Nothing like slowly sliding yourself into a perfectly temped pool on a hot summer day. Now that you're all grown up, the pool is more of a relaxing place rather than a "let's get crazy" playground. Yet, exercise doesn't discriminate. You can workout anywhere if you get a little creative. If you're not into swimming laps, try throwing a few of these moves into your time at the pool.
Treading Water: This a total body exercise that pulls strength and cardio together. You'll need about 6 to 7 feet of water, at least, to allow room for your legs to move around. The concept of treading is being able to stabilize your head above water by using your legs as vertical propellors, your arms for balance and your core for the power. Try to tread for 1 minute, take a 30-second break, then do it again or increase as you go for 10 to 15 minutes.
Fancy Treading: Kick up the self-floatation with so isometric holds. Instead of moving your feet in circles and up and down, try raising one leg forward, pointing through foot. You'll really need to depend on the upper body and core to keep your head above the water. Hold the leg out for a few seconds at a time and then switch. Try to get higher with each rep. Click here if you want to graduate from the pool and try a big burn water sport!
Plank Balance: Grab a floating ball and push it under water. Straight your arms out with each hand on the ball. Lift the torso, hips and legs up into a straight plank as you balance on the ball, which should be straight under your chest. Press away from it like you would the ground in a normal plank. Try to dip you face in the water to straighten the spine, blow bubbles in an exhale and slowly rise for a breath, maintaining your plank. Too easy? Tuck the knees in under the chest for a deep crunch.
Toe-Touch Sit Ups: Show off that pedicure by throwing your feet up on the edge. Scoot yourself close enough so the back of your knees rest on the edge. Keep your legs as close together as you can and crunch up to touch your toes with your hands. Lean back into the water and go under as deep as you can, using only your abs to pull you back up. The resistance on the water will have your core burning in no time!
>> Getting hungry? 5 Healthy Poolside Snacks
Walk the Plank: Set your heels on the edge of the pool and straighten you body out to a full extension. Find your stability and float here for a few seconds. Without hinging any more at the hips, lift one heel and set it down. You can advance this by lifting, moving the leg in toward you or out to the side and back before setting it down. Switch and repeat on the other side. You can always get a kickboard or floating ball to hold behind your head.
Easy Cycle: This one is awesome to use while you're chatting with friends in the pool. Lean your elbows against the edge and bring your hips close to the wall. Start to bicycle with your legs at a steady pace. Without sinking into your shoulders, continue the cycling for as long as you can. Make those lower abs help you!
Press Down: Borrow a noodle for this one. Hold it straight out in front of you with your hands stemming straight from the shoulders. Slightly bend the elbows and press the noodle down until it hits your thighs. Reverse the movement. Exhale as you press, inhale as you let it rise. Try to go at an even tempo and use your core to help you stay solid.
Leg Lifts: Staying on the edge of the pool, resting with your elbows, pull the legs together. Lift and lower them as a solid unit. When you do this, your hips will want to pop up to the surface as you lift, but try to resist it! The hips should always be under water, pulling toward the wall. Flex or point your feet to change up the results. Click here if you wan to incorporate flippers, kick boards and more into your pool workout!
Floating Tuck Jumps: Try these in the shallow end first where you can touch your feet to the ground and keep your head above water. Let your feet hit the pool tile and explode straight up into a tuck. Practice here for a few reps, then move to the deeper end. Once you can no longer touch, you'll need to tread water in between the tucks. This will get your heart racing fast!
Scissor Jumps: Without water, this plyometric exercise is a great cardio starter. In the pool, bend your knees a little and try to get to a depth where your shoulders are still above the water. Jump one foot forward and the other backward at the same time. Without letting your head bob up as you switch, stay low and level as you alternate the jumps.
>> Want more? 6 Exercises to Try in the Pool