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Water Aerobics



Authors as Published

This document was developed by Terry Abston, Family and Consumer Sciences Agent in Nottoway County Agent; Marya Hubbard, HNFE undergraduate student, Virginia Tech; and Samantha Harden, VCE Exercise Specialist, Virginia Tech

Find your balance

Stand with both knees slightly bent- extend right foot letting your toes come to the surface of the water. Engage your core (think about bringing your belly button toward your spine). Continuous breathing. (try it without holding on to the side) Repeat with other leg.

Side leg lifts

Balance on one leg, slight bend in your knee. Flex the foot on the opposite leg and extend that leg to the side. Slowly lower your leg. Switch sides. 20 reps each leg

Front leg lifts

Balance on one leg, slight bend in your knee. Extend one leg out straight with pointed toe. Slowly raise and lower your leg. Switch sides. 20 reps each leg

Kick Backs

Try to bring the heel of your foot close to your bottom. The faster you move, the more intense the exercise. 20 reps each leg


Try to hold your right foot with your right hand. Keep knees lined up. Pull your heel toward your bottom and hold it with your hand. Switch sides. Hold for 1 minute

Triceps kick backs

Stand with feet hip distance apart. Start with arms behind you about 1 foot or 45 degrees. Bend at elbow and press your arms behind you. Include extra weight such as paddles or water bottles to increase the intensity. 20 reps

Chest exercise

Stand with feet a bit wider than hip distance apart for balance. Bring arms to shoulder height and bend arms at the elbow. Press away from your chest and back toward your chest. 20 reps

Row your boat

Get your heart rate up and strengthen your arms: Circle your arms as quickly and safely as you can. 1 minute

Push downs

With arms by your side, push down against the water and slowly bring your arms back up. Using paddles or other hand weights increases the intensity. 20 reps

Full body work

Simultaneously press your arms through the water and bend at your knees. Using paddles or other hand weights increases the intensity. 20 reps

Obliques (side abs)

Standing with feet hip distance apart, twist to the side. Keep your hips facing forward and any added weight below the water. Using paddles or other hand weights increases the intensity. 35 twists


Core strengthening

Using the wall or a partner, lean your torso back. Lift both knees at the same time, tucking them to your chest. 25 reps


Water Aerobics are a great way to get moving, reduce tension and pain, build confidence in water, and stay cool in the hot summer months.

Feedback from you participants supports that they “enjoy the water aerobics class and want to learn more water exercise.”

Water aerobics are a recommended form of exercise for everyone, particularly those who are pregnant.

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Publication Date

April 3, 2023