The Vacuum Will Draw it in If You Leave it a Vacuum

Transitions in themselves are difficult. We leave something familiar behind and head toward something unknown. Even if the move was desired, there is always a period of adjustment, a time when things are not as comfortable as they were. We are in flux and not quite sure where we are going.

As familiar props fall away, we enter a rarefied zone of unknown possibilities. Before new forms can come into existence, we first must pass through a place without form. This is the juice of the transition. It is here that the vacuum sucks in to itself all the things that belong to us. If we are brave enough to stay in this void long enough to allow the natural process to take place, we will draw to us what we need.

This is not merely wishful thinking. It is physics, a law of the universe that is always true. When you want to add something new to your life, get rid of something old. Throw something out, give away clothes, and get rid of the deadbeat boyfriend. The universe will recognize a vacuum, and it will soon be filled.

To understand how it works, we must be willing to stop trying to control the process. The more we panic and hastily add to the empty space, the further away we move from what nourishes our souls. There is a conscious evolution to this transition that will reveal itself in time. This potent period heralds a new beginning, and it is in our best interests to let go and get out of the way.

We may feel afraid, but that is okay. Sure, it’s scary when we don’t know what is happening, but fear has no power over us when we are willing to acknowledge the feeling, feel it, and do nothing. It is only our reaction to fear that causes us to be impatient and jump the gun. We are so petrified of the nothingness; we create something, anything, to hold on to.

In reality, we are more frightened of being afraid than we are of the actual nothingness. Once we surrender to not having all the parts of the puzzle, we can relax a little. We know we can step in and take charge if need be, but now is not the time. Even though our natural inclination is to do something, we need to do nothing and wait.

To stay in the void takes courage and discipline. The universe has innate intelligence and will automatically create a vacuum out of that nothingness. And left alone, that vacuum will pull to it exactly what we need.

Chapter 26 from Reality Works Copyright © 2002 Chandra Alexander

Regional Observation: A Basic, Non-Professional View Of The Southeast Florida Landscape

I am what I call an “armchair urban and regional planner.” Some of you reading this article may know me just from seeing me drive around in my broken down Toyota. While writing about Southeast Florida’s changing landscape from “accidental region” into a complex multi-regional megalopolis is cool, I someday would like to photograph my visions. Stay tuned. In the meantime, here are some descriptive observations I’ve come up with – some original, some perhaps not – throughout the course of casually observing the region while commuting to and from:

COASTAL URBAN CORE = The densely populated core area of Southeast Florida, between I-95 and U.S. 1, where the majority of Southeast Florida’s residents reside.

CITY-PLEX = A city complex. A “Metroplex” or “Twin City” typed urban area. A metropolitan area with two or more major cities closely aligned (Ex: Dallas-Ft. Worth, Miami-Ft. Lauderdale, Minneapolis-St. Paul, etc.)

CITY-REGION = The representative description of a region or sub-region by its largest major city. (Ex: “The Miami Region”)

FLAGSHIP MODEL = A regional model in which the largest and most influential metro area, among two or more large, influential metro areas, within that regional structure, functions as the immediately recognizable, representative body of the entire regional structure.

IMMEDIATE MIAMI VICINITY = Miami and its immediate surrounding areas.

LOCAL CHALLENGE OF INTER-REGIONAL MOBILITY = The regional dilemma involving the complex set of problems that concern the best way to achieve optimal citizen, business and governmental logistical mobility, within context of a regional setting.

MASS-TRANSIT BUBBLE = A small self-contained area, within a regional context, serviceable by mass transit, that also feeds into a mass transit loop. (Ex: Palm Beach County is its own service area but feeds into the larger Tri-Rail serviced Tri-County Area.)

MASS-TRANSIT LOOP = A large interconnected area, serviceable by mass transit, that’s bound by sub-regional borders. (Ex: Treasure Coast, Tri-County, the Keys, Everglades.)

