Swimming is an excellent cardiovascular workout and will help seniors keep their weight under control. Many people over the age of 50 have or start to develop arthritis and swimming is very gentle on the arthritic joints. Additionally, many seniors have balance issues and are not comfortable exercising on a treadmill or in a large group aerobic exercise class due to the possibility of falling. For those who have osteoporosis or fragile bone, the risk of falling a big concern. Unfortunately, swimming does not help us to build bone.
Even though you are exercising in the water, make sure to hydrate. If you don't drink enough water, you can get dehydrated and suffer from light-headedness, heat exhaustion and heat stroke. Properly hydrating before, during and after exercise is crucial, especially during the warm months of summer. The National Athletic Trainers Association (NATA) suggests that individuals should aim to consume between 17-20 ounces of water 2-3 hours prior to exercise, 7-10 ounces of water every 10-20 minutes during exercise and 16-24 ounces of water after exercise for every pound of body weight lost during the workout.
When exercising in the heat, stay hydrated and maintain your body's electrolytes and salt. When you sweat, your body loses not only water, but electrolytes and salt, too. This delicate balance of water and electrolytes is crucial to keep your body functioning properly.