Should you be in the fast lane?

I did an hour time trial in the Watershed yesterday.

By now in Carrick most (but definetely not all) of the people who use the lane know me. Some have learned and some have refused to learn.

Recently I was in a lane for an hour, maybe six people swam in the lane at some point. Some thought they were great (swim behind me for a length, turn in front of me, you know the score, always men). One guy got in the lane before I turned and decided to start swimming underwater in front and below me. Only one woman had a clue.

I’ve certainly never claimed to be the fastest swimmer. But I know how to circle swim, and unfortunately most pool lifeguards in my experience don’t.

Of course many of the pools we swim in have only one lane at best. Let’s make it simple. You probably shouldn’t be in the (fast) lane if:

  • You don’t know how far a 25′ is.
  • You don’t know what circle swimming is or how to do it.
  • You’re wearing board shorts.
  • You’re wearing a “cute” bikini that you got for the beach.
  • You’re not wearing goggles.
  • You use a pull buoy as a pillow while doing backstroke kick.
  • You don’t know what a pull buoy is.
  • You’re doing side stroke.
  • You’re doing some hopping movement down the lane or have to stand up.
  • You’re wearing a mask.
  • You’re wearing a snorkle.
  • You’re wearing a shower cap. Or a bubble cap.
  • Or a towel. I swear there’s a woman in my local pool who wears a towel in the water.
  • You hold your nose when you go under water.
  • You have your cap on sideways.
  • When asked if you’re fast you answer, “Of course! Look at me!”
  • You swim with your head above water, 100% of the time.
  • The lifeguard has to watch you closely because your swimming looks an awful lot like drowning.
  • You think that when someone faster than you passes you, they’re being rude.

I think printing & laminating a few of these and leaving them by the lane end wouldn’t be a terrible idea.

Almost all this list came from here.

Edit: If you came here from H2O open you might want to read my response to Furious Bob: [Should slow swimmers really have the right of way in lane swimming?]


3 thoughts on “Should you be in the fast lane?

  1. I get a wee bit flustered in the lanes, I don’t really know the correct etiquet. I presumed that you let the faster person overtake, especially when you get to the end… I often want to overtake (not bragging!) but find myself following a line of slow breaststrokers and so I just opt for zigzagging around in the regular section of the pool avoiding kids, balls and sunbathers!
    Are you in Guillemenes these days? I never see you around.


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