Health Benefits of Swimming for Seniors

There are many health benefits for seniors who swim. It allows a senior to stay in shape without putting extra strain or stress on their bodies associated with exercising on land. It’s easier on arthritic joints because swimming isn’t a weight-bearing exercise. It also helps to enhance moods and improves heart health. Plus, in many independent living communities, a swimming pool is part of the amenities.

What types of swimming exercises are there?

Water exercises come in four basic types and are suitable for people of all ages. The first would be water aerobics and can be tailored specifically for seniors at the pool at your independent living center. These exercises usually are dancing, water walking and other types of exercises; exercise that are similar to what can be done out of the water.

Basic swimming is also extremely beneficial for seniors as a second type. If you’re a little hesitant about swimming, you can usually take a refresher course. Additionally, water resistant exercises such as leg swings, arm curls and calf raises can all be done while in the water for the third type. The water acts as resistance as the exercises are performed.

Finally, to lower the heart rate, blood pressure and a person’s stress levels; water relaxation exercises can be performed. Some of these would include Pilates and aqua yoga.

Benefits of swimming for seniors

If a senior swims for just two and a half hours a week, this can not only reduce the risk of chronic illness, but can improve problems associated with diabetes and heart disease. Swimming will also help to maintain bone health. It will increase flexibility in the arms, legs, hips and neck too. This will lead to reduced back pain, sore muscles from daily activities as muscles are strengthened, as well as a better posture and muscle coordination. Because of swimming’s aerobic nature, it boosts the health of the heart additionally.

Swimming can make a senior an all-around healthier person.


  1. Reply
    Martina Simpkins says

    People have reported relief even from arthritic pain through swimming. This is one activity that offers overall health benefits, both physical and psychological. It is great for stress relief too. Especially for seniors, the benefits in terms of muscle and bone health are unparalleled.

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