Debunking The Top Four Swimming Myths  

by Pool Builders on 11-08-2013 in Articles

You've probably heard of a lot of stories that could temporarily put you off the idea of swimming, but how exactly how true are these myths? If you've had someone tell you you can't eat a meal before diving into the pool, or that you're not supposed to go into the water when you're on your period, then you're probably feeling a bit confused about what to do or who to listen to. Here are the top five myths ever swimmer has ever heard, and here are reasons why you shouldn't pay attention.

1. You're getting into the water; there's no need for you to hydrate.
This is probably the most misleading myth there is about swimming. Many people believe that just because they're doing physical activity in the water, they do not sweat, and therefore, they wouldn't need to consume water. The truth is, any exercise that involves the cardiovascular system will make the body sweat. It may not be apparent in the water, but it does happen. Make sure to hydrate well before and after a swimming session. Water and sports drinks with high levels of electrolytes are your best bet.

2. You cannot swim when you're on your period.
Ladies, this is nothing but an old wives' tale. People will tell you it's unhygienic and unsanitary, and that it might cause you some kind of infection or illness. There is absolutely no proof behind this myth. Do not be put off by the idea of swimming during your red days. All you really need is a little mindfulness. Make sure you bring extra sanitary pads or tampons with you, and be vigilant in changing them every hour or two. If it makes you feel any better, you can get away with it by wearing dark swimsuit bottoms or board shorts.

3. You're not supposed to eat immediately before swimming.
While it really is advisable to skip full and heavy meals before any kind of exercise, be sure that you have enough energy and fuel to get you through a long swim. After all, hunger can affect your performance in ways that you may not be completely aware of. If you're swimming during the day and you're not a fan of big breakfasts, you can opt to take small but filling amounts of food to keep you energized. A banana, a small bowl of oatmeal, or a glass of protein shake can be quite invigorating without making you feel too full to function.

4. If you're a natural blonde, chlorine will turn your hair green.
While there are reported cases of blondes emerging from swimming pools with greenish hair, it isn't really chlorine itself that causes the subtle yet alarming change in hair color. Oxidized metals in pool water bind with protein particles in the hair strands, giving them this strange, greenish sheen. To prevent this, you can always opt to wear a swimming cap. You may also want to use conditioner on your hair hours before a swim, and rinse your hair immediately with tap water after a dip.

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