I used to be riddled with injuries all the time. From runner’s knee (you’ll know what this is if you’ve ever had it…) to back pain, running would kill my body. That is, until I started training for triathlons and began swimming. The moment I integrated swimming in my routine week over week, I no longer had down time in my life. It was amazing.
I used swimming as active recovery, while getting in the meters I needed. It truly did wonders. Then, I wanted to get faster. I wanted to train harder and swim faster. So, I started training with wearables. I found tips and tricks that helped me add those extra lengths and swim for two minutes more than I previously had.
So, I’m sharing this with you. Are you ready?
How to swim faster (with wearables)
Here is my short list of tips you can do to improve your speed in the water.
1. Track your heart rate while swimming.
This one is difficult, I admit. It’s hard to find a wearable that will allow you to track heart rate, or a wearable that’s water proof. But the moment I did, I was hooked.
You see, when you’re swimming it can be hard to know how hard to push yourself. Mixing in breathing with speed work, long lengths with drills, and you really have to listen to your body while under water.
The Sunto will help you do just that. It’s water resistant to 30m/ 100ft, so – as long as you’re deep diving – you won’t need to worry.
2. Stay Motivated!
I follow Mackenzie Madison on Instagram. She’s a badass triathlete who I admire. I saw her post about Underwater Audio a few weeks ago, so I needed to learn more. I had used waterproof audio technology before, but never like this.
The first time I tried Underwater Audio, I was hooked. It’s pretty awesome – and I love listening to the latest Top 40 when I’m swimming.
Yet, the tip here is around motivation. Especially when I’m swimming in a 25 meter pool, I need all the motivation I can get. Spending over one hour in a length pool can get so boring.
Next time you want to swim faster, try using a waterproof headset. You’ll thank me.
3. Monitor your stroke type.
I joined a Masters Swim Group after my first Ironman, and I’m so glad I did. Though I love swimming I don’t technically know how to do it. What are you supposed to do underwater? How should you stroke look when pulling? I had so many questions.
Here are my top 3 tips on the perfect stroke to swim faster
- Breath bi-laterally. By this, I mean that you should breath one every third stroke. It will keep you in a continuous motion (meaning you’ll be faster).
- Pull underwater with a bend in your elbow. When I learned how to swim as a child, I was taught to make a ‘question mark’ underwater. NOPE. Not a thing. Instead, keep your forearm straight and make a bend at your elbow. Pull.
- Have a flat hand when emerging from the water. Imaging yourself pulling up from your stroke – now, make sure, when your hand is at your side, that you have a ‘flat hand’ when emerging from the water.
These three tips will improve your stroke and make you swim faster.
4. Breathe Correctly
One of the most common reasons why athletes dislike swimming is because they can’t get their breathing down. Yes, it’s difficult – bi-lateral breathing or breathing on one side? How could you know?
Breathing will truly tell-all in your speed, though. Luckily, there’s a wearable for that. The Swimsense Live will capture stroke count, total distance, time/pace and more, which will give you the ability to track just how well you’re swimming – and how well you’re breathing.
For the record, I’m a bi-lateral breather in the water.
5. Review data after every swim.
I’m a data junkie, but I didn’t always feel this way.
In training for my first triathlon, I didn’t touch a wearable. True story! In fact, I didn’t wear a watch until race day. At this point, I just wanted to know how long I would be out there for.
The moment I started wearing my Garmin, I could never go back. Especially in swimming, I could track a good day versus a bad day, and how I felt along the way. I would make changes to improve over time.
The Garmin 920 gives me data on swim length, pace, stroke count and more. It tells me where I can do better, and how I’m improving over their. It’s basically awesome.\
If you’re an avid swimmer, or perhaps you’re just getting into the sport, I’m sure you’ll want to know how to swim faster, longer and harder than ever before. Swimming is excellent for recovery, and it’s even better to tone your body over time.
Do you swim regularly? Do you have tips to swim faster? Share with us below!