How to treat pectus excavatum with swimming

 Pieter van den Hoogenband reacts to winning the gold medal in the men's 200m freestyle Sunday with pectus excavatum , Sept. 17, 2000 at Sydney Olympics
Pieter van den Hoogenband reacts to winning the gold medal in the men’s 200m freestyle, Sept. 17, 2000 at Sydney Olympics. As you can see he clearly has Pectus Excavatum

Swimming is one of the healthiest and cheapest activities that you could possibly do.

It is a minimal-impact activity, which means that it doesn’t harm your bones or joints in any way like the other exercises, and it also has numerous benefits for your mental health.

But most importantly, it may help fix your pectus excavatum condition.

Swimming is a great pectus excavatum workout simply because you need to move your whole body against the resistance of the water.
Pectus excavatum specialists praise swimming as one of the best body weight exercises for fixing this condition.

 Most Notable Benefits of Swimming That Help With Pectus Excavatum

– Swimming is a relaxing form of pectus excavatum exercise
– It alleviates stress
– It enhances coordination, balance and improves your posture, key factors for fixing pectus excavatum
– Swimming increases the flexibility of muscles and the bones and cartilage of the chest, required to move through the various motions of swimming.
– It provides a good low-impact therapy for some other injuries and conditions
– Swimming offers enjoyable ways to cool off on hot days
– It is easily available – you can swim in pools, lakes, rivers, oceans. Just make sure that you swim in safe

Muscles Used

As an aerobic physical exercise, swimming activates your major musculature groups, which definitely helps with your pectus excavatum.

You use both your upper and lower body to move through the water, though, you depend on the muscle groups of your upper body such as the pectorals (chest muscles) for propulsion in lap swimming. Because the leg muscles are large and energy-hungry, energetic kicking tires you out quickly, and so you reserve it for sprints and races.

When you swim, you develop all the muscles in your upper back and chest, particularly the latissimus dorsi and internal rotators of the shoulder which are key for fixing pectus excavatum. Because the muscles bring the shoulders forward and inward, your pectoral chest muscles, or pecs, have a tendency to tighten up and shorten.

Tense and contracted pecs muscles further overstretch and eventually weaken and damage the muscles neighboring the shoulder, leading to possible injury. It is key to stretch your chest muscles after you go swimming, for maximum benefits.

How to Start 

Starting with swimming is easy. It is a sport for all age groups and for all physical fitness and skill levels. Before starting, you will need to invest in a pair of swimmers and some goggles. Goggles can be ordered for about $20 and upwards.

2-3 sessions of pectus excavatum swimming (remember, this means swimming in which your upper body takes the lion’s share of the effort) every week would definitely  be sufficient if you’re weight lifting  or doing some some core workouts combined with it.

Start with 500 meters at first, unless you’re currently pretty good at it.

A few basic tips for pectus excavatum swimming

– Make sure you know how to swim (I think this goes without saying).
– Choose a safe swimming environment.
– Don’t forget to warm up and stretch your  pectus excavatum chest muscles and joints just before entering the water.
– Have plenty of fluids on hand and drink regularly.
– Don’t overexert yourself if you’re just starting.
– Go to your pectus excavatum doctor if you haven’t worked out for a long period of time.
– If you’re having excessive shortness of breath due to your pectus excavatum, stop immediately.

The greatest benefit of pectus excavatum swimming is that it will give you a huge confidence boost because you will get used to doing activities without clothes on!