If the normal gym and aerobics routine is wearing you out, then you must try water resistance exercise, also known and water aerobics, which will definitely make working out more enjoyable. Trainers are now realizing the benefits of performing water resistance exercises that not only reduce chances of injury, but can help a person reduce many more calories in lesser time, when compared to land aerobics. Water resistance exercises provide a dual benefit of strength building as well as cardiovascular benefits and is ten times more resistant than air and therefore, more muscles are at work when you exercise inside water. Aqua aerobics can be performed with or without weights and like other workouts, you have an upper and lower body workout in this form of exercise as well. There are many different water resistant exercises such as walking, running, squats and so on. Here are six of the most preferred underwater exercises, so get wet to get fit!
Underwater running or jogging is a very good way to get a good cardio workout, without impacting your feet joints and knees. Running in water is very effective and you can wear ankle weights so that you get more resistance and burn more calories. You could also wear a buoyancy belt and run for 30-45 minutes in the deeper end of the pool so that your feet do not touch the bottom. You could run for 2-3 minutes at high pace, and then jog for another 2-3 minutes. This pattern should be repeated 5-10 times to provide a great cardio workout. Whilst running, make sure that you have the correct posture, with your torso centered. Even though your feet do not touch the ground, make sure that you mimic the way you would run on land. Always remember that you are supposed to be running and not cycling in the water.
Another great lower body workout loved by all women are squats. Underwater squats are more challenging as you have to deal with the resistance that water weights provide by pushing the body back to the surface. For performing aqua squats, stand with your legs apart in shallow water. Bend your arms on either sides and squat down by bending your knees as if you were sitting on a chair. Make sure that your knees do not go beyond your toes and should be aligned to the position of your knees. After doing so, return to the neutral or starting position. Keep your posture straight and tuck your abs inside when standing up. You should have a proper form when doing this exercise and slouching is not permitted.
Leg exercises with a noodle
There are various leg exercises that you can perform underwater. However, resistance exercises performed with a water noddle tied into a knot around your water shoe or foot is the optimum way to strengthen your leg muscles for an effective lower body work out. Stand with you back leaning against the pool. The water should be waist deep. Spread out your arms so that they touch the edge of the pool for giving stability. Straighten out your leg and keep bending it by 90 degrees from the knee and then return to the neutral position. Do 12-15 reps of this exercise or until you are tired. Repeat the same sets with the other leg.
Resistance exercises and swimming with kickboard
Another great equipment for water resistance exercises is the kickboard. This is an entirely different kind of water weight. If you choose to swim with a kickboard, then only your lower body would get a workout as the front half of the body is propelled with the help of the legs. You could also perform another effective exercise with a kickboard in which you should stand upright with your legs spaced apart. Tighten your abs and extend your arms with two kickboards supported by either of the two arms. Bring both your arms to the center of your body. This will be difficult to do as the two kickboards provide a unique kind of resistance. Repeat this exercise for 12-15 reps or until you get tired.
Water walking with foot pads and hand webs
Foot pads are flat wide foam pads that make it easier to control your movement underwater as they comprise of foam weights. Simple underwater walking offers a lot of challenge to your leg muscles as the foam weights bring about a lot of resistance to this simple form of exercise. Underwater walking is a great way to tone your legs and get a good lower body workout. This low impact exercise is much less strenuous to walking on land as it does not impact the muscles, joints and bones. Start by walking in water that is waist deep by swinging your arms sideways like you would do on land. Do not walk on your tiptoes and use water shoes or foot pads to give you a proper grip and traction while walking. Also keep an eye on your posture, as you should walk with your back straight and your abdomen muscles tightened. You could also increase your resistance by wearing various resistance devices like hand webs and ankle weights. Once you have become comfortable walking in shallow water, try walking in water that is deeper. You could place a water noodle or wear a float belt between your two legs to make sure that you stay above the water.
Underwater freestyle weight exercises for arms
You could also perform a lot of free weight exercises for your torso and arms. Use water barbells or dumbbells that are handheld water weights. You could use these to perform the same kind of exercises that your perform on land for biceps and triceps. From lifts to curls, you could perform a bevy of different workouts which are much more effective as the natural resistance of the water helps to give all your muscles a thorough workout. You could also swim with weights, which is also known as underwater calisthenics. Hand webs are a great aqua equipment that can provide your triceps and biceps a great workout.