If you’re sticking around for the summer and looking for ways to keep fit while keeping extra cool, don’t rule out the pool.
Aside from the fact that all the best hotels currently have some bargain health club access passes for the next few months, we’re not just suggesting swimming lap after tedious lap. In fact, tons of your favourite classes have been clever enough to resort to the pool, from spin classes to circuit training as well. And if you’re feeling stressed, aqua therapy is always an option.
If you’re ready to test-drive your new swimwear, these activities guarantee to help you beat the heat as well as the boredom.
Aqua Zumba @ Fitness First
Take your love for Latin dancercise to the pool thanks to select Fitness First gyms. A low-impact option for the joints (due to water resistance), you’ll groove to classic Zumba moves without realising that you’re working out harder than on land.
Stretch, twist, strengthen core muscles, and increase your muscle tone and endurance levels all while having fun. They don’t call Zumba a fitness party for nothing.
Aquaspin @ Fairmont The Palm
Just in time to combat the heat, this is Fairmont’s new fun and interactive underwater biking class. Held at the North Residence Pool of the resort, it uses stationary bicycles specially made to be submerged in water.
Participants, partially submerged, can pedal using the water’s resistance in order to exercise.
Aquatraining @ L’Atelier Aquafitness
These guys kicked off the in-water training trend in 2013 and their entire facility is based around various fun and challenging forms of pool-based fitness.
You can hop on a submerged bike during one of their aquabiking classes, or really rev up your cardio and endurance levels in a circuit training-style session in the water that incorporates the bike, an aqua-trampoline and light weights for boxing drills.
There’s even a highly choreographed class called Aquaswing that mixes resistance-heavy dance moves and biking. All sessions are ladies only for no more than 10 people so you really have space to roam in the pool.
A post-fitness watsu session is also offered at L’Atelier Aquafitness. Also called aquatic shiatsu, this alternative massage technique involves manual pressure applied to specific points on the body in an attempt to relieve tension and pain.
While you’re floating and being cradled in the water, a therapist is working with you one on one to improve joint mobilisation and muscle stretching. You’ll decrease stress and heart rate levels, and even improve flexibility, digestion and sleep.
Floatation Therapy @ Zero Points Floatation
Aquatic or floatation therapy refers to treatments and exercises performed in water for relaxation, fitness, and even physical and mental rehabilitation.
Don’t have a pool and looking for some medical-grade downtime in the water? Then we highly recommend booking a cabin or pod at Zero Points’ centres in Dubai and Abu Dhabi.
Filled with a super-saturated salt solution that allows you to lie back and bob up and down on the water’s surface, these vessels lock out external stimuli and feature light therapy and peaceful music to help you quiet the mind and calm the nervous system. Some people even fall asleep.
It is an intense experience, being locked in like that, but a highly soothing one in the long run.
Aqua Aerobics @ Cobra Fitness
Cobra’s range of fitness classes has really blown up in the past year and now incorporates use of a cosy outdoor pool on site in Al Bandar, Abu Dhabi.
Don’t be fooled though – much like the rest of their classes, this 45-minute session is a tough full body toning knockout. After a heavy boxing, Spin or HIIT session, this is a great way to cool down and stretch while easing off on joints and tired muscles, too.
Swim Fitness @ FitRepublik
Dubai Sports City’s epic, sprawling, multi-purpose sport and fitness centre is more than well equipped for adults and young ones serious about aquatics and swim fitness.
Eight 50-metre lanes cater for various pool programmes geared towards professionals, amateurs and newcomers who want to learn how to swim or even take part in triathlons and other swim sports.
The swim fitness classes are pretty tough though, seeing swimmers cover around a total of 2 to 2.5km during various drills and sprints. Classes often include aids like fins to better your technique, strength, endurance and lung capacity, as well as generally tighten everything up. You will be buff and bikini ready in no time.