Workout in the Pool: Exercises to Do in the Water


People who feel the need to vary their fitness routine, those who cannot exercise in the summer due to high temperatures and, more generally, those who like to experiment and stay in contact with water can evaluate the workout in piscina. Exercising in the water, in fact, can train the whole body very effectively without some of the disadvantages of floor exercises. Also, in the summer months there is nothing better than being immersed in water while burning calories. Even in winter, however, an indoor swimming pool can allow you to devote yourself to sport in the greatest possible comfort. 

Benefits of the workout in the pool

Doing the same exercises that you do on the ground in the pool means train more intensely. This is because water offers greater resistance than air. Resistance can engage your muscles more fully and even allow you to burn more calories in a short amount of time. Exercising in the water also allows you to get an excellent cardio workout, aumentando also:

  • force;
  • resistence;
  • flexibility .

The buoyancy of the water also provides extra support for the muscles and joints. This allows you to train harder by exercising a minor impact on certain joints compared to what you would have on the ground. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Trusted Source, this is especially helpful for people who have joint conditions, such as osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. The pool workout is also a gentler form of exercise for pregnant women and people who have diseases such as osteoporosis, fibromyalgia, balance problems, joint injuries.


Training in water also prevents heat disturbances.

Recommended exercises in the water

Those taking part in a water course in a sports center will not need large equipment. In fact, the structure will provide everything you need, such as weights, floating tubes, treadmills, ellipticals and bicycles. Those who want to train alone, however, may need tools such as:

  • weights for wrists or ankles, which increase the resistance of the movements of the arms and legs in the water;
  • foam dumbbells: light when dry, they become heavy when immersed in water;
  • hand paddles or resistance gloves, which increase strength training in the water;
  • buoyancy belt, which helps keep your head above water when doing arm exercises.


Here are some very effective exercises for a total body workout in the pool. 


Water jogging and water walking are also excellent. 
These exercises can also be helpful for sciatica in pregnancy. 

Arm raises

This exercise helps strengthen the muscles of the arms. Using foam dumbbells will help add more resistance.


  • Diving with water up to the shoulders.
  • Grasp the dumbbells and keep your arms at your sides, with your palms facing up.
  • Bring your elbows closer to your torso as you lift your forearms up. 
  • Rotate your wrists to turn your palms face down.
  • Lower your arms to the starting position.


Do 1-3 sets of 10-15 repetitions of each exercise.

Lateral arm raises

This exercise also targets the upper body. If possible, do it with foam dumbbells.


  • Enter the pool, with the water up to your shoulders.
  • Keep your arms at your sides, holding the dumbbells.
  • Raise your arms to the side until they are level with the water and shoulders.
  • Lower your arms back to your sides.

Do 1-3 sets of 8-14 repetitions.

Race to the wall

This exercise helps activate the core and lower body muscles. Leg raises are also great for the core.



  • Cling to the edge of the pool.
  • Bring your knees into your chest and press your feet against the wall.
  • Push yourself away from the wall and float on your back as far as possible.
  • Bring your knees to your chest, then press your feet to the bottom of the pool and run towards the wall.
  • Repeat from the beginning.

Continue this exercise for 5-10 minutes.

Kick with the legs

This exercise makes i work core and leg muscles. Use ankle weights to make it more challenging.



  • Cling to the edge of the pool or a platform.
  • First bang your legs.
  • Then open and close the legs with a scissor kick.
  • Then do a frog movement with your legs.
  • Finally, do the dolphin kicks.


Do each type of kick for 1-3 minutes.

Knees to chest

This dynamic exercise does work the core, lower back and legs.



  • Keep your feet away from the bottom of the pool during this exercise.
  • Bring your knees to your chest.
  • Explosively push your feet and legs forward and float on your back.
  • Bring the knees back to the chest.
  • Push your legs behind you so that they float on your stomach.


Do 1-3 sets (with all the complete exercise) of 8-12 repetitions.

You jump by opening and closing your legs

These exercises make you work the muscles of both the upper and lower body. Resistance can be added by wearing wrist and ankle weights.



  • Stand in the pool with the water at chest height.
  • Start with your feet together and your arms at your sides.
  • Jump by moving your legs outward and, at the same time, bringing your arms above your head.
  • Jump again to return to the starting position with your feet together and your arms at your sides. 


Do 1-3 sets of 8-12 repetitions.

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