Fun and Fit: Top 5 Water Sports for Keeping Fit

On a hot summer day, everyone loves to jump into the pool to relax and have fun. There’s nothing like a little vitamin D that can help your health, but water sports outdoors have other benefits as well. Swimming and water sports are one of the most beneficial exercises for your body. All the different water sports that you can participate in drastically improve your health by:

• increasing cardiovascular endurance

• improving general strength

• increases endurance

One of the biggest advantages of water sports for exercise is the lack of impact on your joints. Individuals that are older or those who have knee injuries may not be able to compete in running sports, but swimming does not put stress on joints. Water sports also have a lot of variety. There are sports under water such as diving and snorkeling, sports on the water such as surfing and rafting, and indoor water sports like water polo and swimming laps. Here’s a list below of some of the most popular water sports out there that are fun and good for your health!

1. Swimming Laps

Swimming has been a Summer Olympics sport for more than a century. This could be the sport for you if you are interested in gaining overall strength and cardiovascular health. Swimming laps can exercise your entire body with the different types of strokes. Swimming is great because it is appropriate for all fitness and experience levels. Here are some reasons that swimming helps you keep fit:

• Burning calories – One hour of swimming can burn 500 calories or more!

• Strengthens muscle – Since swimming is a full body workout and water is more dense than air, many muscles in your body will be strengthened by swimming often.

• Low impact – People with joint and back injuries will be glad that they can still stay healthy and fit by swimming.

2. Rowing

Contrary to popular belief, rowing is actually a full body sport although it looks like a lot of the upper body is involved. Rowing has become popular as a sport as well as a form of fitness training. Rowing is about as intense as any running activity, and it can burn as many calories and build a lot of strength. Rowing can keep you fit because:

• Total body workout – Rowing involves your entire body, not just your upper body.

• Improves flexibility – Since rowing will put your body through unique ranges of motion, your body will become more flexible as well.

• Strength and cardiovascular training – Rowing is an intense aerobic activity that helps you strengthen your muscles too.

• Burns calories – Rowing can burn more calories with the same amount of effort as biking or running.

3. Water Polo

Water polo is also another unique water sport that has become popular over the years. Water polo is a sport that is played in teams and can tax the body in unique ways while having fun. With players on teams trying to score goals against an opposing team, your body will become more toned and your flexibility will increase as well. You can also increase your endurance because in each game, water polo players swim an average of four miles.

4. Surfing

One of the most fun water sports is surfing. Although surfing the internet all day is just lazy, surfing on water is entirely different. Your body will be trained to become more flexible to swim and catch waves. Your muscles will also be toned to be able to paddle, swim, and spring onto a surfboard. Surfing is also unique because it helps with motor skills and balance. By surfing, you can increase balance, strength, and cardiovascular health as well.

5. Rafting

Rafting is an extremely fun sport that pumps adrenaline through your body. Not only can you cross it off your bucket list, you can put it down as a fun water sport as well. With time spent in nature, your stress levels can be reduced from rafting. Like rowing, it can increase your cardiovascular strength and muscle strength as well. Most importantly, rafting can improve your mental health as well.

The Importance of Water Sports for your Health

When summer time comes, it’s very easy for one to become lazy and stay outside the sun. However, joining a water sport can be a fun activity that can increase your physical and mental health drastically. Whether it be swimming in a pool, rafting, or surfing outdoors, your body will thank you for the change in your life. You can keep fit all summer and have fun at the same time!

About the Author

Ashley is a freelance writer for a fitness website. She is always on the go and looking for the next activity to keep her busy. One of her favorite things to do is going to the pool with her husband and two daughters.

*Image: Paul Martin Eldridge /*