Observe proper lane swim etiquette!

Katrina Epp, Aquatics Coordinator

From time to time, we hear about lane swimmers that don’t want to share a lane. When swimming in a smaller facility, sharing is sometimes unavoidable. Here are some simple lane swim etiquette guidelines to follow:

1. Be polite, considerate and aware of those around you. We don’t always want to share, but sometimes we have to.

2. Never get into a lane without letting those already swimming know you are entering. Do this by standing to the side at the end of the lane when they are turning.

3. When sharing a lane with one other person, take a quick minute to discuss if you would each like to take a side to the lane, or if you will be swimming a circuit. If you go with the first option, always keep to your side. If you go with the latter, always keep to the right.

4. When sharing the lane with two or more swimmers, you will have to swim circuits. Circuit swimming is dictated by the fastest swimmer present. Take note of the swimmers’ speeds before you enter.

5. The slower swimmer in front must move to the side of the lane, at the end wall, to allow faster swimmers to pass. Allow them to turn at the centre of the lane wall.

6. Swimmers resting at the lane end should stay as far to the side of the lane as possible.

7. If the lane has swimmers doing long-axis strokes (front crawl, back stroke) do NOT do short axis strokes (breaststroke, fly). This can cause congestion within the lane, and injuries may result.

When in doubt, talk to a lifeguard. They are always willing to talk with those in the lanes and help set a plan that works for everyone in the water.