Back in water – Charles-Barclay rehab moves a ‘massive’ step forward

This week has seen some encouraging news for reigning 70.3 World Champion Lucy Charles-Barclay as she’s back in the pool swimming and aquajogging as she continues her rehabilitation from injury.

The 28-year-old Briton was one of the clear favourites for the rescheduled IRONMAN World Championship at St George in May but missed that race due to a stress fracture in her her hip which forced her into an extended spell on the sidelines.

The injury also ruled her out of the Sub7Sub8 project in June.

Charles-Barclay has been documenting her rehab journey in a series of YouTube videos – and this week’s update shows significant progress is being made.

‘Massive step forward’

YouTube video

Based in Austria at the performance centre of her sponsors Red Bull, she said: “It was nice to officially get the green light to start swimming again.

“I had to keep it easy, but it still felt nice to be back in the water. It didn’t feel too hard, but I definitely knew I hadn’t been in the water for a while. I guess I’m fairly lucky that for 20 years I’ve been a swimmer, so the muscle memory is there.

“It just felt like a massive step forward in terms of progress, which means I know I can build up a good level of fitness from just swimming, and hopefully that’s going to make it easier when I return to cycling and running.”

And she’s taken the first steps towards resuming running with some aquajogging in the pool.

“So whilst I was in Austria, we tended to alternate my plans so I would swim one day and then aquajog the next. I think the longest that we actually aquajogged for was around 45 to 50 minutes, but we built up to that really gradually.

“Although aquajogging isn’t an impact based activity, it’s still putting some stress through the hip and we needed to see how the body responded to that. Luckily, there was no negative response to it.”

Jonathan Turner
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Jonathan is Editorial Director for TRI247 and RUN247. He was previously Head of Digital / Comms for pro cycling's Team Sky and now spends as much time as he can running with his local club. Swimming is not yet on the radar.