There is no better way to beat the heat this summer than to hit the pool or fresh Tahoe waters! Swimming works almost every muscle area in the body including your legs, arms, shoulders and even your core. As a very low impact sport, swimming is a great exercise to combat natural gravity, while still strengthening both large and small muscle groups. Swimming is also among the top best cardiovascular exercises to strengthen the legs and increase your blood flow, which is one major component to combating varicose veins.
If you are new to swimming or are looking for ways to solely use your legs in the pool, there are a few simple ways to ease into the sport of swimming. One of the best ways to work leg muscles is to use a kick board. You can rest your chest on the board while holding on to it and propelling yourself through the water using only your legs. This is a great way to build leg muscle and even your endurance to feel comfortable and confident in the pool. If you don’t have a kick board, you can hold on to the side of the pool and kick your legs backwards instead.
Another pool activity that is great to reduce development of varicose veins is to tread water. Treading water requires you to use almost every muscle in your body to keep your head above the water, making it great for improving blood flow and keeping your heart rate high. By engaging your core, using your arms slightly and using your legs to keep you afloat, not only is it a great workout, but will greatly improve your heart health and vein health over time.
If swimming isn’t your style, you can still take advantage of the benefits of the pool. The reduced pressure from the water can help make exercises that are difficult on land, like leg lifts and calf raises, a little easier. To perform leg lifts in the pool, stand in waist-deep water and slowly raise your legs backward and to the side, one at a time. Then repeat while rotating your legs consistently. For calf raises, stand in waist-deep water and slowly raise yourself onto your tip toes, then slowly return to a flat-footed position.
Performing these exercises a few times a week will can help improve the blood flow throughout your legs and reduce the appearance or future development of varicose veins. Dive into gorgeous legs this summer!