How to pack for swimming

So you’ve heard about the benefits of swimming and you are in the zone to go. But what things do you pack for swimming? A swimsuit and towel may both be obvious essentials, but here are a few suggestions of other things to help ensure you have the best possible experience at the pool.

Things to pack for swimming to wear

  1. Swimwear. This may be a swimming costume, trunks, shorts, t-shirt and/or leggings. Check with your pool to see if there are any guidelines on what swimwear it allows. Some pools will not allow certain swim suits.
  2. Towels. A towel is essential for drying off after your swim. You may want to consider taking more than one. It’s always good to be prepared!
  3. Robe. If you are nervous about walking around the poolside in your swimwear, it is a good idea to bring a towelling robe to cover up and keep warm.
  4. Swimming cap. Swimming caps can be useful for those with longer hair. They not only keep the hair out of the face, but also reduce ‘drag’ to make swimming that bit easier.
  5. Goggles. Although not essential, wearing swimming goggles is recommended if you are new to swimming. When you pack for swimming, adding goggles will make swimming a bit easier and protect your eyes from chlorinated water.

Other things to pack for swimming

  1. Toiletries. The chlorine and other chemicals used in the swimming pool can leave skin and hair a bit dry, so make sure you remember your shampoo, conditioner, shower gel, moisturiser and any other toiletries you may need.
  2. Hair clips or hair bands. For those with longer hair, bringing hair clips or hair bands is an idea if you are planning to swim without a cap.
  3. Flip flops or poolside shoes. You may not fancy going barefoot, or you may have concerns about slipping on poolside. If this is the case, pack some flip flops for your walk from the changing rooms to the pool.
  4. Locker coins. Some pools allow you to bring your bag on to the poolside, but others have lockers which usually require coins. There’s nothing more frustrating than getting to the locker to find out you need a one pound coin or a token. It’s probably worth calling ahead first to ask the receptionist what you need for the lockers.
  5. Water bottle. Swimming is a form of exercise. When you swim it’s important to keep hydrated. In a pool you won’t notice how much you sweat and therefore how much water you lose. Remember to bring a water bottle, keep it on the side of the pool and take regular sips.
  6. Snacks. Pack a small snack such as a banana for straight after your swim. This will help to replace energy burnt, while reducing the risk of raiding the vending machines post-swim.