Daily Progress, Jacksonville, TX

Local News

May 8, 2013

HEALTH: Water-based exercises boost health benefits - plus they’re fun

JACKSONVILLE — Individuals looking for a good workout without feeling worked over need look no further than the swimming pool, say individuals overseeing local aquatic exercise programs.

Trinity Mother Frances – Jacksonville health and fitness general manager Ann Provencher said the Aqua Moves and Arthritis Aquatic Program classes are very popular among participants, who like the quality workout they receive compared to the effort put into the exercise.

“Because you’re in the water, you’re more buoyant and it makes you feel like you don’t have the weight” pulling you down the way a regular exercise program might, she said. “Water makes the activities easier for a person, though it also is used as a (type of) resistance, so a person is getting a true workout.”

According to the national Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, water-based exercise – like the two MFH classes and the Ripple and Water Works classes at the ETMC Olympic Center – Jacksonville – “offers many physical and mental health benefits and is a good choice for people who want to be more active.”

Swimming is the fourth most popular sport in the nation, and “just two and a half hours per week of aerobic physical activity, such as swimming, … can decrease the risk of chronic illnesses,” according to the website http://www.cdc.gov. This, in turn, “can … lead to improved health for people with diabetes and heart disease.”

And because “they can exercise longer in water than on land without increased effort or joint or muscle pain,” the site states, “people report enjoying water-based exercise more than exercising on land.”

“It’s the best way for anyone to start (an exercise program) because there’s no impact,” Provencher said.

Jody Balfay, instructor of the ETMC aquatic classes, agreed.

“It provides an exercise mode that executes less impact on the joints and bones (and) it induces a faster recovery rate from injury,” she said.

In addition, Balfay said, “the hydrostatic pressure of the water assists in a more efficient venous return, which is great for those with diabetes and older students with circulation problems.”

In regard to arthritis, aquatic exercise “improves viscosity in the joints, thereby enhancing mobility for those with osteoarthritis – people with arthritis are encouraged to do water exercises over land exercises because of less impact on the joints,” she added. “Most of the older students with physical issues that prevent them from doing any other form of exercises, attend regularly.”

Both women said participants really enjoy the classes, which are held in each hospital’s salt-water pool – an environment which adds to the buoyancy factor.

“They love the instructors, who they said are very motivating and understanding, and who care about them,” Provencher said.

And, “people are able to do things in the water that they could never do on land, such as jumping jacks and  jogging,” Balfay said. “Most people love it the first time they attend a class – it’s nothing like they thought it would be.”

Participants don’t need to know how to swim – and each of the pools have a depth between four and five feet – but for those afraid of the water, the relaxed environment helps them conquer that fear.

“A large majority of students are afraid of the water, but after attending classes, their fear is overcome,” Balfay said. “I have even taught people how to swim just by working with them after class.”

The classes are part of a membership offering that includes use of exercise equipment and other facilities at each of the hospitals. Cost varies, as do times offered. Contact either ETMC – Jacksonville or Mother Frances Hospital – Jacksonville for more information about the aquatics classes.

Text Only
Local News
  • Bullard group rallies behind alcohol petition

    A petition calling for a city-wide city election this November that would make all areas of Bullard wet, including those which fall in Cherokee County, has proven successful, as more than the required 221 signatures have been collected.

    July 19, 2014

  • mom and kids_6776.tif Jacksonville woman celebrates 100th birthday surrounded by family, friends

    Ethel Terry, a lifelong resident of Jacksonville, celebrated her 100th birthday with an open house on July 15 at the Twin Oaks Care Facility in Jacksonville.

    July 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Cemetery grass.tif Extra rainfall produces more abundant lawns, extends hay season

    Steady periods of rain this summer have been a homeowner's dream, as lawns appear more lush than in previous years.
    But for city workers, that same growth has taken on nightmarish proportions.
    “It's a maintenance nightmare,” said Ben Briley, director of the City of Jacksonville Parks and Recreation Department.

    July 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Cherokee County arrests: July 8-14

    The Daily Progress will publish a list of arrests from the Cherokee County Sheriff's Office on a weekly basis.

    July 19, 2014

  • Detective recovers nearly $7K in case

    When a Jacksonville woman became a victim of a scam, Jacksonville Police Detective Greg Compton stopped at nothing to solve the case.
    In early January, Compton said a neighbor of a 94-year-old woman reported that someone had “taken advantage of her.”

    July 17, 2014

  • Bullard ISD names interim leader

    During a meeting Monday night, the Bullard ISD Board of Trustees appointed Joe Dan Lee as Interim Superintendent.

    July 17, 2014

  • City to continue summer mosquito spraying schedule

    Next week, the City of Jacksonville will continue implementing its summer mosquito spraying program.

    July 17, 2014

  • 18wheelerWreck 0715.tif Double 18-wheeler wreck snarls morning traffic

    No injuries were reported Monday morning after an 18-wheel tractor-trailer bore the brunt of damage when it collided with a logging truck in front of it, according to Jacksonville Police officer Matthew Odom. The wreck occurred at the intersection of Jackson and Canada streets.

    July 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • Heart transplant David.tif Jacksonville man recovering after life-saving transplant

    A Jacksonville man is on the road to recovery after a life-saving heart transplant, according to his wife.
    On July 2, David Woods received a new heart from an unknown donor. The surgery took about six hours, and he remained in the intensive care unit for four days afterwards, said his wife, Paula Woods.

    July 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • County changes speed on 4 roads

    Speed limits along four Cherokee County roads were set to 35 miles per hour following a public hearing Monday at the County Courthouse.
    Commissioners voted to lower the speed per request of residents living along CR 4910, CR 4911, CR 4912 and CR 4918, despite the fact that no one showed up for the public hearing, said County Judge Chris Davis.

    July 15, 2014