I just did my first lap swim today! I learned my swimming in a short course size pool, so the pool length is 25 meters. Therefore, technically my first lap was 25 meters (the length of the pool), and it took 34 seconds.
An Olympic-sized swimming pool is 50 meters long (known as a race course or long course). My target is to do my 50 meters lap swimming within my 20th lesson of swimming.
What is a lap in swimming?
A lap in swimming is referred to as the length of the swimming pool. For example, the Olympic swimming pool length is 50 meters, so the lap distance is 50 meters.
I swim in the KIB (Krishibid Institute, Bangladesh) swimming pool, a short course pool (25 meters long). The swimming lap of the KIB swimming pool is 25 meters.
It may confuse you if you are a regular runner. In the running, a lap run means a complete circle of the path. That means you have to come back to the point from where you started.
So, for example, if you start running from point “A” and run straight for 25 meters to point “B,” to complete the lap, you have to come back to point “A.” So in total, you ran 50 meters to complete a lap.
But swimming, from point “A” to point “B,” is called a lap. So, this is one-way swimming.
It is argued that some trainers refer to both ways as a lap or a repeat. And “length” as one way. I asked some of my friends from different countries (Australia, France, and the USA), and they said it is counted as one length of the pool. Maybe in the UK, both ways are considered.
How long is a lap in swimming?
As mentioned above, there is no fixed length of a lap in swimming, but it is said that 25 meters are an ideal lap distance.
So what about the long course Olympic-sized (50 meters) swimming pool lap? Is it count as two laps?
No, the 50 meters is counted as a lap too. It may confuse you, but it is the fact. A length of a swimming pool is counted as a lap.
If your backyard swimming pool is 30 meters long, the lap is 30 meters. Simple as that.
Fun question, if I swim in the ocean, let’s say in the Bay of Bengal, what will be the lap distance?!
How many laps in 1500 meters swimming?
It simply depends on your swimming pool length. For example, if your pool size is 25 meters, you must take 60 laps to swim 1500 meters.
The calculation is elementary—Divide 1500 by the length of your swimming pool. Therefore, in a long-course swimming pool (50 meters), you must complete 30 laps to reach 1500 meters.
What if your pool length is measured in yards? Let’s say 50 yards. To complete 1500 meters of swimming, you need to take 33 laps. Remember, the yard is smaller than a meter.
Now, let’s do a math. How many laps is 800 meters swimming?
My swimming pool is 25 meters long, so 800 meters divided by 25 equals to 32 laps. What is the length of your swimming pool?
Your homework, how many laps in 400 meters swimming as per your pool?
How many laps is a mile swimming?
To answer the question, how many swimming laps is a mile, you need to know two values. One is your swimming pool length which is variable. Another is the mile value in meters.
One mile is equal to 1609 meters. Let’s say it is 1610 meters. Now, if your swimming pool is 50 meters long, you must complete 32.2 laps. To round up, you need to do 33 laps to complete a mile of swimming.
But if your swimming pool is 25 meters long, you need to double your laps. This means you must go for 66 laps to swim a mile.
How long does it take to swim one lap?
Let’s be clear; one lap means a single length of your swimming pool. So depending on the pool’s length, time will vary. For example, my swimming pool is 25 meters long, and my first lap took 34 seconds to complete. With more practice, it will come down to 30 seconds. I will keep track.
So, if I try to complete one lap in a 50-meter pool, it will take me around 70 seconds. It may take less than 60 seconds for regular swimmers, and for experts, it will take less than 50 seconds.
Let me tell you, César Augusto Cielo Filho, a Brazilian swimmer holds the record for the fastest 50 meters (long course) freestyle swimming. He completed his task in just 20.91 seconds!
I don’t know if I can survive to complete my 50 meters lap. I barely complete my 25 meters lap! But I know with more practice, I can complete 50 meters lap soon. After that, I will go for 100 meters lap.
Do you know it took only 14 minutes 31.02 seconds to complete 1500 meters of swimming by Sun Yung? It was in London Olympic Games, 2012.
How to keep track of laps while swimming?
If you are new to swimming, you don’t need to keep track of your swimming laps. Instead, your target should be completing as many laps as possible with our stopping. I think once you can complete two laps at a time, only then you can keep track of your timing.
Learning how to swim as an adult is hard. Here is how I started my swimming journey at the age of 29.
If you want to take part in any competition, you must keep track of your laps. You need to track 2 parameters here. One is your timing; the second is your swimming lane. Of course, it would be best if you swam in a given lane. So it would help if you swam as straight as possible.
You can use a smartwatch or a fitness tracker to keep track of your time. There was a pace clock in my pool site to track time. Those who don’t have access to a wristwatch can use the pace clock to track their time.
Lap Swimming Etiquette
While swimming, you have to maintain some rules if you are not the only person swimming in the lane. These are known as lap swimming etiquette.
Stafford Hills Club did a fantastic video on that. It is fun to watch and important to follow.
The first lap is essential. No matter if it is 25 meters or 50 meters. Once you complete your first lap, you can keep repeating the laps.
Start with the small one. Then, gradually aim for longer laps. For me, lap swimming means continuous swimming without pause. I’m not going to take part in the Olympics. But it’s fun to keep track of my laps and push myself to do better than the last lap.