48 Surefire Ways To Tell You’re A Swimmer

Photo Courtesy: Angela Robuck

48 Surefire Ways To Tell You’re A Swimmer

It takes a special breed of human to do what we do every day. Swimming for as long as we have, it’s fair to say we’ve seen a lot of interesting things in our career. Staring at a black line on the bottom of the pool is fun, right? With goggles and a cap as our weapon of choice, we course through the chlorinated water, striving to improve our skills daily. Although everyone’s journey in the water is different, some things we can all understand.

Here are 48 surefire ways to tell you’re a swimmer.

1. Your hair’s almost always wet, and your hairstyle of choice is a swimmer bun.

2. You carry around the smell of chlorine as if it were perfume.

3. Showering seems like too much of an effort, especially when you’ll be in the water in seven hours.

4. You’re always thinking about food: what you’ll eat after practice, what you’re eating for lunch, what you’re eating now, and what you’ll eat next.


Photo Courtesy: Isabelle Robuck

5. You go through a bottle of lotion a week.

6. “I almost didn’t recognize you with jeans and makeup on!”

7. Your waist is a size two, but your shoulders are a size 22.

8. Waking up at 6 a.m. is sleeping in.

9. You don’t need a hair stylist to bleach your hair.

10. Being more sore than your teammates is an accomplishment.

11. You have a different pump-up playlist for each of your events.

12. Taper is the best time of year.

taper alarm

Photo Courtesy: Makena Markert

13. You’ve experienced at least one swimming injury in your career.

14. You’ve mastered the art of deck changing.

15. Your favorite suit is see-through and covered in holes… But you still wear it.

16. You’ve accumulated at least 100 different swim caps and goggles over your career.

17. Post-meet meals are almost sweeter than victory itself.

18. You make a game out of how long your swim cap with a hole will last.

19. Swim caps inevitably lead to baby hairs.

20. You understand that land sports and water sports don’t exactly correspond.

21. Your recovery drink of choice is chocolate milk.

22. You’ve stayed late at practice perfecting your bubble ring skills.

23. A cool party trick is your hair freezing during winter time.

24. “When are we going – this top or the next?”

25.  You may be horrible at math, but you’re oddly good at counting in intervals of five.

26. The best Christmas gift is a new tech suit.

27. You have a special place in your heart for napping.

Swimmer Sleeping at Dryland

Photo Courtesy: Jonas Gutzat

28. You’re a girl and you don’t shave your legs, or you’re a boy and you do.

29. You run into class with a red face and goggle marks.

30. Whether it be swimming in the snow or jumping inside a swim cap, you’ve participated in at least one swimming related trend.


Photo Courtesy: Emily Grigsby

31. Your resume consists of different life guarding jobs and positions.

32. There’s no such thing as being good at both pull AND kick.

33. You haven’t dropped time in your best events for a couple of years.

34. Crash areas can bring on some of the most extravagant conversations and inside jokes.

Photo Courtesy: Ane Abraham

35. “Stop, honey, let me take a picture!” said every swim parent everywhere.

36. You’re most comfortable in suits so tight that they break skin.

37. Speedos and jammers represent two different levels of swimming.

38. You could wear a different swim shirt for a year and never repeat once.

39. You can swim laps with your eyes closed… Literally.

40. “Eat my bubbles” were the ultimate fighting words as a kid.


Photo Courtesy: Lilly Boardman

41. Your idol is your favorite Olympian.

42. The best part about traveling for meets is hotel breakfast.

43. Your most prized possessions are your medals and ribbons.

44. You don’t get out of the water to go to the bathroom.

45. You’re forever known as “the swimmer.”

46. Your coaches become your second parents.


Photo Courtesy: Angela Robuck

47. Your teammates are your ABSOLUTE best friends.

48. Swimming being the greatest sport in the world is a fact, not an opinion.

From broken swim caps to post-meet meals, there’s always something we can relate to. Thinking back on your own memories and experiences, what makes YOU a swimmer?

All commentaries are the opinion of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Swimming World Magazine nor its staff.

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Kelly Spencer Williams

My swimmer gets excited if hotels offer breakfast early enough for him to eat before he has to be on deck

3 years ago

Seriously? No comments? Fine… I’ll say it. I’m 36 now… and the last 4 made me cry. Not a day goes by that I don’t think about my old team, and praying life has been good to them. And some days I’ll wake up some mornings at 4am in a sweat and with my heart rate x4…and know I was racing in my sleep. Such is life for a swimmer. CGBD!

Sally Wilson
3 years ago

Annie Wilson Charlotte Wilson

Zena Ough
3 years ago

Lena Hamblyn-Ough

Paul Bertinato
3 years ago

Michelle Green-Bertinato Mena

Mareesa Bearman
3 years ago

Mark Bearman ?

Ron Goehring
3 years ago

Did not recognize you with your clothes on

3 years ago

I’m 59 just started swimming again after 25 years. And i can relate to 90% of the list, but the best was not on the list
I don’t recognize you with your cloths on

3 years ago

I am a swimmer and I cannot relate to some because I have only swum in competition since August 2019

Steve Lortz
3 years ago

Your wet a lot.

Louie in the Sky
Louie in the Sky
3 years ago

My body, mind, and spirit feel so much better in the water than on dry land!!! I am 60 and swim a mile five days a week year round. It just gets better and better!

Karen Goemer
Karen Goemer
1 year ago

Never wanting to get out of the pool

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