MASS-TRANSIT NEXUS = The dynamic convergence and culmination of all available mobility options within a regional setting.

METRO BELT = A metropolis, region or mega region served by a beltway styled freeway system. (Ex: Jacksonville, Tampa, Atlanta, Washington, D.C.)

METRO NODE: A major urban concentration or point, usually a specific city with surrounding suburbs and towns, within a regional setting. (Ex: Miami, Ft. Lauderdale, West Palm Beach are major urban points within Southeast Florida’s coastal regional structure.)

METRO STRETCH = An elongated, densely-populated, highly-urbanized metropolis, megalopolis or mega region formed along a coastal highway network. A flagship modeled region along a major highway system that lacks a beltway freeway system.

MIAMI-INFLUENCED AREA = Synonymous with Southeast Florida. The entire regional structure that includes the city, county and natural areas of Indian River, St. Lucie, Martin, Palm Beach, Broward, Miami-Dade and Monroe counties.

PBTC METRO = The general news channel viewing area, within the larger Southeast Florida regional structure, commonly referred to as the Palm Beaches and the Treasure Coast.

REGIONAL DILEMMA = An issue, want, need or concern that drives an individual, business or governing entity to utilize all available mobility options, within a regional context, to acquire economic, political or social satisfaction.

REGIONAL-INTERFACE DESIGN = The general craft of designing, planning and constructing how residents and visitors will best access resources and mobility options on a regional level.

REGIONAL REALIZATION = The matching of a region’s goals with its vision of itself.

SPHERE OF INFLUENCE = The general common characteristic vicinity of a major metro area, within a regional structure, that includes the largest city or city complex and its surrounding suburbs, exurbs and bedroom communities. (Example: Miami’s sphere of influence extends from Miami roughly upwards to Pompano Beach. Ft. Lauderdale’s sphere of influence extends roughly from Hollywood to Boca Raton. West Palm Beach’s sphere of influence extends roughly from Lake Worth upwards to Indian River County.)

SOUTHEAST FLORIDA MASS-TRANSIT NEXUS = The dynamic convergence of large national and regional mass transit systems that will culminate and interact with smaller mass-transit outfits, throughout the South Florida regional structure.

These are all just ways of looking at Southeast Florida’s landscape, in simple terms, from the point of view of a non-professional citizen. I’ll be updating my findings, as I go along, to match further observation. In the meantime, for those considering locating a business headquarters, brand or institution in this region, please contact any local chamber of commerce or convention and visitors bureau for more standardized descriptions.

Clearwater Beach to St. Petersburg Beach — Homes and Condos for Sale

Just west of Tampa in Pinellas County you will find Florida’s West Coast Barrier Islands. These islands have some of the most electric communities to be found among beach communities world-wide. They include Clearwater Beach, Island Estates, Sand Key, Belleair Beach, Belleair Shores, Indian Rocks Beach, Indian Shores, Redington Shores, North Redington Beach, Madeira Beach, Treasure Island and St. Pete Beach.

These areas are blessed with sandy beaches and natural unspoiled landscapes with clear, sparkling Gulf waters, a subtropical climate, and an abundance of glorious Florida sunshine — 365 days a year!

Pinellas County’s barrier islands are accessed via causeways and bridges and each community has its own unique flavor. Because of the mix of many different cultures, foods, music, and entertainment, life on these islands varies from one island to the next. You can find everything from a relaxed escape from the usual rat race of everyday life, to the exhilarating hip-grinding beats of the live music being played at the clubs.

The island of Sand Key is just one of the many different communities you will find here. Sand Key is mostly a residential location of townhouses, homes, and luxury high rise condominiums. This island community does offer shopping and restaurants as well, housing two major hotels on its north end. This is a place to slow down and take the time to truly enjoy the simpler things in life. For the more adventurous, there is the Sand Key County Park, and nearby Clearwater Sailing center that provides for various recreational activities.

