I was at the pool a couple of days ago - getting in a short workout of my own - when one of the managers of the aquatics center stopped me in the middle of my set. He said: "Hey Dave, can I tell you something that I'm seeing in your stroke?"
Now, I'm a good swimmer. And I'm pretty comfortable with my stroke. But this gentleman has been around the swimming community for a long time. His wife is the head coach of a college team here in Colorado Springs. And he did his own share of swimming back in the day. So I knew he must have seen something.
He told me what he saw (it was something my left arm was doing during the recovery phase of my stroke). I made a change, and immediately felt a difference. He then commented: "Yep, that was it. Looks much smoother." I swam a little more and could tell there was definitely a positive change that was made. I thanked him for his input.
The message here? Always be open for constructive feedback. You never know where good advice might come from, and it's never too late to find ways to improve your performance.