Swimming is something most of us tend to leave in our school years, but swimming is said to be a better form of exercise than running or cycling. It also decreases the stress on the body due to the water buoyancy, meaning there is less wear and tear on the body in the long-run.
Swimming is one activity that has a whole range of benefits, from mental health to physical health.
A swim is a full-body workout, using each and every muscle in the body even if you take it east in the water.
Working out in water makes your body work harder than on land, so 30 minutes in a pool is worth 45 minutes of the same activity on land.
Swimming also lowers your risk of diseases such as heart disease, stroke, and type two diabetes.
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No matter how light the swim, your mental outlook will be improved after.
It’s a lower risk form of exercise too because water supports up to 90 percent of the body’s weight.
If the one thing that puts you off going to the gym is sweat– swimming is for you! You will never feel sweaty in a pool.
Swimming has also been proven to lower stress levels, reduce anxiety and depression, and improve your sleep patterns.
Even if you feel tired after swimming, just half an hour of swimming three times a week will boost your energy levels through increased metabolic rate!
All of these benefits are great… but can swimming help you shift those extra pounds?
Can swimming help you lose weight?
Yes, swimming can help you lose weight because it burns calories.
However, you need to remember that no amount of exercise will make up for a bad diet.
In order to lose weight, you need to be in a calorie deficit.
This means you need to be consuming less calories than you are burning.
Swimming.org recommends eating loads of whole grains and fibre to energise you without overloading yourself with carbohydrates and extra calories.
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The best swimming stroke for weight loss
How many calories you burn depends on the stroke you choose.
The stroke that burns the most calories is butterfly at 450 calories per 30 minutes.
It’s tricky to learn but is the most effective stroke for toning and building muscles on your upper body.
The next best stroke is freestyle, since it is the fasted of all the strokes.
You’ll burn 300 calories on average if you swim in freestyle for half an hour.
This stroke is great for toning your stomach, buttocks and shoulders, back, and buttocks.
Next in line is backstroke, since it burns around 250 calories in half an hour.
Backstroke is great from improving your posture and hip flexibility, but it won’t help you lose as much weight as butterfly or freestyle.
Breaststroke is a better form of cardio than other strokes, but it burns the least calories of the strokes.
Breaststroke burns around 200 calories if you do it for half an hour.
Breaststroke is still great for strengthening your heart and lungs while toning thighs, upper back, triceps, hamstrings, chest muscles, and lower legs.
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