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bexyna

swimming

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I'm getting a gym membership through in the next few weeks and I'm wanting to start to go swimming again. But...how do I get to the pool? I don't have a swimming leg. I would guess crutches would be dangerous and I can't imagine my wheelchair will work all too well either. Just wondering whether anyone else swims and can enlighten me...plus give me some hint and tips, or stories of their good and bad swimming experiences. My physio was willing to teach me so I think I'll be alright but I'm a little like a guide and always want to be prepared.

Thanks guys!!!

Bex

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When I belonged to a gym, I just wore my walking leg to the poolside and took it off there. (Forget crutches anywhere near the pool--wet floor'll kill ya.)

Now I have a swim leg and I use it for SCUBA diving...when it doesn't break 90 feet below the surface. But for just exercising in the pool, you'll do as good or better without one.

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Hi Bex,

I'm an LAK too and had the same problems / thoughts when I started swimming.

The idea of popping your leg off when you get to the pool is great (for getting there) but, depending on how your leg is held on could be difficult / impossible to re-attach once you're finished.

Personnaly I have a C-Leg so there was no way I wanted to get it anywhere near water, especially not leaving it unattended while I was swimming for a random child to throw in the pool "for a laugh". I also didn't fancy the idea of dropping my shorts in public to put my leg back on in order to walk to the changing rooms (the joys of a suction socket)!!

In the end I decided to just use crutches (as it's a little difficult to get a wheelchair on the back of a motorbike). this way my leg was safely locked away in the changing rooms and if the crutches did get thrown in it wasn't a problem. Yes, it is slippery and you do have to be careful but I've only slipped out once and didn't fall over.

On the subject of water legs, don't bother with one if you're swimming for fitness. I've got one but only use it if I'm going to be spending more time out of the water than in it or if I'm going to need to climb in and out of a boat or something. This is why they're actually called "water activity legs".

Hope this helps.

Grum

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Hi ya,

Am a LBK. I go to my local swimming pool

where the pool attendants will take me in

a poolside wheelchair to the pool

then there is a hoist chair that i sit in

and they lower me in and out the pool with

that. It's great and very simple.

Hope this helps.

Jules.

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Hi Bex,

I swim at least three times a week and I'm LAK and also in the North of England :biggrin:

I don't have a usable prosthesis yet or a swim leg so I use my wheelchair. I manage very well indeed.

Just wheel myself around, park by the graduated steps into the pool. I lower myself from wheelchair to floor, and in I go, just the reverse to get out again. My gym does have a hoist but I don't really need it so I have never tried it. Getting up and down out of the wheelchair can be done in graduated levels if that is possible at your pool, ie; wheelchair to lower level seat, then from seat to floor.

Swimming is ok, no I don't go around in circles :biggrin: I wear lycra shorts that are stitched up on my stump side, then my costume on top. Not so much to cover my stump up but to give my excess tissue some support.

I even manage to get into the sauna and steam room so get a little relaxation at the same time.

Like with anything it's a confidence thing and once you have done it a few times then you will feel better, and there are always people around to help you if you so wish.

Have you visited all the facilities at your gym to make sure it it is fully accessible?

Good luck...........................Lynne

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At one time I did use crutches and found that as long as I was very careful and went slowly it was ok. Now I use a range of methods including walking to the pool in my swimming leg and then leaving it at the side - if it gets thrown in it doesn't matter.

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I hop to the pool from wherever I've got changed (I can't use conventional crutches due to an arm problem). Always have, and I've never slipped or fallen... it doesn't involve much, I hop to wherever is closest to where I've changed. Once you're in the pool, you're better off without the leg anyway.

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I'm getting a gym membership through in the next few weeks and I'm wanting to start to go swimming again. But...how do I get to the pool? I don't have a swimming leg. I would guess crutches would be dangerous and I can't imagine my wheelchair will work all too well either. Just wondering whether anyone else swims and can enlighten me...plus give me some hint and tips, or stories of their good and bad swimming experiences. My physio was willing to teach me so I think I'll be alright but I'm a little like a guide and always want to be prepared.

Thanks guys!!!

Bex

I grew up with a swimming pool in the back yard. (above ground) I got the nickname of 'fish' from swimming so much and being over weight, they called me tunafish at first. Its changed to diff things throughout the years. My dad took down and sold the pool years ago. My sister put in a pool 3 years ago. They have a nice deck all the way around it. My first problem is getting up all those steps that lead up to the deck. Then my next issue is thinking on how am I to get out of the pool. They dont have stairs that go down, its a ladder. I am rbk and terrified of trying to hop up that ladder that they have, so I didnt go swimming this year. (lost my leg june 2 ) I miss the water. I hope you can find your way to the water easier than I can. I am trying to lose weight so this condition isnt so hard. But Ive battled with my weight my whole life. Onward and Upward and next summer maybe we will have swimming stories to share. :) :) :)

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The gym im told is fully accessible, the joys of suing an insurance company is they hire someone to do my leg work. pardon the pun. I used to love swimming and haven't been for years but want to start again. Its an adults only gym so I think I might do the walk to the pool take the leg off bum shuffle. I have an aversion to my wheelchair, and hoists etc. I think because they reminded me of how helpless I was in hospital.

