Swimming is a sport that is very good for our health. But without knowing about it carefully, the swimmers may encounter many dangerous incidents in the water such as cramps, exhausted,… Thus, all of the swim phases (warm up, overboard, ashore) are have to be done in a scientific way.
1. Using sunscreen
As for in-house pool, you can apply sunscreen with an SPF of 15, because the sun is still possible over the window and affect your skin. If you go swimming in the sea, although there is no sun, you still should use sunscreen to protect your skin from the harmful effects of ultraviolet and other harmful rays. Even when it is shade, the rays still can cause adverse effects to your skin.
One more note for you is to choose a waterproof sunscreen with an SPF of 30 to achieve the highest efficiency, the higher SPF will penetrate into the skin harder and make our skin becomes dry easier.
2. Equiping glasses, swimming cap
Besides swimsuits with good material, we should also equip protective equipments such as glasses, swimming caps,…to protect the sensitive areas of the body, especially the eyes and to avoid adverse effects and diseases.
Tip: You can apply little conditioner on your hair before wearing swimming cap to reduce the risk of hair loss. But do not apply too much, it can make your cap slippery.
3. Do a warm-up before swimming
Going into the water suddenly without warm-up can cause a lot of bad affects to our health such as affects body temperature, cardiovascular, cause unfortunate accidents,… According to experts, before entering the sea, you should do a warm up in from 10 to 15 minutes. This action prevents the unfortunate accidents while swimming like cramps, muscle spasms,… Besides, this also helps us to warm the body, thereby prevents fatigue.
Running short distances (100 meters) slow – fast slowly – slowly and return to equilibrium.
Continue to warm up the joints in order: the cervical spine joints, back, hip, the knee joints, ankle, toes, shoulder joints, elbow, wrist, and fingers. Rotating the joints follow clockwise and vice versa.
4. Do not overfeed before going swimming
-Eating overload before going swimming will make you feel sluggish, uncomfortable, causing languid feeling, stomach ache and affect swimming ability.
It takes the body about 45 minutes to digest food. At this point, blood accrue to the digestive organs to effectuate this function. So if you do not want to be dominated by many factors while swimming, do not eat at least 45 minutes before swimming.
Some notes while swimming
When our bodies expose to the water, a reaction will happen with 3 phases:
Inhibition (about 10-15 minutes): Although we have done a warm-up earlier, when exposing to the water, our bodies still reflex, blood pressure increases slightly, heart beats faster, respiratory rate increases.
Adaptation: This is energy consumption phase which lasts about 1-3 hours depending on health and the training of each person. At this time, our bodies have begun to adapt to the aquatic environment, inhibits disappear little by little. Heart rate, pulse, respiration and blood pressure is stable and back to its original state. During this phase, the movements should be coordinated gently, accurately and comfortably. While swimming, you should pay attention to avoid the whirlpool or torrent. Do not swim too far from shore, far from the rescue means.
Recovery: At this time, the body has consumed more energy. In fact, the swimmers will feel muscle exhaustion, the movements become unconnected, no rhythm. This signals that the body needs rest. If you continue to swim designedly, you may cramp.
When you feel muscle exhaustion, you need to slow down, swim closer to shore or near the rescue means then relax the whole body in floating posture in 3-5 minutes and then step ashore. If you feel cold, you have to step ashore immediately to find somewhere windless. You may drink a hot sweet tea with little water.
If you cramp suddenly when you are swimming (the most dangerous is abs cramps), you have to be calmed, relax your whole body in outstretched limbs posture, breathe deeply and slowly, use your hands to press the acupuncture points and massage the cramping. When you feel better, inform people around or the rescue means to help you to step ashore. In case you are too far from the rescue or alone, trying to be calm and swim slowly to the shore.
Once you step ashore
- You need to take a nap, relax your muscles in 10-15 minutes in a windless place then wash off with warm water for 5-10 minutes. Dry your body thoroughly and wear warm clothing
- Note: Drying the ear, nose and eyes; eyewash if it’s necessary. If you feel tired, you can drink a cup of hot sweet tea.
- Tip: After having a swim, you should use body lotion or body moisturizer for your whole body. If you skip this step, there is a risk that your skin will be dry for a long time!
Drinking water adequately
Like many other sports, swimming not only make us become dehydrated, sweated but also make our bodies dehydrated. Therefore, we need to provide our bodies with enough water before, during and after swimming. You should avoid falling into water shortage because it may affect health, cause fatigue and lead to many unfortunate accidents.
- Go swimming in the early morning or evening. Swimming at noon can make you sick easily and not good for the skin
- Practice other accompanying sports such as: Yoga, aerobics, jogging, gym, tennis, etc,… to increase the efficiency.
You should not:
- Swim 3 hours/ each time continuously or let the water enter the nose too many times.
- Swim while you have a cold/ while you are sick.
- Swim before do a warm-up.
- Swim with emty stomach or when you are full.
- Swim after you have just smoked or drunk alcoholic drinks.
- Swim after doing strenuous exercises.
No one can deny the benefits that swimming brings to our health. Nevertheless, make sure that you can enjoy your swimming time safely by pay close attention to these notes above.