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Swimming with weight - why is it so hard?
Coho - 10/30/2007 9:59 PM
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Category: Educational
Comments: 1
What do folks know about the mechanics of swimming with weight? A couple days ago I was swimming a short distance to a platform for a pumpkin-carving contest. Because pumpkins float, I had with me a second weight belt, which I hooked over the weight belt I was wearing. I expected it to be a little awkward, but I was surprised that I made very little headway forward, either on the surface or underwater. Why would this be? I eventually got out there (maybe 30 feet from shore), but it took a *lot* of effort. Then again, it wasn`t as bad swimming back to shore underwater, so perhaps I`m just confused... (To clarify, I did not have a float bag; when it had air in it the pumpkin was pretty buoyant, but that was it, other than my vest.)


ReefHound - 10/30/2007 11:13 PM
Even though the weight is "less" under water than it would be on land, it still has the same mass subject to the laws of physics, i.e. inertia. It takes a greater amount of energy to move a larger mass. You wouldn`t be able to push a cruise ship even though it floats.