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Get into the swim

Get into the swim

Swimming is one of the best all-round exercises that there is. You don’t need any previous level of fitness, you can take it at your own pace and the support of the water is kind to any injuries.

From lane swimming to advanced exercises, there is a huge choice of ways to get fit in the water.

Here are a few ideas for all levels:

1.    I CAN’T SWIM! WHERE DO I START?

If you missed out or were scared off at school, don’t worry. Adult beginner lessons are now a friendly environment, guaranteed to get anyone’s feet off the bottom. Sympathetic instructors will teach you good technique and help you to cope with any fears. You can even book one-to-one lessons if you prefer.

All you need is a comfortable swimsuit, a towel and possibly a pair of goggles.

2.     WHAT EXERCISE CLASSES CAN I DO IN WATER?

There’s a great deal of choice, with new classes appearing all the time. You don’t even have to be able to swim for some of the workouts, so no excuses! 

If you're recovering from injury or have dodgy joints, try aqua-walking or jogging, where the water resistance makes you work without straining joints.

For a more intense workout, aqua aerobics incorporates weights, and the deep-water version keeps you treading water to add a cardio dimension.

For something different, try aqua cycling with special stationary bikes. Or add some dance music and give aqua Zumba a go. Not for the faint hearted but serious amounts of fun!

3.     HOW CAN I GET MORE FROM MY LANE SWIMMING?

To improve your fitness, you need to raise the intensity of your lane swim. High Intensity Interval Training techniques translate well to the water.

Like all workouts, start with a warm up phase and then look to push yourself for short intense bursts. A simple waterproof watch will help you time your workout. One top tip is to learn to do tumble turns so that your intensive phase is not interrupted. Here are some plans for the standard 25 metre pool.

With so many gyms and leisure centres now providing swimming pools, it is a great time to take the plunge. Search for your local pool and get back into the swim!

 

the author

Jessica Ambrose

Jessica is a fitness writer who loves long distance running, yoga, strength training and healthy eating.

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