World Health Day: 7 Reasons Swimming Is Good For Your Health
Today is World Health Day! It’s celebrated every year on the 7th April and is a good time to remind ourselves to take positive steps in caring for ourselves.
Every year, World Health Day has a theme, and this year’s these is depression. Swimming has been proven to help relieve the symptoms of stress and depression. But relieving stress isn’t the only reason to take up swimming. This year, to commemorate the date, we thought we’d underline the importance of swimming and just why it’s so good for you.
1. It’s good exercise
Swimming helps you exercise most of your body parts without straining your joints. Just Swim found that although water supports the body and is gentle on joints, it also makes you work harder. As a result, you can get the same level of work out with 30 minutes of swimming as you would get from 45 minutes of a traditional exercise. In that time, you can burn over 200 calories, which is twice as much as you would walking.
2. It increases body strength
Swimming is a great way to boost your physical strength and muscle tone compared to other forms of exercises. It helps improve the strength of your bone and joints as well as helping you build a strong and muscular body. When you are in the pool, you will be using pretty much every muscle in your body to keep yourself afloat and propel yourself along. Even if you are stationary, your arms and legs will be constantly moving. You can also tailor which parts of your body you want to focus on – different techniques such as the breaststroke, backstroke or butterfly for instance will work on some parts of your body more than others.
3. It Reduces Stress
One of the main talking points of World Health Day is depression. But did you know that swimming can induce the flow of happy, feel good chemicals? They’re called endorphins and they fill you with a sense of well-being and reduce anxiety and tension. You may feel more energised and less stressed after a few weeks of swimming. In fact, swimming can create the same mood boost as what is known as ‘runners high’. This can result in a feeling of calm, which offers relief to patients suffering from conditions related to chronic stress.
4. It prevents heart diseases
Swimming is aerobic, which means that it improves both the health and function of your circulatory system, particularly the heart muscles. You’ll build heart and lung endurance over time, which will benefit you in all sorts of ways throughout life. The best part is, you don’t even have to swim at a fast pace to see huge benefits.
5. It can improve asthma symptoms
Swimming forces you to work on your breathing. Since the moisture level in the air around a swimming pool is higher than that of a gym, it makes it easier to breathe. This is especially beneficial for those suffering from respiratory ailments such as asthma. Swimming improves symptoms of asthma and increases lung volume.
6. It improves Flexibility
Swimming helps to improve body reflexes by improving flexibility of joints and ligaments. Unlike a gym workout where a different machine is required to work on different body areas, swimming is more or less a whole-body workout. Different strokes target different muscles, elongating and stretching them and improving overall flexibility.
7. Prolongs Life
Most importantly, it has been said that people who swim, live longer!
So if you’ve been out of the water for a while, it’s time to dive back in and swim towards a happier, healthier you!