Rob Brydon took swimming lessons from a neighbour ahead of starring in 'Swimming with Men'.

Rob Brydon

Rob Brydon

The 53-year-old actor stars as a floundering accountant who joins an all-male synchronised swimming club as a means of escaping his marriage woes, and Rob - who has always been a keen swimmer - has admitted his neighbour helped him to develop a better technique.

He confessed: "If I was on a boat on holiday, I'd be happy to jump off the side, have a swim and climb back in, swim with turtles, all that stuff. But I never really had any technique."

Rob - who is playing the lead for the first time in his film career in the new drama - explained how the new stroke benefited him.

The Welsh star told The i newspaper: "It's a kind of reach and glide thing, don't bring your face up too much to breathe and then reach. If you do it properly, with the proper kicking, you really feel the benefits in your body."

Rob also underwent a two-week bootcamp, learning the routines for four hours a day, alongside his castmates, who include the likes of Jim Carter and Rupert Graves.

But the actor - who describes himself as a "short, middle-aged Welshman with bad skin" - insisted he never worried about having to strip off to his Speedos to shoot the film.

He said: "I think that's a non-actors' quandary. Actors are used to all sorts of humiliating things."