Dealing With Foot Cramps In The Pool


Hi folks,

If you get a foot cramp in the pool, your first temptation will be to stop and pull on your foot until it eases off. But you can’t do this in an open water race, so why would you do that in the pool? My approach is to flex my foot, which turns it into a drag-anchor (but suck it up!), and relax. Now, this relaxing thing with a foot cramp is no easy matter as you try to hold your pace, but it can be done, trust me. With a modicum of mental effort you’ll lose very little time and the cramp will eventually go away. They often start as you push off of the wall, so push off with the unaffected foot (if there is one), because there is no wall in the lake or the sea.

Pretty simple really!

-k @FitOldDog

Yesterday’s Swim (From Rick Fee):

400 Warm-up, 500 12:00, 2 x 250 5:50, 4 x 125 2:50, 5 x 100 1:50, 200 Easy, 12 x 75 1:30, desc by 4’s, 400 Pull, 200 Warm-down – 4100 yards (I had trouble with the 5×100 at 1:50, but I made it, while the last set of 75s was a killer).



  1. Pauline Watson says

    This is great advice! I find that if I swim on a day that I have run, I am especially susceptible to foot cramps, especially if doing synchronized swimming which involves toe pointing! I’ll give this a try. We also get hamstring and calf cramps with synchro/running – same advice? I have heard bananas can help = due to the potassium – would you say there is any truth in that?

    • Hi Pauline,

      Same advice, but a much tougher challenge. I have yet to find anything that works apart from getting those muscles loosened up using a roller and avoiding over-training.

      Yep! Much worse after running or biking, which I do not recommend. Get your swim out of the way before these, if you can.

      Got to run (literally).


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Disclaimer: As a veterinarian, I do not provide medical advice for human animals. If you undertake or modify an exercise program, consult your medical advisors before doing so. Undertaking activities pursued by the author does not mean that he endorses your undertaking such activities, which is clearly your decision and responsibility. Be careful and sensible, please.