Clearwater Beach is another of Florida’s Barrier Islands. Clearwater Beach is 4 miles of pristine sandy beach, and supplies visitors and residents with plenty of water and beach activities including parasailing, fishing, swimming, jet-skiing and volleyball to name just a few. Clearwater’s infamous “Pier 60” has music, arts and crafts, and a daily celebration of the spectacular sunsets viewed from the pier. This community is alive with activity. They have hotels, shopping, and fine dining. Waterfront homes and condominiums are what residents can find for quality housing. A trolley is used to transport people between Clearwater beach and the mainland and also for trips to nearby Sand Key. You will find plenty of venues providing live music and you are only a short-trolley trip away from the city of Clearwater’s many music and dance nightclubs.

Madeira Beach is yet another island community just off Florida’s western coast. As a direct-entry point to the Gulf, you will find daily fishing, and cruising charters. This community has plenty of waterfront shops and fine dining restaurants. Residents are found living in various dwellings such as condos, apartments, and luxurious waterfront single-family homes.

Belleair Shores is a private community island with million-dollar waterfront homes. Access to this areas beach is restricted to use by residents only. There are no public access beaches in Belleair Shores. This is a community for those who desire to live in an area removed from the common everyday life found in other communities.

So if you’re looking to relocate to the sunny Pinellas West Coast of Florida, and would like to move away from ordinary living, consider contacting a Tampa Bay area real estate agent to discuss the different island communities. Your real estate agent can arrange for you to tour the different Barrier Islands that populate Pinellas County Florida’s West Coast, so that you can discover the community that offers the lifestyle and housing options that are right for you. Your real estate representative can assist you in finding the financing to buy your new property as well. These friendly, knowledgeable real estate agents are also a good resource for all of the information that you will need in order to make your transition to becoming a Florida resident a smooth as possible.

Real Estate And Social Networking In Today’s World

Social Networking is and has become a huge part of how we all do business and communicate with others. The electronic world is upon us and we as Realtors need to embrace the new technologies that present themselves to do our business more efficiently and to react to our clients in the same way that they live their lives. I have been teaching the use of Social Networking in today’s Real Estate market for a while now within my market center and can tell you that it has been welcomed with open arms by most of the agents in our offices.

This was not always the case. When I first tried to introduce YouTube for example, it was frowned on as a place where people with too much time on their hands could play around. And although this is the case for some of the individuals on YouTube, the environment that is now owned by Google, has been a tremendous opportunity for people, agents, companies, etc to advertise their wares indirectly through the use of video media. And on top of that, it is FREE. The agents in the office, after an extended time of understanding what it can do for their business, saw the light bulbs in their heads go off.

YouTube, Facebook, Online Forums, Social Bookmarking, Blogging, etc are all opportunities that are available in our lives to become known in an online world. We all want to be known, and the more you interface online, the more chances of being found. My classes now are pretty much sold out (I don’t charge anything) and the agents understand the importance of what I teach.

In addition to being found, these mediums assist in the SERP (search engine Ranking Page or Position) which is where your website will be found after performing a search for a particular term. For example, if I were to want to rank on a term like Tampa Real Estate, I would probably include those words in my keywords for my YouTube video, or my blog, etc. This in turn would eventually be indexed by the search engines, and would be pointing back to my page so it would be a pointer to my page and if someone came across that info, they may click through to my page and so on.

Real Estate is all about Networking in every sense of the word and Social Networking should make perfect sense, be Social and Network. So for you agents out there that have not embraced Social Networking, you either need to understand where your clients are communicating with each other, or you need to find another profession. Real Estate is in the middle of a transition, and you can either be along for the ride and position yourself well, or not. It is really up to you.

Tools to Help Stepchildren Transition Into Stepfamily Life

Hands down, bringing two households together to form a stepfamily can be hard work and the art of ‘blending’ is often more difficult than first anticipated. The impact children have on the survival of the stepfamily is great and this is only compounded when stepsiblings do not get along. This can place substantial strain on a couple’s relationship; thus, placing the stepfamily unit at risk. With stepfamilies facing the highest rate of break-up during the first 2 years it is essential for couples to approach merging their families from a systematic standpoint.

