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  • Technique and Training

Masters Swimming 101: Yards and Meters

Coaches will give instructions mainly in terms of distance (or yardage) and time. Most American pools are 25 yards in length and are known as short course yards pools or SCY. To understand the sets, you'll need to add in multiples of 25.

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  • Technique and Training

Masters Swimming 101: What Equipment Do I Need?

Not much! The beauty of swimming is that the water provides all the resistance you need to work every part of your body. No machine can match it.

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  • Technique and Training

Masters Swimming 101: What Is a Typical Workout?

Like a good play, a good workout develops in three main acts: the warm-up, the main action, and the cool-down. A sufficient warm-up is essential for mature athletes, and a relaxing cool-down will help to fight fatigue and sore muscles.

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  • Technique and Training
  • Triathlon

Masters Swimming 101: How Do I Learn the Four Strokes? Why Do I Want To?

Some swimmers and many triathletes only want to swim freestyle, the fastest stroke. But for anyone inspired by Michael Phelps and other true masters of the pool, there are four techniques to conquer on the road to becoming an all-around swimmer. And ...

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  • Technique and Training

Masters Swimming 101: What Are the Basics of Pool Etiquette?

Safety always comes first, and swimming's first rule is never to swim alone. Because you will always be swimming with other people, offer them the type of respect you wish to receive. Swim friendly. Also, always follow the directions of lifeguards an...

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  • Technique and Training

Masters Swimming 101: How to Start Swim Practice as an Adult

Swimming is great exercise, but practicing with a group can seem mysterious to the uninitiated. Can I just show up? Are other swimmers going to laugh at me? If your questions are even more basic than that, you may first want to review our Let's Get S...

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  • Technique and Training

Masters Swimming 101: Lingo You're Likely to Hear at Practice

Here are a few more terms you'll likely hear at swim practice. Some of them seem confusing at first, but once your coach shows you by having you swim a certain way, it will all make sense.

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  • Technique and Training

Masters Swimming 101: How Do I Use the Pace Clock?

A related question would be: Why are swimmers so obsessed with time? You'll find out, my friend, in due time. So, what is your time for a 100? Answer that question, and you are halfway to speaking Swimmerese.

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  • About USMS

Now's the Perfect Time to Become a USMS Member!

Swimming’s universally recognized health benefits are the envy of other sports: superior core strength, reduced stress, increased cardiovascular and respiratory health, improved flexibility, and much more. Swimming’s low-impact nature mak...

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  • Coaches Only

Space, the Final Frontier

While at dinner with some coaches a few months back, the subject of water time and pool space came up. Several coaches lamented the fact that they want to grow but can’t, because of the restrictions on water space or time imposed by their facil...