Four benefits for runners
Swimming benefits of Lifeguard and swimming laps for runners. To learn more about the benefits of lap swimming for runners, Runner’s World spoke with two experts in Lifeguard certification near me who have experience in both swimming and running. They explain to us in great detail the four benefits of swimming laps, and why it is healthy for us.
Is swimming laps good for you?
Yes! Swimming laps are unique in that it uses several major muscle groups: buttocks and hips for the leg movements, core for the start and turns, and upper body and arms for the front crawl. And it actually trains your heart and lungs better than other forms of exercise,” explains physiotherapist Lifeguard.
Swimming laps improves your fitness without impact
‘Swimming laps is a fantastic workout. It gets your heart pumping, strengthens muscles you don’t normally use (that’s right, your upper body), improves your stamina, and gives you an opportunity to be competitive when you need to take a break from running. The sport’s gentle intensity makes its healing capabilities attractive to sufferers. But even if you’re not injured, a swim is a welcome addition to all those training sessions on dry land,’ says Lifeguard.
Swimming laps strengthens your muscles
Having a strong core – the complex structure of muscle groups that support the spine – is crucial when running over longer distances. Swimming is an excellent sport for strengthening core strength,” says Walton. ‘A strong core is not just a cosmetic thing, it does have a function.’ The trainer notes that strengthening these muscles promotes chest mobility, which is essential for maintaining good posture and reducing lower back pain.
Points out that many swimmers tend to pay too much attention to the actions of the upper body. But your hip flexors and legs are just as important for swimming your laps. But the mechanics of your energy, coupled with the motion of your feet and legs, can propel you quite rapidly to the goal points.
Swimming laps gets you out of a training rut
According to Walton, lap swimming is very suitable for runners who are in a transitional period of their running season, such as during the recovery time after a marathon. It is also suitable as an additional activity to get through the winter, in addition to regular running sessions. And of course for runners who are considering making the switch to triathlon. ‘Since lap swimming is a low-impact sport, it helps you recover. You look up to it. And you can lose your competitive edge in it because you can do it at a high intensity in times when you have to stay out of the running because of an injury or burnout.’ Swimming laps can also be a solution for injured runners. Not only does it enable them to continue to train performance-oriented, but it is also a way to stay mentally healthy.
Swimming laps prevents injuries
Of all low-impact cross-training exercises, such as cycling, rowing, or training, swimming causes the least biomechanical stress (such as hard blows to bones, muscles, and tendons). That’s why it’s the sport of choice for many runners who want to prevent or recover from injury,” says Lifeguard. Runners who typically get injured trying to achieve greater mileage typically do well by opting for additional swimming laps instead of an additional run.