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Q: I’d like to start swimming for exercise, but I usually only swim for fun—not to work out. Where do I start?

Underwater photograph of man swimming in a pool, giving two thumbs up.Tonya says...
As a competitive swimmer and triathlete for many years, I can tell you that the hardest part of swimming is getting into that cold, wet pool! But once you are in, swimming is a great cardiovascular workout. As a non-weight-bearing activity, it’s particularly well- suited to those suffering from aches, pains or arthritis. If you’re a beginner, start by taking some lessons to boost your confidence and skill level. Most public pools offer adult lessons for a good price. Or join a Masters swim group if you already have some experience.

Tonya Rouse Hillenbrand is a certified fitness and nutrition expert, and a former national triathlete and duathlon team member. Send her your health questions here.