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Swim Speed – you must earn the right

By Peter Hendriks 

Swim speed needs to be earned, you can’t just demand it. There you go, I’ve said it. It’s not something that is achieved with one coaching session.

If you were wanting to learn Karate or Judo would it be fair to walk into a Dojo with absolutely no or limited schooling in the martial arts and request to the Sensei: “Can I start off training and, by the way, I want to start off at a green belt, coz I’m fit?” The answer would be a resounding: “You must earn that privilege.” Achieving speed in swimming is an outcome that needs to be earned as a result of increased knowledge of the physics of swimming and deliberate practice of the processes that will result in speed. Too many triathletes, Masters and or open water swimmers jump into the water and demand from physics: “I want to swim fast!”

Physics will respond: “Excellent, are you willing to:”

  • Work on your mobility

  • Work on being streamlined and your vessel shape

  • Work on staying long and relaxed

  • Work on your breathing and learn to breath properly

  • Work on your body mechanics and technique

  • Get in the pool and open water often

  •  Stay focused on the process

  •  Be patient

  • Practice, but practice deliberately on specific aspects of the stroke

  • Have your form checked regularly by a qualified technique coach

Physics again responds: “Apply my laws and apply them well and you will be rewarded.: No different than going after your green belt.”

Bruce Lee once said: “I fear not the man who kicks a thousand times, I fear the man who deliberately practices a perfect kick a thousand times.”  

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