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Water walking is an excellent aerobic exercise that burns calories without putting strain on your joints. It is a great way to stay in shape if you are trying to recover from injury or if you are over the age of 65. Both water walking and water jogging use the same muscles as their land counterparts, but do not do as much wear and tear on your joints and tendons.
If you are just starting this sport, ease into it with a 5-minute water walking session. Stand waist deep in a body of water with your abs and buttocks tightened, shoulders back and chest raised. Your arms should be straight throughout their swing, but use your palms to push against the water. Keep your abs tight and walk as you normally would. Try doing high knee kicks if you want to make the exercise more challenging.
After a few weeks, try to move on to water jogging. Water jogging can burn between 300 and 500 calories per hour. It differs from water walking in that instead of walking along the pool floor you jog in place. It's a great aerobic workout during the hot summer months. Try to sustain your water jog for a 10 minute workout at first and then increase the time as you get better at it.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|