Swim Ergometers

How easy is the Ergometer to assemble?

The Vasa Ergometer requires very little assembly, as most of the difficult parts are already put together when it arrives to you. Clearly illustrated instructions and all necessary tools are included with every machine. Allow about thirty minutes to complete the assembly.  Watch SwimErg assembly demonstration.

If you need help, please call Vasa’s customer service and technical support toll-free at 1.802.872.7101 M-F, 9am-5pm Eastern Time.

How much space does the Ergometer take up?

The Swim and Kayak Ergometers are 8’ 6” long x 28” wide.  We recommend a usage space of 10’ long by 4’ wide, to allow the full range of motion in every direction.

What is the recommended environment for the Ergometer?

The Vasa Ergometer is designed to be used and stored in relatively dry areas with low humidity. Because of its sophisticated electronics and internal configuration, we do not recommend using or storing it for long periods of time in environments with high levels of chlorine or ocean air. If used on pool decks, we strongly recommend placing it on a dry floor during use and then storing it in a dry area with low humidity and low chlorine levels in the air.

How much maintenance is required?

Regular maintenance of your Vasa Ergometer is an important component of years of enjoyable, functional, and safe use. Maintenance requirements will vary considerably depending on how much use your Vasa Ergometer gets. Please read the guidelines carefully, as these recommendations are made to help you maintain your Vasa Ergometer most effectively.

Read the owner’s manual for complete details.

How do I adjust resistance on the Vasa Ergometer?

There are three ways to adjust the resistance:

1. Damper Door: You can open the door in 7 increments. Setting number 1, when damper door is fully closed, provides the least resistance. It feels like swimming with a current or like paddling downstream. Setting number 7, with the door is fully open, provides the most resistance. It feels like swimming against a current or paddling upstream.

2. Flywheel: Variable wind resistance feels like the resistance of swimming in water – the harder & faster you pull, the more resistance you feel.

3. Trainer Strap System: This popular accessory utilizes a strap system and rubber tubing allowing the ability to perform a series of key swim-specific strength exercise.

NOTE: Tether Cords are rubber cords that are designed to prevent the seat from rolling too far forward. For example, if you set the damper door fully open at number 7 and want to do butterfly intervals applying maximum force, you would attach the tether cord. Every new Vasa Ergometer comes with one tether cord.

Which Ergometer model is right for me?

The Vasa Ergometer is currently available in multiple configurations, including: SwimKayak and SUP.

The Swim Erg includes handles and swim paddles. It is perfect for swimmers, triathletes, surfers and anyone looking for a freestanding, versatile unit.

The Kayak Erg comes with a molded K1 seat, foot brace, kayak paddle shaft and a pair of exercise handles.

The SUP Erg comes with a wall mounting bracket, SUP paddle shaft, and exercise handles. If you want to use it for swimming, most standard freestanding benches (sold separately) will work well along with a pair of power paddles (additional accessory).

All versions allow you to attach Ankle Straps for leg exercises or use the Exercise Handles for a variety of functional upper body exercises.

Is the Ergometer safe for people of all ages / abilities?

The Vasa Ergometer is simple to use, sturdy in construction and completely safe for use by people of all ages and abilities. It is easy to determine a safe operating resistance. If your children safely play on a jungle gym or other playground equipment, then they’ll safely enjoy the Vasa Ergometer.

Vasa Trainer or Vasa Swim Erg: Which model is best for me?

The Vasa SwimErg and the Vasa Trainer both help you become a stronger, faster, and more powerful swimmer. You will accomplish more in less time, thanks to the high-quality training they provide. If you want to see a side-by-side comparison of how each rank by training benefit, review our Model Comparison Chart.

What exercises can I do on the Ergometer?

In addition to the primary sports-specific training, you can perform a wide range of exercises on the Vasa Ergometer. You can do functional training exercises for strengthening abdominals, arms, back, chest, shoulders and legs. Each exercise can be performed at a resistance setting that is appropriate for your specific need, be that strength, power, speed, endurance, rehabilitation or flexibility.

Add the Trainer Strap System (accessory) to greatly increase the number of swim-specific strength exercises.

Can I accomplish hip roll / body rotation for freestyle?

Accomplishing a complete hip roll and body rotation on any swim bench cannot be simulated perfectly. This is because the axis of rotation while swimming in water is a straight line through the center of your body. On a swim bench, the axis of rotation is about four inches below the stomach, which requires the swimmer to roll over, rather than with, the axis of rotation. In water, the body is buoyant, which allows the swimmer to catch the water at full arm extension and initiate the arm pull with a hip rotation by driving the opposite hip toward the bottom of the pool while pulling with the opposite arm. The hip rotation engages the core abdominal muscles and transfers that energy into the pulling arm.

To a degree, swimmers can effectively condition the core muscles used in hip rotation while training on the Swim Erg. The padded benches on Vasa Ergometer (and Vasa Trainer) are designed to allow the swimmer to activate and strengthen the core muscles used in hip rotation while performing Freestyle exercises. This is accomplished by simultaneously driving one hip into the padded bench just at the catch of the opposite arm. If the swimmer uses proper stroke technique, then hip rotation on the bench will activate the correct muscles of the core torso and will provide better conditioning.

The difference between swimming Freestyle on the bench with and without hip rotation is quite noticeable. Swimmers can find slight destabilization and greater activation of core muscles by swimming Freestyle while laying on a long Aeromat pad, a rolled up towel or placed lengthwise on the Vasa padded bench.

Learn more about Better Freestyle Body Rotation from world record holder, Karlyn Pipes.

Can I do Swim Erg workouts to substitute pool workouts?

Yes, it’s easy to simulate typical pool workouts using the Vasa Ergometer. Many swimmers and coaches use it for intervals, timed sets or long aerobic workouts. The Vasa Ergometer allows you to do swim-specific aerobic or strength sessions effectively, on your own schedule, in the comfort of your home, or club. The gains made by using the Ergometer are easily transferred to the water.

World Masters Swimmer of the Year, Karlyn Pipes, discusses how to use the Vasa Ergometer as a substitute for the pool: