Read more about how many more benefits a little water will add to your workout.
It’s always great to get exercise, no matter what workout you’re doing. You’d be amazed, though, at how many more benefits a little water will add to your workout.
Right now, in France and much of Europe, underwater cycling studios and aqua aerobics classes are a big success. Why? Working out while immersed in water doesn’t feel over strenuous, and it produces amazing results.
Two years ago, Paris native Esther Gauthier brought underwater cycling to New York City by founding Aqua Studio in Tribeca. Gauthier’s favorite element of this underwater exercise is the massage the water gives your tired legs as they pedal the bikes. This massage has a naturally energizing effect. She explains:
“It drains your lymphatic system and stimulates your blood flow, which energizes you.”
In addition to providing a free massage, water workouts are incredibly inclusive. Because of the absence of gravity, the workout’s low joint impact makes it just as easy for anyone who is pregnant, heavyset or recovering from an injury to participate.
“The salt water also enhances your basic cardio workout into a therapeutic and rejuvenating experience,” says Gauthier. “Cycling in our pool at Aqua Studio feels like you are getting an intense cardio workout while relaxing at a spa.”
And the process is so easy. The metal bikes are already submerged in water, and the necessary water shoes are available at the studio. When biking, the water is only ever up to your waist. While the instructor demonstrates the moves outside of the pool, he or she will jump in the water to give individualized attention, too. The classes are 45-minutes and offered to men and women separately.
Though primarily focused on exercise, Gauthier also feels a grounded comprehension of wellbeing is essential to these workouts. “Aqua is becoming a wellness destination,” she explains. “Our approach to fitness is more about… a general understanding of your body and mind.”
“Living in a stressful environment like New York, finding an escape is crucial to staying sane. Aqua provides this oasis to our clients,”
she says. Her holistic approach also includes a lifestyle detox shop, and bi-monthly wellness events and workshops.
Aqua is the only underwater cycling studio statewide. If you don’t happen to live in New York City or Paris, there are other kinds of water workouts you can access.
Equinox offers Aqua Boot Camp, Swim Team, Aqua Blast, and Water Workout. According to the app, Aqua Blast is a low impact cardio and conditioning class, while Water Workout is a combination of cardiovascular and muscle drills using water resistance. The classes are offered nationally at any of their 21 locations with pools. Equinox’s swim expert, Ellis Peters, says that anyone from seniors to peak-performance athletes can benefit from water classes. Peters adds:
“Injured runners can train in the water as their injuries heal. The drag and buoyancy forces of the water [relieve pressure] on joints, hips, knees, ankles, and the lower back.”
Peter further explains that, depending on the training goal, water workouts twice a week coupled with dry-land exercises can be the beginning of a great cross training program. She insists, “All athletes can gain strength and flexibility from water workouts.” Perhaps the best part of water resistance, though, is it versatility. Peter puts it perfectly, “[It can be] gentle as a rain drop or strong as a tsunami.”
So go ahead and jump in no matter your athletic ability. You won’t be disappointed by the results.
A full list of the benefits of water workouts can be found on Aqua Studio’s website
Eliza has over five years experience as a writer and editor with California and New York publications. She first discovered her passion for beauty after moving to New York to cover fashion. Since then she’s eagerly tried and reported on the latest products and beauty trends. When she’s not writing about beauty or fashion, Eliza is writing on love and relationships for Glamour.