6 Low Impact Swimming Workouts for Weight Loss

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6 Swimming Workouts for Weight Loss | If you're looking for a low impact cardio workout to help you burn calories, lose weight, and strengthen and tone your muscles, swimming is where it's at! We're sharing the health and weight loss benefits of swim workouts, plus our fave full-body, fat-burning swimming workouts. Whether you prefer an easy freestyle swim workout, or want to incorporate a kickboard, flippers, and/or resistance bands for a HIIT swim workout, these workouts are for you!

One of the best ways to lose weight is to switch up your workouts, and if you haven’t added swimming to your fitness routine, it may just be what changes the weight loss game for you. Swimming is an effective full body workout that tones you up, strengthens your muscles and burns calories. It’s low impact, so it’s a great alternative if you’re used to running- or jumping-heavy workouts. Check out 6 low impact swimming workouts for weight loss you can start now, no matter your level.

Is Swimming Effective for Weight Loss?

Swimming is one of the most efficient ways to lose weight, as it increases your heart rate and strengthens and tones your muscles. By building more muscles, you’re also burning more calories. It’s a low impact, cardiovascular workout that helps strengthen your heart muscle and keeps you healthy as can be.

Swimming is a full body workout and each workout uses your muscles in different ways. According to a Harvard University study, for a person who weighs 185 pounds, doing 30 minutes of freestyle can burn 488 calories, butterfly can burn 488, backstroke can burn 355 and breaststroke can burn 440.

To burn more calories while you swim, try making your swim workouts more challenging by adding resistance by adding flippers or resistance bands, changing up your strokes, and incorporating intervals. HIIT intervals will help you burn more calories since the faster you go, the more challenging the workout will be. For example, swim as many lengths as fast as you can for 30 seconds, take a 30 second break and repeat.

5 Benefits of Swimming Workouts

1. Lose Weight and Tone Up
Swimming is a super efficient way to burn calories. You can lose the same amount of weight swimming as you do by running, without the impact. It’s one of the best activities you can do to tone and slim your entire body, working your upper body, lower body and core all at the same time.

2. It’s Low Impact
If you’re looking for a way to exercise without adding stress to your joints, swimming is a great option. The natural buoyancy from the water removes the impact you would experience when jogging at a similar level of intensity, for instance.

3. It Works Your Whole Body
Swimming is amazing for all levels, from beginners to more advanced athletes because it provides a total body workout. It provides resistance training through the weight of the water itself, aerobic training, and strength training since you’re building lean muscles.

4. Good for Your Heart
As swimming is anaerobic exercise, it provides benefits for cardiovascular health. Regular swimming can reduce blood pressure, increase cardiopulmonary function, and contribute to other health benefits like lower cholesterol and a stronger immune system.

5. Improves Your Breathing
As you incorporate swimming into your workout routine, your body and brain learn to build breathing into the training. You build lung resilience by taking, using and expelling your breath, and you also gain the ability to maintain oxygen levels even when your body is under physical stress.

6 Swimming Workouts for Weight Loss

1. 3 Swim Workouts for Beginners | MySwimPro 

If you’re new to swimming, this tutorial will be perfect for you! These workouts will help you get faster and improve your stroke technique so you can make the most out of your swim time. It explains what structured workouts are, the benefits of following structured workouts, plus 3 different workouts, running from 300 meters all the way up to 1000 meters.

2. Low Impact Swimming Workout | Livestrong 

Warm-Up:

Gradually raise your heart rate and warm up your muscles by alternating between 50-yard freestyle swims and flutter kicks on a kickboard.

  • 50-yard freestyle (easy pace)
  • 50-yard flutter kick (with a kickboard; easy pace)
  • 50-yard freestyle (easy pace)
  • 50-yard flutter kick (with a kickboard; easy pace)

The Workout:

Alternate between freestyle, backstroke and breaststroke or choose the stroke you find most comfortable. You’ll do four 50-meter swims at a moderate pace followed by four 25-meter swims at an intense pace. Rest for 30 seconds between intervals.

