Hey everyone,

I just saw this article today about breathing more when we swim: http://beginnertriathlete.com/cms/article-detail.asp?articleid=2356, and followed one of their links to this video: http://www.theraceclub.net/videos/breathing-patterns/.  Basically, they're saying to breathe more than every 3rd stroke, though I actually breathe less.  Now, I'm not a fast swimmer, and perhaps this is part of my problem, but I just feel like I'm gasping for air when I don't take the time to let it all out and get a big, full breath.  In the pool, I usually breathe every 4th then 5th stroke, alternating between the two, but I breathe more like every 3rd then 4th stroke in an open-water race situation.  Am I crazy?  How do you all breathe?

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I'm not a fast swimmer either.  i used to breathe every 3rd stroke, but recently found myself doing every two on the right side.  After reading in a blog somewhere that it is best to make sure you can breathe on the left side at IMFL since it is counter-clockwise and the waves will be coming in.  So at least I have a couple weeks to start working on the left side for the turn.  I do feel faster when I breathe every 3rd or 4th stroke, but I too run out of air quickly and don't feel like I can maintain that very long.

Hi Mike:  Food for thought, the sun will be at your left on the 800m way out, blind you as you come across for 200m, then on your right as you swim the 800m to shore.  Then again on the second lap, only worse glare because the sun is higher in the sky.

I come from a swim background and breathe every stroke (I favor the left).  The swim is the first part of a very long day.  I try to stay strong and comfortable and for me that means air at every opportunity.



I breathe every 3rd stroke and bilateral breathe. I've tried to breathe just on one side but my neck starts to hurt. I'm not to fast and hope that the waves arent to bad and I dont swallow a tone of ocean water.
In the pool I am a bilateral breather. It took me sometime to master the skill but it makes everything so much easier. I wish I could get as comfortable doing this in a body of water. If I find clear water I can get into the groove, but if there are others around me I fall back into old habits and breath on one side.
I'm not fast either (sound familiar?), I did a 3K swim in just over an hour.  I can breathe bilaterally but I generally am more comfortable breathing on the right.  I breathe every stroke.  I know I'm a real exception.  Seem s to work well for me.

mike...im with ya. i'm a one sided breather so i work on a longer gliding stroke but a strong one. idk? if this is any indication of that conviction but i swam IM LOU in 1:08 doing this. i believe if you do not have a whole year or more to accomidate a major change in breathing then why go backwards. i always worked hard on the technique to make up for the one sided breathing. thats my story an i'm stickin to it


In my half yesterday, I breathed about every 2nd then 3rd stroke, because I wanted to keep using both sides but practice breathing more.  It worked really well, except when the waves were coming in the same side I was breathing on. :-)

My real problem in the water (at the risk of offering TMI) is that no matter how hard I try, I can't pee while swimming!  At least not in my wetsuit.  But I spend so much time and energy trying to relax enough to do it that I slow way down.  Guess I should just give that up and plan on using the bathroom in T1.



Maybe this will help. Just imagine you are swimming in this big ocean of water with 2,500 people around you, oh wait that is really going to be happening, sorry. 


I have the same problem and it really isn't something one should practice in a pool. I had the same problem at IMWI until someone draped a huge bed sheet over a wall and it said wave if you are peeing in your wetsuit. Te pressure was off and the rest was history. I find if that moment comes the breast stroke is often my choice of swimming.

When I'm training I breathe every 3rd but have discovered I cannot do this in race situations. Always every 2nd in a race or I get totally messed up.


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