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We’re only a few days into the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, but Team GB is already making a splash in the pool.
Tom Dean has won two gold medals, making him the first British male swimmer to do so at a single Olympics in 113 years. Adam Peaty has also had a stellar competition, taking home gold for the men’s 100m breaststroke.
If you’re watching everything going down at the Tokyo Aquatics Centre in awe, you can also get in on the action – even if the last time you swam some lengths was back at school.
Swimming can sometimes seem like a bit of a faff: you have to get changed at the pool, deal with wet hair, and getting out of the water in the middle of winter isn’t always appealing.
However, the positives definitely outweigh the negatives. If you find watching Team GB boss it in the pool just a bit inspiring, we’d argue now is the perfect time to take up swimming again…
You don’t have to be an Olympic athlete to see benefits from swimming. Even just a gentle breaststroke or front crawl is brilliant exercise: it manages to work muscles you’ve totally forgotten about. If you’re hunched over a desk all day or only do a certain type of exercise, give swimming a try and see how much stronger and more open you feel.
Merseyside is home to some amazing swimming pools, many of them free to use. Liverpool Aquatics Centre in Wavertree offers plenty of classes and courses including Aquafit, adult swimming sessions and family sessions too. You can also learn to swim for around £80 per month courtesy of Liverpool Lifestyles. You can sign up to join The Harbour Club at Crowne Plaza in the City Centre here. And if you fancy taking on some open water swimming a new facility launches on Princes Dock in August – all the info is this way!
If you’ve got dodgy knees or any other kind of joint injury, swimming means you can still get a good workout. As the water supports your body, it’s great for anyone recovering from an injury.
Swimming is a solo sport: it tends to be just you and the pool. However, there are plenty of great swimming clubs around if you’re looking to meet some new people and broaden your social circle. You can find one tailored to your abilities – from non-judgemental beginner groups to something a bit more competitive – and make friends with like-minded people.
If you haven’t swum in years and are a bit nervous about getting back into the pool, joining a club could help build your confidence and give you tips and tricks you hadn’t thought about.
Your first few sessions might feel a bit nervy if it’s been a while since you’ve hit the pool. However, once you get into the swing of things, you might find doing laps is truly meditative. Many people find concentrating on the rhythm of their strokes helps them to unplug, unwind and come out feeling refreshed.
Exercising is so much easier when you actually want to do it. Swimming is fun – even if you’re doing serious lengths, it still evokes that feeling of childhood and splashing around in a pool. If something is enjoyable, you’re far more likely to stick with it.
Plus, nothing can beat the feeling of success after a good session in the pool.
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