Five Swimming-Based Workouts to Try in Boston Right Now

Whether you’re an experienced freestyler or feel like a giraffe trying to tread water, you’ll want to test out your sea legs with one of these swimming-based workouts.

Photo by Jeannie Phan

For novices
Enroll in swim school

Sick of spending hot days hanging out in the shallow end of the pool? It’s never too late to learn how to swim. Instructors at Boston University’s FitRec Swim School know how to teach everyone—including adults—the skills needed to conquer the deep end. Once you’ve gotten the hang of the essentials, continue your aquatics journey with more-advanced courses that cover everything from strokes to the springboard.

915 Commonwealth Ave., Boston, 617-358-7946,

For thrill-seekers
Learn how to dive

You don’t have to go far to see shipwrecks, marine life, and rock formations, but you do have to go deep—as much as 60-plus feet underwater. At Boston Scuba, newbie divers complete two pool classes and four open-water dives before receiving their certification. And then? It’s time to explore Boston Harbor. In the fall, the area is known for its scallop harvests; if you’re lucky, maybe you’ll snag a handful to bring home.

256 Marginal St., East Boston, 617-418-5555,

For nature lovers
Swim in Walden Pond

When the lap pool at the local gym gets tedious, take your stroke skills to Walden Pond, where the water is warmer than at any New England ocean beach. Even for the most advanced natators, open-water swimming offers welcome challenges as you work to avoid natural hazards (watch out for rocks and other paddlers!) and move with the current. Need a little extra support in the water? Breakwater Sports Training offers private coaching sessions.

For team players
Join a synchronized swimming team

After you’ve mastered traditional aquatic skills, flip your world upside down in the pool by learning the art of synchronized swimming, a.k.a. water ballet. At Boston Synchroswim, beginners are welcome to test the waters (literally) by practicing sculling and treading water with an eggbeater kick. Once you’ve aced the basics, you’ll be eligible to perform in solo, duet, trio, and team routines.

5275 Washington St., Boston, 781-816-7946,

For those looking for a gentler workout
Try a water aerobics class

Low-impact, high-intensity: that’s a good way to describe the water aerobics class held every Monday evening at the Clubs at Charles River Park. Ideal for those who suffer from injuries or lower-back pain, the program uses props and toys to help participants improve core stability and strength. Lest you think it’ll be a walk in the park, though, keep in mind: Water is much more resistant than air.

10 Whittier Place, Boston, 617-726-2900,