Just like everywhere else in life, the pool has a few guidelines that make swimming with a crowd of people actually manageable.
If you’re new to lap swimming and aren’t sure of the unwritten code of conduct while in the water, take a minute or two to look over the protocol below. If you’re swimming recklessly, you could not only be angering other lap swimmers, but also endangering your wellbeing while in the water.
Pick Your Lane Wisely
Before simply jumping into the lane with the fewest swimmers, take a few minutes to survey your new lap pool to see if there are informal lane designations. While all pools might not have this, those with more serious swimmers will have three distinct speed lanes. One side of the pool will be designated for slower swimmers. The middle will usually be saved for those swimming at a medium pace. And the opposite end will be for the faster swimmers in the group. Do a rough survey of the lanes and time the per-lap pace of individual swimmers to see which group you fit in with best. Bring along a waterproof watch to help you keep track of yours and other’s split times. Swimovate Poolmate Live Lap Counter Swim Watch is great at keeping fully automated lap and stroke counts, no matter how fast or slow you prefer your pace.
Respect Other Swimmers’ Space
While overcrowding in high traffic pools in unavoidable, highly efficient lap swimmers can easily fit 5 or 6 people into one lane. If you, as a swimmer, are respectful and mindful of other swimmers’ space, there’s no reason that you can’t fit seamlessly into an already active lane. Allow faster swimmers to go ahead of you and when you need a rest, take one at the wall on the far side of a lane. Keep an eye out for wide strokers and try to be aware of where your arms and legs are at all times. While running into other swimmers isn’t the worst thing that could happen, you want to minimize the number of times bump-ins occurs. And because harmless collisions are inevitable in busy pools, avoid wearing protruding jewelry or anything else that might scratch other swimmers or their gear. Remove any potentially harmful accessories and keep your valuables stored safely and organized with the help of a strong and sturdy swim gear bag. The Aqua Lung Mariner Mesh Duffle Bag is large enough to store any and all of your pool equipment, as well as keeps your clothes and personal belongings dry and safe while in you’re spending time in the water.
One of the main reasons that swimmers run into each other in lanes is because one, or possibly both, of the swimmers do not have the proper eyewear. Bad fitting goggles or leaky lenses can hinder your ability to train efficiently. Do yourself a favor and invest in a solid pair of goggles that will keep your vision as clear as possible. Try the Speedo MDR 2.4 Mirrored Swim Goggle on for size. This competition grade goggle lies low to the face, yet gives swimmers a surprisingly wide panoramic view of the underwater world around them. They are sure to help you from bumping into swimmers that share your lane.