Saturday, May 7, 2011

Time Well Spent

Last night I was able to fill in for Chris and work with the Regional Development group and the Gold group after my usual 4pm-6:30pm workout with Elite and Platinum. It was a long night, but I felt that it was time well spent.

Using my iPod and a device I bought recently, I was able to show some very good video from GoSwim.TV. Glen Mills (who I met while speaking at the Swim Ontario AGM in September), runs a very good website, full of great videos. They really are helpful when trying to describe drills because they are very descriptive and visual... also, I think my athletes get tired of me talking all the time.

We worked primarily with the following 2 videos:

I felt that this video was useful, especially when many of our athletes have a hard time using the clock to calculate their times and when they have to leave on a repeat. I think that the following quote got through to quite a few people: "Without paying attention to the clock, swimming becomes exercise rather than a sport" got through to quite a few athletes. We need to remember that we're swimming to get better at the competitve sport of swimming, not just exercising. I feel that watching this video really opened some of our swimmers eyes to what other clubs expect of their athletes.

We then used this video to work on fly. Platinum and Elite followed it with a very long IM set with lots of butterfly. The expectation was to swim well while fatigued.
Regional Development focused more on timing and stroke past the drills:

My observations before the work on these drills was that many of the swimmers would use 1 weak kick and then allowed their legs to sink. As they sunk, their body position changed and so did the position of their hands on the catch. Rather than facing down, they were parallel to the surface which created an pull up rather than a pull forward (picture a kitten in the water trying to keep its head above water). After work with rythym and focusing strongly on the second kick, I was observing monumental increase in velocity, stroke consistancy and stamina through the stroke.

I was really happy that we did this work with those groups. I particularly think that Chris has done a miraculous job with the Gold group. There are many swimmers in that group that look to be of much better quality than HHBF has had in that rank ever before. They should all be proud of themselves, as should all of the groups that I got to do this with yesterday. Good work produces great results.

Glen Mills' website can be found at and all of his videos can be found on Youtube (his Youtube Channel is There is also a free iPod App available. Please check him out, lots of great information available for free. Thanks for making all of this available to us, Glen!