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How do I make sense of my swim workouts?

It is important to understand the “lingo” when approaching a swim workout. Standard swimming pools are either 25 yards or 25 meters. One meter equals 1.1 yards, so meter pools are slightly longer, but swim workouts are often interchangeable between yards and meters. Just know which pool you are swimming in, so if you change pools you will know what measurement you were accustomed to. One length of a pool is 25 meters or yards and one lap equals two lengths or 50 meters/yards. A 100 then, refers to two laps or four lengths. One mile is 35 laps in a yard pool. Most swim workouts are prescribed based in terms of distance, so for example a 500 warm up, 10x100 swim set, 300 cool down all refer to the distance of the swim set. The warm up would be 10 laps, the swim set would be run on two lap intervals with a specified rest time and then a six lap cool down. The only modification to this type of workout prescription is for open water swimming. Most athletes are unable to measure their distance when swimming in open water. So instead of 100 meter sets, athletes are given time intervals to vary the intensity of their workout. In order to effectively execute a swim workout an athlete must understand what they are being asked to do. Thus understanding the workout itself can be half the challenge of the training session to athletes unfamiliar with swimming terminology .

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.