Make a splash in your routine

Try something new with water aerobics classes. 

Aquatic fitness classes deliver low-impact workouts in a fun group setting.

By Kirsten Ajax, WAC Aquatics Instructor

Water aerobics—it’s not just flowered caps and flutter kicks. It’s a real workout that can help you lose weight, improve your stamina, or recover from injury. As a former competitive athlete, I have my fair share of physical limitations. But that doesn’t stop me from continuing my love of physical activity. Properly designed aquatic exercise offers a great opportunity for those with aches and pains to remain active while avoiding further injury. It’s also a great alternative for anyone looking to add a twist to their routine.

If you’ve never worked out in the water before, you might be surprised when you realize how quickly your heart rate picks up during water exercise. That intensity, coupled with low-impact movements, makes water aerobics a favorite workout for many. Compared to running, for example, water-based fitness classes come with virtually none of the same physical stressors while still offering great cardio benefits.

Additionally, the weight-bearing nature of water allows participants to increase their range of motion and mobility. By alleviating your need to support your entire mass, the water allows you to improve your kinetics. In turn, anyone overcoming injury or working through abnormal movement patterns can experience faster and better recovery.

Simple exercises, such as treading water in the deep end, burn calories and tone muscles without any equipment. For those looking to up the ante, the WAC’s Aqua Boot Camp on Wednesdays and Fridays delivers fast-paced pool intervals combined with strength-training on the deck.

This high-intensity workout will challenge non-athletes and athletes alike.

Water-based exercise is also a great cross-training tool. Add an hour in the pool to your weekly workout routine and you’re sure to awaken and strengthen new muscles that can help you succeed in other athletic endeavors.

I can’t run as fast, bench-press as much, or jump as high as I used to. But I can still do similar exercises with no discomfort in the water. And when I do dryland workouts I feel more confident in my abilities—all thanks to the pool.

Aquatics Instructor Kirsten Ajax teaches Cardio Express from 10:30–11 am and Deep Water Aerobics from 11–11:45 am on Mondays.

As published in the July/August issue of WAC Magazine.

—Posted July 10, 2018

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