Tuesday, July 02 2019

Ideas for hand buoys is by far one of the most requested video topics.  Fitmotivation subscribers will be thrilled with the latest video.   Russian Aqua Expert, Ekaterina Khapkova, shares a workout that blends together upper body and core training using aqua foam dumbbells. 

Second only to noodles, hand buoys are the most common and popular equipment used in aquatic fitness classes.   Light weight on land, they deliver a great deal of resistance once submerged and interacted with the forces of buoyancy.  Buoyant resistance is the opposite of gravity resistance.  In gravity, movements are resisted upwards against the downward gravitational pull.   In buoyancy, movements are resisted downwards against the uplifting buoyant forces. 

As we celebrate international aqua this month in honor of the International Aquatic Fitness Conference (IAFC), please keep in mind that aquatic fitness is taught very differently across the globe.   Russia is similar to European countries in that classes are often taught later in the evening to healthier and younger populations.   If you teach in the morning to older, more deconditioned populations, please use common sense and modify the cadence and the movements to suit the needs of your students. 



The warm-up is performed without hand buoys using various arm patterns that prepare the joints of the upper body for the toning workout using the buoys.  Other large pattern movements with the lower body serve to increase thermal regulation to the cooler temperatures of the water, while also serving as a way to gradually elevate the heart rate. 

Upper Body # 1

The first upper body toning segment includes creative exercises to tone the posterior muscles of the upper body – triceps, lats, trapezius and rhomboids.  The pace is also kept vigorous to encourage cardio health and caloric expenditure. 

Core #1

The first core segment blends together Level I, Level II and Level III movements that encourage spinal rotation, flexion and stability. 

Upper body #2

The movements progress in this segment to challenge agility, endurance and strength of the upper body muscles. 

Core #2

Gat ready to challenge your core with creative and progressive exercises that repositions the buoys for various outcomes, including under the legs for neutral support. 

Cool Down

Enjoy a rhythmic flexibility routine Russian style! would like to extend a HUGE thank you to Ekaterina(Kate) for sharing her creative hand buoy exercises with video viewers.   Kate is the owner of, MindAqua, a Russian based fitness company.  She is also the organizer of Water World International Convention (WWIC), Russia’s premier aquatic fitness conference.  Kate is the director  of EAA Russia and an AEA International Training Specialist.   She holds a master’s degree of sports in synchronized swimming and has presented at Russian and international aquatic fitness events since 2000.


Look for Kate at the International Aquatic Fitness Conference (IAFC), which is next week, May 16-20, at the Innisbrook Resort in Palm Harbor, Florida. 

Author: Mark Grevelding is the founder of Fitmotivation. He is also a training specialist and consultant with the Aquatic Exercise Association’s (AEA). Mark has been active in the fitness industry for 22 years as a group fitness instructor, personal trainer, international presenter and a continuing education provider for AEA, AFAA & ACE.