Many are finding today that the bubbling movement of a hot tub’s warm water adds to the effectiveness of certain types of exercise — all without straining your body.
To provide a brief catalog of the best types of spa exercise, Best Hot Tubs interviewed a fitness guru on the subject.
He is Cailean Johnson, owner of Trilogy Fitness in Seattle. A personal trainer, Cailean has received a good deal of positive publicity for his expertise.
The following Q&A with him provides a lot of helpful ideas on how to make a hot tub your personal gym for low-impact exercising.
Q: Why is exercising in a hot tub a good idea?
A: When your muscles are relaxed, you experience less pain and you can move your body in a greater range of motion. Also, when in a hot tub, there is less of an intense sensation due to movement.
It is important, however, to do any exercising in a hot tub in a slow, full-range motion so you get the full effect of exercise. To achieve the slow, full-range motion, make sure to extend your muscles and flex completely; this enables muscles to get the full effect of exercise.
Q: Can you give our readers some simple exercises they could try safely?
A: Sure. I’ve got some great ideas.
First. Here’s one I enjoy doing for my shoulders — a simple front side lat (lateral) raise:
Holding a weight, simply raise your arms, one at a time, straight up, slightly above water, and drop it right back down to your side.
Then raise the arm out to the sides of your body – out above water – and back to your side again.
Then repeat with the other arm. Note, when raising arms, don’t bend your elbows, keep them straight, and work from your shoulder.
Second. When sitting in the hot tub, work your core (from chest down to below the hip, including your abs), by moving your hips side to side.
This will exercise your obliques abdominal muscles (side muscles of your abdominal wall).
For nice looking arms. When in the hot tub, all you have to do is work against the water.
Hold weights, if you wish, or just use your palms flat open to create more resistance in the water, then, making sure you are sitting tall/straight, no slouching, with your arms at the side of body: flex your elbow all the way to bring your hand to your shoulder and lower it back down to your side.
This is a great bicep curl exercise.
And finally. Another abdominal exercise is to stand tall in the hot tub and place both hands behind your head. Bring one knee up towards your chest, twist, and bring your opposite elbow to the knee that is coming up. Then return your leg back to the start position and continue with other side. Pull that knee up and the opposite elbow across your body to your knee.
Q. Thanks, Cailean!
You will exercise in your hot tub more often if it has a nice setting. These Best Hot Tubs clients surrounded their Bullfrog Spa with natural stone, moss rock, and plantings to give a “set in garden” effect.
This Bullfrog Spa (A-8) was set between two levels of the homeowners patio. It’s conveniently located near their back door. That means they’ll use their hot tub year-round. This Bullfrog model has 6 interchangeable JetPak massage jets/seats — as comfortable a home gym for therapy and relaxation as you can find.