Swim with your Apple Watch

From laps in a pool to a freestyle across open water, your Apple Watch Series 2 or later is ready for a swim with you.

Start a swimming workout

  1. Open the Workout app. 
  2. Scroll to Pool Swim or Open Water Swim. Use Pool Swim for laps in a pool and Open Water Swim for swimming in places like a lake or ocean.
  3. Tap to start the workout or tap the more button the More icon to set a calorie, distance, or time goal.
  4. For Pool Swim, turn the Digital Crown to set the pool length. This helps your Apple Watch accurately measure your laps and distance. Then tap Start.
  5. Wait for the three-second countdown. To skip the countdown, tap the screen.

When the workout starts, the screen automatically locks to prevent accidental taps from water droplets.

  • To pause your swim, press the Digital Crown and side button at the same time.
  • To resume your swim, press the Digital Crown and side button again.

To check your progress, check your watch face. You can choose which metrics you see on the screen.

Apple Watch Series 1 and Apple Watch (1st generation) aren't suitable for swimming. Learn about the water resistance of your Apple Watch

Unlock your Apple Watch and clear water from the speakers

When you start a swimming workout, your screen locks to prevent accidental taps. You can see the Lock icon the water lock icon at the top of the screen. To use your watch, you need to unlock the screen.

  1. To pause your workout, press the Digital Crown and the side button at the same time.
  2. Dry your screen. If your screen's wet, the water might cause accidental taps.
  3. Turn the Digital Crown to unlock the screen and clear any water from your Apple Watch. Your watch makes a sound, and you might feel water on your wrist.

To lock your Apple Watch again, swipe right, then tap the Lock button .

End your workout

  1. To pause your workout, press the Digital Crown and side button.
  2. Turn the Digital Crown to unlock the screen.
  3. Swipe right, then tap the End button the end workout icon.

When your workout ends, your Apple Watch shows you a summary of your workout, including the strokes that you swam. To see more, check your workout history in the Activity app on your iPhone. 

View splits and sets

  1. On your iPhone, open the Activity app.
  2. Tap the Workouts tab.
  3. Tap the workout that you want to view. 

The Pool Swim workout automatically tracks your splits and auto sets, while the Open Water Swim workout tracks splits. Splits are your total workout time divided by distance. Auto sets show your rest and swim time separately.

In earlier versions of watchOS, your rest time was subtracted from your splits. In the latest version of watchOS, your splits include your rest time.

Get better results

  • Your Apple Watch estimates your measurements during workouts based on the information that you entered during setup. Here's how each workout is measured: 
    • Pool Swim: When you start a workout, be sure to accurately set the pool length to help your Apple Watch measure laps and distance. GPS isn't used during a Pool Swim, and water might prevent a heart-rate measurement, but calories, laps, and distance will still be tracked using the built-in accelerometer.
    • Open Water Swim: GPS will only provide distance when you do a freestyle stroke. Water might prevent a heart-rate measurement, but calories will still be tracked using the built-in accelerometer.
  • Learn how to update your personal information.  
  • See your Activity history.
  • Learn more about the Workout app
  • Learn about each workout type on your Apple Watch.
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