Pool exercise offers health benefits

By Nina Scimenes
October 28, 2004

Shane Evans

The Dixon Center’s pool offers an alternate place to work out and not even break a sweat. Exercising in the pool is an alternative to those who want to give their body a break from the constant pounding on the joints from running. There are many purposes for water exercises; rehabbing from an injury, conditioning for a sport or balancing a workout.

The pool on campus is used primarily by community members but students are encouraged to take advantage of the astonishing facility. Many sports teams have been incorporating pool exercises into their practicing. “After basketball practice I swim a few laps to cool down and to keep myself flexible,” said junior history major Justin Walsh.

The cross country team in particular focused its preseason around the pool to prevent from serious injuries during meets. Jogging in the deep end of the pool is just as benefaction as hitting the road.

Working out in water is an opportunity to tone muscles and bring the heart rate up. Resistance is a key element in the water that plays a major factor in a pool workout. Water has 12 percent to 14 percent more resistance that air. This is similar to having weights all around the body making every movement count.

In addition to traditional lap swimming, vertical water workouts have 75 percent more resistance than swimming horizontally. Vertical workouts can consist of kicking or jogging, focusing the workout on the lower half of the body.

Colleen Poole, aquatic director at Cabrini, has witnessed many triumphs at the pool. Last year a community member, who was a roadrunner, injured his knee severely and was not permitted to put pressure on it. For four months he could not run, and jogged in the pool instead to keep in shape while he was going through physical therapy. After four months of working out in the water he went back on the road and was running the same times prior to the injury. “He was so amazed by the results that he continues to incorporate the pool into his daily workout,” said Poole.

Poole is also an instructor of water aerobic classes for those with arthritis. Many members of her classes do not have any other option for exercise because of health reasons. Dixon Center members use their time in the pool to rehab from hip replacements or other injuries. “For the elder crowd it is more of a social atmosphere, and they are a support group for each other. They don’t always come to exercise; they come to chat,” said Poole.

Don’t forget to drink plenty of water to avoid dehydration. When working out in the water signs of dehydration are not noticeable. Have a safe and fun work out.

Posted to the web by Shane Evans

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Nina Scimenes

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