Find out what Max Depth Underwater is, how it's measured, and the ideal and typical depth for each stroke and pool length.
What is Maximum Depth Underwater?
Maximum depth underwater is exactly as it sounds, it’s how far down you went during your underwater swimming before returning to the resurface each length. This metric is great for helping realize how much extra work is caused by swimming down instead of out, and how to monitor progress in decreasing this depth. If you go deep on your starts and turns, this is one of the lowest hanging fruits for improving your times.
How is it measured?
This metric measures changes in barometric pressure on the unit to determine your depth below water, and records the deepest point during the underwater phase of each lap.
What is a good Max Depth?
Just like with push depth, you want to aim for between 40-60 cm (14 - 23 inches) as the max depth you achieve. Less than 40 cm (14 in), and you are fighting against the wave force or friction at the top of the water caused by your turn, any deeper and you are wasting too much time and effort swimming downward and upward when you could be going forward.
The Max Depth chart below shows where the general population falls on this metric, in centimeters. Check to see where exactly you fall for each stroke and pool length.
How to Improve Maximum Depth Underwater?
The key is to pay attention to body position on entry, both from a dive and from a turn. If your body is pointed downward off the turn or dive, you will go deeper by default. Utilizing our hand positioning will help redirect the rest of our body to ensure you do not continue to go deeper once you reach the ideal depth range.