Many swimmers enjoy a good cool-down after working out, and what better way to wind down than with some water yoga? Water yoga allows you to stretch your muscles, calm your mind and enjoy the sensation of the water around you. The next time you find yourself at the pool, give these water yoga poses a try. Who knows, it may soon become your favorite part of working out.
The tree pose aims to improve your balance and to focus your mind. Stand in chest-high water with your legs together. Bring your arms up over your head, palm-to-palm. Lift up your right foot and rest the sole of your foot along the inside of your left thigh (not your knee). Hold the position as you take 3 to 4 deep breaths, focusing on the air going in and out of your nose. Then, switch sides. Floating on your back in the tree pose is also relaxing.
Doing a hand-to-big toe pose on land can be especially challenging to your flexibility. But in water, the pose is actually much easier. To get started, stand beside the pool wall in chest-high water, holding onto the wall with your right hand. Bring your left leg up, with your knee bent. With your left hand, hold onto your big toe, and try to straighten your leg out forward as much as possible. Next, rotate your leg out to the side as much as you can. Hold this pose for 3 to 4 breaths. Then, switch to the other leg. This pose is great for stretching your back and leg muscles.
If the backstroke is your go-to swim move, you may notice the cobra pose feels quite similar at first. Stand facing the wall, at a chest-high depth. Put your hands on the wall of the pool, fingertips pointed toward the ceiling. Push on your hands, go up on your tiptoes and arch backwards, trying to lean back so that your hair is partially submerged. Hold the position for 2 to 3 deep breaths. The cobra pose stretches your core muscles and feels terrific after a swim workout.
A triangle pose is the perfect way to stretch out your core muscles after a long swim. Stand in chest-high water with your right hand touching the wall. Spread out your legs, shoulder-distance, with your right foot closer to the wall. Point your right foot at the wall, but keep your left foot parallel to the wall. Then bring your left arm up in an arc over your head, reaching toward the wall. You should feel the stretching all along your left side. Hold for 3 breaths and repeat. Then, switch to the other side.
The savasana pose is the ending pose of many yoga classes on land and in the water. The best way to relax in the water with a savasana pose is to use two pool noodles. Put one behind your neck and wrap your arms around the ends of it. Put the other noodle under your knees. Simply lie back, and enjoy the sensation of the water around you. Breathe deeply, relax and let your mind and body be at peace.
What to wear for pool yoga
For all swimmers, whether lap-swimmers, water aerobics fans, or water yoga practitioners, we recommend wearing the swimwear that makes you feel your best. Finding the right swimsuit gives you both more confidence and comfort during your workout. Try these:
If water yoga is your thing, search for a comfortable swimsuit. Water yoga is all about flexibility, so you want something that will move with you. One pieces, tankinis and bikinis are all perfect options.
If you like swimming laps and going to aerobics classes, athletic styles are your best bet. You want something that supports you in all the right places.
If you’ve got a curvy figure, don’t be afraid to show it off with swimsuits specially designed to flatter fuller figured women. There are so many great options!
Any pool-lover knows that chlorine can wreak havoc on your favorite swimsuits. Chlorine resistant swimsuits will keep their color and their elasticity up to 10 times longer than other swimwear. They are a great value for anyone who loves the pool.
With these water yoga poses, as well as other tips from our Swim School blog, you are sure to have a strong season at the pool this year. The time is always right to embrace your inner swimmer and make the most out of your pool time.