Just because you didn't quite get the time you wanted, or the swim felt like a trip down the water rapids at centre parks. It doesn't mean that it will be the case next season if, you work on your technique for the year ahead.
Efficiency in the water is key when it comes to the swim.
The average adult who does triathlon is at the same technical standard as a 9 year old swimmer. Now imagine going on a bike ride with a child, they wouldn't last. But yet if you take a child swimming they could probably keep up with your pace. How is that? Technique.
I want you to imagine your body is a house. If you want to build a house that can withstand the elements, you need to build strong foundations. Here are a few tips that can help you with your swimming this winter;
If you can't breathe properly when swimming then you wont be able to swim more than 2 lengths without feeling you need a ventilator.
Don't hold your breathe. Try holding your breathe next time you go out for a run and let me know how it goes.
There should be a constant flow of air out when your head is in the water and breathe in when your head comes out of the water. You want to think about taking deep breathes out from the diaphragm rather than making hamster cheeks and breathing from the mouth.
Drills to help you relax with breathing
2. Body position.
You need to be as streamlined as you possibly can. Hips, shoulders, feet in one long line. Not ankles dragging along the floor or legs too wide apart- this is only going to create extra drag.
I had a client say to me recently "I will be wearing a wet suit so that will keep my legs afloat, so I don't need to worry about my body position or leg kick". My response. "Well, as you are doing a Triathlon in Majorca next year, I am not sure you will be wearing your wetsuit. Also what if we have a record breaking scorching summer? Do you want to be wearing your 3mm thick insulating wet suit? I think not. So work on your leg kick!
Drills to help with alignment
Kicking On The Side
3. Catching the water.
The most propulsive part of the stroke is the catch. Some people like using hand paddles to help them feel the water, I like to take it back to basics with drills to break the movement down. The Doggy Paddle drill is very useful for this, whilst performing the drill you want to think about your hand and forearm acting like an oar to help propel you through the water. Use a pull buoy in between your legs so you can focus on your arms. I would perform 150 meters as this and a further 150m that consist half the length doggy paddle half the length full stroke.
Drills to help catch the water
Invest the time in the winter to work on your technique as you will become much more efficient in the water which will lead to better results next season.