land counterparts.

Weights

Aging should be easy. It should be about removing the weight and stress from our lives. But life still throws curveballs, and we need to ensure our body is ready.

That’s why adding weight exercises to your routine is useful – to help improve your strength and maintain strong muscles and joints. This can take the form of adding resistance to your movement, or simply calf raises and leg swings within the water.

 

Getting older doesn’t mean giving up who you are – and there's still a long (and hopefully healthy) road ahead – for all of us. Thankfully, the water provides a gentle way to keep the body active and in shape.

Oh, and if you're after after classes to stay healthy, check out our over 50s Fitness Program, Strength for Life – it's a lot of fun.