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asbrown90 01-24-2009 01:05 AM

TI swimming in a crowded public pool
 
Hello all. I'm sure someone has asked this before, but I couldn't find any answers using a search of the forum. So... please don't be too frustrated if people have asked this before. =)

I am a freshman at NYU. I started doing TI swimming my junior year of high school and it has really changed my life. It's something I enjoy to do for fun and for exercise. And I also became certified as a lifeguard at the end of my senior year of high school. My question is resulting mainly from the crowding at the pools at Palladium and Coles at NYU. The times I've gone to either place this year, the pools were crowded and there were at least 2 people to a lane. I am used to my gym's pool in Michigan -- open 24 hours with many opportunities during the day to find a free and open lane.

I guess my real problem is that when swimming with other people in a lane, I don't know "how to behave" in this more crowded and restricted environment. I know the idea of circling in a lane, tapping the foot to pass, etc. But am I allowed to swim other strokes? What if I want to do drills - is that allowed?

Any swimmers who swim at more crowded public pools, offer me your advice! Thank you in advance.

---

Alex

moordt 01-24-2009 01:13 AM

Hi,

I find that in our local pool the slow lane is slow enough to allow me to do my drills, mostly during less popular times, but I understand your hesitation. I wonder if there is a swim etiquette that covers this issue. Curious to see any replies..

MOO

daveblt 01-24-2009 01:36 AM

[quote=asbrown90;1417]Hello all.

I guess my real problem is that when swimming with other people in a lane, I don't know "how to behave" in this more crowded and restricted environment. I know the idea of circling in a lane, tapping the foot to pass, etc. But am I allowed to swim other strokes? What if I want to do drills - is that allowed?

Any swimmers who swim at more crowded public pools, offer me your advice! Thank you in advance.

---

You can swim any stroke you want ,the only exception unless you have the lane for yourself may be butterfly because of the room needed not to hit the person coming towards you and at the same time hitting your hand on the lane line . You can also do any drill you'd like but if there are three or more people and you are doing a circle and you think you may hold up the person behind you just let them pass and go behind them.Two people to a lane you split the lane and three or more you do a circle


Dave

Jamwhite 01-24-2009 04:01 AM

I would say the most important thing, after politely letting others know that you will be in the lane, is watch what other people are doing and talk to your lane-mates.

When you have designated lanes: slow, medium, and fast, then the choice is somewhat simple. Slow to drill. Medium or fast to swim.

But mostly I find that talking to the people in the lane is best. Let them know that you are going to practice your IM or that you are practicing backstroke.

Also you need to determine if you are going to swim circles or side-to-side. Competitive swimmers will want to swim circles more often, while most fitness swimmers will much prefer side-to-side.

When you start is also important in a shared lane. If you want to swim butterfly, let the other person start first and follow, moving to one-arm at the end of the length. All other strokes, I prefer to start opposite the side of my lane mate while swimming side-to-side. Most people are uncomfortable with someone trailing behind them in the water so to be polite, I try and stay as close to the opposite side as possible. It also makes it much harder for me to catch the person.

However, I think the best lane mates are non-swimmers. The people who are doing aerobics, walker-walking, or floating around in some non-standard way. Like you, they are performing non-traditional endurance swimming and are much less likely to get upset if you drill and swim in their lane.

As with so many things, if you are a regular swimmer at the pool and are polite in how you share a lane, people who see you will invite you into their lane so that they get a good lane-mate.

RadSwim 01-24-2009 04:18 AM

Pool Etiquette by Dr. Phillip Whitten
 
http://www.usms.org/fitness/content/pooletiquette

as 01-24-2009 10:44 PM

ny
 
hey - i'm in nyc too - but at the actual public pools (the rec center pools). 2 people plus you in a lane in a city of 12 million is not so bad. a lot more space than you get on the subway.

the main thing is to nod or acknowledge the other swimmers when you or they get in the lane. this action will increase your odds of being forgiven in that deeply patient way that real ny-ers frequently demonstrate (often without the tourists noticing). don't introduce yourself - just say hi or nod when they get to your end of the lane - gesture for them to go ahead, and when they get far enough in front of you to be now danger of you passing go ahead and start swimming.

something i've found is that sometimes there is a "fast" lane and someone starts doing slow breastroke in between laps of freestyle. try to avoid this -just do some warm up strokes in one lane, switch to the faster lane for faster strokes, and switch back to the slower lane for drills or cool downs.

most important - if you take a break and stand around, stand in the corner of the lane furthest to your right (if you are facing back up the lane) so you don't block people or confuse them as they try to turn.

naj 01-25-2009 12:29 PM

This is a great topic. I'm fortunate that the rec pool that I use in San Francisco is A.) right around the corner from my house and B.) is wide enough that the three lanes are very wide.

Still, this is no excuse not to be polite. I ususally get in the slow lane to practice a slow steady glide in whole stroke or drills. I practice at 6am too so most folks are still sleeping and it is not as crowded. However, when I swim in the slow lane I have a mix of more elites who warm up there and true novices and folks who obvioulsy taught themselves to swim.

Whenever I get in I usually let those in front of me get at least a 15mm head start and then I push off. If I need a longer break and someone seems to be waiting behind me I always let them know that they are more than welcomed to go ahead of me. And like NY said, when I do take a break I move to the far right (in the pool only though not politics!)

Rhoda 01-25-2009 11:15 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jamwhite (Post 1421)
...However, I think the best lane mates are non-swimmers. The people who are doing aerobics, walker-walking, or floating around in some non-standard way. Like you, they are performing non-traditional endurance swimming and are much less likely to get upset if you drill and swim in their lane...

I do that too - warm up with drills in the slowest lane, joining the ladies who just paddle about. No need to worry about getting in their way with my very slow non-finned kick. The medium lane is always crowded for the first half hour anyway, so by the time I'm ready to start actual swimming, someone has moved out to hit the showers, allowing me to take their place.

gooner 01-26-2009 09:28 AM

Something that really helps me it to not have a fixed idea of what I want to practise. Often I'll have an idea that I want to do 100m zenskate 100m swim intervals or whatever and find that it's probably not gonna happen in the space. So I just give up watching the clock and just try and drill when appropriate. Be flexible.
Another good idea is to always bring fins to your practise. This will help speed you up on the slower drills.

gobbles 01-27-2009 12:34 PM

If possible try to find a lane with speed that matches your own pace as it will give you less hassle so that you can concentrate more on your own development. If it is not possible then swim in the slowest lane with a tunnel vision and thick skin. Practice makes perfect.


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