Many people have heard about the benefits of water exercise and therapy. The water helps improve flexibility, balance, and strength without putting extra pressure on the joints.
But you want to know: Can I do stretching exercises in the water?
The answer is … YES!
The properties of water that it make an ideal place for exercise also help people get the most out of their stretching sessions.
Whether you own a hot tub or swim spa from Master Spas, you can improve your flexibility and range of motion. The warm water of a hot tub or swim spa can raise the temperature of your muscles, helping to prepare them for stretching. And the buoyancy allows you release tight muscles and lengthen the tissues — in ways that you can’t do on land.
Keep reading to discover the best stretching exercises you can do in your hot tub!
Benefits of Stretching
The Mayo Clinic says stretching exercises are a key part of any fitness program.
- Increase flexibility, which makes daily tasks easier
- Improve range of motion of your joints, which helps keep you mobile
- Improve circulation
- Promote better posture
- Help relieve stress by relaxing tense muscles
- Help prevent injury, especially if your muscles or joints are tight
RELATED: Check out the best ab exercises that you can do in the water.
- Give your muscles time to warm. After hopping in to your hot tub or swim spa from Master Spas, begin with more dynamic movements. Begin with walking, alternating knee lifts or step outs.
- Stretches should be held for 20 to 30 seconds.
- Focus on the areas of the body where you experience the most stiffness or tightness.
- You should never feel pain when you are stretching.
- Balance is key! Make sure to stretch both sides, even if one side of your body feels tighter. (By the way, that’s natural!)
- Remember to breathe.
10 Stretching Exercises for the Water
Half Moon Pose
Standing in your hot tub or swim spa, place your hands on your lower back. Elbows are bent and tucked in. Push the hips forward, lift the chest and look toward the sky if comfortable. Be sure to keep feet planted on the floor.
Straight Leg Stretch
Use the stairs of the hot tub and place a foot up, leg straight but not locked. Keep a slight bend in the knee. Lean gently forward. Hold and repeat on the other leg.
Stand with feet shoulder width apart and bring arms out to the side. Rotate to one side and look over your shoulder, if it’s comfortable. Rotate slowly to the other side.
Sitting in the hot tub or standing in a swim spa, lengthen one leg out in front of you. Flex the foot toward your shin. Hinge forward at the hips, keeping the spine neutral. Switch sides.
Upper Back Stretch
Give yourself a hug! Seated or standing, wrap your arms and try to touch your shoulder blades with your fingertips.
Keeping a soft bend in the elbow, bring the arms in front of you so that they form a circle. Create space between the shoulder blades and have a slight C-shape in the spine. Swim the arms back, squeezing the shoulder blades together, and lift your chest.
You can do this stretch whether you are seated in the hot tub or standing a swim spa. Extend your leg and make a circle with your foot. Switch directions. Repeat on the other leg.
Standing near a wall in the hot tub or swim spa, bend your knee and bring your heel toward your bottom. Gently hold your ankle with your hand. Bring the leg back and push the hips forward.
Seated or standing, lift your knee toward your chest and use one or both hands to bring it closer to your body. This stretch feels great on the hips!
Toes on the Wall
Heel of a foot is a few inches from the wall of the hot tub. Place the toes a few inches up and lean forward. It helps to stretch the ankle and back of the lower leg.