I was in Maui over Labor Day weekend, and managed not one, not two, but three round-trip crossings to nearby Lanai: as a member of a 6-person team in the Maui Channel Relay; a solo swim along the same course; and a snorkeling outing (via ferry) to otherworldly Hulopoe Beach.
Here’s a short video with some pictures & GoPro footage from the solo swim (click through to Vimeo for HD version):
The second in a series of posts on etiquette for organized pool swimming. These lessons are considered “advanced” because they focus on nuances of etiquette specific to organized or coached swim workouts, such as Masters. You should already be familiar with basic pool etiquette for lap swimming, which has been well covered by LoneSwimmer, Rob Aquatics, and Art Hutchinson.
Do you walk right behind people on an otherwise empty street? No? Then don’t do it in the pool, either.
In a short-course pool there are 50 yards (or meters) of physical space to swim in. In a long-course pool there are 100 meters of space. Use it.
In an organized workout, each swimmer is entitled to a certain amount of personal space behind their feet. During an interval training set, the relevant dimension of personal space is actually time – specifically, 10 seconds. By default, leave 10 seconds apart.
An exception to the 10-apart rule is if your lane is so crowded that the lane-leader is nearly finished with the inbound length before the last person has begun the outbound length.…
Everyone knows wetsuits help keep you warm in cold water. Lesser known among the general public (but well-known among triathletes) is that wetsuits also make you swim faster! The buoyant neoprene in a wetsuit floats a swimmer higher in the water, decreasing drag and thus increasing swim speed.
But how much faster is a wetsuit? I’ve heard various rules of thumb: 10% speed increase; 4-6 seconds per 100m; 1 minute per kilometer. I’ve also heard various caveats: it depends on the swimmer’s skill (better swimmers benefit less); it depends on the swimmer’s body-type (naturally floaty people benefit less); it depends on the quality of the wetsuit (you get what you pay for); it depends on the fit of the wetsuit; and so forth.
So the answer is: It depends. Because I’m usually disinclined to let things go at “it depends,” I decided to conduct a field experiment. Reef & Run, which I’ve written about previously, provided the perfect laboratory. Almost every Thursday evening between June 21 and yesterday, August 23, I swam one mile in the ocean at East Beach in Santa Barbara.…
The first in a series of posts on etiquette for organized pool swimming. These lessons are considered “advanced” because they focus on nuances of etiquette specific to organized or coached swim workouts, such as Masters. You should already be familiar with basic pool etiquette for lap swimming, which has been well covered by LoneSwimmer, Rob Aquatics, and Art Hutchinson.
As Donal has written, if there’s a “golden rule” of pool etiquette, it’s probably awareness. Be aware of what is going on around you. Who are you sharing a lane with? What are their relative swim speeds? Where are they? Are they swimming back and forth continuously, or are they doing intervals? What strokes are they doing? Is a faster swimmer approaching from behind? Get out of their way. Is someone standing above your lane, preparing to join you? Make room for them. Are you splitting a lane with someone, and a third person is about to join? Get ready to circle-swim.
Awareness is also vitally important in an organized workout. It’s actually easier to be aware in an organized setting, because everyone is (or should be) doing the same thing.…
In a comment on my recent post on violations of pool etiquette (“Menaces to Swim Society“), reader Luke took issue with my tone and choice of words, saying they’re likely to turn people off from organized swimming. Nobody wants to be a “pool asshole” – or worry that others might think them one without realizing it.
It’s a fair criticism. I was aiming for humor with a tinge of snark; I may have over-done the latter. Reader Bob Needham correctly identified it as “unresolved rage” from recent, real-life experiences.
So allow me to offer some clarification: If you are a beginning swimmer, please don’t feel intimidated from taking the plunge and joining a Masters squad. My List was not aimed at you. It was aimed at those who should know better.
Which raises another question: Who should know better, and who is cut some slack? There’s a very simple test: Are you swimming in the “fast lane,” or close to it? If so, you’re expected to behave accordingly. If you’re a newbie, you’re probably not in this lane. Most likely, you’re sharing a lane with other newbies, or people who are accustomed to swimming with newbies.…
A sobering summary of recent shark activity in Santa Barbara County by Peter Howarth, director of the SB Marine Mammal Center (courtesy of Shark Research Committee):
14 April 2012 Shark attacked adult female sea lion off Stearn’s Wharf, Santa Barbara Harbor. Sea lion rescued by harbor patrol, then it was brought to the dock to Santa Barbara Marine Mammal Center (SBMMC) volunteers, where it died from shock and blood loss;
20 July 2012 Male southern sea otter attacked at Guadalupe Dunes. Rescued by ranger and brought halfway to Santa Barbara, where it was picked up by SBMMC volunteers. Transferred to Mike Harris of CA Dept. Fish & Game for necropsy;
15-20 July 2012 Adult female California sea lion attacked, received two bites on pelvic area;
25 July 2012 Sea lion above reported on mooring buoy off East Beach, Santa Barbara. Sea lion left when harbor patrol approached too closely;
25 July 2012 Sea lion attacked by shark off Leadbetter Point, Santa Barbara (Properly called Santa Barbara Point). Reported by Dan Collie, charter boat captain;
27 July 2012 Sea lion attacked during period 20-25 July rescued but had to be euthanized;
*10-11 August 2012 Male Pacific harbor seal, 5-6 months old, attacked off Carpinteria sea rookery;
12 August 2012 Above harbor seal reported on beach at rookery but washed away before rescued;