Reasons Swimming is Great Exercise

In Southwest Florida, we have a lot of access to water and water-based activities, and people who are looking for ways to start exercising and be more active can find quite a bit of opportunity in the water.  Swimming is an easy way to enjoy the water and also great exercise that doesn’t require a lot of equipment.

One of the best features of swimming as exercise is its cardiovascular benefits.  Because you have to work at controlling your breath while you swim, your muscles need to work harder and your circulation needs to be more efficient more quickly than with running.  At the same time, swimming is much lower impact than running and often doesn’t feel as if you’re doing as much work, so you will get more benefits from the exercise in a shorter amount of time.

Swimming is a total-body exercise that works many parts of the body at the same time.  Because of the requirement of coordinated effort, it works many muscle groups as well as general coordination and body control.  By itself, swimming benefits many parts of the body, but if you’re cross-training, swimming can help improve performance in many other exercises as well.

Swimming’s low impact but high efficiency is a great way to burn calories.  You can burn about 500 calories with only about an hour of moderate swimming, and because the activity ramps up your metabolism, your body will continue to burn extra calories even after you’ve left the water.

For older people or people who are recovering for injuries, swimming is a great choice for exercise because it doesn’t stress the joints or impact your bones as much as other exercises such as running.  With the many variations on swimming, such as the four different strokes, as well as other water activities like pulling and kicking that can serve as an easy workout, swimming is a great way to stay fit and in shape while not overstressing your body.

There are many health benefits to exercise, and swimming is a great exercising regimen for staying fit.  It’s always a good idea to talk to a doctor before starting a new exercise regimen, so if you want advice on your own exercise needs or more information about the benefits of swimming, you can use IPALC’s physician directory to find a good doctor for your needs.  Go to or contact IPALC directly at and our staff can help point you in the right direction.


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