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Swimming for Weight Loss

Submitted by Serena Mason on June 24, 2010

Swimming is the act of movement of one’s body through water. Swimming can be done either in a swimming pool or in a natural water body such as a lake, a river, or the sea. Swimming is an extremely efficient form of exercise and can be effective when combating weight loss and lack of fitness. Water, like air, is fluid in nature. However, the density of water is significantly higher than air.

This means that any movement in water requires more energy than a similar movement while walking as air is passing around the body. This gives swimming a unique advantage as it can be used for exercise. Swimming at a moderate pace requires a moderate amount of energy over an extended period of time. If a person swims for an hour, they are likely to burn a significant amount of calories because this form of exercise is slow but continuous.

The density of water has another significant benefit. When one is standing in water, the buoyancy effect of water reduces the weight on the person’s legs. This means that joints that are under a constant strain of carrying the body weight are less stressed.

While exercising, these joints will enjoy the benefit of the workout without the stress of carrying the body weight. When one compares swimming to jogging, one can understand the massive difference that the two types of exercises have on the joints, particularly the knees. Jogging tends to jar the knees as there is constant shock being received from every stride. While swimming, a person uses his or her legs to propel the body forward, thus applying a physical effort to the leg muscles without any physical jolting.

For this reason, swimming is considered to be a good method for recovering from injuries. Athletes and sports persons tend to train and recover from injuries using swimming as a technique.

Swimming is also a wholesome form of exercise because it involves the arms and the legs as source of propulsion. It also involves the back and lots of other muscles as the body flexes and changes shape throughout the motion of the swimming stroke. It is thus one of the best methods for weight loss. However, when one is swimming for weight loss, the motion should be continuous and fast enough to make you require deep breaths, but not so hard that you should be panting. This continuous type of exercise is the way in which one can lose the extra inches and pounds.
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