Underwater cycling is a fun, relaxing and safe activity for people of all ages. It can be done as a self paced exercise routine or as part of an organized cycle class or cycle race. It is great for those that may have limitations or are recovering from an injury. There are a number of reasons that cycling over water may be beneficial.
If you have never tried it before you may find yourself falling in love with the sport. It is great for toning muscles, improving cardiovascular fitness, building endurance and just having fun. It is easy to get caught up in the excitement of getting out of the water and pedaling fast when you are doing it with others that are having the same experience. When you can relax in the water while watching the scenery swim by, it is hard not to feel inspired and ready to do it all over again.
You will need some special protective gear if you decide to take up underwater cycling. The most important piece of equipment is the wetsuit. This is worn during the whole cycle. It covers the torso and back to keep any cold water out. Without it, the cycle can easily get damp and start to stink.
Some people prefer to use wetsuits that are waterproof. They can then swim out in the cold water without worry about being chafed or having water spots on their clothing. Many choose to wear a wetsuit that has a hood or other type of added protection. This way they can still swim out in the cold water but can also stay warm when swimming back in.
When you are first starting out underwater cycling can be a little scary.
You may find yourself going for a swim hundreds of yards at a time. It is easy to get frustrated and give up but stick with it. Most experienced swimmers will tell you that you have to have a good attitude. Even if you think you are not going to make it you will at least try.
Another tip is to focus on swimming the lengths that are listed in your guide book. If you are going to be swimming 100 yards, do not start your cycle until you have already done about half that distance. This way you will make sure that you are doing enough swimming strokes in the water to get used to the water. By starting out too fast you will end up swimming more than enough in the water to be exhausted before the race even starts.
Another thing to focus on is getting the right timing. As mentioned above it is important to focus on swimming the length listed in your guide book and not to try to do too much at once. For example, if you are in a guide book that lists a distance of one mile, do not try to swim that far in one cycle. Start slow and build up your swimming strokes over time.
Last but not least it is important not to get so focused on getting good swimming strokes in that you forget about breathing. Take deep breaths when you are ready to go. You should also monitor the water temperature and make sure that you are coming back into the water after a cool down to avoid getting an overheated body. With a little practice you will easily be able to cycle underwater with very good results.
When I was training to become a competitive swimmer, I spent almost eight months practicing underwater cycling. During this time I lost about twenty pounds and my arms got stronger. Since then I have been using my swimming ability and strength to cycle under water for over fifteen minutes at a time. Many professional swimmers use underwater cycling as part of their workout routine. You can certainly use it to stay in shape and increase your endurance.
One thing that I recommend is that you take your iPod with you while you train. It will help you focus on your breathing and swimming so you will not forget to breathe. When you listen to music on your iPod underwater cycling will become a whole lot easier. You will even find yourself swimming faster and having more energy as you listen to music.
The key to underwater cycling is to get the correct positioning. You want to be right under the surface, but not too close or else you will have trouble breathing. Try to keep your head above water and as much upright as possible. Swimming in this configuration will help you get the most out of your workout. Once you have found the right spot to cycle, start breathing deeply and hold your breath for about five seconds before getting back on the cycle.
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