First and foremost, couples need to plan, plan, and then plan some more! Not enough can be said about the importance of planning and its function in preserving the stepfamily unit. From informing one’s own children of his/her intention to remarry to aspects of daily living in the new family unit, tensions between stepfamily members can be eased by a well-thought out plan as it provides much needed structure. It is also good for soon-to-be stepchildren to be afforded the opportunity to get to know each other before adults remarry and everyone finds himself or herself living under the same roof.

It is important to remember that for most children the forming of a stepfamily indicates the death of the first family. The remarrying of a parent to another adult also dashes children’s hopes that their biological parents will get back together. Leaving children with a sense of loss, many are confused about their new role in the blended family. For example, an older child may no longer be the eldest in the stepfamily and a single child may now be faced with sharing with stepsiblings.

Couples can help ease this transition by establishing and helping everyone understand the 3Rs: rules, roles and responsibilities. The 3Rs help create structure in the stepfamily unit. Roles and responsibilities in stepfamilies do not evolve along the natural trajectory as they do in the biological family. Given this it is important for each stepfamily member’s role and associated responsibilities to be understood. In addition, rules for the household are important. The children’s involvement in the creation and implementation of certain household rules is important as this empowers each person in the stepfamily. And while the adult couple makes final decisions, eliciting feedback and allowing influence from the stepchildren works to develop and eventually strengthen stepfamily bonds.

Another important step to helping stepchildren adjust to each other and the new family structure involves giving little tokens of appreciation. Stepfamilies are often experienced as an “instant family,” rather than a biological, or first family, which goes through the traditional motions to assemble and build the family unit. Given this, attention needs to be placed on developing these relationships and then maintaining them. Gestures that show gratitude such as saying hello and offering a smile go a long way in this endeavor. Such greetings can even be incorporated into the new family’s household rules. In addition to communicating a degree of respect, such tokens of appreciation lay the needed groundwork to slowly unite family members.

Combined, these strategies can go a long way in starting the stepfamily off on the right foot and in helping children adjust to their new step relationships. It is important to remember that relationships in a stepfamily take time and once established, need continued nurturing. Despite the effort, though, step relationships can be very rewarding.

In the beginning, one-on-one activities between stepfamily members can lesson the insider/outsider dichotomy that is heightened in ‘all together’ activities. Such gatherings should take place, but a mentality of ‘less is more’ will help ease the transition into stepfamily life. Gradually over time ‘all together’ activities will come more naturally and can be extended with greater acceptance from the stepchildren. Throughout this it will always be important for biological parent and child to spend one-on-one time together.

It is important that couples keep communication between them open, as this will help stepchildren through this transition. It will also further enable the adults to provide emotional support for their children and each other. While combining households can be a difficult process, it can be very rewarding. With more than half of American families being stepfamilies, the need for a focus on and understanding of stepfamily dynamics could not be greater. Here it is vital to remember that bumps in the road arise from the ‘step’ situation and not from anyone individual.

As Tampa Bay’s go-to stepfamily resource, Success for Steps ( http://www.successforsteps.com/ ) may be a useful resource for helping stepchildren transition into stepfamily life.

Tampa Schools

Tampa Schools recently became the first to discuss the dangers of internet chatting and online predators with Attorney General McCollum. The Attorney General launched a youth internet awareness campaign that began in Tampa Schools and will continue to be broadcast to more teenagers in the months to come. The entire state of Florida will be presented with CyberSafety Programs in schools to educate students and help prevent them from becoming victims of internet abduction. Presentations will include sessions that instruct students on how to identify online predators, and ways they can protect themselves from attempted contact.

