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People swim for competitive sports, such as the Olympics event, as well as for aerobics and others do it as a recreational activity.in exercise activities such as running, your body temperature, hydration levels and sweat rates are affected by the intensity of your exercise and the air temperature, but the water temperature you swim in is likely to affect your swimming duration and performance. It is very important for people to learn how their body reacts to different water temperatures, so as to avoid dangerous conditions when swimming. Outdoor swimming can mean ponds, rivers, and the sea and can include wet suits. Without lane ropes and pool ends swimming outdoors is a very different experience: you may quickly find a whole range of strokes you didn’t know you had, from Australian backstroke to sidestroke and doggy paddle, as you mill around looking at the riverbanks and clouds. The essential principles of swimming well apply equally to indoor or outdoor swimming, but a few changes to your technique may make you more efficient. And help you adapt to some features of the outdoors that you don’t get in the pool – wavy water, and the need to see where you’re going. What is an ideal swimming water temperature? A difficult question to answer as it depends on an individual swimmers preference.
The Warm Water Effect
Swimming in water that is too warm over 90 degrees Fahrenheit can lead to overheating and exhaustion particularly when you are exerting yourself by swimming several laps or a marathon. Warm water increases your body temperature, which also raises your sweat rate and quickens dehydration. Your body tries to cool itself down through sweat to regulate your body temperature. Profuse sweating can lead to an imbalance of electrolytes, which can affect muscle mobility. Open-water swimming in warm climates can expose you to water temperatures that are too warm, which can cause muscle spasms and severe fatigue. USA Swimming notes that sometimes-warmer water can be appropriate, such as for Aquatic Therapy, but activities like that are supervised and not done for very long.
Taking a Dip in Cold Water
When you get into cold water, your blood vessels widen to allow warm blood to increase your body’s temperature. Your body will eventually start closing the blood vessels to maintain your core body temperature and prevent organs from shutting down. The body cannot restrict blood flow for long, so your blood vessels reopen, which increases the risk of cold blood flowing to your organs and leading to hypothermia. Anything below 60 degrees Fahrenheit without a wetsuit can lead to shivering or cold shock. The severity of symptoms depends on your tolerance to cold temperatures, according to the National Center for Cold Water Safety.
Cold Water against Warm Water
Warm water at about 90 degrees Fahrenheit can increase your metabolism and speed when swimming, but a cooler temperature of 70 degrees Fahrenheit is safer for swimming because the body can adjust better to colder temperatures than warm water, Swimming in cooler water also helps you swim for a longer duration without the risk of heat-related exhaustion. However, swimming in water cold enough to make you shiver can eventually lead to hypothermia. When swimming in warm temperatures, such as a heat wave in open waters, keep your exertion level low or swim for short durations to prevent heat exhaustion.
The Ideal water Temperature
The water temperature ideal for swimming varies, depending on your activity. Generally, the more intense your aerobic activity, the lower the air temperature needs to be. The ideal swimming water temperatures is 82 degrees Fahrenheit and cooler are ideal for competitive swimming and high-intensity swimming; the air temperature should range between 78 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit. For recreational swimming and moderate exercise, 86- to 88-degree water is optimal, while the air temperature should be between 82 and 84 degrees Fahrenheit. To avoid dangerous water or air temperature, swim when the pool is monitored by an aquatic fitness professional and ask about when the pool’s temperature would be right for your activity.
To be credible, any safety advice must be based on well-researched facts. The claim that bathing in inland waters is inherently dangerous because the waters are cold is, as we have seen here is misleading as it overlooks the real danger of bathing in comfortably warm waters. And it’s very important for people to learn how their bodies react to different water temperatures, so as to avoid dangerous conditions when swimming. These same temperature variations apply in the indoor and outdoor swimming pools. At the end of the day, you decide which pool temperatures you are comfortable with, as there are artificial ways to alter the pool temperatures. Understanding the effects of different water temperatures not only adds vital knowledge, but also helps us make informed decisions while constructing and maintaining our swimming pools.