  • 50-meter swim (moderate pace)
  • 30-second rest
  • 50-meter swim (moderate pace)
  • 30-second rest
  • 50-meter swim (moderate pace)
  • 30-second rest
  • 50-meter swim (moderate pace)
  • 30-second rest
  • 25-meter swim (intense pace)
  • 30-second rest
  • 25-meter swim (intense pace)
  • 30-second rest
  • 25-meter swim (intense pace)
  • 30-second rest
  • 25-meter swim (intense pace)
  • 30-second rest

Cooldown:

When you finish all of your intervals in the main set, help your body recover by completing a gentle 100-meter freestyle cool down.

3. Get a Great Swimming Workout in 30 Minutes | How to Structure a Quick Swim | Global Triathlon Network 

30 minutes is a great amount of time for a swimming workout and this tutorial teaches you how to structure a workout that will greatly benefit you in that amount of time. It offers tips on how to warm up, cool down and maximize your swim training. You’ll also learn how you can work on your technique to make yourself a better swimmer overall!

4. Stroke-Focused Workout | Byrdie 

  • Swim 100 yards at an easy pace with your stroke of choice
  • Swim 100 yards at an easy pace with your stroke of choice with a kickboard
  • Swim 100 yards at an easy pace with your stroke of choice with a pull buoy
  • Swim 4×50 yards of your stroke of choice (except freestyle). Take 30 seconds of rest in between each interval
  • Swim a 100-yard freestyle at a moderate pace
  • Swim 3×50 yards of your stroke of choice (except freestyle). Take 20 seconds of rest in between each interval
  • Swim a 100-yard freestyle at a moderate pace
  • Swim 2×50 yards of your stroke of choice (except freestyle). Take 15 seconds of rest in between each interval
  • Swim a 100-yard freestyle at a moderate pace
  • Swim 1×50 yards of your stroke of choice (except freestyle). Take 10 seconds of rest in between each interval

5. 3 Essential 30 Minute Swim Workouts | Global Triathlon Network 

If you only have time for a 30 minute swim session, check out these 3 workouts. Each one starts with a warm up, goes into the main circuit and ends with a cool down. Each of these workouts ensures you get the most out of your 30 minutes and burn as many calories as possible!

6. Beginner’s Guide to Swim HIIT | Women’s Health 

  • Warm up with easy freestyle swimming for two to five minutes. (Optional: Use a kickboard every other lap.)
  • 25 yards freestyle at medium pace
  • 40 second rest
  • 2 x 25 yards freestyle at hard pace with 30 second rest in between laps
  • 2 x 25 yards kicking with board at hard pace with 35 second rest in between laps
  • 25 yards freestyle easy with pull buoy
  • 30 second rest
  • 2 x 25 yards freestyle hard with pull buoy with 40 second rest in between laps
  • 25 yards freestyle easy
  • 30 second rest
  • 2 x 25 yards freestyle hard with 45 second rest in between laps
  • 25 yards freestyle medium
  • 40 second rest
  • 2 x 25 yards freestyle hard with 30 second rest in between laps
  • 25 yards freestyle easy
  • 50 yards walking lunges in pool, with weights starting at your side and lifting up to shoulder height for a forward raise at the top of each lunge (begin with foam weights, then move up in one pound increments as you get stronger)
  • 30 second rest
  • 40 seconds high knees in place
  • 50 yards walk backward and use aqua weights for shoulder press (straight overhead, palms face each other)
  • 30 second rest
  • 40 seconds squat with biceps curl
  • 30 second rest
  • 40 seconds squat with tricep extension
  • 30 second rest
  • 40 second squat with rows
  • 30 second rest
  • 40 seconds high knees in place
  • 60 second rest
  • Repeat from the lunges for 2-3 rounds

Swimming workouts are one of the best ways to tone up, burn calories and lose weight. Try out these tutorials and drills to get started with swimming for weight loss.

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6 Swimming Workouts for Weight Loss | If you're looking for a low impact cardio workout to help you burn calories, lose weight, and strengthen and tone your muscles, swimming is where it's at! We're sharing the health and weight loss benefits of swim workouts, plus our fave full-body, fat-burning swimming workouts. Whether you prefer an easy freestyle swim workout, or want to incorporate a kickboard, flippers, and/or resistance bands for a HIIT swim workout, these workouts are for you!

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