Wednesday, July 18, 2012Print

Swim and Have Fun! Get Healthy!

 

Swim and Have Fun! You Might Just Get Healthy

A local newspaper recently reprinted an article by an environmental contractor who suggested the best thing we could do with pools was to 1) not have them,  2) fill them in because they are energy inefficient and use water, or 3) if you have to have a pool make them as energy efficient as possible. 

I will say that his energy efficiency suggestions were for the most part spot on and issues I agree with, the rest of the article was for the birds however.   I commented on his article to dispute his other points.   My issues with his stance and those who think like him are:

Why would we save a watt of energy or a gallon of water when we could spend it having a great time in a pool or spa and getting healthier as a nation?  

Given the fact that the country spends billions of dollars annually on the care of the obese and the elderly, I feel any recommendation to limit swimming as exercise and therapy is poor public policy and a misunderstanding of the use of resources. 

I think we should swim- I think we should swim every day, and I think children, the elderly, the recuperating, and overweight people should be encouraged to swim.  Swimming is proven to be one of the healthiest means of exercise.  

According to the CDC Swimming is currently the second most popular aerobic activity- and it has tremendous advantages. 

·         People can exercise longer in the water and have less stress on joints and muscles. 

·         This is vital to elderly and heavy participants.

·         Warm water therapy is also a proven benefit for arthritis suffers and provides relief to anxiety and depression suffers. 

·         Basically we all feel better after a few laps or a pool game or a float.

·         Swimming is good for us- body, mind and spirit. 

The CDC’s article on water based exercise goes into more detail at:  http://www.cdc.gov/healthywater/swimming/health_benefits_water_exercise.html

So, I have an alternative to the environmental folks who don’t like pools- we should ignore your shortsighted opinions and swim. 

We are getting out our swim suits grabbing the children and hitting the pool.  We are exercising in the pool, playing “Marco Polo,” holding our breath and doing cannonballs, and you can’t stop us.  More over you shouldn’t want us to stop, because swimming is part of a healthy lifestyle.  We are getting inspired by our Olympic Swimmers; pretending to be in the finals and racing to the wall.  We are taking a relaxing soak in the spa and feeling renewed, happy and pain free when we get out.

I think that is good public policy and stewardship in line with true conservation- the proper use of resources without squandering them.  So my response to the article is pretty simple:

Swim, have fun, get fit and be happy, that is certainly worth and extra watt of energy and a bit of splashed out water.  Cannonballs are encouraged!

 

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