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Why We Need to Be in or Near Water

Point to Ponder:

How much time each week do you spend in or near water ?

I think it’s safe to say summer has arrived. Unfortunately the temperatures are soaring, however and fortunately it’s the perfect time to find your way in and near water. Here’s why:

Getting in water is a great way to beat the heat, but with bodies of water being part of nature and outdoor swimming pools being in nature, being in and near water has similar life-giving, detoxifying, stress eliminating and holistic benefits as time in nature. To focus on the benefits of water specifically, author J. Nichols wrote a fasnciating book titled Blue Mind. In the book, J. writes about the scientific connection between water, health and happiness and the cognitive and emotional benefits we receive every time we spend time in and around water. He first sites the body/water connection by stating our body consists of 60% water, and our brain--75% of water! J. says, "When you see water, when you hear water, it triggers a response in your brain that you're in the right place."

As for the physiological affect, according to J.'s findings, proximity to water floods the brain with feel-good hormones such as dopamine and oxytocin. Levels of the stress hormone, cortisol, actually drop. As a reminder, too much stress causes higher levels of cortisol, and higher cortisol levels result in:

  • a decrease in our immune system

  • increase of abdominal fat deposition

  • the breakdown of muscle, bone, and connective tissue

  • inhibits thyroid hormone activation.

Jay concludes our response to water is deep, human, life and survival. Scientists have also discovered that the brain prefers the color blue above all others and water increases our ability to focus. He says, "water helps us relax and sucks the stress out of our body and mind, and because stress affects our physical, mental and emotional health, spending time in, around and near water really is necessary for optimal health".

As for water opportunities, we have many options on summer schedule....and don't forget to stay hydrated drink plenty of water too. Here's to taking the plunge into summer! #getoutsidewithiGnite

  • Tuesday- 8:00 a.m. Swim & Hydro-Fit w/Sha at the JCC Pool

  • Wednesday- 6:30 a.m. Power Tabata Plunge w/Sha at Barton Springs

  • Wednesday- 9:30 - 1:30 Lake Escape with Kathleen at Lake Austin

  • Thursday- 8:00 a.m Swim & Hydro Fit w/Sha at JCC Pool

  • Friday- 7:30 a.m Vinyasa Yoga w/Paula at Rowing Dock

  • Friday- 8:15 Bridal Bootcamp w/Kathleen at Northshore Overlook (and other Friday classes at, around and in Barton Springs on Fridays during the summer)


Action Item:

Make it a priority to spend time in and around water each week and don't forget to drink at least 1/2 your body weight in oz of water each day.


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