The term Aqua Aerobics may evoke images of senior ladies with flowery caps chatting while floating around a pool, but is that all it is? What is the truth about AQUA Fitness!
The truth is exercising in water is a combination of effective, suitable fitness programming and the creation of an experience that provides a safe, fun training session that keeps members coming back for more. It is delivered by aqua instructors with the knowledge, skill, passion and understanding of the principles of movement in water who deliver a WOW experience for each participant.
WHAT IS AQUA FITNESS?
Exercising in water provides a safe and supportive environment for increasing cardiovascular fitness, improving muscle strength and endurance, as well as mobility and flexibility. It is a fantastic, low impact fitness option for older adults, people undergoing rehabilitation or simply as an alternative, refreshing method of training from land exercise.
Attending a class is a fun, sensory experience and the wonders of water provide 360° of resistance and support for the musculoskeletal system.
It is common knowledge that the effect of buoyancy means that impact in the water is greatly reduced, making exercising in water perfect for those with joint problems. Lesser known is that hydrostatic pressure (the massaging effect of the water) actually reduces the heart rate (in water <30°C) by approximately 10 beats per minute, due to the ease by which blood is redistributed from feet to chest.
This means that participants can safely work at a higher intensity and that recovery will occur faster than when exercising on land. The physiological benefits for the cardiovascular system remain the same; increased Stroke volume and cardiac output.
Aqua classes come in a variety of styles and formats, but all have the same aim - to improve health and wellbeing, water familiarisation and water safety through exercise to music.
AQUA AND OLDER ADULTS
Encouraging the ageing population to exercise regularly requires options that are convenient, inexpensive, safe, social and enjoyable.
AQUATIC INTERVAL TRAINING
Many athletes and sports teams use water exercise as complementary training to their sports-specific workouts or for recovery sessions. Some people assume that you can’t create an intense workout in water, but in fact, this is the perfect environment in which to offer high-intensity interval training.
It goes without saying how important it is for children to develop safe water practices. An aqua class or aqua activities can be a great tool for this and for the development of functional motor skills, coordination and social skills. This type of class differs from an adult class as it should include more games, fun and/or team activities.
QUALITY INSTRUCTION FROM QUALITY EDUCATION
The aqua instructor is not only required to provide a well planned, safe and effective workout, but also an experience that keeps participants coming back.
The AUSTSWIM Aqua Instructor course is an intensive education program that provides the knowledge, skill and understanding to provide quality aqua classes and requires proficiency beyond requirements within the National Training Package.
These competencies are framed under AUSTSWIM’s Learning Pillars, preparing students for the specific Aqua Instructor role. Water safety, drowning prevention strategies, and risk management are an integral element of AUSTSWIM’s Learning Pillars.
To find out more visit the AUSTSWIM website at www.austswim.com.au