Need advice on lap swimming !!!!

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    Jan 13, 2011 8:38 AM GMT
    Need advice on lap swimming !!!!


    I've decided to get back into lap swimming after an absence of decades. Used to swim a lot back in high school. Problem is, I've got a chronically bad shoulder (rotator cuff). I'm afraid if I go too hard too soon I'll just reinjure it. So, here's a few questions:

    Any suggestions on how to slowly ease into the workouts? The pool at my gym is completely empty much of the time so I can pretty much do whatever I want. Eventually I'd like to be doing something like 1000 yards at a time, but I can't even think about that now.

    The shoulder problems have left me with a slightly limited range of motion on the right side (hard to go the full 360 without pain). I've always taken breaths on the left, but I thought maybe if I switched over and breathed on the right it might go easier. Does that make any sense? If so, is there an easy way to train myself to breathe on the "wrong" side?

    Any other advice for training with a bad shoulder - or maybe some recent wisdom on swimming efficiently? After all, I haven't been coached in swimming for over 30 years.

    Thanks guys.
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    Jan 13, 2011 2:57 PM GMT
    [quote][cite]VanLumet said[/cite]Need advice on lap swimming !!!!


    I've decided to get back into lap swimming after an absence of decades. Used to swim a lot back in high school. Problem is, I've got a chronically bad shoulder (rotator cuff). I'm afraid if I go too hard too soon I'll just re injure it.

    First: Congrats for returning to the pool.
    Second: You answered your own question by saying "If I go to hard 'll just re injure it."

    Stretch and warm up before you begin. I mean really warm up. Then start with light breast stroke and see how your shoulder feels. Just a few laps. If you feel ok then start a slow crawl. The minute you feel a burn, a pain, stop. That is your limit for the day.

    It will take time but just go slow and listen to you shoulder. Endurance will come back as will strength.

  • Ironman4U

    Posts: 738

    Jan 13, 2011 3:38 PM GMT
    I think you just need to get in the pool and see what you can and can't do. Obviously, if you have pain, you should stop whatever you're doing. But if you can ease into it without pain, then that would be great.

    As far as breathing on a different side, that's just drills. In other words. Swim a lap only breathing on the opposite side. Then repeat. Then repeat. Do the drill enough so that you start to get more comfortable with the motion. If you need to, you can start the drill by alternating left to right. The important thing is that you incorporate 'the new side' into your breathing pattern so eventually it becomes easier and less awkward.

    Best of luck.
  • swimmerdude52...

    Posts: 119

    Jan 13, 2011 4:06 PM GMT
    First off- congrats on getting back in the pool. I always feel great when I get a good swim in.

    Some advice: if you just want to get back in the water and ease into it I would focus on kicking for a while. Grab a kick board and get some yardage in that way. Start with some very easy and slow freestyle drills when you feel comfortable using your arm.

    Also I know it probably feels better to only breath on your strong shoulder but Do Not only breath on one side. That can actually create a wide range of new problems (ESP in the neck) so make sure that you breath on both sides when you swim (rotate breathing on each side)

    If you want more specific advice feel free to shoot me^ a message