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      How healthy is that dip in the pool?

      Three days a week, John Halpin swims at least one mile at the Marquette Senior High School pool during the early hours of the morning. "It relieves stress and it's just a good way to start your day. Gets your head straight, gives you time to think about things you need to do during the day," said Halpin. Swimming decreases stress, but it's an all around good way to exercise, according to physical therapists, and it helps your cardiovascular system. "Over a 10-minute period, a simple breast stroke can burn as many as 40 calories. If you up that to a freestyle stroke, you can go up to 100 calories at a time. So really a small amount of time, 30 minutes a day, can benefit cardiac health in a tremendous way," said Mark Stonerock, Certified Athletic Trainer. Even if it's just starting to swimming laps, it helps your hydrostatic pressure, say health professionals. The pressure of water helps your body circulation, especially in the lower extremities. "It's good especially in the winter 'cause people get crowded in their houses with all the snow. It's good to get out get in the water; it is low impact. So if you have any injury, it's good for rehab," said Robbie Middler, lifeguard. Experts say if you get in waste deep, it reduces joint stress by 40 percent. If you go all the way in, it's 90 percent in people with arthritic problems. The pool at Marquette Senior High School is open Monday, Wednesday and Friday mornings for early birds from 6 to 7 a.m. It's also open Tuesday and Thursday evenings from 6 to 7 p.m.

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