Watch This Elite Swimmer Try a Special Forces-Inspired Workout Underwater

Swimming can be a highly effective form of full-body exercise, but have you ever looked at a pool and thought “this needs to be more extreme”? In a recent video on the MySwimPro channel, swimming coach and three-time U.S. Masters Swimming National Champion Fares Ksebati attends a Deep End Fitness workout class, which combines regular swimming with less conventional training techniques to improve functional fitness.

The workout includes a range of exercises, including swimming sidestroke while carrying a diving brick above the water’s surface, grabbing goggles off the bottom of the pool (with your hands behind your back), swimming underwater lengths, doing a dumbbell carry along the bottom of the pool, and then getting out to perform sets of 10 pushups and 10 squats. As instructor Don Tran explains, the entire program is built around “FREE” principles: focus, relaxation, economy of motion, and efficient breathing.

Fares concludes the session with a game of underwater torpedo, a sport created by Special Forces instructors which has been a popular pastime in the military for more than 10 years. “The sport was created as an aquatic training tool to build water confidence, teaching people how to handle discomfort and control stress and anxiety while accomplishing a very specific task,” he says. “These lessons translate well both in and out of the water.”

“The workout was a lot of fun, and definitely something different to lifting weights or just swimming on my own,” says Fares. “I learned a lot, pushing myself both physically and mentally.”

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