If you're considering taking up aqua aerobics, here are a few convincing reasons by guest contributor Patricia Hogenes on why you absolutely must!
I’m always looking for new and energizing ways to spice up my exercise routine. I was a runner for many years, and I have just taken up tennis. I’m not that great yet, but I enjoy it a lot. When I discovered aqua aerobics, it quickly moved to the top of my list of exercise options. Here are 7 reasons to give aqua aerobics a try:
1. For the Fun of It
Let’s face it, if a workout is a grind, I’m not going to stick around long. I’ll go find something that is enjoyable. The first time I tried a water class, I was pretty impressed by how much fun everyone was having. People were breathing hard, but laughing a lot and enjoying themselves. That got my attention right away.
2. The Low Impact Element
After years of running, I want to be gentle on the old knees. Doing lunges in the gym makes my knees creak, and I don’t like that feeling. But with lunges in the water, the effect is totally different, because the water cushions me. I don’t need a lot of equipment, either – I can do a water workout using only a foam noodle.
3. A Great Way to Stay in Shape
A guy in my running group had an injury, and couldn’t run for a while. He turned to the water – specifically aqua jogging – and he kept his condition very nicely. I was surprised at how far he could run when he came back to the running trail. He now uses aqua jogging as part of his regular cross-training, and to give his legs a break occasionally.
4. A Super Cross Training Option
Speaking of cross training, I have now added water workouts to my list as well. It makes sense that in looking for an alternative, I look to the water. There are so many varieties of workouts available, I have a lot of choices to take a break when my tennis game is not going well.
5. Excellent Cardio
Don’t believe me? Go to the pool when the lap lanes are open. Jump in a lane, and take off in a good jogging motion. You’ll be surprised at how quickly you’re breathing hard, and feeling the burn in your legs. I was astonished. I thought I’d go knock out a couple of miles the first time, and had to dial down my goal. The cushioning effect of the water turned into a resistance element – having to force my body through the water gave me a great cardio workout.
6. So Many Choices
If aqua jogging doesn’t interest you, there are a lot of options for water workouts these days. I had a lot of fun, and got a fantastic workout, when I did an aqua kick-boxing class. When I want to relax, I’ll go for aqua yoga, or tai chi. Either class can give me a super workout, and help me relax after a long day with the kids. I’m working up my courage to try Zumba in the water – all those sexy hip swinging moves look fun, but I’m still just a little self conscious.
7. It’s a Healthy Choice
The point of working out is to stay in shape, and keep yourself healthy. Aqua aerobics classes certainly provide a lot of health benefits. I get all the advantages of cardio, low impact, and cross training, with exercise routines where I really have fun, and that’s the bottom line.
I have really enjoyed aqua aerobics, and plan to continue for a long time using the water as a regular part of my workout program. If you’re wondering about it, just try it once – you’ll quickly become a believer like I did.