Equipment Needed for Swimming & Diving

Equipment Needed for Swimming & Diving
Although swimming and competitive diving are both separate sports, much of the equipment is the same. While there are specialty swimsuits designed to promote faster swim times, some suits can offer additional skin protection to divers. Equipment needed for swimming and diving varies greatly when it comes to training gear. Swimmers use a variety of tools to help them build strength, gain proper form and reduce swim times. The equipment used by divers is primarily boards, trampolines and surfaces outside of the pool to help practice proper form.

Proper Swimwear

Proper swimwear for swimming and diving is important. For those looking to get a workout from swimming or diving, comfort and fit are the most important aspects of a proper swimsuit. New fabrics can eliminate resistance and have been proven to improve times in competitive swimming. Durable fabrics can help reduce wear and tear on suits, particularly in those using chlorinated water. Weighted suits can help in training and lighter fabrics can improve buoyancy (and therefore overall performance).

Eye Protection

Eye protection is available in the form of masks or goggles, although masks are not used by divers. Anti-fog goggles, prescription swim goggles and nose-covering masks are all types of eye protection offered by swim companies. Additionally, specialty sprays can help reduce fog on traditional goggles or masks. Mirrored goggles that can help divers and swimmers see the water's surface also are available.

Ear and Nose Protection

Ear and nose protection comes in various types and is used primarily by swimmers. Silicone, wax and rubber ear plugs can all help reduce water in the ears and the instances of infection, and water-resistant ear phones can help plug ears to both protect and entertain swimmers. Nose plugs, nose clips and mask/snorkel sets can enhance the swimming experiences of both amateur and experienced swimmers.

Skin and Head Protection

Head protection in the form of swim caps or hair gels that protect and coat hair strands from sun and chlorine are used by many swimmers and divers who train both indoors and out. Skin protection in the form of shirts or full-body swimsuits help prevent rashes and excess sun exposure. Body glide gels and sticks help swimmers glide through the water and anti-chlorine body lotions can keep chlorine from absorbing into the skin while swimming or diving.

Training Gear

Training gear for swimming can include fins, weighted fins, hand weights, kickboards for sidekick workouts and to relieve neck pain, pull buoys to promote upper-body strength, finger paddles to enhance breaststroke training, ankle locks to prevent feet from splitting during sets, hip rotators to help with upper body roll and fitness gloves to improve glide through the water. Hydro-resistant dumbbells, weighted belts, leg training weights and jog belts are all used by swimmers-in-training. Waterproof wrist watches with timers and water shoes are also used by those who practice resistance training in the water.

Training gear for diving includes springboards and trampolines, portable platforms, water agitating systems to help divers see the water's surface and balance boards to build strength and balance.

Article Written By Kendall Olsen

Kendall Olsen has been writing for more than 20 years She is a University of Missouri-St. Louis Gateway Writing Project Fellow and has published instructional materials with the McDonald Publishing Company. Olsen holds an Ed.S. in educational technology, an M.Ed. in secondary English curriculum and instruction, a B.S. in elementary education and a B.A. in art history.

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