How can I remedy problem of trapped air on long swims?


Our resident Olympian answers your swimming questions

If I do a longish swim (ie, 3km plus) I often end up very bloated afterwards with trapped air. It can really hurt sometimes! Anything I can do to remedy this?
Becky Horsbrugh 

If it is happening on long swims where you feed, try and burp when you stop at feed stations. This will help deflate your stomach and stop the pain. Also, if you do a bit of backstroke for a few strokes every couple of 100m it can help dislodge the air. I hope this helps as I know how painful it can be!

“Swimming was my whole life for over 20 years. I poured every ounce of enthusiasm into it. I am so fortunate to have found these new outlets for that enthusiasm.”

Cassie Patten won bronze in the first ever Olympic 10km marathon swim, in the Beijing 2008 Olympics.
Cassie now coaches and is a frequent commentator at open water events.


Email your questions to: with the subject ‘Coach Cassie’

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Issue 42 October 2020

  • Q&A with Jaimie Monahan - marathon swimmer and Queen of the Ice
  • Autumn swim adventures around the UK
  • The science behind cold water acclimatisation
  • Reviewed: The Best Open Water Goggles
  • The often deadly history of unsupported marathon swims

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