My mam did tell me about my second cousin who's a below knee who used to delight going into a public swimming baths when there were children there and swim in circles in the deep end screaming I can't get out. Is it me or do you get a distinct sense of humour when you become an amputee?

Where abouts in the north are you lynn?

Bex x

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Hi Bexyna,

When it comes to swimming I have found it well worth the trouble to do a quick look/see first that way you will have no “surprises” waiting for you.

For example one place that I went swimming I couldn’t fit my arty limb in the locker (I’m lak) and there was no way I was going to leave it laying about in the changing rooms.

Other than that, the methods I use are simply hop (I’m told that I shouldn’t).

I use crutches, and leave them on the pool side

I have a swim leg but it’s too much hassle taking it off and putting it back on.

I have even “borrowed” a Zimmer frame which was quite successful as I could hang my towel on it and it was very useful afterwards when getting showered (something to hold on to.)

The only other thing that is worth a mention was that the first time that I went swimming after my amputation was I dived in and with out thinking went to a crawl style and went to kick my left non existent leg and nearly dislocated my hip socket as there was no resistance.

But whatever methods you use to get in the pool its well worth the effort,

Have fun …………………Mick (also from the north east)

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Hi:

I've only been swimming a couple of times since being rearranged. Once was on a cruise ship where I bummed my way over to the pool. It was OK once people got used to seeing me. The other was in Cuba where I wheeled as far as I could................then crawled to the sun chair...................then bummed my way to the water............................then dragged my sopping butt backards up the beach......................resulting in much sand in my trunks.

ED

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ooh sand in trunks thats not good!!!

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I have a shower leg (not a swim leg) ; when in the pool or see it just floats behind me, until it fills with water and become neutraly buoyant.

Happy to swim without.

at my gym If doing a "session" rather than a splodge, I sit on a chair, take it off and slide in.

Crutches by a pool are nangerous.

you can lean on someone and hop.

You can bottom shuffle.

Being in the water is great.

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Bex,

I started swimming laps in the early 80's and have swum over 4,000 miles. Each time I go to the gym I leave my leg in the locker and then crutch out to the pool. One thing that I learned quickly was to replace the crutch tips often and to be careful on wet floors.

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i am gonna frown upon using crutches as i have fallin a couple times while using them due to wet floors and banged my stump pretty hard.

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I have missed out swimming with the kids(6) the past couple of years. The younger ones spend most of the summer in the pool. I don't want to spend alot on a swim leg, so I'm going to give one of these covers a try.

http://www.drycorp.com/content/waterproof-...rmat/index.html

Just need something to allow me to climb the ladder and get in the pool. Thought of many ways to do it, like have my son lower me in with the skid loader and then pull me back out. don't know, may end up doing that if the protetor doesn't work. I think I would perfer to have the leg off while in the pool. Going to give it a shot instead of sitting on the sidelines.

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:biggrin: Hi,

I rediscovered swimming 4 years ago I swim almost 4 times a week.It is So relaxing and it help keep off the belly!!

At 47, Ihave been an amp for 25 years and it is the best thing I have found. It also is great because I can do it all winter .

I can suggest investing in a pair or Fetterman tips. They are 30.00 or so BUT they are just like tires and have tread and well worth the investment. I never slip when I go to the pool or in our very wet locker room. I crutch in rain and snow with no fear, but a little caution!

if you like try www.crutchguys.com

When I am out at least oncea month an map stop me and asks about them!!

Swim on!

Cynthia

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Here is the Fetterman site that Unique is speaking about. I am posting the link to the crutch TIP section. I beleive that the Tornado RT and the Performance RT would be the ones that are perfect for wet surfaces they have some new Solid body ones also for Rain..... If you scroll to the bottom of the page you can read the details.. I would think from Fetterman they are going to be Best.....hope this helps.

http://www.fetterman-crutches.com/tips.html

Mike

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Hi there,

I have been going swimming for the last 2 years at least twice a week and find it a very freeing experience. It is also great for developing your core stability muscles. As to access. I use my crutches. Am just conscious of the times that I go to the pool i.e. not when there are lots of children likely to be running about and making the pool deck wet an slippy. I have also used my wheelchair which does work. I was lucky enough to begin swimming with a group of amputees in a rehab pool. I have now ventured into the big wide world of public pools and am even thinking of taking part in a short ocean swim. So go girl is my advice. ps I don't have a swimming leg either as I am a hip disartic but I do swim with a flipper which adds buoyancy and speed. Good luck, Linda

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