Team helps promote health benefits of swim training

Published 9:46 am Friday, December 23, 2016

We are birthed from the protective waters of our mother’s wombs, so it makes since that swimming would be considered one of the healthiest forms of exercise.

Swimming offers a full body workout since all of the muscles in the body are used and it is good for the brain.

“Swimming affects the neurotransmitters such as serotonin that influence mood and produces ANP, a stress-reducing hormone, which helps control the brain’s response to stress and anxiety,” stated the website.

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The Vicksburg Swim Association members know first hand the benefits of swimming.

“I have exercised induced asthma and swimming strengthens my lungs,” VSA member John Daniel said, adding that he has had fewer asthmatic attacks.

The Bowmar Avenue Elementary fifth-grade student said swimming has also made him stronger.

“If you want to be competitive you need to be faster, so your legs need to be stronger and swimming strengthens your legs. And the more you practice and the more you compete, you get stronger and stronger,” he said.

“Swimming also works your full body and works everything you do to help keep you fit,” VSA member Charlie Martin said.

The St. Aloysius High School senior said he has been swimming about 10 years for the team and membership has also helped encourage exercise.

Sometimes it’s hard to come to the gym by yourself, but by being on the swim team, if you are having a bad day, other team members will cheer you on and vice versa, he said.

“Our number one goal of our swim team it not to just have fast swimmers, but to prepare our youth for adulthood and to use the sport of swimming to instill those habits that tend to last a life time, VSA coach Matthew Mixon said.

“I tend to look at exercise like I do good daily habits like brushing your teeth. If you instill good habits at a young age and you stick to a regimen, it is almost guaranteed to be there later in life,” Mixon said.

And swimming is a sport you can do at most any age.

“It is amazing how many people will eventually find their way to the pool because of injury from another sport or they need an exercise that is not as impactful as running or cycling,” he said.

The VSA practices at Wyatt’s Gym, located on Manor Drive, and just recently owner James Wyatt has made some impressive changes to the gym’s pool, which not only benefit the membership, but also has made it easier for the swim team.

“The new pool is a great benefit to our team. James has gone above the call of duty for our program. He extended the pool to a full 25 yards, and he made the water depth deeper,” Mixon said, which makes it easier for the swimmers to do their turns.

The pool is also heated, he said, making it more comfortable for year around swimming and exercising.

About Terri Cowart Frazier

Terri Frazier was born in Cleveland. Shortly afterward, the family moved to Vicksburg. She is a part-time reporter at The Vicksburg Post and is the editor of the Vicksburg Living Magazine, which has been awarded First Place by the Mississippi Press Association. She has also been the recipient of a First Place award in the MPA’s Better Newspaper Contest’s editorial division for the “Best Feature Story.”

Terri graduated from Warren Central High School and Mississippi State University where she received a bachelor’s degree in communications with an emphasis in public relations.

Prior to coming to work at The Post a little more than 10 years ago, she did some freelancing at the Jackson Free Press. But for most of her life, she enjoyed being a full-time stay at home mom.

Terri is a member of the Crawford Street United Methodist Church. She is a lifetime member of the Vicksburg Junior Auxiliary and is a past member of the Sampler Antique Club and Town and Country Garden Club. She is married to Dr. Walter Frazier.

“From staying informed with local governmental issues to hearing the stories of its people, a hometown newspaper is vital to a community. I have felt privileged to be part of a dedicated team at The Post throughout my tenure and hope that with theirs and with local support, I will be able to continue to grow and hone in on my skills as I help share the stories in Vicksburg. When asked what I like most about my job, my answer is always ‘the people.’

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