Short Underwaters, Sprints, and Race Pace

Ryan Woodruff, Lynchburg YMCA

This was our SCY workout this morning. The race pace set at the end came from Mike Anzano of COM Aquatics

This blog has always been and will continue to be a FREE resource for the global coaching community. As for many coaches, the COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant negative financial impact for my family.

If the Swimming Wizard has provided value to you and you have the means, donations are gratefully accepted via PayPal and Venmo.

The One Where Coach Couldn’t Speak

Ryan Woodruff, Lynchburg YMCA

Right now on Saturday mornings we have just a 1 hour practice. Due to having to yell over a lot of noise at practice two days ago, my voice was almost totally gone for this one. The kids did a good job with minimal instructions and encouragement from me.

This blog has always been and will continue to be a FREE resource for the global coaching community. As for many coaches, the COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant negative financial impact for my family.

If the Swimming Wizard has provided value to you and you have the means, donations are gratefully accepted via PayPal and Venmo.

Pushing the Pace

Ryan Woodruff, Lynchburg YMCA

After two weeks back in the water, we did this one to push the pace and enjoy racing our teammates. To properly social distance, we had swimmers going from both ends of the pool, thus the opposite instructions that allowed me to time both groups. SCY.

If the Swimming Wizard blog has provided value to you and you wish to support my efforts, donations are gratefully accepted via PayPal and Venmo.

IM Warmup

Ryan Woodruff, Lynchburg YMCA

In the past, we have often done a “standard warmup” 90+% of all practices. We have a good routine and it has served us well.

As we come back from the pandemic, I am no longer doing standard warmup (for now).We have shorter practices and I don’t want us to fall into any routine — I want to keep everyone on their toes. Here was our warmup preparing for today’s IM set.


This blog has always been and will continue to be a FREE resource for the global coaching community. As for many coaches, the COVID-19 has had a significant negative financial impact for my family.

If the Swimming Wizard has provided value to you and you have the means, donations are gratefully accepted via PayPal and Venmo.

Video Station and Back or Breast

Ryan Woodruff, Lynchburg YMCA

SCY. This morning we set up our underwater camera to get a closer look at our dolphin kicking and how we can improve it. Swimmers at that station kicked a 25, watched their video, panned the camera for their next teammate, and then got back in line to kick.

The second station got some short rest quality swimming with good technique.

Kick set to finish off the session.

Back in the Water!

Ryan Woodruff, Lynchburg YMCA

Our team got back in the water yesterday for the first time since March 13. We are limited on time and space, but at least we are swimming. Here is our first practice, 55 minutes in length in a SCY pool, focused on freestyle body position and stroke length.

600 warmup free with open turns and 4 dolphin kicks off each wall

6 x 75 25 flutter kick on R side/25 on L/25 catchup @:10 rest

4 x 3:00 Fartlek @3:30

#1 – 20 flutter kicks on your side and then take 1 stroke

#2 – 16 kicks and same

#3 – 12 kicks and same

#4 – 8 kicks and same

6 x 200 @:20 rest

Odds 25 free min cycle count / 25 back

Evens free descend to 80% effort

100 ez warm down

IM’ers Delight

Ryan Woodruff, Lynchburg YMCA

SCY. Every good IMer needs to be a breaststroker. This set worked a little of both. We started from the shallow end of our SCY pool, so the 200 breast included 20 eggbeater kicks in a vertical streamlined position in the middle of each 50 where we would have deep water.

This set was first published to this blog in May 2020.

Sprint Challenge Set for Meters

Ryan Woodruff, Lynchburg YMCA

This set can be done in a SCM or LCM pool. All 35, 65, and 95s are done from a start and timed to the head crossing the line.

Athletes are instructed to go all out on the 35. The goal for the 65 equals 2 x 35m time. The goal for the 95 equals the 35m time + the 65m time.

4x

35m sprint, 100 ez @4:00

65m sprint, 100 ez @4:00

95m sprint, 100 ez @5:00

We did the set 4x through to allow our IMers to go 1x each stroke.

 

This set was originally published to this blog in May 2018.

Blackjack with NRG

Raymond Keown, NRG Swimming, Leavittown, PA

Blackjack Drill:
-100/125/150s (or appropriate distance for ability) on a moderate to tight interval (make it harder over time).
-Swim 21 cycles then streamline kick the remaining distance.
-If you make the distance 3x in 21 cycles or less= BLACKJACK- your done with the set.

This encourages kids to lengthen their strokes so that they kick less and get more rest at the end of the repeat.  The tight interval keeps them from exaggerating their stroke too much and maintain some moderate tempo.

*we do allow the kids to “cheat” by doing more underwater dolphins off the walls (kills two birds with on stone).

Once someone gets Blackjack, they move up in distance x25.

This set was originally published to this blog in April 2017

4 Lanes, 4 Speeds, 1 Freestyle Set

Ryan Woodruff, Lynchburg YMCA

This SCY set allowed us to keep the group together on the same 5:00 interval. Each group/lane swam different distances (as indicated at the bottom of the dry-erase board) based on their ability.

We started each new round together. Swimmers were instructed to descend (swim faster) across the three swims even if/when the distance might stay the same.

This set originally appeared on this blog in May 2018.

Kicking Test Set for all Abilities

Ryan Woodruff, Lynchburg YMCA

This kick set worked well with the wide range of kicking speeds in our group. Swimmers aim for the fastest total 400 time (25+50+75+100+75+50+25=400), always doing a 50 easy on a :50 interval. 6 easy 50s means there is a total of 5:00 “active recovery” in the total set. Coach can start the watch and just subtract 5:00 from the total time at the end of the second 25. We had swimmers pick one kick (stroke) for the first round and then they can change for the 2nd round.

This set was originally published to this blog in April 2018