With winter training and the start of our technique phase commencing, I have had LOTS of questions about snorkels and how to swim with them.
Step 1 – ensure your snorkel matches your bike. But seriously, your cap and goggles too if possible.
And now for some useful tips, in no particular order!
Tip #1: You wear it in the centre (not like you’re snorkelling no a tropical island with nemo), put your goggles on first, then the bar across your forehead and strap over the back.
Tip #2: Slow down and breeeeatheeeeeee. Slow your breathing down, slow your bubbles, slow your swimming. Go slow and breathe.
Tip #3: Keep your head still, and relax your neck and shoulders (or try to relax as much as possible!).
Tip #4: Breathe in through your mouth (ie. Snorkel) and out through your nose (prevents water going up through your nose instead!).
Tip #5: Think of it as if you are breathing in a “circle” the air flows in through your mouth, out through your nose, and in through your mouth again.
Tip #6: Did I mention slow down? Take your time, any drill you are doing with a snorkel means you don’t need to be going fast so if you need to stick at the back, do it.
Tip #7: Don’t overthink it
Tip #8: Don’t rush it. You might not get it straight away. It will take time. But be patient and persistent and you’ll get there!
I first used a snorkel just a few months after getting brand new (fake) front teeth and I still worry that they will fall out (Gaz, you’re on standby). I still don’t like my snorkel much and I find it very claustrophobic. I can’t stand the fact that my goggles get foggy and I’m unable to clear them easily. And don’t even ask me to put on paddles at the same time!!
I hope my tips help you and please share any other tips you may have with me so I can spread the wisdom (and benefit from it too!).