Swimming is by far one of the most fun and enjoyable fitness activities one can participate in. Swimming, unlike jogging, cycling, weightlifting or any other activity, is ideal for any age or physical ability.
It's hard to beat swimming when it comes to a sport that strengthens the body, soothes the mind, regulates breathing, stimulates circulation and puts no stress on the joints all in one. Unlike running or weight training, which concentrate on specific muscle groups, swimming benefits the upper body, torso and legs together and is one of the fastest ways to improve general strength, stamina and cardiovascular fitness.
Swimming is a very low impact exercise; the weightlessness the water provides greatly reduces the stress on joints virtually eliminating the potential of back, knee and other muscular injuries common in high impact activities. The water pressure against the legs and arms is also beneficial to the circulatory system. The water pressure adds to the muscle pressure exerted on the veins to aid in returning blood to the heart and lungs.
According to the British Heart Foundation, just 30-60 minutes of physical activity 3-4 days per week can help reduce your risk for heart disease, stroke, and diabetes. As a regular physical activity, swimming can also help lower your blood pressure and cholesterol.
Calories Burned Per Hour...
With regard to weight loss, fitness swimming gives you the best aerobic workout with the least amount of joint stress or impact. According to studies, full body workout swimming burns up to 790 calories per hour. That's 70 more calories than running and cycling which are the next closest common activities.