"The groundwork of all happiness is health." - Leigh Hunt

An easy solution to do high intensity interval training

By now, you're probably aware of high-intensity interval training (HIIT), a preferred exercise strategy that alternates vigorous exercise with rest or low-intensity activity. This technique helps you get fit faster than traditional moderate exercise. HIIT also produces equal or greater improvements in blood pressure, blood sugar, weight reduction, and functional abilities (resembling walking briskly or getting out of a chair) in comparison with moderate exercise.

But what if you could have an old sports injury, a chronic illness, or a sedentary lifestyle that makes HIIT too difficult? The answer could also be to do a powerhouse workout within the pool.

Aquatic HIIT

Analysis of 18 studies published online November 14, 2023 BMJ Open Sport and Exercise Medicine found that folks with chronic conditions who participated in high-intensity interval training in water—called aquatic HIIT or AHIIT—experienced an analogous boost in endurance (their maximum sustained physical exercise). Like those that participated in land-based HIIT.

About 900 people were involved on this study. Conditions amongst participants included arthritis, low back pain, lung or heart problems, peripheral artery disease, diabetes, obesity, history of stroke, and spinal cord injury.

Benefits of water exercise

Exercising in water is commonly easier—and more fun—than exercising on land. One reason is your body's growth in water. “It reduces the load on your bones and muscles. You can move more easily, and you're less afraid of falling to the ground,” says Brian Simmons, a physical therapist and HIIT at Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital. The expert says.

getting began

Although the advantages of AHIIT make it viable for individuals who are unconditioned or debilitated, it's still essential to consult with your doctor before trying this strenuous workout, especially if you could have heart disease.

Once your doctor gives you the green light, take a gradual approach to AHIIT, depending in your current activity level.

If you might be already a daily exerciser: Get used to exercising within the pool for a couple of weeks before trying AHIIT. Simons suggests seeing how well you do at different depths, and trying the several pool activities mentioned above.

Dive into

You can find an AHIIT class at your health club or local YMCA. Or you possibly can try your personal AHIIT program. Start with a warm-up, resembling drinking water for a couple of minutes (to get your blood flowing and muscles ready). Then, alternate intervals of vigorous activity and rest or leisurely activity, for a complete of half-hour. For example:

Lap swimming. Repeat the method for half-hour, alternating periods of sunshine swimming (resembling a really leisurely lap swim) with periods of fast swimming.

Do the circuit. Alternate between rest periods and circuits of 4 or five consecutive exercises performed as fast as you possibly can, for about one minute per exercise. “You can wake up in place or jump up and down on the pool floor, scissoring your arms back and forth. [underwater]Scissor your legs back and forth, hang over the edge of the pool and kick hard, and then rest for a few minutes,” says Simons. Repeat the method until you've reached half-hour.

Gradually increase the length of every high intensity period. “Ideally, we want the rest period to be shorter than the work period. But if you have a chronic condition that limits your ability, take a longer rest period,” says Simons.

If AHIIT still seems too difficult, Simons offers this remark: “I've noticed that folks with chronic illness develop a better level of resilience that helps them push harder than other people. ” says Simmons. “So don't be timid. With your doctor's approval, that is something you possibly can do.”

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