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Like rowing, swimming is also no impact yet can get the blood pumping and leave your lungs gasping for air. Runners often ignore strengthening their upper body and swimming is great for your shoulders, back and core, all of which make you a stronger, all-around runner.
“Swimming is an excellent endurance sport that uses different muscles groups [than running]. It is especially beneficial for runners recovering from injuries,” San Diego-based swim coach Brian Jenkins explained. “Running can be tough and swimming is a good outlet for similar endurance activity but low impact. It’s also great for the aging population who can’t run like they used to.”