Swimming - health benefits - Better Health Channel

2024.02.07 21:02

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Swimming - health benefits

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Read the full fact sheet As well as being fun, swimming is a great way to keep fit and make friends. Swimming is a healthy activity that you can continue for a lifetime. Swimming is a low-impact activity that has many physical and mental health benefits. Make sure you know how to swim and do so in a safe environment.

On this page

Swimming for recreation Competitive swimming Health benefits of swimming Other benefits of swimming Getting started with swimming Some general tips for swimming Where to get help

Swimming is one of the most popular sports in Australia. Our nation is surrounded by water and swimming is one of our great passions.

As well as being fun, swimming is a great way to keep fit, stay healthy and make friends.

Swimming is a healthy activity that you can continue for a lifetime. It is a low-impact activity that has many physical and mental health benefits.

Swimming for recreation

Swimming is a great recreational activity for people of all ages. Recreational swimming can provide you with a low-impact workout and it's a good way to relax and feel good.

Common swimming styles in recreational swimming are:

breaststroke backstroke sidestroke freestyle.

Competitive swimming

Some people who enjoy swimming want to take it to a competitive level. This can provide the health benefits of a vigorous workout as well as the fun and thrill of competition.

The main strokes used in competitive swimming are:

breaststroke freestyle backstroke butterfly.

The distances swum in competition swimming can vary from 50 metres in a pool to much further distances in open water.

Health benefits of swimming

Swimming is a great workout because you need to move your whole body against the resistance of the water.

Swimming is a good all-round activity because it:

keeps your heart rate up but takes some of the impact stress off your body builds endurance, muscle strength and cardiovascular fitness helps you maintain a healthy weight , healthy heart and lungs tones muscles and builds strength provides an all-over body workout, as nearly all of your muscles are used during swimming.

Other benefits of swimming

Swimming has many other benefits including:

being a relaxing and peaceful form of exercise alleviating stress improving coordination, balance and posture improving flexibility providing good low-impact therapy for some injuries and conditions providing a pleasant way to cool down on a hot day being available in many places – you can swim in swimming pools, beaches, lakes, dams and rivers. Make sure that the environment you choose to swim in is safe .

Getting started with swimming

Getting started in swimming is easy. It is a sport for all age groups, skill and fitness levels. Before you get started, you will need to purchase a pair of swimmers and some goggles.

There are public pools throughout Australia that are open to everyone. Entry to public pools is inexpensive and many aquatic centres offer swimming lessons for people of all ages, as well as training and exercise groups.

Some general tips for swimming

Before you dive in:

Make sure you know how to swim. Choose a safe environment and ensure the water safety of children . Warm up and stretch your muscles and joints before entering the water . Have plenty of fluids on hand and drink regularly. Don't overdo it if you're just starting out. See your doctor if you haven't exercised for a long time.

Where to get help

Your GP (doctor) Local leisure centres, public pools and swimming clubs Swimming Australia Tel. (03) 9910 0700 Swimming Victoria Tel. (03) 9230 9400 Sports Medicine Australia Tel. 1300 711 211

Swimming health, safety and nutrition , Liveabout. From building strength to making friends, these are the health benefits of swimming , 2019, Australian Broadcasting Corporation.

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Content on this website is provided for information purposes only. Information about a therapy, service, product or treatment does not in any way endorse or support such therapy, service, product or treatment and is not intended to replace advice from your doctor or other registered health professional. The information and materials contained on this website are not intended to constitute a comprehensive guide concerning all aspects of the therapy, product or treatment described on the website. All users are urged to always seek advice from a registered health care professional for diagnosis and answers to their medical questions and to ascertain whether the particular therapy, service, product or treatment described on the website is suitable in their circumstances. The State of Victoria and the Department of Health shall not bear any liability for reliance by any user on the materials contained on this website.

Reviewed on: 26-08-2021


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