There are many benefits of a Water Fitness Program but perhaps one of
the greatest benefit is that water’s natural resistance helps clients
to perform muscular stretching and strengthening exercises in a pain
free and comfortable way. That is because water allows the body to
move in many movement planes and working or body positions as each
movement is taken through multi dimensional resistance.
Training muscular strength and resistance is necessary for:
Other benefits include
stronger muscles helps to increase physical work capacity – in other
words, having more muscular fitness will help you to work at a higher
level of cardiovascular fitness.
Keeping muscles strong will also increase and improve metabolism by burning more calories during exercise and while at rest
Cardio vs Muscle Conditioning:
only Cardio training may help you to lose weight but will not
necessarily change your overall appearance. Adding muscular stretching
and strengthening sets in the water, will help sculpt your body to
change your physique and body shape. So if you want to look good in your
jeans you have to work on core strength to improve the waistline,
tighten the buns and sculpt the muscles of your legs.
The goal of WaterART Exercise is to improve function for daily activities requiring safe and effective movement on land.
Water vs Land:
in water provides approximately 12-14 times more resistance than when
the same movement is performed on land. On land all upward movement is
performed against the pull of gravity whereas work in the water may be
assisted with or resisted against buoyancy. This resistance may become
exponentially more challenging when utilizing water specific equipment
which can provide more surface area and/or buoyancy to work against.
Training muscles in water must be carefully planned.
each joint or biomechanical action is the same in water as on land, the
properties of water make for unique program design.
water’s buoyancy naturally lifts the muscles up to lengthen and relax
tight muscles, the client must work down against this buoyancy to
strengthen the weaker muscles. Since this is completely opposite to land
training, water exercise can train for optimal muscle balancing which
helps to decrease injuries.
In order to gain an effective training
benefit – muscles need first to be isolated and then worked downwards
against the buoyancy of the water. If a client just utilizes momentum
the muscles are not challenged sufficiently to overload and cause
hypertrophy to the muscle.
One of the greatest mistakes with muscle conditioning is to try to strengthen both muscle partners at
the same time. This often entails utilizing speed and momentum rather
than control. Using the agonist and antagonist muscles simultaneously
does not specifically target either side of the muscle pair. Work and
overload is created when a muscle is fatigued with sufficient
repetitions using control to both start and stop the action. When an
instructor incorporates momentum into strength training design they are
often working more joint stress. As a result the desired muscle group
will not reach overload to become stronger and the resulting joint stress may cause injury.
mentioned, in order to strengthen muscles EFFECTIVELY in the water --
the joint action (muscle movement) must be worked down against the
buoyant resistance of the water. When assisted with buoyancy the muscles
are not overloaded effectively. In order for muscles to hypertrophy
(strengthen) they must be worked a little more than accustomed to - so
cheating with buoyancy does not achieve the desired training benefits.
important point is that since most muscle pairs are unequal in strength
the joint action should isolate the intended muscle for specific
strengthening. Working both sides of the muscle pair will end up with
the same imbalance. Using control to start and stop the movement is the
key component of the muscular contraction. Momentum doesn’t use the
muscle through its length for a long enough time to be beneficial. So
take time to set up muscle work by focussing on the intended muscle
group. Use sufficient repetitions through the correct ROM at a
controlled pace to properly fatigue and train that muscle group.
do work in partners or in pairs; however, to strengthen effectively muscles do
require more than one repetition. In other words, even on land a muscle
cannot be worked with one repetition or alternating repetitions with the
opposing muscle group – such as working one biceps curl then changing
to one triceps extension. To properly train muscular strength, fatigue and overload the
muscle. The muscle set must be focused into 2-3 sets and 8-25
repetitions so that the muscle is fatigued effectively and thereby
consequently trained and benefited.
Another point is that land
movements dropped into the water do not work. As an example - a land
biceps curl will work against gravity – however, in water the joint
action will be lifted with buoyancy. To be effective the biceps curl
must work against the resistance of the water and start with the arm
extended behind the body so that the curling action will push down into
the water’s buoyancy. Otherwise there will be negligible work or
overload on the muscle.
are many reasons for people to start water training – however, many
people do not realize that they don’t need to be a swimmer nor get their
hair wet. Explain the difference between water fitness (vertical
training) and swimming (horizontal training).
Taking the time to
orient new comers to the water may seem overwhelming for them at first –
however, what is interesting is that most people see results fairly
quickly and soon realize that the water gym may be the fountain of youth
Resistance training of moderate intensity (i.e.,
sufficient to develop and maintain muscular fitness and lean body
weight) should be an integral part of every adult fitness and
rehabilitative exercise program. In addition to the development and
maintenance of muscular strength and muscle mass, the physiological
benefits of resistance training include increases in bone mass and in
the strength of connective tissue.
Both muscular strength and
endurance are developed by the overload principle - by increasing the
resistance to movement (intensity) or the frequency or duration of
activity to levels above those normally experienced. Muscular strength
is best developed in the water by resistance training using resistance
that develops maximal or nearly maximal muscle tension with relatively
The properties of water allow the joint to be
submerged and the body position to be changed more easily to allow
positions that maybe were painful or not possible on land to be pleasant
and effective in water.
Another hidden benefit of water’s
strength training is that posture and injury prevention is improved
because the naturally the tight muscles are stretched with upward
movements and the weak muscles are strengthened while pushing down and
through the water..
There are infinite exercises and techniques
that will help to develop strong musculature in the water; however
understanding the properties of water as well as the protection of the
water is key to safe and effective training......
Otherwise – you may as well train on land !
Download full PDF Article -Why WaterART Muscles Work
Suggested DVDs to view
DVD002 - Aquatic Fitness Muscles (W0)
DVD003 - Beginner Muscles with Noodles (WO)
DVD004 - Intermediate Muscles with Noodles (WO)
DVD005 - Advanced Muscles (WO)
DVD008 - Advanced Deep H2O Workout (WO)
DVD018 - Foam Weights Workout (WO)
DVD021 -Finning,The Ultimate Butt Burner & Program for Swimmers (ED)
DVD022 - Pre & Post Natal Instructor Program (ED)
DVD039 - Awesome Abdominals (ED)
DVD040 - Resistive Paddle Program (ED)
DVD041 - Fit Band Workout (ED)
DVD042 - Advanced Buoyancy Cuffs (ED)
DVD056 - Deep H20 Running Workout (WO)
DVD059 - Fun with Function (WO)
DVD060 - Advanced Dumbbells and Shoulder Impingement (WO)
DVD061 - Programming for Common Hip Problems (WO)
DVD062 - Programming for Common Knee Problems (WO)
DVD063 - Programming for Common Back Problems (WO)
DVD071 - Shape Up and Water Train ( 2 DVD set) (ED)
DVD072 - Shallow H20 Splash ( 2 DVD set) (ED) !
DVD077- Advanced Noodle Challenge (membership)
DVD079- Move to Health with Walking (2 DVDs) (ED)
DVD086-Aquatic Personal Trainer Program (Guided Tutorials - 2 DVDs)
DVD087- Aquatic Personal Trainer Assessments (Guided Tutorials )
DVD088=Aquatic Personal Trainer Program Tutorial (Guided Tutorials - 1 DVDs)
DVD089 - Arthritis Instructor Tutorial ( 2 1/2 hours of Guided Tutorials- 2 DVDs)
Email Us if you have questions or need our help