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Aquatic Exercise



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I have bad knees, one of which was replaced but still hurts two years later. As a result, I cannot walk long distances even if I use a cane or rollator. Instead, I do aquatic exercise and use fins and a kick-board to swim laps at the local YMCA pool.

I started using the pool before I had total knee replacement in a "Hip & Knee Class" recommended by my orthopedic surgeon. I liked it so much that I continued in the class for a year after surgery. Then COVID struck and everything shut down. A year later, in April 2021, I was so discouraged by being at home all the time and not getting exercise, I called three people who had been in the "Hip & Knee" class and suggested that we return to the pool. The YMCA was not yet holding classes, but the pool was open again. We knew the routine down pat. We started going for an hour each Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. In September, the YMCA started offering aquatic classes again. The four of us signed up for the "Senior Stretch & Tone" aquatic class AND the "Knee & Hip" class back to back! Yikes! The class meets only on Mondays and Wednesdays, but we go on Fridays, too, so we get five hours of exercise weekly

Since the Senior Stretch and Tone class uses some of the same exercises that the original Hip & Knee class used, we started using the second hour of class to develop strength by swimming laps using kick-boards and flippers. The fins make us work harder, kicking from the hips instead of the knees, and we are getting a good aerobic workout,

By increasing the number of laps by two each time, I finally swam 1/2 mile or 18 laps last Friday. I'm going to try to increase by two more laps each time I go. I want to be able to do a mile (36 laps) by summer. I'll have to take a break after my upcoming revision surgery, but I've been told that as soon as the incisions are healed I can go back to the pool. Maybe by spring I'll have lost enough fat that I will no longer float like a beachball, and will be able to actually SWIM rather than kicking.

Screen Shot 2021-12-05 at 11.09.49 AM.png

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I noticed after losing over 200 lbs that I actually SANK instead of floated! I've gained about 20 lbs back since then so I'm not a sinker anymore, but on the other hand, it takes a lot more effort to tread Water than it did when I weighed almost 400 lbs! I think swimming is the only exercise where it's actually easier to do when you're carrying around extra fat!

Edited by catwoman7

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I kept thinking I wanted to join the YMCA for their Water aerobics classes, but it's too expensive for me and Silver Sneakers doesn't cover the Y where I live. But whenever I'm on vacation and in an outdoor pool I spend the whole time doing exercises in the water and it feels so wonderful. I just don't know if I'd like doing it in the cold snowy weather, going into a gym and changing clothes and getting wet and stuff.

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