How to make a real splash!

2013July08_SwimmingWaterSports_AThere’s something different about being in the water. It’s relaxing, fun and it can certainly beat sweating it out exercising on dry land for a change. When was the last time you really enjoyed some time in the water, be it in the big blue sea or the swimming pool? Are you looking for a little inspiration on how to really make a splash with one of the best ways to keep fit? You just need a few ideas on how to enjoy your swimming time a little more.

┬áLet’s be honest, jumping in cool water in a skimpy bathing suit or trunks and bearing all, not to mention the cold body and wet hair feeling when you get out of the pool, is hardly the same as taking a cool dip in a azure sea on a hot day at the beach. And yet, everyone knows what a great total-body workout swimming is. What you need is convincing to get in the water in the first place.

Choose the right pool environment: A pool is a pool is a pool, right? Not quite. Choosing where to swim might be about convenience and location than personal preference. What does make a difference is checking out the schedule. If a lane style swim is a little too rigid, then opt for a more freestyle session. Choose a time when the water is more family friendly or where little ones won’t be splashing around.

Cleanliness counts: Clean toilets, hot showers and a swimming pool that doesn’t look like it’s from an old early 70s movie, is a start. While you might not expect a spa setting unless that’s what you’re paying for and what you want, a pool that lacks that sparkle of cleanliness is not going to tempt would-be swimmers.

Luxurious, simple organization: Yes, it can be a bit of a pain getting your swim bag ready, with goggles, swimming attire and towel, etc., but it doesn’t have to be. Have a bag ready with shampoo, conditioner and a comb and any other swim essentials. Add in a feeling of luxury with a soft, fluffy towel for your body and a small hand towel to give your hair a good rub.

Float and meditate: Appreciating just how de-stressing swimming is can be a real motivating factor. While at times you might want to plunge right in and get right into your strokes, spend some time letting your body and thoughts drift. Try floating on your back in a starfish shape with your toes pointing out of the water and your hips lifted. Make sure you’re conscious of other swimmers and then close your eyes and relax for a few seconds at least. Shutting off the senses momentarily is the perfect antidote to stress and brings a sense of calm that few gym sessions can achieve.

Family fun: Kids love swimming and it’s even an activity that less than responsive teens can sometimes muster some enthusiasm for. It’s a great way to bond and share some quality family time too, where the focus is on fun rather than fitness. A simple game of throwing and catching a ball takes on a new challenge in the water. Youngsters can learn to swim and improve their strokes, while parents can embrace their inner child and splash about.

When you weigh up the pluses of swimming against excuses such as not wanting to get undressed and cold, or having to pack a bag and come out the water with wet hair, the benefits outweigh any inconvenience. We offer more tips to get you water-motivated in ‘Making a real splash: Part 2!’

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