The Internet Student Advisory Council is also a benefactor of the initiative as Tampa Schools continue to employ technologically fluent teenagers with the CyberCrime Law Enforcement Team. The internet safety initiative requires the compliance and assistance of Florida school district superintendents. In order to widely organize intra school programs, the state has come together and will help eliminate the threat of internet predators to children. The initiative is not limited only to schools. There have been presentations in community settings so that information also reaches parents. One such outreach was held at a Boys and girls Club in Orlando.

Tampa Schools are also reconfiguring transportation. The Transportation Improvement Plan sprang into action earlier this year and plans to restructure the movements of many Tampa Schools’ students. Targeting families that rely on the bus systems of Tampa, the improvement plan states a clear goal of providing more efficient bus service. A more predictable schedule of arrivals and departures has been drawn up and competitive pay has been introduced as good worker incentive. The Tampa bus system transports nearly 93,000 students every day. A hectic drive can be dangerous and Tampa Schools’ officials are taking action to organize the chaos of a disheveled system.

The Student Progression Plan has been in effect throughout the Tampa Schools for some time and is beginning to show changes in the curriculum of Tampa Schools. Student performance has been under intense evaluation and scrutiny. In the trend of No Child Left Behind, Tampa Schools have attempted to bridge the gap between all learning patterns and methods. Students are brought up to speed with their peers and the pace is supposed to allow everyone equal success. The school boards which govern Tampa Schools are required to draw up individual maps of progress for teachers to track themselves throughout the year. The Student progression Plan is one of the leading strategies in the Tampa Schools. It focuses student and parent attention on continued achievement and lifelong learning habits.

Early Childhood School Readiness Programs are also prominent in the Tampa area. Tampa Schools attempt to transition students from pre-k to grade school smoothly and without interference. The effort to maintain an even footing among students is greatly aided in Tampa Schools by the early childhood programs, which allow students to begin with basic skills needed to succeed in a classroom environment.

Tampa Schools Prepare Students for the World of Tomorrow through Global Classrooms

The United Nations Association of the United States of America (UNA-USA), along with New York-based Merrill Lynch & Co. Inc., has brought the Model United Nations to schools in Tampa. Originally, only four high schools were participating and only as an extra-curricular activity. Now, over 50 teachers teach the Global Classrooms curriculum to students in over 120 classrooms in 35 Tampa schools. The program has the supported of Tampa schools District Social Studies Supervisors Dennis Holt and Martha Ford, as well as Tampa schools administrators, University of South Florida, and University of Tampa.

The Model United Nations program of Global Classrooms was developed by the UNA to enhance student understanding of international issues. Their hope is to develop strong leadership and critical-thinking skills in our youth, needed to shape a globally informed workforce in the future. To that end, a special Model UN teachers training program was recently developed that includes global trade, finance and development.

Global Classrooms deal with such critical world issues as human rights for refugees, prevention of nuclear terrorism, global economics, post-conflict transition, and UN Security Council reform — the same issues world diplomats deal with daily in the United Nations. It is an excellent educational opportunity for students in the Tampa schools.

Tampa schools participation increased in the Model UN program after the April 2006 conference, held at the Tampa Convention Center. More than 500 high schools and 600 middle schools participated in the conference of Global Classrooms.

Ambassador William H. Luers, president of the UNA-USA, addressed the Tampa schools students and students from other areas within the Hillsborough and Pinellas County Public Schools. Luers noted that children today must learn about the world to be prepared for tomorrow. The younger the child, the more open minded he or she will be.

Another speaker was Shaun King, former quarterback for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, current player for the Detroit Lions, and a favorite with Tampa schools’ students. Like Luers, King wants to see young people use all that talent they have. He believes it truly makes a difference, especially for children of single-parent and/or disadvantaged families.

The UNA-USA is a not-for-profit organization that develops innovative programs to engage Americans, especially the children, in issues of global concern. It promotes educational and humanitarian campaigns, as well as policy and advocacy programs. The UNA’s mission is to allow people to make a global impact at a local level.

