Swimming – tell me the benefits

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  • Swimming – tell me the benefits
  • I'm thinking of getting back in the pool after a break of 20yrs or so. But what are the genuine benefits?

    Currently I spend 5-12hrs/wk cycling or running. Not up for hardcore training or triathlons – more a case of wanting to know what the point of it really is. Has anyone else noticed a difference in any way, e.g. strength, physique, fitness, etc?

    Cheers

    Premier Icon GrahamS
    Subscriber

    Swimming – tell me the benefits

    Avoids drowning, particularly when in water.

    Mr Woppit
    Member

    Mouthfulls of urine.

    Mr Woppit
    Member

    … and fish poo.

    hora
    Member

    18yr old girls in bikinis.

    Premier Icon Stoner
    Subscriber

    Benefits: sitting at the bottom of the deep end with your goggles on perving.
    Drawbacks: tenting on leaving the pool.

    scu98rkr
    Member

    Your not getting in my way on my trails !

    Oooh you mean benefits to you? I'll have to give that some thought.

    KINGTUT
    Member

    Without wishing to sound rude, do a Google search there is tons of in depth info out there, I swim on average about 2000 – to 2,500 meters a week and one thing I can say is that it is great for toning the physique and cardio but not so great for weight / fat loss.

    dickydutch
    Member

    haha – "tenting on leaving the pool". An absolute classic. 😆

    Keva
    Member

    yup, swimming is a great way to get a cardio work out and when I get back on the bike it always feels like ma legs have had a bit of a rest. Great for building upper body and core strength, great for not wrecking yer body and great for when it's absolutely pissing down with rain and you don't wanna be outside for very long.

    Kev

    Without wishing to sound rude, do a Google search

    I have done a Google but wanted to get the perspective of MTBers and road cyclists more than anything.

    great for toning the physique and cardio but not so great for weight / fat loss.

    Yep, I was hoping the toning/cardio side would be a winner, and I've read that it's no good for weight loss (because of the way calories stop being burned after the session or something?).

    Great for building upper body and core strength

    That's probably want I want to aim for too.

    Methinks I'll give it a go.

    Cheers

    hora
    Member

    I read up on this-

    Posture/core stability. That really helps with technique on a bike IMO.

    The only problem I found was no matter how quiet the pool was I have no 'pool presence' so people just swam into me. I even came across people who always swam at the sametime in the same lane everyday (an angry rude man in particular- who was rude to the attendants as well apperently).

    Found it too stressful.

    Found it too stressful.

    I thought swimming would be quite therapeutic … but I guess d1ckheads/traffic/lane rage can change all that.

    KINGTUT
    Member

    The only problem I found was no matter how quiet the pool was I have no 'pool presence' so people just swam into me. I even came across people who always swam at the sametime in the same lane everyday (an angry rude man in particular- who was rude to the attendants as well apperently).

    That's not unusual, the lack of spatial awareness displayed in the pool by some adults is quite astounding.

    Pool life is fun though, from Eastern European ladies showering naked in the pool side showers to the lady who tried to commit suicide by drowning herself in front of me last week.

    KINGTUT
    Member

    I thought swimming would be quite therapeutic … but I guess d1ckheads/traffic/lane rage can change all that.

    I keep out of the lanes, I've seen several bust ups between the 'elitists' and the 'plebs'.

    hora
    Member

    Kingtut. I think we need a STW swimming meet. WHEN?

    jonb
    Member

    I'm a roadie mountainbiker. I started swimming again about 18 months ago after a gap of 10 years (I used to swim competitively as a teenager).

    I've found it's helped with fitness. I don't know the technical terms but I have better control over my breathing and can climb faster while not coughing up a lung I also recover faster after going anaerobic.

    I swim about an hour a week doing – sprint/technique work (interval type stuff) or pure endurance (normally try for 2 miles in the hour).

    Other benefits are that it's different from cycling so I can still go if I've done a hard ride and in winter it's nice and easy to go after work whereas a couple of hours in freezing rain is less appealing.

    Oh, and girls in bikinis.

    jon1973
    Member

    Pool life is fun though, from Eastern European girls showering naked in the pool side showers to the lady who tried to commit suicide by drowning herself in front of me last week.

    Kind of a bitter sweet experiance then? Someone nearly died, but you did see some naked ladies 😉

    KINGTUT
    Member

    Indeed, I've changed it from girls to ladies though just in case people got the wrong idea, they were adults.

    ebygomm
    Member

    I don't find swimming fitness compliments cycling fitness in anyway (or vice versa)

    I still like swimming though.

    If you're swimming on your own, most people don't sustain a high enough intensity for long enough to have a real impact on aerobic fitness level.

    trail_rat
    Member

    Re **** with no lane ettiquette – they soon move out of the way of fast moving objects…… I cant stand folk who swim up and down one side of the lane – you can get 6 in a lane at busy times if you do circles…..

    Ive just got back into swimming for a bit of upper body work out. going twice a week doing 3000 m or so – feel great after and nowhere near as tiring as a good 60k ride.

    As per jon b i find it helps lung capacity or efficiency or something ….dont quite know what it is but the engine seems to breath better when ive been swimming regular

    Keva
    Member

    oh yep, and you do get a few morons who don't know the difference between anti-clockwise and clockwise, people who cannot judge speed and distance, like fast lane /slow lane… and there are people who don't look behind them before swimming off to make sure they're not holding anyone up… but I guess these are the same people who push their shopping trolley into you at the supermarket without looking.

