During the days of lockdown, swimming in our security complex pool was off-limited. During this time I bought a small Bestway pool, mainly for the kids. As they started playing in the pool, as only kids can, it dawned on me that there might be a lot more to above the ground pools. And yes, as a fitness person I immediately started thinking about how my latest acquisition can be turned into something to exercise in.
It is only natural when looking at one of these pools to ask the direct question “Can I exercise in a small above-the-ground pool?” In general, all size above-the-ground-pools have plenty of exercising possibilities. When there is water resistance there is a place for exercise. Also, most temporary pools are spacious enough to support a few people swimming around, so it’s safe to say that they can bear your twisting and paddling while you work out. Plus, these pools are very durable and can withstand a lot of pushing and water pressure.
So, before you rush out to buy small pool, perhaps see if you fancy some of these exercises. Trust me you can still sweat even in water…
10 Exercises That You Can Do In a Tiny Pool
- Walking: This is as easy as it sounds. It is a good warm-up and can help build your arms, core, and lower body. You use the water as a resistance for this exercise. While you don’t need any equipment for this one, you can add extra weights to your ankles or hands if you wish. You start by walking around the pool with your hands and torso above the water. Push hard. This can be tough, but this can be a really good workout for your legs. Stand as tall as you can as you walk to engage your core. Do this for 5-10 minutes.
- Lunges: Similar to lunges on the ground, you will extend one leg forward with a bent knee and flat foot while the other foot is positioned behind. The difference is that you will hold the side of the pool while you do the lunges. You can stay in place or lunge-walk around the pool. You can do 3 sets of 10 lunges for this workout.
- Noodle Plank: This exercise will need a strong core since the water-resistance will make it more challenging. You will also need a pool noodle to do this workout. Hold the noodle in front of you and then lean forward into a planking position. Your feet will still be touching the floor as your noodle submerges with your arm. Your elbows should be straight downwards. Hold this position for as long as possible. Repeat for 3-5 times.
- Bicycle Kicks: Go to the edge of your pool, face away from the rails, and then try to hold your hands on it. If you cannot reach your rails, use a noodle instead. Rest your upper body and let your lower body float. Make a pedaling motion with your legs like riding a bike. This exercise aims to work your legs. Do this for 3-5 minutes.
- Dolphin Kicks: This is going to work on your core, legs, and back. Grab the edge of the pool with both hands together. Stick both legs together, let them float up, and start kicking them like a dolphin. You can also do laps back and forth on your pool in this swimming position.
- Sprints: Similar concept as walking, but instead of walking, you are now running in the water. Lift your legs until they touch the top of the water. This high-knee style of sprinting, combined with the resistance of the water, makes for a great workout for the legs and the core.
- Hurdle Jumps: Stand perfectly straight in the water with your hands and torso above the water. Stand with your feet together. Pretend that there is a hurdle is behind you. Tuck your knees and bounce as high as you can over the invisible hurdle. Then you jump forward again, still avoiding the hurdle. You can also jump sideways. Just keep your knees tuck when you jump. Do 15-20 reps.
- Foam Dumbbells: Foam dumbbells are lightweight on land, but will become heavy as they absorb water. Use them for weight lifting to train your biceps and triceps. Do slow repetitions to really work those muscles. A good rule of thumb would be to count one-second lifting, one second contracting and one second going back to the original position
- Jumping Jacks: Like jumping jacks on land, you can do this exercise too in water. The force of the water can act as extra weight to challenge you to move more. Just press your hands to your body and your feet together, then jump by moving your legs outward and raising your hands. Do 1-3 reps with 10 jumping jacks.
- Simple swimming: What is a pool useful for if not for swimming? Do small laps back and forth of your pool. Take short breaks after a few reps then start over again. Leisurely swimming can burn around 500 calories in an hour and it’s an effective way to work your whole body out.
Good, so now you know what type of exercises you can do. However, it leads us to the next question.
What Shape Above The Ground Pool Do I Need For Exercise?
Mainly manufacturers create three shapes of above-the-ground pools. Square, Rectangle and Round. The shape of pool you require is dependable on mainly three reasons.
- The space available in your yard.
- The type of exercises you want to do
- Your budget
It goes without saying that the size of the pool is in direct proportion to the available space at your home. In addition to the size of space, you should also consider the structure of your space, in other words what shape will fit the area the best.
Next, determine what type of exercise you want to do. Trust, me water running for example is far more challenging in a round pool – in fact, it is borderline nauseating – than it would be in a square or rectangle shape. Also, consider if your exercise will be with or without props (Get some great water exercise props here). The bigger the water area the better for using exercise props.
Last but not least, always only purchase what you can afford. As we have stated previously, you will be able to exercise in all size pools, because of one thing in common: water resistance.
To conclude and hopefully, you would agree that there are plenty of reasons why you should get an above-the-ground pool and start exercising today. Water aerobics and swimming are great workout options. You don’t need a large pool in your house to achieve a healthy lifestyle. Plus, the pool is also great fun for the whole family. So go out now and get your own pool today with some of these great deals on Amazon.
How deep is a typical above-the-ground pool for exercise? In general, an above the ground pool covers about 4 feet of water. This provides more than enough water resistance to exercise in.
Can exercise in an above the ground pool help me loose weight. It is a proven fact that resistance exercise, combined with cardiovascular provides a good dose of calorie burning. If you combine above the pool exercises with a sensible caloric deficit diet, then there is no reason why you cant loose that extra pounds.
Is it better for my joints to exercise in a small pool? In general water aerobics is seen as a low joint impact exercise. Although water resistance will create an environment for a great work-out, it is far less taxing on your joints than running. Also most athletes wills start water training after a serious knee or ligament injury to strengthen muscles and joints.