It's estimated that roughly 91 million people in the U.S. swim in our country's lakes, river and oceans each year. Swimming is a fun and rewarding activity that people of all ages can enjoy. Whether you enjoy competitive freshwater swimming or the occasional dip in the coastal waters of your favorite beach, you're sure to appreciate the ultimate sense of comfort and relaxation it offers. In this post, we're going to take a look at 5 fun facts about swimming.
#1) Swimming Has Been an Olympic Sport Since 1896
Swimming was officially added to the Summer Olympics over a century ago, in 1896. At the time, there were only 13 participants representing 4 countries – Hungary, Greece, Austria and The U.S – whom competed against one another in the 100-meter, 500-meter, 1,200-meter and 100-meter sailors freestyle.
#2) Swimmers Cut Their Hair For Greater Aerodynamics
In the sport of competitive swimming, fractions of a second can mean the difference between winning and losing. This is why it's important for swimmers to eliminate all potential sources of resistance, including their hair. Swimmers will shave their legs, cut their hair, and wear a cap to make themselves more aerodynamic in the water. It might sound silly to some but it gives them a slight edge in the water.
#3) Swimming Is Great For The Joints
Traditional workouts such as running, jump-roping, kickboxing and lifting weights place a large amount of pressure on the bones and joints. Each time you take a step when jogging, for instance, the weight of your body is absorbed in the joints. Over time this can lead to the formation of painful arthritis and limited mobility. Thankfully, swimming is one of the few workouts that's considered low-impact, meaning there's very little pressure placed on the joints.
#4) Swimming Makes You Happy
Swimming is scientifically proven to lift the spirits while reducing stress. How is it able to accomplish this? Well, it all stems from the increased production and release of happy chemicals known as endorphins.When you're swimming, the body naturally produces more of these chemicals; thereby, making you happier and less stressed.
#5) There Are 7 Officials In Swim Competitions
Competitive swimming requires a total of 7 different officials, including referee, starter, clerk of course, timekeeper, inspectors of turns, judges of strokes, and finish judges, all of which have their own unique responsibilities.