Age Group Taper Speed Set with Coach Nicholas Wooters

Nicholas Wooters
Head Coach, Director of Competitive Swimming at The Bay Club

PSRP Panthers
Bay Club Redwood Shores
Redwood City, CA

We have a championship meet for our age groupers this weekend. We are going to go through a small (VERY SMALL because they are age groupers) quick taper (3 days) leading into this weekend. Here is what we did today to focus on race specifics/race details in short speed burst situations.

Our main set was 3,450yards with intervals that kept things moving along but were not very challenging.
200 smooth
#1-#2 = blast the breakout (to 12 1/2)
#3-#4 = blast the finish (final 12 1/2)
#5-#6 = blast both  (1st and last 12 1/2)
#7-#8 = whole 50 fast

1×50 smooth
1×100 FAST from the blocks

    100 smooth
        #1-#2 = blast the breakout (to 10)
        #3-#4 = blast the finish (final 10)
        #5-#6 = blast both  (1st and last 10)
        #7-#8 = whole 25 fast
    1×50 smooth
    1×50 FAST from the blocks


"The Guessing Game"

Ryan Woodruff,  Lynchburg YMCA

This set is useful for helping distance freestylers refine a sense of pace.

? x 100 freestyle @ coach’s send off

Continue until you achieve 3 points.

Earn 1 point by guessing your time correctly within .5 seconds
Earn 2 points by guessing your time exactly to the tenth of a second
Earn 3 points by guessing your time exactly to the hundredth of a second

Swimmers may swim whatever speed they wish.

I like to use the Guessing Game during taper, typically at the end of practice. Once a swimmer achieves his three points, he warms down and is done with practice.

Tip: Be sure to turn off your pace clock or have the swimmers turn away from the clock when you send them off. You don’t want them looking at it – there won’t be a pace clock at the meet!

This set was originally published here 12/3/2009.  Visit our archives for more excellent training sets and ideas.

Speed set for taper time

Jack D. Roney
Assistant Senior Coach/YOTA Masters

Here is a set that I have found extremely beneficial as a great “Approaching Taper” speed set. It allows the swimmers to focus on quality of stroke while still trying to put in some speed as the athletes approach a taper meet.

500 Free on 5:30
16×25 (1-Smooth / 3-FAST) on :40

400 Free on 5:30

12×25 (1- Smooth / 2-FAST) on :40

300 Free on 5:30

8×25 (1-Smooth / 1-FAST) on :40

200 Free on 5:30

4×25 (ALL FAST) on :40

100 Free on 5:30

1×50 (For Time — SPRINT)

**NOTES: The 500/400/300/200/100 should be all focus on technique. A bit more speed may have to be put into the first 500 depending on the level of swimmer you are coaching, but the 400/300/200/100 should become much “easier” to make the interval. Therefore, attention to detail in EVERY aspect remains high. Perfection swimming is the goal in all non-“FAST” swims.

As you get more rest, the FAST 25s should be as described (100% intensity) but with obvious focus on technique.

I made the athletes hop out of the water after the 300/200/100 and stretch for several minutes before the next set of 25s began.

Quality during the weeks leading up to a meet was the main focus when I was being coached, and is by-far the most important aspect in my workouts AS a coach for my athletes as we approach our taper meet.