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Thread: swim performance vs pool temperature

  1. #1
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    swim performance vs pool temperature

    I swim in a standard pool and count my time. However, in the summer, when the pool is hot, I cannot swim as fast as what I do in the other seasons.

    For example, on a hot day, when the pool was about 30℃, my 100m interval was at least 2 seconds slower than normal.

    More recently, I attempted to do a USRPT set of 50m's (target time 1', interval 1'15") a few days ago, and failed at the 22nd, 28th and 34th. However, after the hurricane, I did the same set again and completed all 40x50m's offered. I don't think it is possible to have such a large jump in performance in less than a week, and the only plausible reason may be the difference in the pool temperature before and after the hurricane.

    Is it true that the pool temperature can cause such a large difference in performance?

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    Very Active Member JPEnge's Avatar
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    Re: swim performance vs pool temperature

    Yes, pool temperature has a HUGE effect on performance. Your body's cooling depends almost entirely on maintaining a temperature differential between your skin and the surrounding environment. On top of that - in their air, you have the additional cooling advantage of convection (think: the fan in your A/C unit blowing hot air away from the cooling coils) that you don't get in water.

    Side question: is 40x50s race pace with 15 seconds rest really a USRPT thing? That seems rather... excessive.
    400 IMer/200 backstroker in another life, now sprinter/breaststroker... Yeah, I don't know how that happened either!

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    Very Active Member orca1946's Avatar
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    Re: swim performance vs pool temperature

    Those of us that can't sprint know that cooler water in a must for longer swims.
    Hot water is for making soup or cooking lobsters!

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    Very Active Member ForceDJ's Avatar
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    Re: swim performance vs pool temperature

    Wow...30C (86F) is pretty warm. The pool I lifeguard and swim at is maintained at 27.7C (82F) and that is warm to some folks. Four degrees (F) may not sound like much...but when the temp goes up just one degree to 83...people complain that it's like a bathtub. When it goes down just one degree to 81 they say it's like ice water. Is there a reason your pool is kept so warm?

    Dan

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    aka Elaine-iaK & Aqua Dog ElaineK's Avatar
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    Re: swim performance vs pool temperature

    Quote Originally Posted by ForceDJ View Post
    Is there a reason your pool is kept so warm?
    Dan

    I'm guessing it's the same reason many warm pools across this country are kept so warm: NOODLERS! There are two things the water aerobics ladies hate: cold water and getting their hair wet!
    http://ElaineiaKsTravels.wordpress.com

    ~ Believing in your dreams can be far more rewarding than living by your limitations ~Karla Peterson

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    Re: swim performance vs pool temperature

    Quote Originally Posted by ForceDJ View Post
    Wow...30C (86F) is pretty warm. The pool I lifeguard and swim at is maintained at 27.7C (82F) and that is warm to some folks. Four degrees (F) may not sound like much...but when the temp goes up just one degree to 83...people complain that it's like a bathtub. When it goes down just one degree to 81 they say it's like ice water. Is there a reason your pool is kept so warm?

    Dan
    It's because the weather is so HOT in summer in the southern regions of the country, that I need to stop swimming in outdoor pools in July and August.

    For the USRPT thing, 40x50m is the appropriate amount for longer distance, for example, at 750 m race pace; for 1500 m training, about 24 - 30x100m may be considered.
    Last edited by miklcct; September 18th, 2018 at 06:10 AM.

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    Participating Member Zwemmer's Avatar
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    Re: swim performance vs pool temperature

    Yes, it's absolutely true pool temperature affects performance and definitely matters. USMS sets the competition pool temp range at 77-82F. I prefer it closer to the 77 mark myself. One of our local team pools was heated up to 84 recently and after polite emails to the pool admin from the Masters swimmers they lowered it back down to 78 or so. When it was 84 we could not train properly.

  8. #8

    Re: swim performance vs pool temperature

    I am a amateur swimmer. I used to practice in public swimming pool near my locality. But, Everytime a question arises in my mind that, how public swimming pools are maintained? Do the entire water of the pool is replaced or they just use pool water filters or cleaners?

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    Very Active Member JPEnge's Avatar
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    Re: swim performance vs pool temperature

    Quote Originally Posted by Harvey474 View Post
    I am a amateur swimmer. I used to practice in public swimming pool near my locality. But, Everytime a question arises in my mind that, how public swimming pools are maintained? Do the entire water of the pool is replaced or they just use pool water filters or cleaners?
    All of the above at some point. Public pools use filters and chemicals and the water is constantly circulated to ensure it's going through the filters and the chemicals are being spread about. There is always some loss of water in a pool that's being used, so there's fresh water makeup which means that eventually all of the water in the pool is replaced on a regular basis.
    400 IMer/200 backstroker in another life, now sprinter/breaststroker... Yeah, I don't know how that happened either!

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    Re: swim performance vs pool temperature

    Constant problem for those of us living in Florida. All 3 of my local pools do not have chillers and I finally gave up on any distance this Summer when the water temps hit 87-90. I did need the break as I had an injury but now just starting to get back into the water and we are still between 85-87 degrees.

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    Participating Member Zwemmer's Avatar
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    Re: swim performance vs pool temperature

    Quote Originally Posted by cmolnar65 View Post
    Constant problem for those of us living in Florida. All 3 of my local pools do not have chillers and I finally gave up on any distance this Summer when the water temps hit 87-90. I did need the break as I had an injury but now just starting to get back into the water and we are still between 85-87 degrees.
    I'm sorry to hear you have such a hot pool situation. Pools around South Carolina are starting to install chillers along with the heaters anytime they do a big refresh or maintenance. Are they doing the same in Florida? Seems with all this warm weather & likelihood of continuing warmer temperatures year-round it is now a necessary thing.

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