Do you skip workouts because you’re too sore? Consider including Aquatic Fitness in your program.

Whether it’s muscle soreness from a vigorous workout, joint pain from arthritis or tension caused by stress or musculoskeletal imbalances, many people find themselves skipping workouts or avoiding even basic physical activity due to feeling sore. If you’re trying to establish a regular fitness regimen, missing even one workout can cause a domino effect that makes it easier to skip subsequent workouts as well, especially if you are new to fitness and haven’t yet made exercise a habit.
If this sounds like you, Aquatic Fitness – in shallow or deep water – may be the solution to help you stick to a regular program and keep moving in a way that works you out while  helping to ease any discomfort.
Scroll down to the end of the article for a list of Aquatic Fitness Programs offered at Saddletowne YMCA or keep reading to learn about the benefits.
Aquatic Fitness uses the unique properties of water together with movements through different plains of motion to create resistance for the whole body while simultaneously giving you a fantastic massage! Buoyancy reduces the impact on your joints while immersion & movement through water create a therapeutic ‘hugging’ and massaging effect that feels great on the muscles and assists circulation to reduce swelling. If you are sore from an intense workout or feel stiffness & tension for other reasons (like stress, arthritis, pregnancy or injury), the water can sooth your muscles and help work out the ‘kinks’, restoring you to your regular fine form.
Many people mistakenly believe that Aquatic Fitness classes are only for older adults or people wanting a gentle workout however these classes offer a host of benefits for all populations, especially when used as part of a cross-training program. What makes these classes appropriate, even for people with vastly different fitness goals, is that participants are completely in control of their own intensity level and can increase or decrease the intensity simply by modifying lever length, surface area, speed and force. In other words, the harder/faster you push the water and/or the longer you make your limbs, the more intense the workout will be and vice versa.
Aquatic Fitness classes are different from swimming in that most of the exercises are performed vertically. In shallow water workouts like AquaFit or Aqua Bootcamp you are exercising at mid-chest depth and are able to touch the ground. In deep water classes like Deep Water Workout,Tethered Deep Water Workout or Tethered Deep Water Running, participants wear a flotation belt that helps them stay afloat so they can focus on maintaining proper form and performing intentional movements rather than struggling through the class to keep their head above water. In Prenatal Aquatic Fitness which is also a deep water class, participants sit on a ‘noodle’ instead of using the belt to avoid the pressure of the belt on the abdomen. This means that no swimming skill is required and you don’t even have to put your face in the water which makes these classes a great option for people who want to enjoy the benefits of water but don’t know how to swim.
When done properly with attention to good form Aquatic Fitness tests one’s core strength & stability, making you aware of imbalances that may be contributing to your movement issues and offers an avenue for correction. Most people are surprised by the amount of core activation required and how challenging it can actually be, even for those who thought they were well-conditioned. Aquatic Fitness can also help to maximize lung volume and improve breathing patterns because the pressure of the water on the submerged chest causes one to work harder to fill their lungs. This in turn helps to strengthen respiratory muscles and can lead to greater ease in breathing throughout every life. Better breathing = increased energy, reduced stress, better mood & mental clarity, etc, etc, etc.
If you’re looking for way to be consistently active and be kind to your body, avoiding the pitfalls of both over and under training, I challenge you to give Aquatic Fitness a try – you will be surprised, guaranteed.
Saddletowne YMCA offers the following Registered & Drop-in Aquatic Fitness Programs:
Aqua Bootcamp (Shallow) – Registered
Mondays 7:00-7:45pm
Beginning January 6
Barcode#85442
Tuesdays 9:15-10:15am
Beginning January 7
Barcode#87287
Tethered Deep Water Workout – Registered
Tuesdays 10:30-11:30am
Beginning January 7
Barcode#87195
Wednesdays 7:00-7:45pm
Beginning January 8
Barcode#87262
Pre-Natal Aqua Fitness (Deep Water) – Registered
Wednesdays 6:00-6:45pm
Beginning January 8
Barcode#86318
Call 403-237-2393 to register or visit our website for more information: www.ymcacalgary.org
Drop-in Programs:
AquaFit – Monday, Wednesday & Sunday 12-1pm
Deep Water Workout – Friday 10:30-11:30am

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