Saturday Swim Session: Swim Golf

Swim Golf is a style of workout that you can use to enhance your efficiency and technique swimming. This session is perfect for Ironman and Olympic distance triathletes or people doing longer Ocean Swims.

Each week I will load three options up for you to do. Option A is for swimmers who are after a workout less than 2,000 metres. Option B is for swimmers who are after a workout between 2,000 and 3,000m and Option C will be greater than 3,000m.

Option A

  • 200m WU;
  • 8x 25m Drill;
  • 8x 50m (25m Drill/25m Swim);
  • 8x 50m Swim Golf 10sec RI;
  • 8x 25m Drill;
  • 200m CD (1,600m)

Option B

  • 400m WU;
  • 8x 25m Drill;
  • 8x 50m (25m Drill/25m Swim);
  • 8x 50m Swim Golf 10sec RI;
  • 8x 25m Drill;
  • 8x 50m (25m Drill/25m Swim);
  • 200m CD (2,200m)

Option C

  • 400m WU;
  • 8x 25m Drill;
  • 8x 50m (25m Drill/25m Swim);
  • 8x 50m Swim Golf 10sec RI;
  • 8x 25m Drill;
  • 8x 50m (25m Drill/25m Swim);
  • 8x 25m Drill;
  • 8x 50m (25m Drill/25m Swim);
  • 8x 50m Swim Golf 10sec RI;
  • 8x 25m Drill;
  • 200m CD (3,400m)

Start the workout with a Warm Up (WU) covering 200m (Option A) or 400m (Options B and C). During the warm up feel free to stop and stretch as needed.  It doesn’t need to be a continuous swim.

Next up are eight repetitions of 25m Drills.  Feel free to use fins whilst doing the drills. Do the drills below, twice through:

  1. Kick On Side (KOS) left side 
  2. Kick On Side (KOS) right side 
  3. 6/1/6 
  4. 6/3/6

I wrote an article about Swimming Drills previously. Click here to read and watch it.

Next up are eight repetitions of 50m Drill/Swim, where you do a drill for the first 25m of the repetition and then normal swimming for the next 25m swimming. Feel free to use fins whilst doing the drill/swim set. Do the drills above again twice through.

Take your fins off for the Golf set. During this set you will need to count your strokes for each 50m rep (of which there will be eight). Time each length and add the time (in seconds) to the number of strokes taken to complete to get a Golf Score.   i.e. if it takes you 50 seconds and you take 50 strokes your Golf Score will be 100 (50 + 50).  With each rep try and get a better Golf Score than the previous rep by either swimming more efficiently (without a drop in speed) or by swimming faster (and maintaining your efficiency). After each rep take a ten second Rest Interval (RI).

Next up put your fins back on and complete another set of eight reps of 25m drills, utilising the previous four drills and completing them twice through. At the end of this set if you are doing Option A you move onto the Cool Down (CD) and if you are doing the other two options move on to the next set.

The next set for Options B and C is a repeat of the eight reps of 50m Drill/Swim same as you completed earlier. After this set Option B goes straight to the Cool Down (CD).

For Option C you now complete a third set of the eight by 25m Drills again. Then move on to repeating the eight reps of 50 Drill/Swim, again for the third time this workout.  Then take your fins off and complete a second set of Swim Golf. The last set before the Cool Down is a fourth set of eight 25m Drill reps (once again you can put your fins on, but make sure you take them off for the Cool Down).

It’s now time for a 200m Cool Down (CD). Unlike the previous sets which have to be freestyle, the cool down (like the warm up) can be any stroke you wish to swim.  You can also stop and rest after any length.  I encourage you to stop and stretch during the cool down.

If you would like further advice feel free to contact me.

I am the Head Coach & Director of Qwik Kiwi – Endurance Sports Consultant.

I specialise in assisting first timers and recreational athletes to achieve their sporting goals. I can be contacted at coachray@coachray.nz and 021 348 729. Make sure you sign up to my informative newsletter.

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If you enjoyed this workout, here is a similar session I published 12 months ago. It is designed for beginner swimmers to help them get started with swimming.

Getting started with Swimming: Week 5

Coach Ray is the author of the successful 12 Weeks to an Ironman Swim PB – Swim Faster with Smart Training eBook.

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