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How to Get Out of a Swimming Rut

Le 31 October 2018, 18:24 dans Humeurs 0

The age group swimming plateau is an experience that just about every swimmer will encounter over the course of their swim career. That certainly doesn’t make it any easier to deal with when it inevitably happens.

Whether you are in a small slump, a year-long funk, there are plenty of things that you can do and should remember. Not only are plateaus common, but they are avoidable.

The biggest pointer I would recommend is for swimmers to take a look at their process instead of their results. Here’s what I mean: swimmers will typically view how they performed in competition and use that as a basis to determine that they are plateauing.

While understandable, it’s not entirely fair.

If you really want to see if you are plateauing look at your process. Are you going to more workouts? Are you doing more meters at race pace? Are you doing better in the kitchen? Are you making sleep more of a priority?

These are the things you should be looking at in your determination of whether or not you are plateauing. Performances in competition rely on a wide variety of things, some of which you don’t control. Don’t allow a race that lasts a minute or two indict your entire training cycle or season.

Look at your process first.

Okay, with that out of the way, there are some simple things you can do to help bust yourself out of a rut, where things feel stale and you just want to shake things up.

Here are some of my favorite ways to bust through an age group swimming plateau:

Diversify your swimming. Sure, you aren’t dropping time in your best event, but that doesn’t mean other distances and strokes won’t see some serious improvement if you give them some TLC. More often than not removing the pressure of “This is my best event so I have to go a best time or else!” and moving our focus to other events frees us up to eventually perform better in our favored races. It’s another reason to train your “off” strokes. Stroke variety is the spice of life, man.

You aren’t recovering enough. You can only train as hard as you are recovering. If you are perpetually sleep deprived, eating garbage, and not managing the stress of daily life you are going to consistently walk onto the pool deck with half a tank. Improving requires being at your best, so take the same focus and commitment to your recovery as you do your training: sleep like a champion, eat like champ, and stay on top of your schedule.

Change up your environment. Believe it or not, habits and motivation are highly influenced by your environment. Switch lanes at practice. Start from the shallow end instead of the deep end. Breathe to your weak side. Train with faster swimmers. Subtle changes in the environment can have profound effects on your swimming. You don’t need to quit your team or change coaches to get a taste of newness in the pool and head-butt your way through that pesky plateau.

5 Tips for Better Swimming This Year

Le 21 August 2018, 09:24 dans Humeurs 0

Ready to unleash some faster swimming this season?

Sure ya are—here are some proven ways that you can get more from yourself in the water this season, whether it’s hammering down on a high-performance mindset or spending a little extra time doing warm-down, let’s get you swimming like a rock star this season.

Write down your workouts. One of the hallmark characteristics of elite swimmers is their ability to be self-aware. This keen sense of objectivity allows them to make course corrections more quickly when things are going well (but could be going even better) and more importantly, when they aren’t going well at all. Writing out your swim practices and reflecting on your performance gives you a moment to step back from the pool and get a clearer idea of where to go from here.

Master your breathing. Swimming is a unique sport in that you have to work on your technique, strength, aerobic capacity, starts, turns and more, and then, on top of all that, you need to condition your lungs and respiratory muscles to time your breathing properly. There are a few different ways to improve your breathing capacity. There are different breathing exercises for swimmers that boost their lung capacity, including using a respiratory training device, breathing patterns, and hypoxic sets.

Work on your mental training. Similar to the point above, a lot goes into your swimming. But how often has your workout or your races gone to garbage because of a mental hang-up: Perhaps you were focused, or you weren’t motivated enough to push hard in training, or you got overly nervous before competition. You don’t need to go full tilt with everything that mental training has to offer, but you should target the problem areas in your swimming, committing ten minutes a day to get started.

Warm down after your intense workouts. Ever notice that on the nights where you train your brains off that it takes a while to get to sleep? That’s because your body is coursing with cortisol and adrenaline, which can take up to two full days to return to normal levels. A simple way to speed up this process, while also improving your ability to clear lactate from your blood, is to perform 15 minutes of active recovery at the end of your most intense workouts.

Foam roll it out. Foam rolling has become quite the fun thing to do for everyone from high performance athletes to casual gymgoers to those seeking physical therapy. When done properly foam rolling helps to decrease muscle soreness, it reduces arterial stiffness, can help you perform more explosively in the days following a tough workout, and can increase flexibility faster than static stretching alone. Commit to doing 10-15 minutes of foam rolling after your workout, and then again later in the day or the following morning to help loosen things up and promote blood-flow.

The Benefits of Swimming with Water Noodles

Le 19 May 2018, 20:59 dans Humeurs 0

The pool noodle is one of the most enjoyable pieces of swim equipment kicking around the pool deck. The uses for it are basically only as limited as your imagination.

Whether you are just splashing around, learning to swim, or looking to get a serious workout in, there is plenty of awesomeness that comes when you pick out the best pool noodle for your water activities.

Here’s just some of the fun things you can do in the water with these bad boys:

Getting used to being in the water.

For those of us getting into the water for the first time it can be an intimidating experience! We watch the lap swimmers cruise back and forth with seeming ease and wonder how we will ever get that fast when we don’t even like putting our face in the water.

Using a pool noodle can introduce us to the water without having to wear a full size life jacket. Simply wrap it under your arm pits and lift your feet off the bottom of the pool and you are floating.

Play around with different positions—front, back—to get an idea of how to align your body in the water for max flotation and comfort.

Great for water jogging.

For those of us who are a little heavier (no judgement here!) using a water noodle is more comfortable than wearing a flotation belt. More importantly, it provides a decent amount of flotation that we don’t sink straight to the bottom of the pool when we are trying to run across it!

Teaches you how to float on your back.

Wrapping the pool noodle around you like a scarf and “falling” backwards across the surface of the water helps teach you how to float on your back. This experience can be a little terrifying for the novice to the water, but being comfortable on yoru back is wildly important for general water safety. Sure, you might know how to swim, but in an emergency situation you want to be able to turn and float comfortably on your back to rest and catch your breath. Using a pool noodle at first can help you achieve buoyancy in an effective manner.

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