    Kev

    llama
    Member

    I started swimming masters with a club a couple of years ago. A couple of times a week, sessions of 2-4k. The good thing about clubs is you avoid the idiots in public lanes and don't get in each others way as much because you are all doing the same thing. Also we have a coach telling us what to do so its easier to be motivated.

    I reckon its good for cardio because we do quite often do interval stuff. Certainly feel like I've done something by the end, we've done sessions where I really felt sick after. This must translate to the bike a bit I suppose. Can't say I've noticed much difference compared to e.g. running. Mrs Llama says it has changed my physique and posture, I'm not sure myself.

    hora
    Member

    I was swimming happily away in our local (quiet) pool when some bloke climbed in at the other end, swam right at me and physically shouldered me out of the way. I had a word with the Pool attendant and she said 'he always does that to people who swim in his lane'. I asked why they allowed this to happen 'he swears at us if we try and tell him different and there others who are like this so we just let them be'.

    I got back in- stood in his way and asked him who he thought he was swearing at people. Funnily he didn't make eye contact once.

    Since then I haven't bothered. I'd rather play with fast cars on roads 🙄

    ….until the day KINGTUT came into my life.

    Travis
    Member

    You can loose weight from swimming if you do it right.
    Bit like saying, you can't loose weight from riding the bike.

    Swimming when done well, can burn an excessive amount of calories, but people tend to hit the vending machines, stop at the pub/chinese/fish and chip shop on the way home as they are very hungry.

    If you eat controlled and properly after you should loose weight.

    Olly
    Member

    you dont need a bath afterwards?

    ….until the day KINGTUT came into my life.

    Sounds like the beginning of a love story 😛

    stumpy01
    Member

    I find swimming definitely helps with toning up core muscles and also seems to help stretch me out a bit.
    I haven't been for ages, but used to stick to a fairly steady pace, but keep going whereas lots of people I used to see would do 2-4 quick lengths then stand at the end for ages.

    It can be frustrating though when people don't really understand the lane system & either go in the opposite direction, go straight up & down the middle or blitz up & down the slow lane like a semi-pro giving all the minions dirty looks.

    keavo
    Member

    started swimming about 2 years ago, having not done any since schooldays (i'm 42). i really struggled with technique but eventualy got good enough to get some benefit out of a session. its been excellent for my back, neck, shoulders, core etc. it really stretches and strengthens the upper body (which takes a beating on the bike) which in turn, improves your posture. i go about 2/3 times a week and miss it if i don't go for a while. i feel relaxed rather than knackered afterwards and can see me swimming for life beacuase its unlikely to injure me.

    Premier Icon Taz
    Subscriber

    I started about 2 years ago after about a 20 year lay off (used to compete at school). I invested in a few lessons to get my technique back. That was well worth it.

    Key benefits for me are
    It is a great cross training tool for when your legs have been blasted the day before but you still want to get some exercise done.
    Being asthmatic it helped me regulate my breathing
    I do a fair bit of weight training so the upper body & core stuff was not as big a deal for me but ceratinly there are benefits
    It burn calories so can help control weight
    When travelling with work it is often an option for some exercise

    The downsides
    Skin irritation – drove me nuts initially
    Boring! Some days I can zone out and time just passes. Other days it is a chore from first to last stroke.

    Certainly give it a try.

    .

    nicko74
    Member

    I want to like swimming, but I really don't enjoy it. I know it's good for physique, cardio fitness etc, but unless the pool's empty it's just not for me.
    There's one guy who's there every day and every time I go, who splashes like a complete f&ckwit. Doesn't go that fast, and hates it when people try to overtake him – he got in a fight last week with a woman who tried to go past him, threw his goggles across the pool, went to get them then got back in the pool.

    steve-g
    Member

    Having developed dodgy knees from too much running I got back in the pool last week for the first time in years. Having recently given up smoking I struggled at first but in a very short space of time I found that it really helped me control my breathing. Once I can run again I am hoping this will translate.

    After a swim I can also feel the tonig effects on my shoudlers and upper back

    Premier Icon nickc
    Subscriber

    The big elephant in this little room that no-one seems to want to mention is of course the fact that swimming lanes is the dullest thing in the world to do, I mean it's soooo dull I even loose count of how many lengths I've done.

    ridiculously boring…

    zaskar
    Member

    What Graham S said!

    Also low impact and supportive.

    Fun?

    cynic-al
    Member

    I like swimming but dealing with lane cretins did it in for me also.

    ebygomm
    Member

    Dealing with the lane cretins adds a little bit of excitement to just swimming laps. Swimming with a club is much more interesting, except when they decide to do fly sets 🙁

    Premier Icon thepurist
    Subscriber

    Yep swimming lengths is dull – to get all the benefits, work harder than you do plodding up and down the pool and develop your recovery time try…

    underwater hockey

    hora
    Member

    KINGTUT Im supposed to be riding this Sat but if the Eastern Chics are out lets swim! (Da!)

    Thanks all – some valuable comments in there. Will definitely give it a go.

    SM

    Coasting
    Member

    Swimmings a great compliment to biking.Excellent for the lungs and upper body.Very little impact on the joints and a great when u get a bit older.Have to agree about the lane nazi's every pool seems to have them

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