Swimmers in Hambleton can now chart their progress in the pool thanks to a new training aid.

The district council, working with Swim England has introduced swimtag in all its pools – a revolutionary wristband tracking system.   It can tell swimmers how many lengths have been swum, how fast they have been swum and how many calories were burned.

It is suitable for all levels of swimmer – from novices looking to improve their stroke and fitness levels right up to serious swimmers.

It also enables them to enter competitions and challenges – individually or as part of a team – follow training plans, and access information on how to improve their technique and strokes.

Swimtag has been made possible thanks to a grant from Sport England to boost swimming across the district – the £30,000 makes it available at the four centres in Northallerton, Thirsk, Bedale and Stokesley.

Swimmers wanting to use the system must first register online at www.swimtag.net. When they swim at one of the centres they will be given a Swimtag band to wear which is logged into their personal account.  It will then chart that session and the results will be available on line immediately.

“It’s a great way of seeing how well you are doing during each swim session,” said Councillor Bridget Fortune, who has recently taken up swimming lessons to improve her confidence and technique.

“I am using swimming to get fit as well – so plan to take up some of the challenges it can set me.  Seeing my progress encourages me to work even harder the next time I get in the water.”

Hambleton is one of 12 councils across the country working with Sport England to encourage more people to use their local swimming pool. The council is about to embark on a programme of improvements and awareness raising to encourage residents to improve their health through swimming. This includes SwimTag and the introduction of Pool Activators – district council employees working in the community – to help get more people swimming.

A spokesman for Sport England said: “We’re delighted to be working with Hambleton District Council to make Swimtags available in local pools. Swimmers in other areas have found that they really motivate you to take to the water more often, build up your fitness and be more healthy.”

  • The pool at Northallerton’s Hambleton Leisure Centre is closed until 11 December  as part of a major refurbishment and improvement programme at the centre – users are encouraged to use one of the council’s other pools in Thirsk, Bedale or Stokesley.

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