I was jones'ing for some non wheelchair or crutch related cardio today so we headed down to Brisbane's oldest swimming pool, the "Spring Hill Baths", established in 1886. The change rooms are great, just little booths on the side of the pool. One side is marked for "Gents" and the other for "Ladies".
We had the whole pool to ourselves so I felt very comfortable going for it and figuring this one out. I guess its out of the way location and the flashier health club pools have taken much of the old clientel away. You know... that and the fact that none of the original patrons from 1886 show up for Saturday afternoon tea at the pool anymore.
Swimming turned out to be surprisingly simple and nearly identical to swimming before the surgery. I had expected to be swimming in circles but my left leg held its own in the water, pushing me along at about 60% of my right leg, making it easy enough to compensate with body positioning and arm strength.
Treading water was where I really noticed the difference. I used to rely a lot more on my feet for this one so having only one meant I used a lot more energy to stay afloat. Again, just a few minor adjustments to my body position helped on this one. It didn't take long to figure out that I needed to use a sort of stomping motion in my left leg rather than the "peddling" motion I used in my right.
Swimming seems like a great way to strengthen the effected leg as well as providing a nice cardio workout for someone in "leg limbo" like myself. I can't very well jog and visions of falling off my bike at crosswalks have kept me off the peddles. My scar line has healed up nicely so this seems like a great option.
Oh... and Lisa would like to point out that she finally beat me in a swim race. Yep, she clobbered me by about a meter. In my defense, she was standing on the side of the pool taking photos while I did about 30 lengths to get a few good shots, and she was a leg up on me. This win will be her last.