The Model UN program would not be possible without the support of business. Merrill Lynch has donated more than $37 million in 2005 to charities with educational organizations receiving more than half. They are responsible for bringing the April Model UN conference to Tampa and underwrote the cost of implementing the program in the Tampa schools.

Together, the UNA and Merrill Lynch hope to bring the Model UN experience to urban public schools across the nation, as well as a diverse array of schools around the world.

It is a fact that the U.S. is losing its world economic edge by falling far behind other countries in preparing its youth for the global world issues of tomorrow. With programs, such as the No Child Left Behind that concentrates only on reading and mathematics skills, the children of the U.S. are missing an opportunity to know about the world and its issues. Bringing the Model UN program to students in areas like the Tampa schools is an essential step. Hopefully, more Tampa schools will participate in the future.

NFL Predictions – Betting on the 2008-09 Tampa Bay Buccaneers Win-Loss Record

NFL predictions are part of the fun of the new season. Do you have your crystal ball ready to go? Most sportsbooks have the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at 8.5 wins for the 2008-09 season. Can the Buccaneers repeat their 9-7 record last season or will betting the under be the play here?

In 2007-08 the Buccaneers had a 9-7 record and if you bet the over on their 2008 season win total wager, you’ll need a repeat performance-or better-to win. Unfortunately, there could be trouble on the horizon for the Bucs.

Before I forget, I’m writing myself a note to tell you about the potential “lock” of the 2008-09 season for win totals. The team I’m talking about is getting a favorable number at the sportsbooks and it’s my pick this season. Okay, back to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Let’s first look at games where the Bucs are likely to win:

1. Detroit (at home)
2. Atlanta
3. Atlanta (at home)
4. Oakland

Next, let’s look at the games where the Buccaneers are likely to lose:

1. New Orleans
2. at New Orleans
3. Denver
4. Seattle
5. Dallas
6. San Diego

As it sits, Tampa Bay is 4-6 with 6 games to play. Look at these games:

1. at Chicago
2. Green Bay
3. Carolina
4. at Kansas City
5. Minnesota
6. Carolina

If they go 4-2, they’ll finish 8-8 on the season and fall one game short of their 8.5 game mark.

Given that their QB is 38, their best WR is 36 and their RB is 33, it’s highly likely that this team in transition will run into injury issues.

My NFL prediction for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the 2008-09 season is under the 8.5 win total.

What Are the Differences Between VoIP and Digital Telephone Systems?

OK, so your company is moving, adding staff, or maybe had some sort of natural event such as a lightening strike, which has affected your telephone system. It’s old. It’s made by a company that is not even in business anymore like Nortel, Comdial, or you-can-insert-name-here xyz company. You’ve heard of VoIP and think it might be able to save you some money or add some functionality, but are not sure where to look to buy a system or what it can even really do for you. I think I can help. I’ve been in this business for more than ten years, but really I have been around telecom for my whole life. I would love you to buy something from me, but that’s not the point here. Hey, you’re reading this article and I don’t even know who you are! Or where you are! This is completely anonymous and you can benefit from a knowledgeable guy without giving me one red cent! Yeah for you!!

First, let me bring you in on one real big secret in the industry- VoIP is generally not cheaper than traditional telephone systems. There, I said it. It’s out there. I feel better, don’t you? So here is the deal with cost savings and VoIP. It can save come businesses money. But there are MANY variables involved in how it does and even more nuances in how it is implemented. If a business has multiple locations, all using stand alone traditional telephone systems, managed separately and utilizing either copper trunks or T-1/ PRI then there is a definite savings available by moving to a networked solution and centralizing the trunks either onto fewer T-1/ PRI or SIP trunks. This is the main savings in VoIP. On the other end of the spectrum, there are very small companies, maybe with 10 or fewer telephone handsets, that can realize a cost savings by moving to a hosted solution where there is no telephone system onsite and they pay what is essentially a rental per telephone. This can save money as well. So, why you ask, would any business not meeting the above criteria move to a VoIP system? The answers are twofold- first, because all reputable manufacturers are moving this direction and only making VoIP systems. Second, is because there are additional features available on VoIP that a traditional digital system can not offer.

