Archives for the month of: October, 2017

I will be away this week and Chrissie has very kindly offered to coach the second session while I am away.  We will be following a similar structure to the last couple of weeks with a pull set followed by a technique set and finishing with a mainly aerobic-based main set.

The technique set is moving beyond the sideline kick from the last two weeks into both Unco and Reverse Catch-up.  This means there is more to think about with both arms and legs moving at the same time.  The focus is the same, though, and I’d like you to think about high-elbow catch and pushing straight backwards (no cross-over under your body) as you use your strong core-driven rotation to finish each stroke.

The main set includes a little bit of kick and faster-paced swimming alongside the majority of steady-paced work.  Use the kick to focus on a strong core-driven kick from your buttocks.  For the faster-paced sections focus on getting a maximum speed for minimum effort (which you will get by keeping your high-elbow catch and strong core-driven rotation).

Have a good session and see you next week!


This week with will be continuing with the same theme of high-elbow and rotation from your core.  We will be doing similar drills – sideline kicking and Unco – as well as a mix of pull and swim sets.  So please focus your efforts in all of the sets on a good technique, as follows:

  • In the pull set take advantage of the slower arm speed and higher resistance of swimming with paddles to focus on levering yourself past a fixed point in the water using your core.
  • In technique subset focus on the basics of high-elbow catch and rotation.
  • In the main set focus on maintaining the benefits of your good technique on every repetition throughout the set as you being to tire.

We will also be doing a bit more kick in this session and all the sessions building up to Christmas.  Kick is good for working on your core fitness so focus on really kicking with straight legs from your glutes and core.

See you tomorrow!


Well done to everyone who braved the high chlorine levels on Friday and Saturday last week to attempt some of the challenge swim at least.  The Duty Manager was very apologetic and did everything he could to reduce it with extra water and opening the door, with all the chemicals turned off, but it took a long time to even out.  The good news is that the water quality was so much better on Tuesday so hopefully it will remain so.

This week we will be starting more technique work and steadier-paced swimming in the Winter training leading up to Christmas.  There are lots of things to look forward to in this period, such as time trials, some fun new drills and video analysis, but we are going to start with some simple sideline kicking drills this week.  I would really like you to think about three main things when doing this:

  1. Really engaging your core muscles to hold a good straight body position
  2. Making sure your lead arm always has your palm facing down and your elbow higher than your hand, ready to start a high-elbow pull
  3. Keeping your head looking down (only looking slightly forward to check your high-elbow) and only moving when you turn for a quick breath

After the technique set the most important thing to do is to try and keep what you have been practising on the drills throughout the main set and beyond.  Think “technique” on the first length of each rep and keep it going.

See you Saturday!


It’s the end of the main triathlon season now for most of us (unless your name is Don and you are Kona bound) so it’s time to celebrate with a special swimming session.  The Juniors will be at Thetford so we have the pool for 3 hours meaning we can do our favourite long set of 100s.

We will be doing two 1.5 hour sessions from 7am till 8:30am and 8:30am till 10am.  We will be doing a long set of 100s in both sessions giving you the opportunity in each session to do 5km in lane 1, 4.5km in lane 2, 4km in lane 3 and 3.5km in lane 4.  Or why not double up for a really monster set of distance training!?

Three things I’d like you to do on Saturday, please:

  1. Bring a drink and appropriate nutrition for the length of set you are planning to tackle.
  2. Focus on efficiency in your stroke and good technique – especially maintaining a high elbow catch with core rotation to finish each stroke strongly – when you are starting to fatigue.
  3. Enjoy both the personal challenge and sharing it with everyone else in your lane, too.

See you Saturday,


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