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Weight Lifting in the Pool: A Guide

Fitday Editor
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When used in the pool, water weights are great pieces of exercise equipment that can help you increase your strength and fitness, regardless of your current health status. If you have never used water weights before, you may want to consult with a personal trainer or gym employee for some tips on how to use the weights for best results.

Are Water Weights Right for You?

One of the most important considerations that you must keep in mind when it comes to weight lifting in a pool is to determine whether or not water weights are really right for you. People usually engage in aquatic exercise for three basic reasons. First, they are interested in increasing their cardiovascular system or losing weight, and prefer swimming to other types of cardiovascular exercise such as walking or jogging. Second, the person may suffer from arthritis, and non-weight bearing exercise is most comfortable type for them. And third, they are interested in increasing muscle mass and body strength, but don't feel comfortable working out in a traditional weight room.

If you are interested in cardiovascular training, weight lifting in the water is probably not the best choice for you. However, as suggested above, if you are interested in increasing muscle mass, but either have an injury that prevents you from using regular weights or simply prefer exercising in an aquatic setting, water weight lifting may be perfect for you.

Choosing the Right Weights

Once you have decided that weight lifting in the water is right for you, you must choose the right weights. Water weights are different from traditional dumbbells in that they do not vary in weight. In fact, water weights typically are all composed of Styrofoam, or another similar material that absorbs water, and weigh practically nothing when dry. However, lifting these weights through water can be very difficult. The size of the water weights you choose can play a part in determining the difficulty level of the weights--the larger the surface of the weight, the more water will need to be displaced, and the harder the exercise will be.

Learning How to Use the Weights

Learning how to use water weights is also essential when it comes to using these pieces of equipment. Typically, water weights can be used in exactly the same manner as regular weights. Therefore, if you have lifted dumbbells before, you should have no problem, as you can do the same exercises underwater. If you have never lifted weights before, you may want to consult with a professional before using the weights. Most gyms will typically offer water aerobics classes that you can attend to help you better understand how to use the weights.

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