Since I’m gearing this website more to persons with auto-immune diseases, especially those with arthritis, I will be referring to a specific exercise called water aerobics, and because I have lived with Ankylosing Spondylitis and Degenerative Disk Disease for over 45 years, I will talk from my personal experience about how aqua aerobics has helped me.

First, let's talk about the advantages of water aerobics. Because of the aquatic environment, water aerobics provides tremendous advantages over traditional forms of fitness activities. The resistance of the water challenges both beginners, and highly conditioned athletes. This exercise program can be individualized and adapted to fit all needs and abilities. It is a wonderful exercise alternative for people with a wide range of joint problems, and because the water provides a cushioned environment, water exercise can decrease the risk of injuries.

Muscular endurance is enhanced to a much greater extent through water aerobics than most land-based fitness activities. The higher density of water provides a heavier workload for the active muscle group, which better stimulates muscular development and enhances toning. Another advantage of water aerobics is that it involves both upper and lower extremities making it a total body workout. If you compare that to jogging and walking, you know that they do little to improve the condition of the upper extremities.

Water aerobics also provides a cooler and more comfortable climate in which to exercise than land-bases activities do. Exercising muscles produce heat as a byproduct of energy. Heat can be dissipated much more efficiently in water than on land. So it makes sense that aquatic exercise significantly reduces heat stress, and makes exercise more comfortable and invigorating.