Top 18 Worst Types of Swimmers to Practice With

Photo Courtesy: Jeremy Crawford

By Nick Pecoraro, Swimming World College Intern.

Waking up before the sun rises, diving into a cold pool, getting water stuck in your ears; these are a few of every swimmer’s least favorite things.

A swimmer’s pet peeve can even take the form of a person. Everyone knows at least one person who does something off in practice that gets you rattled. But who is the worst person to practice with? Then so begins the countdown of the top 18 worst types of swimmers to practice with:

18. The Staller

They take forever to get in the pool. Why? Perhaps they’re legitimately having some last-minute suit or goggle issues. Or, they’re trying to skip as much of warm-up as possible.  

17. The One Who Can’t Put On a Cap

Apr 15, 2015; Mesa, AZ, USA; North Baltimore Aquatic Club teammates Allison Schmitt and Michael Phelps check their goggles during practice session at the Arena Pro Swim Series at Skyline Aquatic Center. Mandatory Credit: Rob Schumacher/Arizona Republic via USA TODAY Sports

Photo Courtesy: Arizona Republic-USA TODAY Sports

“Can you cap me?”
If you’re in high school or college, you should know how to put a cap on at this point. If not, there are a hundreds of tutorials on how to put on a cap.

16. The One Who Proceeds to Sprint Warm-Up

The pool is cold, you’re feeling out-of-it, but you want to survive swim practice. Typically, the best way to get prepared is by getting your heart rate up. Yet there’s still that swimmer who immediately thinks that means sprint time.

No, not yet.

15. The Kicker

laura-kicking

Photo Courtesy: Jeremy Crawford

For some reason, kickers are just a species of their own. This rare talent can sometimes get to their heads, and they maybe get a little too hyped for kick sets.

14. The “Coach, we got one more left.”

phelps-face

Photo Courtesy: USA Today

*cough* Coach’s pet. *cough*

13. The Lane-Line Puller

Sometimes, you need a little bit of help. And what’s right next to you? An awesome lane-line with little handles for you to grab. The lane-line wants to be your friend, until your coach notices…

12. The One Who Only Tries at Meets

When you’re at swim practice, you train how you would swim at a meet. Obviously, this theory isn’t officially proven. Why? There’s always that one person who treats every set like a cool-down, yet at a meet, they can pop off a 21 in their 50 free.

11. The One Who is Always Hungry

anna with snacks

Photo Courtesy: Julie Karl

“How dare you talk about food. Now I want food! But there’s only an hour left of practice, and I’m stuck here thinking about food.”

10. The One Who Needs A Potty Break

Coach: “Blah, blah, blah – awful set – blah, blah.”
Conscience: “How convenient, I have to go the bathroom. Bye!”
(A few minutes later)
Coach: “Alright, only three more left!”
Conscience: *smiles deviously*

9. The Chatty Cathy

brian-swim

Photo Courtesy: Dan Vos

Cathy: “OMG, did you see that one episode?” *swims a 25* “Did you get your tickets for Coachella?” *swims a 25*
“I did not understand that one geometry question.” *swims a 25*
Me: “Hey, does anyone know what number that was?”
*dead silence*

8. The “Go in front of me.”

nick-post-set

Photo Courtesy: Emily Slenk

Me: “Go in front?”
You: “Yeah, I’m super worn out”
Me: “And sacrifice my precious rest?”
You: “But you’ll pass me if I stay in front.”

7. Who’s got spirit? This one’s got (too much) spirit! 

swimming-is-just-fabulous

Photo Courtesy: WeKnowMemes.com

2-4-6-8 who’s that teammate? The only person who gets excited about any kind of set that requires motivation. Don’t worry, their totally awesome words of encouragement will be ringing in your ears… the whole set.

6. The One With the Cramp

fly-takedown

Photo Courtesy: Jeremy Crawford

Unless your calf muscle is bulging out of your leg or your shoulder popped out of its socket, it’s not an emergency. Hop back in the pool.

5. The Save-It Sally

The set is 10x100s best average. You’ve been holding 1:05s – not too shabby. Your teammate next to you is right with you the whole time. You race each other on the last one, but you don’t see him. You come in and go a 1:06. Your teammate? He popped a 59.

4. The One Who Swims Down the Middle of the Lane

lane-collison

Photo Courtesy: Jeremy Crawford

Dear Friend,

That big black T at the bottom of the pool? Swim around it, not directly on top of it.

Sincerely,
My Swollen Hand

3. The One Who Doesn’t Know What’s Going On

rachel-confused

Photo Courtesy: Jeremy Crawford

Swimmer One: “When are we leaving?”
Swimmer Two: “This top.”
One: “Wait, I thought we’re leaving on the bottom?”
Two: “Go now!”
One: “Oh whoop-” *swims frantically*
Two: “Dude, it’s build on this one”
One: “Hold on, is this on the :55?”
Two: “You were supposed to leave…”
One: “Hang on is this a 75 or-” *leaves confused*
Two: *splashes in* “This one’s a 100”
One: “Oh wait, now I get it!”
Two: *ugh*

2. The Try-Hard

nick fly

Photo Courtesy: Jeremy Crawford

It’s not a bad thing to try in practice – that’s what makes you better. However, you can sometimes have a little too much of something. That’s where the try-hard comes in. You can feel their competitive edge from the other side of the pool. They’re bouncing on the wall in between 50s, leaving the wall with such force. At the other wall, you can see them finish and look over to see if they beat you. By now, you’re a little sick of this, and… “Yes! I beat them!

1. The Dreaded Toe-Toucher

paul-post-race

Photo Courtesy: Jeremy Crawford

The toe touch is the mother of all swim pet peeves. It could occur as a result of many factors. Maybe you’re in front of someone who thought this 50 was fast. Maybe someone left a bit too early behind you and wanted to let you know they did. Or it could be your pal, Save-It Sally. Even if you’re diving into a freezing pool or your hand hits the lane-line, nothing is more unpleasant than someone touching your toes.

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

18 Comments

18 comments

  1. Daf Corella

    Gael ayer el número 13😂😂

    • Daf Corella

      Deberían agregar también a la lista “el que te hecha agua a cada rato, sin importar si te estás ahogando “ 😒😂

  2. Jessica Lee

    Georgia Lee Chelsea Furlong Elliot Jones

Author: Nick Pecoraro

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Nick Pecoraro is a sophomore at Calvin College studying kinesiology with an exercise science emphasis. He swims breastroke and the IM for the Knights.

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