Benefits of Swimming for the Elderly

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Elderly couple in pool

Benefits of Swimming for the Elderly

Swimming is an aerobic activity that gets the muscles going and is a perfect way for people to stay in shape, particularly the elderly thanks to its low-impact nature. As the fourth most popular sport in America, swimming for just two and a half hours a week can reduce the risk of chronic illness and cut the risk of death in half compared with those who are inactive, says the CDC. Older people who swim on a regular basis as part of homecare Phoenix experience improvements in their health related to diabetes and heart disease.

Physical Health Benefits

Swimming is perfect for the elderly because it’s easier on the joints and muscles than exercise on hard land. This is good news for those with chronic diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis and osteoporosis, which is a decrease in bone density as a person ages. Water-based exercise has also been known to boost quality of life and decrease disability, helping to maintain bone health, particularly in older women. Swimming also boosts flexibility, especially in the neck, legs, arms and hips, leading to reduced back pain and sore muscles, as well as better posture and muscle coordination, according to the National Swimming Pool Foundation. Muscles tend to tone up easier, as every single muscle in the body is working hard to cut through that water, providing a resistance training of sorts. Building muscle strength can equal less flabby skin on the arms and legs. Because swimming is aerobic in nature, it boosts the health of the heart, leading to a reduction in coronary heart disease through lowered risk of inflammation.

Mental Health Benefits

The physical benefits of swimming are plenty, but the mind also benefits from a regular swimming regimen in seniors. This popular activity is a natural stress reliever which can improve moods and fight off depression. Seniors also experience a heightened sense of camaraderie when swimming in a public pool with friends or at a family member’s home. These situations create positive memories with children, grandchildren, spouses and friends, giving the elderly an outlet for socialization. This in turn combats feelings of isolation and loneliness, leading to better mental health overall thanks to the interaction and intimacy provided by swimming with others, according to Livestrong.

For more tips on how swimming helps keep you in shape, both physically and mentally, visit us at MD Home Health, where you can learn more about home care Phoenix. Keep your heart pumped, muscles toned, bones strong and attitude positive when you engage in swimming as part of Phoenix home health care!