During the spring and summer, swimming may be your favorite outdoor activity and form of exercise. But then fall sets in, pools get covered for the cooler weather, and many don’t think about swimming again until the weather warms up in spring. But are there good reasons to keep up your swimming habit during the cold weather months? How can you do so?
The Dangers of Becoming Sedentary During Winter
It can be dangerous to give up your primary form of exercise for half of the year simply because it is no longer warm enough to swim outside. What are some of the negative effects of being less active during the fall and winter?
- Poor Posture – Exercise helps to strengthen the bones, muscles, ligaments, and other structures of the body that aid in proper posture. Without maintaining an active lifestyle, your posture may suffer to the point that slouching feels more natural than standing or sitting up straight.
- Poor Fitness – Reducing one’s activity has an effect on overall fitness. This is why many gain weight during winter. Besides weight gain, muscle tone can be lost with inactivity. Joints become stiff if not regularly used, which can lead to increased pain levels.
- Mental Health Decline – Exercise releases hormones in the brain that are important for self-esteem and an overall sense of well-being. Plus, the weight gain and increased pain that result from inactivity can both have a negative effect on a person’s mental state.
The Health Benefits of Swimming
Instead of finding a new activity in the winter, why not find a way to stick with your favorite form of exercise? There are plenty of places in the Fairfax,VA area that provide an indoor pool for public use. For example:
- Fairfax County Park Authority RECenters
- Gyms like Life Time Athletic and 24 Hour Fitness
- Educational Facilities like George Mason University
The health benefits of swimming include:
- You get a full-body workout – many muscles are strengthened
- Low-impact and non-weight bearing means that swimming is gentle on joints and bones
- It’s an activity that can be performed year-round, so you don’t become sedentary in winter
Chiropractic Relief from Soreness During Fall and Winter
If you still suffer from occasional pain during the winter, Dr. Ward is always available to provide chiropractic treatments. You may even strain a muscle or tendon while swimming. Check out our FAQ on swimming injuries to see how chiropractic can help. Then call (703) 672-1661 to schedule an appointment at a time convenient to you.