MAV and swimming


I’ve been reading this forum for the last few months but this is my first post. I’ve had MAV for the last year although I’m lucky that on most days the vertigo is noticeable but quite mild. I do have bad days but mostly it doesn’t affect my life or work too much.

Before this started I was a keen swimmer and street/jazz dancer. I’ve had to change my dance class to tap dance which doesn’t involve fast turns so I can continue dancing. How ever I’ve had to stop swimming. My vertigo is fine when I’m swimming but as soon as I leave the pool, it gets much worse. Does anyone have similar problems? I’d hate to think I can’t swim anymore.

On a final note I wanted to say how great this forum is. It really helps to hear from people who are going through this.


Hello and welcome, Jenlo,

That’s an interesting question. I haven’t had any experience with swimming since my MAV issues, so I can’t answer your question directly, but it makes me wonder if it has something to do with your inner ear regulating itself as you swim, but then not being able to right itself as it were, when you are on land. Do you know what I mean? I’d be curious to hear what other responses you get regarding this.

Best, Bonnie

I started out with a similar experience; swim okay–usually, at least if I didn’t exhaust myself–but get out and vrooom-vroom. Lifeguards would come over, concerned. Diet straightened me out, or maybe diet+nortriptyline. Now I still have to pay a bit of attention when I swim, and notice if my thoughts get a bit fuzzy or I start noticing synaesthesia when I look at the pool ceiling. If so, no prob; I just need to slow down a bit.

When I get out of the pool, I may be a bit uncertain on my feet. S’okay, if nec I can sit a minute.

Another trick that may be helping is that I’ve gotten religious about having a cuppa water at the edge of my lane, and stopping for a drink as I notice I’m getting parched.

Hi Jennifer,

I used to be bad every time I got out of the pool after swimming, staggering to the changing room. I thought it was the head movements while I was swimming.

Then one day I took my daughter to the baby pool and didnt swim that day because I was with her and when I got out, same thing happened, dizzy and fatigued. I figured it was the chlorine in the pool. I dont seem to be that bad after a quick dip in the sea. Worse paddling just in the sea with the movement of the waves going by though.


Thanks for all the replies.

David, I’m glad to hear you still manage to swim. I’m currently seeing my doctor to try different medications to help the MAV so if it improves, maybe I can try swimming again. I struggle with changing my diet as I work full time and find it difficult to find time to prepare all my meals avoiding certain foods and using fresh ingredients. Plus I love eating chocolate too much! :smiley:

Christine, it’s interesting to hear that you think it’s the chlorine and that swimming in the sea affects you less. I always assumed it was the motion of the water and that swimming in the sea would give me more problems so I haven’t been brave enough to swim in the sea yet. I’d be interested to find out if others have problems with the chlorine too.



To be honest with you Swimming in a pool makes my MAV worse cause i’m so Motion Sensitive. The little waves in the pool going about every which way…well that is what i’m already experiencing in and around my head so if go into a pool and the little waves nudge me from all over that just increases all the symptoms, especially motion. So unfortunately i stay away from swimming.