Archives for the month of: January, 2019

We will be doing time trials this week and the second of our three regular time trials over the Winter.  To help you prepare please try and get into a good mindset to see time trials as an interesting challenge. 

I know many of you get anxious and don’t like the pressure but I do hope you are able to give it a try.  The article I posted last year about getting into a good time trial mindset is very relevant here based on one of Helen’s articles about “Challenge and Threat.”  You can read it again here.

See you Saturday!


I will be away next week and Chrissie has kindly offered to cover the Saturday session for me (swimming one of them as I do.) It will be the final session in January where I’d like you to continue focusing on maintaining the shrug of keeping your shoulders near your chin throughout the pull all through the warm-up and main set.  You can see this position well in the picture below of Nathan Adrian from the video Speedo have done on his stroke.

See you in two weeks for the next set of time trials!


We are going to keep the technique work going throughout January, as we did last year, before we start the build towards more race pace swimming from February onwards.  And for January the focus is going to continue to be on the underwater part of the pull by focusing on connecting your catch, with good EVF, to the powerful push part of the underwater pull.

This week I would like you to focus on your posture and shoulder position.  This should help you get more power in each stroke.  To illustrate the point I have a videos and two pictures to illustrate the point.The video here is from Brenton Ford at Effortless Swimming that illustrates the difference in strength possible with a good posture.  To focus on posture this week I would like you to think about keeping your shoulders forward and near your face during the pull.  You can see the difference between a poor and good shoulder position  in the photos below.

These photos are from Sheila Taormina’s excellent Swim Speed Secrets book and show Jack maintaining a high and forward shoulder position which helps engage his strongest muscles for a powerful pull, and also helps keep a vertical forearm for longer through the pull.  The drills we will be doing this week will help you focus on this.  Please work on your shoulder position during both the drill and main set and see if you can feel the difference in power connecting your catch to the powerful back-end of your underwater pull.

We will stick with the usual pattern of doing time trials every 2 months – on the last Saturday of the month – and the next time trials will be at the end of January.  We won’t be doing any speed work before then so any improvement in your performance is most likely to come from technique. So please focus on your technique over the next few weeks by getting a good lever, with an early vertical forearm, to push yourself forward using a strong core rotation all controlled with shoulders near your chin.

See you Saturday,


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