Since the summer season is ending and schools are already starting, shifting priorities to change things up might put your workouts on the back burner. Lucky there are many options that you can do for the winter months that bring you right back into the swing of the "summer" spirit. Have you ever thought about swimming indoors? Hitting up the local pool for lap swim can be the best thing that you can do for cardio and endurance with low impact on your joints !
Swimming is technical just like any other movement that requires attention to details if you want to become a better and more agile swimmer. Just like lifting, no matter how strong you are if you are not moving with the proper form you wont be efficient at moving. Below are 7 pieces of advice to teach you about swimming and getting the most out of your workout!
1- Enter the water with your fingers first. Your hand should cut through the water first and then your elbow should follow. Many people don’t bend their arm enough. This means the arm is straight when it enters the water, and therefore the hand and elbow enter the water at the same time. When your hand is straight, you are not able to pull the water efficiently.
2-When your hand enters the water, you need to glide, stretch, and reach as far as you can. You can gain a few inches for every stroke, which would make a huge difference over the course of a swimming race or triathlon
3-Your hand should not cross the center-line and it should not be too much to the outside. In fact, it should be right in line with your shoulder. If your hand crosses the center-line, you will zigzag from left to right.
4-By rotating your body, you can reach much farther with your hands and you can use a lot more strength when pulling the water. By rotating, instead of only using your shoulder, you also use your lats muscles, pectorals, and core. It will also prevent many shoulder injuries.
5-By keeping your hand loose, you maximize the area your hand takes in the water. Don’t keep your fingers tightly pressed together because your arm will be contracted and you will lose energy.
6-By raising your elbows high, your hands will enter the water with the proper angle and you will be able to pull water efficiently because your entire forearm will pull water. This also reduces the drag in the water.
7-For a sprint, such as 50m, 100m, or 200m, you should kick as much as you can because the event is short and you don’t need to manage your energy. For a longer event, like a 5km or 10km open water swim or an Ironman, you should kick less because you need to conserve energy. In those cases, keep a two-beat kick, which means you do one kick for every stroke.
You can practice sighting by swimming laps keeping your head out of the water. Your head should stay still and your neck should be relaxed and not contracted. Try to fix something in front of you and make sure your head stays still and doesn’t move from left to right.You need to be able to breathe on both sides so you are able to adapt to any conditions think about when you do an open water swim, you don't want to be breathing into waves as you swim !
Swimming is a great way to increase your muscular endurance as well as keeping your cardio in check ! Get down to a local pool and do lap swim and then head to the sauna for a nice relaxation cool down !!