Top 12 Benefits of Swimming, Risk, Backed By Science

A man swimming

Swimming is one of the best aerobic exercises, for the overall body, has many health benefits, whether it is mental or physical health.

It has multiple benefits where its benefits depend on water (cold and hot water), cold water is excellent in quick recovery.

Swimming in cold water seems to have a positive effect on insulin metabolism.

Here are given 12 benefits of swimming, which is research-based are:

Great For Asthma Patients

Asthma is a condition where the airway becomes narrow and swelling, which makes it a person difficult inbreathe.

Swimming training can lead to a decrease in the severity or frequency of bronchoconstriction (1) (defined as the narrowing of the airways in the lungs)

During a 5 month study, some asthma school kids are added to the swimming training program (2)

Results showed that asthma and medication showed significant decreases in children who continued to swim regularly, compared to those who did not continue.

However, some research also believes that chemical that is used in the swimming pool can increase the risk of asthma or make the symptoms worse.

Excellent During Pregnancy

Yes, it is excellent during pregnancy, where water density acts as a supporter to your belly to lift up, which is really helpful for pregnant ladies.

Swimming is considered one of the safest exercises for pregnant women (3).

NOTE: Water jumping, skiing, diving, and scuba diving are bad ideas. In these, pregnant women are at an increased risk of injury.

Tips to prevent the risk

  • Avoid warm water swimming during pregnancy
  • Stop swimming, if you feel too hot, nauseous, pain, bleeding, and vaginal discharge
  • Avoid jumping, diving
  • If do not know how to swim, then take someone with you, or stay in shallow water.

Women can use the bath, shower, and pool of water in labor pain, and any discomfort during pregnancy, because it acts as pain relief.

Check Out – Mistakes That Pregnant Women Should Avoid

Improve mood

When you are swimming, the body releases endorphins, this makes you feel happier, and after having an activity you feel that you are in a better mood.

Several studies have suggested that cold water swimming can amelioration of mood disorders (4).

One study involved swimming in cold water, where 24 old-year-old women who are suffering from depression and anxiety were involved

This resulted in an immediate improvement in mood after swimming and a steady and gradual reduction in symptoms of depression (5)

In a 12-week study, were involving people with dementia, results showed mood improved after participating in an aquatic program (6)

Strengthening Core muscles 

Numerous reports have shown that swimming is also an important part of many exercise training programs in core muscle-strengthening exercises (7) (8).

An 8-week core training program is run to measure the performance in front crawl swimming by female athletes.

Results showed that these groups significantly improved their performance in the 50-meter front crawl time trial (9).

Promote a better life quality

The report also found evidence that swimmers live longer and regular swimming helps older people stay mentally and physically fit (10)

Lower high blood pressure

High BP occurs when the blood circulation starts going up and down very fast, which causes high Blood pressure, or hypertension.

The ideal blood pressure is always best measured at rest. the ideal blood pressure is 120/80.

Swimming in cold water has been shown to have a positive effect on cardiovascular health risk factors such as blood lipids and blood pressure (11).

Meta-analysis supports aerobic exercise like swimming in the prevention and treatment of hypertension (12) (13).

Other studies, found that blood pressure and heart rate are increased during immersion and swimming, especially in the elderly (14).

A 10-month study of aerobic training showed an impressive effect on the resting systolic blood pressure in a person with hypertension (15)

Improve Heart Health

Yes, swimming can improve heart health, by preventing heart diseases, stroke, but how?

In general, maintaining regular exercise can decrease the risk of all kinds of cardiovascular disease including stroke, heart disease, and high BP.

It is considered that regular swimming is very effective for improving the physical strength, and blood lipids (16) of middle-aged women.

However, some studies suggest that swimming exercise was not be related to the degree of change in blood lipid and lipoprotein levels (17).

In addition, diet is as important as exercise, so make sure to eat healthy food, and reduce the intake of cholesterol, and triglycerides.

Check Out – Heart Attack: Symptoms, Reason, At Young Age

Burns Massive calories

A relaxed swim burns around 500 calories, while a tough one burns up to 700 calories an hour, Tom Holland says.

