Psychological Benefits of Swimming  

by Pool Builders on 09-24-2012 in Articles

While the physical and health benefits of swimming are quite obvious, some people might be surprised to learn that the sport has a number of psychological benefits as well. Between rhythmic, soothing breathing to the release of calming chemicals in the brain, there's more to swimming than meets the eye.

Swimming, like most other exercises, can help keep away a case of the blues. By getting the body moving, heart pumping and metabolism burning, swimming can take your mind off things that are stressful and help you focus on other things in life. Since the sport requires your full attention, troublesome worries or bad moods seem to melt away when you're working below the surface. And if you must face a difficult situation after a swim, you're more likely to feel clear headed and better able to concentrate after the session in the pool. This is thanks in part to our bodies' natural relaxation chemicals, endorphins. These tiny neurotransmitter chemicals can make us feel big differences in our mood and overall well being. Swimming, as well as other heart-pumping exercises, makes our bodies release endorphins to help us relax and feel good during and after a workout.

To make your lap time as stress-free as possible, choose swim gear that won't fail you when in the water. A good pair of sleek and leak-free goggles, such as the classically styled, yet highly dependable, Speedo Vanquisher 2.0 Goggle are a must-have in your swim bag. The Vanquisher 2.0's come with ultra soft silicone eye seals to keep your eyes dry and comfortable throughout your entire swim.

Even though you're required to hold your breath for a lot of a swimming workout, the rhythmic breathing that's associated with the sport can be an efficient method to calm your entire body down. Just as with the practice of breathing into a paper bag when anxious, swimming requires you to focus and take notice of each and every breath. It's a small, yet noticeable psychological side benefit of swimming.

It's not just swimming that can have you staying focused and calm, there are additional water-based exercises that can keep a smile on your face in and out of the pool. Programs, such as Ruth Sova's Ai Chi Flowing technique, are designed to do just that. A take on the traditional, focused sport of Tai Chi, Ai Chi is a versatile program that helps increase oxygen flow, burn calories and stretches and works the entire body. It's a great way to infuse aquatic therapy and rehabilitation sessions with a soothing and relaxing program.

And you can't ignore how the social aspects of lap swimming and other water-based exercise programs benefit everyone psychologically. Heading to the pool is a social event and while you're there, you're likely to run into people that have similar interests as you. These contacts can turn into friendships and companionship is something that's always beneficial to our mental health. If you're new to water aerobics, take along a flotation device that's sure to help you during your new workout and to get everyone's attention. The AquaJogger Sqoodle is the latest trend in water fitness and gives more buoyancy and resistance than other noodles. It's a versatile tool that's perfect for your water-based exercise programs. Grab a Sqoodle, find a friend, enjoy your water aerobics class and see how truly beneficial swimming can be to your overall well being.

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