Mercy Sports Medicine Expert Dr John-Paul Rue Discusses Immersive Fitness Training And How It Benefits The Body

July 12, 2019
Orthopedics and Joint Replacement at Mercy - Baltimore, MD

Immersive fitness, including swimming-pool-based resistance training, has received increasing attention from workout and fitness enthusiasts. What is immersive fitness? Is it for all ages? Why is it a good way to stay in shape? Mercy’s Dr. John-Paul Rue, a Board Certified orthopedic sports medicine surgeon specializing in the prevention and treatment of injuries related to sports and exercise, recently responded to questions from Community Health magazine about this exercise trend…

1. What is immersive fitness? Can you discuss the history of it? Where did it come from and when did it get popular and/or start?
Water exercises that involve resistance training in a pool or other water setting may also be called immersive training. This type of exercise has long been used for those people dealing with arthritis and other painful joint conditions, but the benefits have been seen for others, as well.

2. What are the benefits of resistance training in a swimming pool? What are the cons, if any?
Resistance training in a pool offers the ability to unload your joints…to experience near weightlessness, but at the same time work the muscles around that joint for resistance training.

3. Why is this type of training beneficial to the body? How does it work?
It allows you to work a constant resistance without pulleys, gears or other mechanical friction.

4. How can men ease into it if they are beginners?
The key is to stay hydrated and know your limits. If you overdo it at the start, this can lead to muscle strains or other injuries.

5. What body parts get the most bang for their buck with immersive fitness? And why?
Because immersive training requires a certain amount of balance, your core muscles will get a great workout with all of the exercises.

6. Can you offer any tips or go-to exercises or workouts for immersive fitness?
The main exercises will be those that involve water jogging, treading water, and various types of resistance training.

7. Who is immersive fitness good for? Older folks? Teens? Adults? Kids? And why?
Anyone can benefit from immersive fitness provided they are comfortable in the water and able to support themselves.

8. Where can this swimming-based resistance training be done? Is it more preferable in a large pool, small pool?
Generally, this is something that can be done in any size pool. Some exercises can be done in a lake/ocean setting, but that may add some level of complexity to balance/flotation depending on the outdoor elements like wind, waves and current.

9. What kind of gear and/or equipment is needed for immersive fitness?
There are several types of equipment, such as fins/flippers for added resistance, water dumbbells for additional weight, and flotation belts to keep you afloat.

10. Is it better to do in a group or solo? Why or why not?
Everyone is different in this aspect, but group exercises offer certain advantages for motivation , but some people prefer the solitude and quite of solo workouts.

Dr. John-Paul Rue is a fellowship-trained Board Certified orthopedic sports medicine surgeon, specializes in arthroscopic repair of sports-related injuries, including complex knee and shoulder reconstructions with Orthopedics and Joint Replacement at Mercy. His primary focus is treating injuries of the knee, shoulder and elbow, from ACL tearsmeniscus and cartilage injuries to shoulder instability and rotator cuff injuries. He also sees patients with injuries such as overuse tendonitis, ankle sprains and fractures.


Dan Collins - Senior Director of Media Relations at Mercy Medical Center

Dan Collins, Senior Director of Media Relations

Email: dcollins@mdmercy.com Office: 410-332-9714 Cell: 410-375-7342

About Mercy

Founded in 1874, Mercy Medical Center is a university-affiliated medical facility named one of the top 100 hospitals in the U.S. by Thomson-Reuters with a national reputation for women’s health. Mercy is home to the nationally acclaimed Weinberg Center for Women’s Health and Medicine as well as the $400+ million, 20-story Mary Catherine Bunting Center. For more information visit Mercy online at www.mdmercy.com, Facebook, Twitter or call 1-800-MD-MERCY.

News and Events