Aqua Cycling: What Is It? Does It Actually Work?

Is aqua cycling just a fad? It certainly looks like it, but there’s more to aqua cycling than it might seem!

Aqua Cycling: What Is It? Does It Actually Work?

You might have seen it online or on the class schedule at your local fitness center. One thing’s for sure: aqua cycling is becoming more popular. 

Aqua cycling, also called aqua spinning or underwater cycling, is the newest spin class on the block.

And since it’s new—and a little unconventional, let’s be honest—there are a lot of questions surrounding its purpose and whether it works.

If you’re also searching for these answers, you’ve arrived at the right place, as this guide has everything you need to know about aqua cycling.

What Is Aqua Cycling?

Simply put, aqua cycling is an underwater spin class. You’re not totally submerged, thankfully, as only the lower body remains beneath the surface!

Aqua cycling combines stationary cycling and water aerobics. Both have their benefits, needless to say, with the central purpose being to improve general health and fitness and lose weight in the process.

Since it’s performed underwater, aqua cycling involves special exercise bikes (designed for underwater use) and wearing suitable water clothes and shoes.

Who Is Aqua Cycling For?

Aqua cycling is fun, so it’s for anyone looking for a fun spin on regular spin class! Funness aside, though, aqua cycling is ideal for people with joint problems and injuries.

As with swimming, the buoyancy of the water allows for low-impact exercise that’s easier on the joints than running, dancing, HIIT – even traditional cycling for that matter.

This makes it perfect for beginners, seniors, and those recovering from injuries.

And for others who simply enjoy being in the water, aqua cycling can be much more exciting than regular spin class. 

Does Aqua Cycling Work?

Aqua Cycling: What Is It? Does It Actually Work?

So, does aqua cycling work? Here’s what you need to know.

Underwater training has been used for years, not just for athletes, but soldiers undergoing military training.

Any movement performed in water is inhibited by its natural resistance, increasing the difficulty to move.

Aqua cycling, as a result, can offer a more challenging workout.

And as mentioned above, underwater buoyancy is highly beneficial for people who suffer from joint problems or injuries – especially of the ankles, knees, or hips.

Some might argue that aqua cycling is no different to turning up the resistance on a regular exercise bike.

Still, it has to be remembered that the underwater aspect makes it far more beneficial on the joints. 

And, in general, if aqua cycling is considered more enjoyable for the person doing it, then this can also mean better health benefits and weight loss results. 

Aqua Cycling Benefits

Summarized, the benefits of aqua cycling include:

  • It improves cardiovascular health and promotes weight loss
  • It’s easier on the joints, making it ideal for beginners, seniors, and those with joint problems or injuries
  • It can strengthen all lower-body muscles
  • It can be easy or challenging
  • It can be more fun and enjoyable (than regular cycling), increasing the motivation to exercise in general
  • In addition to cycling, it can involve upper-body water aerobics
  • Exercising in cool water can regulate body temperature and soothe pains
  • It’s generally safer than traditional cycling, stationary or otherwise

The Cons Of Aqua Cycling

We can’t talk about the benefits of aqua cycling without going over the cons.

Everything has its disadvantages, after all, and some of the following might be enough to turn you off from aqua cycling!

The main disadvantages of aqua cycling include:

  • It can be more challenging than regular spin classes
  • It can’t be done at home
  • It can involve longer preparation (getting changed into suitable clothes before and after, setting up the bike, etc.)
  • It’s performed in group classes, which is not for everyone

Aqua Cycling: Should You Try It?

It’s clear to see from the above that there are generally more pros to aqua cycling than cons.

And if you find that the benefits will help you to work out more, then there’s nothing that should stop you from trying an aqua cycling class.

Aqua cycling is perfect for beginners, seniors, and those who have joint problems and lower or upper-body injuries.

For those who find it more fun than regular cycling, or just enjoy being in the water, aqua cycling is easily a great incentive to be more active.


Aqua cycling, also known as aqua spinning or underwater cycling, is essentially an underwater (waist-deep) spin class for improving cardiovascular health, strengthening lower-body muscles, and losing weight – with naturally increased resistance yet no real impact on the joints.

As for whether it works, the simple answer is yes.

Aqua cycling offers a great workout for beginners, as well as those who are advanced, and is especially ideal for those who suffer from ankle, knee, or hip joint problems.

Some simply find aqua cycling more enjoyable than other exercise classes, making it an easy incentive to get in shape and be healthier! Visit all our articles at RateYourBurn.

Avi Silverberg
Latest posts by Avi Silverberg (see all)