Swimming thread

Every time I get out of a swimming pool I really really need the loo.

What’s up with that?

stop swimming with your mouth open?


rubbish at swimming. i’m relatively fit but for some reason get massively knackered (and bored) in a pool.


Timely thread. I’ve got a broken leg so can no run at the moment. I went for my first swim this weekend and quite liked it. I just swam about in the general area and stayed away from the lanes as its more fun to weave about people and occasionally just tread water or dive down to the bottom.

Only thing is my hair felt like total shit afterwards, is there any way to remedy this without wearing a swimming cap and looking like a weirdo?

I’m with the “good god this is unexpectedly difficult” crowd.

I started swimming a bit towards the end of last year, as I had a leg injury and couldn’t run. After the first couple of times I felt like I’d just been beaten up. Kept at it and ended up being able to do 50 minutes or so non-stop breast-stroke. But I am sooooo slow - literally half the speed of most of the other swimmers. I was overtaken easily by a lady in her 80s.

There must be something fundamental I’m doing wrong, but I can’t figure out what. Guess I should probably have some lessons!

Getting back into it after a few months off. Usually do 50 lengths, mixture of crawl/breast stroke. None of that tumble bullshit, get to the side, push off and carry on. Have a rest every so often as I’ll burn myself out sometimes. Always goggles and always ear-plugs. Have to time when I go though as it’s usually really busy straight after work and the swim club twats take up half the pool.

Went last year swam a few lengths found it surprisingly knackering and then went and sat in the steam room for a bit would recommend.

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Yeah I want to get back into it

Have you tried shampoo and conditioner afterwards? That does help.

If you decide to wear a swimming cap, wet your hair in the showers beforehand and then put on conditioner before putting the cap on - it’ll keep your hair in better condition and it makes it easier to get the cap off.

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Shampoo and conditioner! I honestly don’t know what we’d do without marckee sometimes.

what’s you favourite water slide (flume)?

For all those saying that they struggle with swimming or find it too knackering: keep at it, and if you can, have a few lessons on technique.

It’s a bit like running in that when you start out it is a struggle and it does feel horrible, but the more you do it, the freer and easier it becomes, and like running, there is a point at which you can kind of cruise up and down the lanes without getting out of breath and without having to concentrate too much on what you’re doing. This is when your mind can switch off and when it becomes relaxing, physically and mentally.

If I was to offer some quick tips on technique they’d be:

Front crawl: SLOW DOWN and stay long. Too many people crash through a length, splashing everywhere. It’s far better to slow down your cadence and make sure that you use the full extent of your reach. An easy way to help with this is to breathe out when your face is in the water and to stop ‘windmilling’ your arms: your hand should enter the water in front of you just as your other arm starts its pull. Too many people put their hand in the water when the other is down by their hip.

Your feet should barely break the surface of the water, but also, your legs shouldn’t drop. To help this, don’t hold your head too high when breathing.

Breaststroke: The problem with breaststroke is that you can have really bad technique and it doesn’t knacker you out (unlike front crawl), so it’s often the stroke that people do without really thinking about whether they are doing it right.

Again, stay long. Keep your heels just below the surface of the water. The best way to do this is to snap your ankles together at the end of a kick - don’t kick out and down, but back and together. Bring your heels up to your bum, rather than your knees up to your chest. Don’t lift your head up so much that your bum drops down - it’ll slow you down and can cause you problems with your back.


Good advice, thank you!

What does stay long mean?

Only found out a few months ago that you’re meant to blow out through your mouth when your head’s under. Think I used to just hold my breath. No wonder I’ve always found it impossible to swim properly. Swimming’s knackering.

print it out, bring it to the pool

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I’d advise watching a few youtube videos beforehand - it makes it much more understandable.

Yeah, so many people try to breathe out when their head is out of the water - it makes it much more tiring and slows you down as your timing goes out of whack and your legs inevitably drop.

When I say ‘stay long’ I mean that you should aim to be as flat and narrow in the water as possible. Reach out with your arms and stretch your legs out and keep that feeling in your head. For front crawl your legs should be long and bend from the hips, not the knees, and your hand should enter the water inside of your shoulder line, with your body rotating slightly to extend your reach, and then hold it there, until your other arm is passing your head on the way back.

A lot of people don’t reach out with their arm and bend from the knees, which makes their legs drop in the water. It should be a long, relaxed stroke, not a windmilling splash.

What I don’t get is how you’re supposed to breathe that slowly. It must be the only physical activity in which you’re meant to draw out your breathing like that so unnaturally

Baffles me. How can you get enough air in that little snippet of time you turn your head out of the water? I just need to breathe in again straight away

Slow your cadence right down.

Quick, deep, intake of breath and then slow, long breathing out when your face is in the water.

for normal swimming it’s perfectly okay to breathe every 2 or 3 strokes (3 strokes is preferred as you’re breathing bilaterally, which offers better balance to your style).

Your breathing rate should be about the same as if you’re going on a steady run.