I got out of the wrong side of the bed one morning. I wasn’t ready to get up yet but a loud voice from the pool down below roared up to our suite in the fourth floor and dragged me out from dreamland. I looked down through the window and saw a small group doing water aerobics under the instruction of that loud-voiced lady. Well…understandable. That makes me realize I would rather do this alone or just with my husband. I prefer a mindful water aerobics enhanced by the serenity of the natural surrounding. If you prefer to benefit from it and gain friends at the same time, go ahead, join a group and socialize at the same time.
What is water aerobics? It is an aerobic exercise, a low-impact exercise done in a waist-deep water or pool. There are classes done in deeper water though where participants use buoyancy belts. It is a type of resistance training (reminds me of how I practiced my kicks while immersed waist-deep in the sea, when I was young and into martial arts) that entails rounder and fuller workouts for better toning of muscles and burning calories. Actually, this fitness workout comes naturally to those who love to be in the pool or at sea but who do not know how to swim. 🙂
The following are ways to do water aerobics:
- Water moving meditation – This type of meditation focuses on the movement of the body to quieten the mind.
- Aqua Zumba – Well, this can be coupled with music therapy, as the Latin music rhythm of Zumba definitely moves your body to release more endorphins.
- Aqua Jog – This low-impact resistance training for the joints and for rehabilitation is the type of water aerobics that may require going to the deeper part of the pool, wearing flotation belt and weights.
Which is the better setting for water aerobics, at the pool or at sea? It depends on where one is. Water aerobics was designed formally for the pool but the informal practice may have been done at sea or in rivers, long before the invention of the pool and aerobics training. Just watch Chinese Period martial arts movies and you’ll agree. 🙂 In an urban setting like here in Singapore Yacht Club where we usually stay when we are are in Singapore the pool is a convenient place to do water aerobics because the sea is unsafe at the marina. My preference is, by the sea across our p.o.s.h kubo in the Philippines.
Here are good reasons to do water aerobics at sea:
- The mineral-rich sea water is good for the skin and the immune system, so it’s a healthier environment than the chemically-treated water in the pool. Being rich in magnesium, immersion of the body in the sea relaxes the muscles, relieves stress and promotes deep sleep.
- Earthing or grounding – This refers to direct contact of the feet to the sand in the sea, making a connection to the earth’s surface electrons, transferring the energy from the ground to the body. There’s already a scientific research (all mentioned in the book Earthing) that exhibited proof of the earth’s electrons inducing the following multiple physiological changes of clinical importance:
- A shift from sympathetic to parasympathetic tone in the autonomic nervous system (ANS) which means reducing our neurophysiological experience of stress.
- Reduced pain
- Better sleep
- Blood-thinning effect
- It gives the opportunity to constantly check the sea environment nearby for noticeable pollutants and clean up the trash.
What about a seawater pool? I heard about that but haven’t tried it. I do know though that it is chlorinated.