LIVINGSTON, NJ — In addition to some of the better-known benefits to swimming—such as increasing muscular strength/tone and improving cardiovascular health due to the aerobic nature of the exercise—British Swim School is also bringing awareness to some of the medical benefits—such as helping to avoid asthmatic symptoms, counter mental stress and boost the immune system.

British Swim School, which operates from 14 locations in New Jersey, including locations in Livingston and Clifton, stresses the importance of learning to swim not just for safety and recreational purposes, but because it is an activity shown to have a positive effect on the body.

According to medical experts, vigorous aerobic activity in a dry setting triggers wheezing and shortness of breath (medically termed "Exercise Induced Bronchoconstriction"), which is why people with respiratory problems or asthma find it difficult to exercise regularly.

Sign Up for E-News

Swimming is a viable alternative (especially in non-chlorinated pools) because the aerobic activity is performed in a setting with moist air, unlike a gym, accoring to British Swim School. This significantly reduces the symptoms of Exercise Induced Bronchoconstriction and helps in avoiding asthma attacks. The respiratory benefits of swimming include regulating the breathing cycle and increasing the lung volume.

For those who need a break from work pressures, late nights and maddening traffic, the team at British Swim School believes that swimming is the right activity. 

It is an aerobic exercise that helps the circulatory system function better, which ultimately eads to better blood circulation to the brain. When the brain is supplied with enough oxygen and blood, it starts a process called hippocampal neurogenesis, where cells from the hippocampus (the part of the brain responsible for memory) that have been lost due to stress are replaced with new cells.

In addition, swimming also triggers the release of endorphins in the brain, which are chemicals that bring about feelings of contentment and euphoria. That’s equivalent to the rush that smoking a cigarette gives, but without the subsequent lung damage.

Finally, swimming also helps boost the immune system. Most benefits of swimming primarily arise from its effect on the circulatory system. When the cells in the body receive blood and oxygen regularly, they function more efficiently and periodically remove toxins like carbon dioxide.

The lymphatic system, which is responsible for distributing healthy white blood cells throughout the body, is also positively affected. When the lymphatic system functions perfectly, white blood cells are regularly distributed, resulting in increased immunity against all diseases and infections.

A study conducted by the University of South Carolina has shown that swimmers have a lower mortality rate (49 percent lower) than people who pursue other fitness measures.

Visit to learn more or to find a class nearby.