Stay Active While Recovering From An Injury With Aqua Aerobics
A great way to stay in shape is through water workouts. Once in a while, I’ve hurt myself doing other forms of exercise, and found that aqua aerobics was a way to maintain my conditioning while my injury healed. It’s a great way to stay active, and enjoy myself in the process.
To overcome an injury. I actually learned about aqua aerobics through running. Odd to say, but it’s true. I was working up to run my first 10K, and injured my knee. One of the men in my running group suggested I consider aqua jogging to stay in shape while my injury healed. I had never heard about doing that, but I did some research and found out the water has a lot going for it even if you’re not a swimmer. Here are some excellent resources with more details:
- Running Injury? Try Aqua Jogging To Maintain Fitness
- Water Aerobics And Water Fitness Exercises
- Aqua Exercise
Buoyancy and low impact. There was a reason we had so much fun as kids playing in the pool. Remember how you could bounce and feel really light? That’s because of buoyancy – a person’s body only has to support a fraction of its own weight in the water. That means that my body won’t put as much stress on joints that might be aching or injured. I used to hate doing lunges in the gym. My knees would creak, and when my foot landed, it felt like a clunk. In the water, it’s totally different. As I stretch out my leg I move gently through the water, and when I land, it’s with a gentle feeling – and that’s the low impact part of the water, which is great when you have an injury. It feels great.
Heart benefit. I was surprised to learn that working out in the water has an advantage that land can’t offer. In the water, my heart rate will be around 13% lower. It is thought that this effect is brought about because of lowered gravity, and the lower water temperature. The benefit to me is that I can work just as hard as I would on land, and stress my heart less.
A strenuous cardio option. I had seen water aerobics classes, and it looked like a lot of smiling people waving their arms as they stood in the water. I wondered if it could provide a good cardio workout. To maintain my condition, I would need to elevate my heart rate like I did on the running trail. That’s when I learned about resistance. Water is a dense medium, and I have to really push to force myself forward. When I learned that competitive runners training for marathons regularly use aqua jogging to cross train and recover from injuries, I started paying more attention.
Aqua jogging. My favorite workout in the water is to go for an aqua jog. I go to our community pool, which has a cover that they put on, so I can work out all through the winter. I wear old tennis shoes, to protect my feet from the rough surfaces on the bottom of the pool. I put a water bottle at the end of the lane – it’s hard to tell, but you really do sweat in the water. I begin to move up and down the lane with my best running posture – which is exactly the same motion I would use on the running trail. There is one interesting difference – to feel like I’m jogging, I have to lean forward like I am sprinting. My heart rate elevates, I quickly get into my running breathing rhythm, and it’s a wonderful experience.
Even when I’m not injured now, aqua aerobics is one of my top exercise choices. Try it – you’ll love it like I do.
Kaitlin Gardner started An Apple Per Day to explore her passion for a green living lifestyle, and healthy family living. She and her husband have just moved to rural Pennsylvania, where they enjoy exploring the countryside to discover interesting and out of the way places. She is also learning how to paint watercolors.