Exercising in the pool will increase your fitness level and tone your abs. Since pool exercises are low impact, you can use them as an alternative to dry land exercises when injured or if you're susceptible to injury. Pool exercises will get your heart rate up to burn calories as well as challenge your muscles, including the abdominals, to give you a toned belly. Get in the pool three to five times a week to tone up and get an enviable midsection.
Train your abdominals with a dolphin kick exercise. Start this exercise by standing in chest-deep water facing the pool wall. Hold onto the pool's edge with your right hand. Place your left palm, with fingers pointing down, against the wall below the water. Extend your legs behind you until they are at the level of the water. Legs and feet should be close together as you start to kick like a dolphin. The motion should start from your abdominals, hips and pelvis and travel all the way down to your thighs, knees and ankles. Aim to kick as fast as you can for 20 to 30 seconds before resting and repeating.
Strengthen your abdominals with leg lifts. Stand upright in chest-high water with your back straight and abdominals engaged. Contract your belly muscles as you lift your left leg off the floor of the pool while standing steadily on the right leg. Bring your left leg in toward your chest before lowering down to the start position. Repeat 10 times and switch sides to lift the right leg.
Use a kick board to increase abdominal strength in the pool. You can use the board to help keep you afloat, which enables you to focus more on contracting the abdominals instead of sinking or flailing. Try a backward stroke with a kick board by rolling over onto your back in the pool. Hug the board into your chest as you start to do the backstroke. Keep your legs as close to the surface of the water as you can by contracting the abs to increase leg force.
- Always consult with a health professional prior to starting an exercise plan that could affect your health.
Jennifer Andrews specializes in writing about health, wellness and nutrition. Andrews has a Master of Science in physical therapy from the University of Alberta as well as a bachelor's degree in kinesiology. She teaches yoga and pilates and is a recent graduate of the Institute of Integrative Nutrition.