I swim several times a week in the lap pool at my health club. I started slowly, but now I can easily do laps for thirty minutes, and that's excellent aerobic exercise, I believe. The only problem is that my swimming technique is terrible. Many other lap swimmers can breaststroke faster than my crawl, thay can backstroke faster than my sidestroke. All my strokes look wrong, and I've forgotten how the breaststoke and the trudgeon work. If I take some classes and improve my technique, I shall feel prouder about my swimming, and I will also be able to swim more laps, with less effort, in my allotted thirty minutes.
But would that be a good thing?
My goal is to exercise. And at my age, I'm unlikely ever to need to rescue another swimmer, or swim a mile to save myself. Improving my swimming technique might actually mean burning fewer calories in thirty minutes of pool time. Why don't I leave bad enough alone?
There's something about men's competitiveness going on here. I suspect it's hopeless. In fact I have to admit that I've been improving my technique on my own, and I can't wait to have time to get some decent instruction. If that means burning fewer calories in thirty minutes? I don't care!