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Aqua Jogging For Injured Runners

  • By Jeff Gaudette
  • Published Oct. 12, 2012

What is aqua jogging?

Aqua jogging is a form of deep-water running that closely mimics the movement of actual running. When aqua jogging, your feet don’t actually touch the bottom of the pool, so it is zero impact and safe for almost any type of injury. In my experience, the only time to avoid aqua jogging is when you have a hip flexor injury, which can be aggravated by the increased resistance of the water as you bring your leg up.

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Because aqua jogging closely mimics the movement of running, it provides a neuromuscular workout that, in addition to aerobic benefits, helps keep your running-specific muscles active. The same can’t be said for biking and swimming.

The only downside to aqua jogging is that you need a pool that is deep enough to run in without touching the bottom. If you’re lucky enough to have access to a pool of this size, aqua jogging should be your first cross-training choice.

How to do it:

Good aqua jogging form should closely imitate your natural running style. You’ll want to submerge yourself in the deep end of the pool and use an aqua jogging belt/vest if you’re new to aqua jogging. These are nice tools, but once you get the form down,they aren’t absolutely necessary.

The key to good aqua jogging form is to keep your upper body straight and to not lean forward too much, which is a little different than your normal running posture. You should practice using a higher knee lift and a more compact back kick compared to running on dry land. This will allow you to remain upright and also enable you to perform harder sprinting activities. Check out this image to see an example of good aqua-jogging form. 

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FILED UNDER: Running Injuries / Training TAGS: / / /

Jeff Gaudette

Jeff Gaudette

Jeff has been running for 13 years, at all levels of the sport. He was a two time Division-I All-American in Cross Country while at Brown University and competed professionally for 4 years after college for the Hansons-Brooks Distance Project. Jeff's writing has been featured in Running Times magazine, Endurance Magazine, as well as numerous local magazine fitness columns.

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