Major Pet Peeves When Swimming


As you may well know, I have been doing a lot more swimming lately at my local pool as part of cross training. Anyone who spends a decent amount of time doing any sort of training, whether it's swimming, running or something else, will have a tendency to find some pet peeves with people doing the same activities.
pet peeve
noun informal
         something that a particular person finds especially annoying.
         "one of my biggest pet peeves is poor customer service"
When I first started learning to swim and visiting the pool outside of my lessons, I never really had any pet peeves and I was probably more worried of pissing other people off! The more that I've been swimming, the more I've been noticing things that really annoy me and things that could easily be prevented in the pool with just a little more consideration.

Everyone practices good manners on a daily basis, whether that's on the phone, at work, at the dinner table.. so why not in a place like a swimming pool?

I'm going to share a couple of my major pet peeves, starting with most annoying first and some advice for swimmers to help avoid these issues.. etiquette rules if you will..

Too Much Talking.. Not Enough Swimming 
By far the most annoying thing in the world for the swimming pool. I typically go to a 'swim for fitness' session which runs from 7-9 AM but I find a lot of people, especially the oldies, tend to use this as a socializing session and it annoys the hell out of me. They're not really swimming, a majority of the time they're swimming side by side and taking up half of the lane space with no space to overtake.

My last swim session had a few pairs of chatty people in the pool and I witnessed them swim about 3 lengths in the space of 30 minutes. Sure.. you pay just like the rest of us, but it really isn't fair - especially taking up the room paddling down the length of the pool!

I don't really have any rules or etiquette for this unfortunately.. unless you count advice on not bothering to get in the pool.. you could just walk round the pool and talk instead? ;) I'm joking obviously.. but  it's still annoying as hell!

Hogging the end of the lane!
Slightly follows on from the last one, but if you've decided to stop for a little break or a chat, don't just stop at the wall and stay where you are. For me and I'm sure can be said for a lot of others, the wall is used as a quick, efficient way of turning around(and pushing off the wall) to do another length. If the wall is blocked by people having a break or chatting, things become  way more difficult to try and turn around in the water..not to mention avoiding collisions.

Don't get me wrong, swimming is tiring work and every so often, you may want a break for a quick chin wag, a rest, clearing your goggles.. whatever it may be - but good etiquette in this case is to move to the corners oragainst the side wall, so you don't obstruct the swimmers that are still swimming.

Being in the wrong lane
Most, if not all swimming pools will have lanes for swimming, some only include a fast and a slow lane(like my local pool), others may have a third 'middle' lane. It's important to pick the lane that best suits your swimming ability. There is nothing worse than a slow swimmer being in the fast lane or vice versa.

I'm currently in a predicament where, due to the fact that we've only 2 lanes as part of our pool, I find it difficult to fit into either of the two lanes. I find I'm slower than those in the fast lane, but too fast for the slow lane - you basically just have to weigh up where you're going to cause the least hassle and where you'll fit in best!

Not giving way to faster swimmers
It is a given that there are going to be different paces when swimming, there may be people slightly slower or faster than you in your lane. If the lanes are busy and you reach the wall, it's always best to quickly check there isn't a faster swimmer on your tail.

I've been in the position of being behind a slower swimmer and being too close to the wall to overtake them.. but they ignore the fact that you're behind them and continue with their next length instead of letting a faster swimmer go first. It's common courtesy to pause, let a faster swimmer go first and then start your next length. Otherwise, they end up trying to overtake mid length and could cause collisions, something I'm sure everyone would like to avoid.


That's actually got some good frustration off my chest! Therapeutic! ;) Until the next time I go to the pool and I have to deal with the above all over again!

Basically, it's all about being courteous. Everyone at the pool wants to swim but we don't have to make it something that becomes less enjoyable and more of an annoyance for anyone else!

Question: What is one of your biggest pet peeves when swimming?

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  1. I used to swim a lot and understand all these bug bears. The worst is swimming in the wrong lane! I do love a lane to myself and used to try and swim at quiet times just for that.
    Natasha |

  2. These Girls Do29 June 2016 at 14:48

    How about "not following the directional arrows in the lanes"?! I saw two women crash on Monday evening - and the one who was in the wrong was the first to get angry until it was politely pointed out to her that she was going the wrong way...(and she also 100% picked the wrong lane speed for her ability but ho hum)


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