Swim Sessions

Saturday Swim Session – Utilising Drills To Swim Faster In The Long Term

Utilising swimming drills within your sessions can really enhance the efficiency of your stroke. This workout is perfect for Ironman and Olympic distance triathletes or people doing longer ocean swims.

Each Saturday I will post a Swim Session, most weeks I will load three options up for you to do. Option A is for swimmers who are after a workout between 1,000 & 2,000 metres. Option B is for swimmers who are after a workout between 2,000 & 3,000m and Option C will be greater than 3,000m.

Option A

  • 200m WU;
  • 8x 50m (25m Drill/25m Swim);
  • 200m Easy swim focusing on Tech;
  • 8x 50m (25m Drill/25m Swim);
  • 200m Easy swim focusing on Tech;
  • 200m CD (1,600m)

Option B

  • 400m WU;
  • 12x 50m (25m Drill/25m Swim);
  • 200m Easy swim focusing on Tech;
  • 12x 50m (25m Drill/25m Swim);
  • 200m Easy swim focusing on Tech;
  • 200m CD (2,200m)

Option C

  • 400m WU;
  • 12x 50m (25m Drill/25m Swim);
  • 200m Easy swim focusing on Tech;
  • 12x 50m (25m Drill/25m Swim);
  • 200m Easy swim focusing on Tech;
  • 12x 50m (25m Drill/25m Swim);
  • 200m Easy swim focusing on Tech;
  • 200m CD (3,000m)

Start by swimming 200m (Option A) or 400m (Options B and C) for a Warm Up (WU). Keep a nice steady pace and feel free to pause occasionally to stretch or grab a quick drink. The idea of the warm-up is to get the blood flowing and muscles loosened up before some of the more intense sets later in the workout.

The set after the warm-up includes eight (Option A) or twelve (Options B or C) repetitions of 50m. This 50m is done continuously with the first 25m done as a drill before going straight into the final 25m of regular swimming. Pause after each rep and have a short rest while you focus and mentally prepare for the next drill. Here are some drills that you can include in your programme.  Complete the first four drills twice through for Option A and each drill twice through for Options B and C:

  1. Kick On Side (KOS)
  2. Kick On Side (KOS)
  3. 6/1/6
  4. 6/3/6
  5. Broken Arrow
  6. Popov

For the drill, set wear a pair of short fins. These will provide you with a small amount of momentum whilst you are focusing on what the upper body is doing. I recommend Finis Zoomers.

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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