The benefits of swimming laps are well worth the effort and dedication to regular practice that the sport requires. Swimming isn’t just great exercise; it’s a sport that can greatly increase your overall health and fitness without causing undue stress on your joints and muscles. Swimming laps also offers meditative and psychological benefits as too, as it can help individuals learn better concentration and focus that can be applied to other areas of their life as well. For people of all fitness levels, the benefits of swimming affect the entire body, including the cardiovascular and muscular systems, making it the best all-around exercise for all fitness levels.
To get the most benefits from swimming laps, use a variety of strokes in each workout in order to change up the muscles that you are working each time. In general, swimming will improve your endurance and overall fitness. Regular swim exercise strengthens the lungs and increases your heart rate. With regular practice, these systems will become stronger, leading to better health throughout the body in the long run.
Another popular benefit of swimming is its ability to burn calories without the stress that running and other high aerobic activities can bring. Swimming burns around 3 calories a mile, per pound of bodyweight. This means that someone who weighs around 150 lbs. will need to swim around 30 minutes (or 1 mile) in order to burn around 900 calories. While this may seem like a long time, developing your endurance to be able to swim for that long is a great fitness goal for all levels of swimmers.
The benefits associated with swimming laps can also be psychological as well. Swimming is a relaxing sport that can be done with varying levels of intensity depending on your fitness goals. Strong, powerful swimming is great for building muslces and developing endurance, but calm, slow swimming can be extremely restorative and refreshing. To get the most out of each swim, focus on the rhythm of your stroke and your breathing in order to take your mind away from the stresses of the day. Developing the self-discipline, goal-setting and good sportsmanship that swimming requires can greatly add to the overall benefits that you receive by adding swimming to your life.
To enjoy laps even more, and take your mind off the efforts of breathing, add a fresh air snorkel like the Powerbreather to your laps. With the Powerbreather, there is no recirculated air with CO2, as with a traditional or front snorkel, it's always fresh air, which is key to any sort of long distance. Never have to turn your head again. Even add an iPod to the mix.
A great way to get the most benefits out of swimming laps is to try working out with a buddy or joining a lap swim group. Spending time with others, challenging yourselves and sharing your fitness goals for swimming is a great way to make it an even more rewarding experience. To really get the most out of swimming, be sure to incorporate it into your regular workout routine and spend time focusing on learning the correct form and developing strength in each stroke. Swimming laps on a regular basis will help you to increase your fitness skills while also learning a new form of relaxation and meditation that only swimming can bring.