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Water Aerobics: Get Exercise While Playing in the Pool

When you attend your first water aerobics class, you may feel guilty because you had a great time. You didn't sweat, you were never bored, and the water felt rejuvenating.

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How can something so pleasant be an effective exercise? But water aerobics is in fact one of the best exercises in the world, being suitable for most people in all sorts of physical conditions. Do you want to lose weight, burn fat, improve muscle tone and improve your flexibility and strength? Water aerobics has it all. Read on for the basics, and then get your suit on!
  1. Get your suit on. The hardest thing about starting water aerobics is finding a suit you can live with. You want a bathingsuit that stays where you put it, that doesn’t creep or crawl. One pieces are ideal; after all, you're in the pool to get your exercise, not to try out for Playboy.
  2. Get a good pool. The pool must be clean; grout, tiles, water and dressing room. There should be enough chlorine to kill germs but not so much that your eyes burn. Look at several pools if the first one isn't clean enough, because if it's not clean, you won't want to be in it. The water should be comfortable—warm enough to get in easily but cool enough to refresh. There should be safety equipment by the pool—life preservers and a stretcher and things like that. Your instructor will probably also bring out workout paraphernalia—foam boards and noodles, big mitts or sandals and other things used for flotation or increased resistance.  
  3. Take a class or get a professional trainer. The instructor should be Red Cross CPR certified, and should have training specifically in water aerobics and fitness. Instructors should also be encouraging; they should be able to explain and demonstrate what you need to know to work effectively in the water.  
  4. Can you swim? If not, you may not be allowed to take water fitness courses. In this case, sign up for a beginning swimming class: you'll get great exercise, learn an important life skill and be able to move on to water aerobics in a few weeks.  
  5. Give yourself plenty of time. It takes time to change clothes, get in the water, work out, cool down and maybe even swim a little after class. Don't rush through water aerobics if you want to maximize your fitness; arrange your schedule so you can paddle around and relax in the water.  
  6. Enjoy your freedom. Water is the perfect resistance machine. If you have weight problems, painful joints or old injuries, you may find you feel freer in the water than anywhere else on earth. Your aqua aerobics instructor can teach you how to increase the intensity of your workout as you gain fitness, and you will grow stronger. You may even find yourself more comfortable on dry land after working out in the water.

Continue reading the next aerobics article on strength training program

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