It is amazing what people can accomplish with enough motivation!!!

Ryan Woodruff, Lynchburg YMCA

This was our finish to practice today. We have done 25s underwater pretty consistently, so every swimmer knows his or her best time. The lifetime bests were written down on a dry erase board and this challenge was thrown. If you can beat your best twice, you get to go home. Amazingly, more than half of our swimmers were able to accomplish this feat. The mind is an amazing thing!

The I.M. Merry-Go-Round

Ryan Woodruff, Lynchburg YMCA

SCM. We did this IM Set recently. At the conclusion of the set I asked each swimmer two give me two scores on a scale of 1-10. The first score was for how challenging the set was (lowest score was an 8), the second was for how well they thought they did (lowest score was a 7).

Note the stroke instructions on the right were different for each of the four parts on each round. On the 16×25 of the fly round, the EZ 25 was permitted to be freestyle, but on all other rounds all 25s were of the specific stroke.

Total distance: 4,000m

Total time: 1 hour, 20 minutes

Q: Why is it called the “I.M. Merry-Go-Round”?

A: Because it looks fun, but after an hour you can’t wait for it to stop!

Do you sometimes need an idea for practice? Would you like to receive a free email to help spark your creativity? Then sign up for my e-newsletter to get a dose of information, inspiration, and innovation delivered every once in a while.

Speed at the Start, Speed at the Finish

Ryan Woodruff, Lynchburg YMCA

SCM. We timed the first 15m from a dive with a target time from our pace cards. The next 70m was focused on good turns, breakouts, and underwaters. With 15m to go, swimmers paused and floated/sculled at the surface. When 1 swimmer in each lane was ready, a coach yelled “Go” and they commenced a sprint to the finish.

The next issue of “the wake-up swim” is coming soon. Check out the archives here to see what you’ve missed or you can sign up here.

The Freestyle Squeeze

Ryan Woodruff, Lynchburg YMCA

SCM. This set really brought on the burn. FPA = Fastest Possible Average. JMI = Just make it. Initially, the 7 x 50 were not written on the board and then were added during the 2nd 200 scull/swim by 25. This added a surprise challenge that they excelled at.

Make sure you are following the Swimming Wizard on Instagram and Twitter for hundreds more ideas, sets, and swim workouts from coaches all over the world.

23 x 1

Ryan Woodruff, Lynchburg YMCA

SCM. This set was designed to push to the brink of failure. A few of our swimmers passed that point – all were challenged. Instructions on the first 9 were to make the interval by at least 3-5 sec. The 1×100 @ 2:00 was easy.

Last set of 3 was “just make it”.

Free Get Faster Set

Ryan Woodruff, Lynchburg YMCA

SCM. The aim of this free set was to gradually accelerate into some high effort swims.

Do you sometimes need an idea for practice? Would you like to receive a free email to help spark your creativity? Then sign up for my e-newsletter to get a dose of information, inspiration, and innovation delivered every once in a while.