So my second point is that most telecom manufacturers have jumped in full bore and are only making VoIP systems. Even companies such as AVAYA who still make digital telephones are actually making VoIP systems and then adding cards to enable digital. We should talk more about that- lets get together again at another time and I would love to discuss how to use digital sets on a VoIP system to save you money. But that’s another time another article. OK, so like I was saying, the top three manufacturers in the world are VoIP now- Cisco, AVAYA, and ShoreTel. Even the little guys all offer pure VoIP systems such as Mitel, NEC, and Samsung. So the truth is the makers of the equipment are driving the transition. Basically, they can make less product, instead concentrating on software, and still charge you the same money. Or maybe less for the hardware, but then they are selling software for more cash. Either way, they are doing better than before!

Third, with VoIP, there are additional features that digital could not offer, at not least not elegantly or simply. Connecting locations is a prime example. Previously, the main way of doing this was with point to point T-1, Tie lines, or other cumbersome avenues. Now, we can still use MPLS, SIP, public internet, or many other ways. So our choices are better and cheaper. Another feature is management. No more command lines or difficult interfaces, the modern VoIP system is a nice GUI that is easy to use, understand, and simply designed. One of my favorite VoIP features is the options for mobility. I have my cell phone tied to my desk telephone so if I am not in my office, I still take calls as if I were, even being able to transfer that call back to my assistant. There are many more features, but you get the point.

So basically, it comes down to you. If you have an application for VoIP, then it may not be cheaper per-se, but the added efficiency and productivity that it can offer will easily offset any additional “cost” that is associated at implementation. Or at least if you need a new telephone system, your options are severely limited if you do not consider VoIP, so you may as well look into it!

Now the sales pitch! If you are in the Tampa, Sarasota, Naples, St. Pete, Austin or San Antonio areas, give me a shout, let’s talk! Our website is http://www.csmsouth.com where you can learn more about what we do and some of the products available in today’s marketplace.

Swimming Workout

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A swimming workout can be a new and refreshing way to get or stay in shape. Swimming is a full body aerobic sport that tones muscles, improves strength and flexibility, increases circulation, controls weight and enhances body contours.

Swimming workouts give you a low impact activity that can easily be tailored to match your abilities. A good way to gain cardiovascular stamina is to exercise in a swimming pool.

The secret to a good swimming exercise program is to work with the water. To accomplish this, propel yourself through the water by using your abs, hips and shoulders.

To understand why water exercise works so well, you need to know about water’s   unique  properties. In water, your body has almost no gravity. You’re relieved of 90% of your body weight so you become very buoyant.

You can float, bob and relax without feeling like you’re putting out any effort. Yet water provides 12 to 14 percent more resistance than air, so as you move through it, it’s like having weights around you.

Swimming laps is great exercise in a swimming pool. Try different strokes to vary the muscles you work to keep your workout balanced.

Going vertical or upright is another very effective exercise in water. These types of water workouts include water walking, jogging, water aerobics, water toning, water therapy, water yoga and water flexibility training.

You can strengthen your muscles with these vertical water workouts because you experience 75% greater resistance than swimming horizontally. This vertical position maximizes the resistance of water against your movements.

Water based activities can provide significant benefits for older adults too. In addition to increasing metabolism, physical activity can improve cardiovascular health and increase strength, not to mention the psychological and social benefits as well.

Joining an aquatics class or just sharing a swimming workout with a friend can help you feel better about yourself. You can be more socially active, engage in community activities and tend to not lose your independence because you are more physically fit.

The bottom line is to choose activities that you enjoy and will stick with. It is never too late to introduce physical activity into your life. Swimming workouts can provide a healthy and enjoyable way to get back the fun you use to have as a child.

Copyright © 2005 Treadmill Info.com All Rights Reserved.

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