The biggest challenge swimmers face is fatigue. The same muscles that propel you must also stabilise you in the water; once they tire, your shoulder mechanics change, priming you for pain, says Dr Scott Rodeo, author of a new study on swimming injuries. Here are some tips on how to better your lap time in the pool.
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The Swimmer’s Workout
External Rotation – Shoulders
Attach an exercise band to a doorknob and stand with your right shoulder facing the door. Reach across your body and grab the band in your left hand. Bend your left elbow 90 degrees and press your biceps firmly against your side. Rotate your forearm outwards and return to the starting position. Switch sides and repeat.
Full Can Straight-Arm Lift – Shoulders
Hold your right arm out in front of you and slightly to the right. Grasp a small dumbbell, thumb up, and raise your arm overhead. Repeat with your left arm.
Ball on the Wall – Shoulders, Upper Back
Use your right hand to press a soccer ball firmly against a wall; then rotate your hand clockwise. Repeat with your left hand.
Seated Row – Chest, upper and lower back
Loop an exercise band around a pole. Sit facing the pole and grasp each end of the band. Then pull it back, keeping your elbows tucked in.
Push-ups with a Plus – Chest
Perform normal push-ups but with one addition: at the top of each rep push your hands into the floor so your back arches.
Dead Bug – Abs, upper and lower back
Sit on the floor; then lean back and lift your legs so your body forms a V. Simultaneously flutter your arms and legs.
Quadruped – Upper and lower back
Kneel on all fours. Extend your left leg and right arm at the same time, then your right leg and left arm. Alternating between the two.
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