A summer getaway anywhere near a body of water can make it easier to fit in being active while staying cool. Whether you’re retreating to a lake, heading to the beach or simply hanging by the pool, take advantage of your surroundings with these water exercises.
For a great arm and back workout in the water:
- Kayaking is a great way to isolate and work out your arms, shoulders, abdominals and back. Kayaks can take several forms but the most common two are sit-on-tops (SOTs) and sit-insides. SOTs are popular because they are less likely to keep you dry and allow the water to cool you off in the heat. The paddling for either type of kayak will definitely have your arms working hard.
- Sailing is another way to combine activity with fun on the water. Renting a small Sunfish sailboat can work your muscles and be exhilarating as you pull on the rigs to move the sails in the right direction. If you’ve never sailed before, take a few lessons to be comfortable in the water and stay safe.
Water exercises can also work your leg muscles:
- Water walking is a safe and cool way to get some exercise. Simply walking around in waist-deep water adds resistance to any exercise, making your legs work harder. Water walking can also help your cardiovascular health.
- Step it up by jogging in the water to increase the resistance and build greater strength. Once you get used to it, build up the time you spend exercising to get greater benefits.
Use activities in the water to work your whole body:
- Paddle boarding is an excellent full-body workout. By paddling you are using your core, back, shoulders and arms while rowing across the top of the water. When standing on the board, you are using your legs, abs and toes to help yourself balance. In addition, the workout itself is both fun and can be leisurely or challenging depending on the pace you choose.
- Of course, any overview of water activities would not be complete without mentioning swimming. Swimming works the entire body and, depending on the stroke, places major focus on the arms and legs. Simply swimming around the pool can be fun, cool and healthy.
AICR recommends at least 150 minutes of weekly, moderate physical activity to lower cancer risk. Regular physical activity is also important for overall health—helping you gain strength, improve your immune system, reduce anxiety and sleep better. Embrace these water exercises and activities this summer to see and feel the benefits!