Coach Ray

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Swim Sessions Triathlon Training

Saturday Swim Session: Technique Drills To Make You A Better Swimmer

Drills are the perfect way to break down your stroke and focus on key aspects of it. Following this programme will develop your swimming to make you a better swimmer.  This session is perfect for Ironman and Olympic distance triathletes or people doing longer ocean swims.

This is continuing the series of Saturday Swim Sessions that you can do to enhance your swimming using a 33⅓ yard or metre pool. Each week 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.

I’ve written these sessions for a 33⅓ metre pool, but a lot of the older style pools are 33⅓ yards long (100 feet), so simply interchange the metres for yards and do the session.

Option A

  • 200m Warm Up;
  • 16x 33m Drill;
  • 100m Easy swim focusing on Tech;
  • 16x 33m Drill;
  • 100m Easy swim focusing on Tech;
  • 200m Cool Down (1,667m)

Option B

  • 400m Warm Up;
  • 20x 33m Drill;
  • 100m Easy swim focusing on Tech;
  • 20x 33m Drill;
  • 100m Easy swim focusing on Tech;
  • 200m Cool Down (2,133m)

Option C

  • 800m WU;
  • 20x 33m Drill;
  • 100m Easy swim focusing on Tech;
  • 20x 33m Drill;
  • 100m Easy swim focusing on Tech;
  • 20x 33m Drill;
  • 100m Easy swim focusing on Tech;
  • 200m CD (3,300m)

Start the workout with a Warm Up covering 200m, 400m or 800m (Options A, B or C respectively). During the warm up feel free to stop and stretch as needed.  It doesn’t need to be a continuous swim.

Next up is a drill set of 16 (Option A) or 20 reps (Options B and C) of 33m. Feel free to use fins whilst doing the drill set. Do the drills below four times through for Option A and five times through for Options B and C:

  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.


After the Drill/Swim set remove your fins and swim 100m nice and easy focusing on your technique.

Repeat the drills and technique swim a total of twice for Options A and B, or three times for Option C.

Complete the workout with a 200m Cool Down. Feel free to pause and stretch when needed and/or include stretching as part of each break until the distance is covered.

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

I am the Head Coach & Director of Qwik Kiwi Coaching.

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.

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If you enjoyed this workout, here is a similar session I published previously.

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Ray has competed in triathlons from sprint to ironman distance (both IM Taupo and Challenge Wanaka). Consequently he is aware of the importance of balancing training with lifestyle, thus complimenting other important aspects of an athlete’s life (family, work, study commitments etc…). • Entering your first triathlon? • Stepping up to a longer distance? • Looking to go faster? • Wanting to turn previous negatives into positives? Ray has coached athletes to achieve these and more. Training programmes are accessible online, so athletes can be located anywhere and still reap the benefits of Ray’s coaching. Contact him to discuss how he can assist you to achieve your goals.
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