Pursuing the next great aqua move
Aqua Fitness has taken the world by storm, captivating enthusiasts with its invigorating and effective workouts. Aqua instructors constantly pursue groundbreaking techniques and cutting-edge moves to stay ahead in this rapidly evolving domain.
Even with our quest for innovation, we often resort to familiar exercises and routines. While relying on tried and tested methods builds a solid foundation, it needs to be improved when pushing our clients’ fitness boundaries. To truly elevate their progress, we must embrace the theory of muscle adaptation and introduce elements of variation to our beloved “comfort moves.”
By analysing our favourite exercises through a fresh lens, we can unlock their hidden potential. Incorporating the following concepts into our routines, we can transform virtually any exercise:
Rhythm & Speed
In the ever-evolving realm of aqua fitness, staying relevant and captivating requires a deep dive into rhythm and speed. As the music inspires us to move, our chosen exercises can replicate that infectious beat, compelling participants to sway, tap, and groove. While most instructors stick to the basic beat or every second beat, true innovation lies in exploring different rhythms.
Imagine infusing the lively rhythm of a Cha Cha dance, with its tantalising 1, 2, 3 & 4 counts, into your aqua routine. Pair it with movements like a quick jog on 1 and 2, followed by three rapid jogs. This fusion of rhythm and movement challenges the cardiovascular and nervous systems, breathing new life into familiar exercises.
But don’t stop there. Rhythm can intertwine with the speed of repetition, creating a dynamic interplay.
Picture the exhilarating sequence of fast, fast, slow. A move like jack out, jack in, jack out, and pause becomes the perfect conduit for this rhythmic variation. And remember, this concept isn’t limited to the lower body alone; it can be seamlessly integrated into arm actions, adding a whole new dimension to your aqua repertoire.
Combining moves that flow together
Now, let’s explore the power of combinations. Aqua moves neatly fit into six broad categories: jogging, kicks, jack/scissors, tuck jumps, single-leg repeaters, and suspended moves. By cleverly combining these categories, participants are encouraged to develop fresh movement patterns.
Push the boundaries of creativity and challenge the brain by experimenting with unlikely pairings. For instance, take three favourite moves, kicks to the front, kicks to the back, and knee tucks, and weave them into a captivating combination. Try a right leg kick to the front and back, followed by two knee tucks, then repeat on the left. Or unleash your imagination and craft your unique sequence, keeping the possibilities endless.
Not all exercises fit or flow well together, but experimenting in the pool with moves that traditionally you have not combined will provide new and innovative exercises.
To truly revolutionise your aqua workouts, consider the concept of levels
- Level 1, where participants sit with their shoulders submerged
- Level 2, where they stand with water at chest height; and
- Level 3, where propulsion takes centre stage.
Seamlessly transitioning between these levels provides a range of intensity options. Take a traditional Level 2 move like a jack and introduce a Level 1 twist, where participants drop their shoulders under the water while maintaining a fast-paced motion. Alternatively, combine different levels within a single sequence, infusing familiar moves with a fresh twist that ignites excitement.
Vary arm lines
While lower limb actions often steal the spotlight, let’s remember the tremendous potential of arm patterns. They offer countless opportunities to shift the focus and intensity of an exercise. Broadly categorised into linear movements, breaststroke and reverse stroke, alternating arm swings, scooping or circular actions, and figure-of-8 movements, arm lines can breathe new life into your aqua routine. Break free from the mould by combining unfamiliar arm patterns with familiar lower limb actions. Picture a pendulum move with figure-8 arms, transitioning from the “familiar” to a challenge that demands participants’ attention and coordination.
Lastly, let’s embrace the exhilaration of travel. Moving through the water not only elevates heart rates but also optimises the use of pool space if available. Teaching effective forward, lateral, and backward travelling moves expands the scope for experimentation, transforming static exercises into dynamic journeys. The energy expenditure is more significant, and any move incorporating a rebound action can seamlessly integrate into these travels. So the possibilities are as vast as the aquatic horizon, whether it’s jumping jacks propelling you forward and backward or tuck jumps taking flight in every direction.
Step out of the familiar for growth and development.
In conclusion, it’s time to examine your aqua workout with a critical eye. When was the last time you truly challenged yourself and your participants? Stepping outside your comfort zone takes courage but is essential for growth and improvement. Embrace the allure of rhythm, the thrill of combinations, the transformative power of levels, the ingenuity of arm patterns, and the boundless exploration of travel. Dive into innovation, captivate your participants, and unlock the true potential of aqua fitness.
Aqua Mentoring Membership
Ready to take your aqua fitness expertise to the next level? Join my Aqua Mentoring Membership and dive deep into the world of creating new moves, innovative routines, and so much more. Connect with like-minded aqua instructors, gain valuable insights, and elevate your skills. Don’t miss out on this incredible opportunity to enhance your career and make a splash in the aqua fitness industry.