Aqua jogging update

It was great to be involved in this article on deep water running or aqua jogging in the Washington Post. We discuss technique tips here:

Mimic how you run on land

The best way to aqua jog is to mimic running on land, experts say. Style instructions may vary, but you should lean forward slightly. The movement of the arms and legs should look similar to land-based running, Heywood said.

Runners typically move back and forth in the pool during their workout.

The movement forward is very slow so don't get discouraged by this. Your cadence (or cycles per minute) of your legs is directly correlated to your heart rate (or exercise intensity) although HR will be lower in water (for the same intensity of exercise) due to hydrostatic pressure increasing central blood volume and cardiac output.

Work your legs up to a running motion. A cycling action of the legs is easier to start with and will get your heart rate up, Heywood said, but practice replicating a running motion with your legs when you feel more confident in your balance and core control. “Imagine extending the foot down and behind as if you were pushing off the ground as you would in a run,” she said.

Additional info for those of you who want to try this

*First few sessions just work on technique. It's difficult to maintain your core control, and a great challenge to hold a steady position to start wtih. Focus on keeping your shoulders and hips level as you build up pace. Make sure you're not holding your breath as a way of compensating to stay steady.

*Some people with joint pain find the fast movement of the legs (hips and knees) can be painful. If you've tried aquajogging and your joints didn't like it you have a couple of options

- slow down and find the cadence that your joints are happy with. Then increase slowly with time OR

- consider swimming with a pull buoy (peanut shaped float) between your legs so you don't have to kick OR

- try fast walking or joggin in the shallow water for cardiovasular conditioning instead.

You can read more here:

Or check out a demo of deep water running in the videos and podcast section.