So while swimming, you do not only burn calories but also build lean muscles (18).

However, another report showed that walking and cycling are effective methods of reducing body fat, but swimming is not (19)

As you increase your performance, or faster and harder, your heart rate and blood pressure increase, which overall helps in weight loss.

There are also some other exercises that are excellent for burning calories which include:

Check Out – Research-Based Health Benefits of Cycling

Excellent in back pain

Lower back pain is most commonly seen in most people around the world, followed by upper pain, and middle back pain.

Aquatic exercise can significantly reduce pain and increase physical movement in patients with low back pain (20)

However, less evidence are support that aquatic exercise was potentially beneficial to patients with low back pain.

There is some other natural ways to treat back pain which includes:

  • Massage
  • Cycling
  • Stretch exercise include yoga asanas,
  • Acupuncture
  • Hot and cold therapy
  • Take enough rest, if pain in mild
  • Diet
  • prescription medicines

Check Out – Is Walking Relieves Back Pain?

Improve sleep quality

Swimming is an effective treatment to improve sleep quality, mood, and quality of life in older adults with chronic insomnia (21).

Chronic sleep deprivation has been shown to increase the risk for a host of physical, as well as the risk of accident also increases while driving (22).

Reports suggest that exercise can improve sleep quality without adverse effects, however, some studies are still pending (23).

In addition, swimming timing also matter, where doing exercise before sleeping makes it difficult to fall asleep, compare to morning exercise.

Check Out – Food And Drink To Have For Soundly Sleeping

Good for Bone Related Issues

Ofcourse, swimming is excellent for person who suffer from bone related issue, because it is very low impact exercise, due to which no impact on bone.

Which also reduce the risk falling down, and improve your recovery from injury.

After menopause or evern before it, a women should try this exercises, where there is no pressure on the bones, the risk of fracture is also reduced.

Regular swimming are ideal exercise for patients with arthritis, as well as associated with reducing joint pain and stiffness (24).

Diet include vitamin C, D, and Calcium (Bone is made up of fiber and to retain the fiber requires calcium) is as important as physical activity.

Check Out – Ways To Maintain Your Bone Health – According To Research

Reduce stress Level

Stress is one of the common mental issues, due to which everyone is struggling today.

Stress is allied with the release of cortisol and improved inflammation (25). And swimming is effective in reducing inflammation, and cortisol levels (26).

Research where rats are included, shown that swimming could reduce depressive-like behaviors in rats during pregnancy (27)

It increases the activity of the superoxide dismutase and reduced oxidative damage by increasing pro-inflammatory cytokines and SOD activity (28) (29) (30).

SOD is an antioxidant enzyme, which is very important to fight against oxidative stress in the body.

Swimming can also reduce the stress in the joints, as well as increase overall physical strength.


Swimming is ideal for all peoples, and considered safest exercises.

NOTE: Its risk depend cold water and normal water swimming. And the most significant risk of swimming in cold water are hypothermia (31) (32) (33).

Hypothermia is condition where the body loses heat faster than normal.

People with skin condition, first talk to your doctor, because pool chemical may interact with your skin surface, and make the symptoms worse.

Safety Tips

  • Never swim alone, see if there must be someone near you.
  • If do not know how to swim, then take someone with you, with safety instrument or stay in shallow water.
  • Don’t play breath-holding games, that which many kids do.
  • Always wear a Life vest
  • Be aware, while swimming in sea, especially with child or old people, because large waves can more powerful than you might think.
  • Swimming does not mean that you should not drink water, so make sure drink enough water, to prevent dehyration.
  • Take more precation or supervision with child.


Consult your doctor first, if you have any skin illness, because majority of pool contain chemicals, that can disturb the condition.

Swimming is considered one of the safest exercises during pregnancy, because here water density support very much.


Hello, I'm Sahil bisht, I am a Mechanical engineer, As well as, aspiring blogger with an obsession for health. This blog delicate to people who want to learn in health.

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