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Making a SPLASH for Health

Swimming Your Way to a Better You

Fitness begins as a child as Kimmi Jo LeBon teaches these young children proper swim techniques.

Anne Zegel

Everyone needs a change from their normal workout. If you continue to follow the same routine without any variation, you can plateau, causing your workouts to be mundane and monotonous. Adding variation to your workout can help ensure that you continue seeing results and stay interested. Advancing the Wellbeing of Women can be applied in your every day life by trying something new to contribute positively to your personal wellbeing.

Kimmi Jo LeBon, Freret 5K committee member and head swim coach at Kehoe-France, translated her lifetime love for swimming into “Making a SPLASH,” a swimming program based entirely on the individual needs of each participant. Kimmi Jo, who swam competitively throughout her life, believes that swimming may just be the change up your workout routine needs. Regardless of age, fitness level or medical conditions, swimming can be incorporated in everyone’s daily life. Whether it’s to increase strength and mobility or to learn stroke technique, she will complete an initial assessment of these abilities and goals and discuss what is desired of the swim program. Addressing these needs, she will develop a uniquely individualized program.

Swimming is a healthy activity that can add much needed variation to your workouts and can be continued for a lifetime. It is a low-impact activity that has many physical and mental benefits. While building endurance, muscle strength and cardiovascular fitness, swimming also helps maintain a healthy weight, heart and lungs. Swimming is a peaceful form of exercise that reduces stress while improving coordination, balance, posture and flexibility. It is also a great form of low-impact therapy that helps release those feel-good endorphins improving mental health. Your whole body moves against the water causing your heart rate to increase while removing much of the impact from the body. By working against the resistance of the water, you can get an intense workout while being able to move freely. “Even your lungs get a beneficial workout, because the water pressure makes them work harder than they would on land,” explains Kimmi Jo. Doctors often encourage swimming to help maintain a healthy lifestyle that will sharpen the tools one needs for daily functioning and normal activities like climbing stairs and carrying heavier objects.

Kimmi Jo is also an advocate of good nutrition and believes that “combined with physical activity, your diet can help you to reach and maintain a healthy weight, reduce your risk of chronic diseases like heart disease and cancer, and promote your overall health.” The average swimmer will burn around 600 calories per hour in her program. That’s more than a cocktail for sure.

If you are looking to lose weight, Kimmi Jo encourages swimmers’ interval training. “Interval sets are designed to allow the swimmer time to rest and recovery after each individual swim within a particular set. The added rest and recover helps build endurance, allows the swimmer to maintain proper stroke technique and form by remaining fresh throughout the set, allows the swimmer to challenge themselves by increasing the effort during a set without becoming too fatigued and can also increase weight loss.”

You can contact Kimmi Jo LeBon by email at kimmijoparris@aol.com or by phone at 985-592-7552. “Enjoyment is the best motivator for exercise” believes Kimmi Jo, so whether you decide to get in the pool or get involved in a different exercise regime, just make sure to get out there, get moving and enjoy what you are doing!

 


 

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