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Барвиха
Клинический санаторий

Water aerobics

Отделение лечебной физкультуры

What is water aerobics

Water aerobics is a kind of gymnastics, involving performance of exercises in water and combining physical activity on all major muscle groups, in other words these classes are very efficient in providing physiotherapeutic recovery. Water aerobics is rhythmic and is held mostly with music.

 

When water aerobics appeared

Water aerobics is a type of physical activity with an ancient history. The first mentioning of aquatic exercise is associated with ancient China, where student monks wishing to learn martial arts trained in water to achieve power, accuracy and precise striking much needed traits when attacking the enemy. Water aerobics however, has received global popularity only in the past century in the United States when workout in water had become the practice of many professional athletes. The history of the development of aerobics in Russia is connected with broad propaganda in the SOVIET UNION, sports and health, in particular. Water gymnastics was prescribed by physicians as a general way to imrove one’s health. In Russia water aerobics became popular by the end of the 20th century, where this activity was present mainly in large cities and modern fitness clubs.

 

Advantages, special aspects, benefist from aqua-aerobics and indications to practice

The advantage of aerobics is somewhat similar to swimming as both of these activities are performed in water.

 

Water aerobics classes have a number of significant advantages:

 

Pool exercises imply lack of support under your feet, which contributes to increasing of the motor activity, development and strengthening of all muscle groups, improvement of mobility of the joints. These conditions like no others help to strengthen muscles-stabilizers. Water aerobics can help building good posture. Position of body in water greatly facilitates the work of the heart, causing blood to flow to it, and therefore water aerobics classes are not harmful for people with weak hearts. Water aerobics in the pool can also be used as prevention of heart disease, because it benefits to the functioning of the heart muscle, increasing its strength and volume. Water exercises are beneficial for general circulation of blood in the circulatory system of the organism, improves venous blood outflow, and is very useful for varicose veins.

Water massages skin during exercise, improves metabolic processes in it, prevents the development of cellulite. The skin becomes more elastic, supple. Water aerobics and swimming is well known as one, if not the most effective type of exercise to conqure cellulite.

Water has a stimulating effect on the nervous system, water aerobics brings a sense of vivasity, relieves stress and increases vitality, health and mood, improves sleep. Water aerobics classes help one to "take a load off" the body and joints (due to lower body weight in water), it is therefore more gentle and relaxing than ground-based aerobics classes. Water aerobics classes are not only for people with injured joints, but on the contrary, it will help anyone to increase their functionality, preventing premature decline in their flexibility. At the same time the chance to get injured is significantly less than on land.

Water aerobics is great even for the elderly people. Aqua aerobics is also recommended for people with diseases of the spine and joints. Water aerobics, as well as swimming in the pool, has a water quenching effect. While performing aerobics in water the body burns more calories, as extra energy is needed for heating the body (water cools much more than air), as well as to maintain ones balance in the water. Just one hour of exercise helps you to burn up to 700 kcal! Water aerobics is a great activity for those who are on diet. Even people with a large obesity problems can cope with exercises in water, because the weight of the body in water is reduced greatly. Water aerobics can offload the spine suffering during pregnancy. After gymnastics in water muscles don't feel overstrained because constant water massage reduces the levels of lactic acid in them. When performing water aerobics one doesn’t experience unpleasant sensations associated with overheating due to the cooling characteristics of water. Even non-swimmers can do this type of aerobics because, in most cases, classes are held at a depth of to one’s chest. So, everything indicates towards the fact that “aquafitness” is most helpful in many cases. It can engage people of all ages, with various degrees of physical development, with diseases of veins, joints, spine, recovering after traumas, and people with overweight. If you still have doubts, an advice from your own local consulting physician will surely help you to make the right decision.

Limitations and contraindications for Aqua-aerobics

While the benefits of aqua-aerobics is undeniable, there is still a category of people who needs to attend classes with particular attention:

  • Special care should be paid for people suffering from severe chronic diseases of the cardiovascular and respiratory systems, also people who have recently gone through severe diseases and operations.
  • People who suffered heart attacks and are proned to convulsions, should consult with a physician.
  • People suffering from allergies should also consult a doctor beforehand.
  • The approval of a physician is needed for people suffering from osteoarthritis, which may be accompanied by dizziness and nausea.
  • People who are going through rehabilitation after spine traumas should consult a physician before any kind of exercise. Your doctor will advice you  what exercises should not be done or on the contrary added to your rehabilitation program.

People having water aerobics restrictions, should be instructor-led and start with easy physical activity, and increase gradually the difficulty/challange of the workout. People who have never experienced water aerobics before, should also start at a reasonably easy level, gradually increasing the intensiveness.

 

How water aerobics classes are given.

Water aerobics classes are usually conducted in groups. You can also practice individually with a coach. To maintain the rhythmic tempo of exercises, as well as for the good mood, classes are held under the constant flow and rythm of dance music. In order to perform water aerobics you should wear a comfortable swim suit. Be sure to have a swimsuit, swimming hat, a set of poolside footwear e.g. flip-flops. It is highly recommended to wear goggles in the swimming pool, however this is not compulsory. Lessons can take place both in the shallow part of the pool (hardly chest level), and in the deep end of the pool, when swimming in the deep end one uses special belts for safety reason. Usually the classes are held in the swimming pool for public use.

 

A set of exercises in water includes:

  • Warming-up exercises and stretching exercises;
  • The main set of exercises. In this set cardio exercises, endurance exercises, strength and flexibility exercises are practiced;
  • Rehabilitation exercises.
  • Compound exercises are developed in order to engage all major muscle groups, but the burden is fixed on the lower part of the body. The exercises are performed with the help of special tools and sometimes without it. The composition and intensity of exercise, as well as the time of classes varies depending on group training. Lessons usually last between 30 to 45 minutes. At the end of a lesson, especially one that its rather intense for you it is always good to swim a little or do some stretching, to “warm down”.

     

    When will you see the effect of aqua aerobics

    You will feel a burst of energy and improvement in your mood already after the first time. Gradually your muscles will begin to strengthen, increase efficiency, not to mention your emotional state, which in turn is bound to further increasing vitality. As in any other sport, in order to achieve good and noticeable results, you should practice it at least 2-3 times per week. Visiting aqua-aerobics is a most valuable and necessary contribution to your health and youth! Start exercising and feel magic effect of the interaction with water.