Tri Swim Coach

Saturday Swim Session: Margaret Cyphers’ Tapa Workout

Including a mix of drills and a range of swimming, strokes will help you develop your technique and feel for the water. This session is great for swimmers and triathletes preparing for longer, open water 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.

The inspiration for these sessions came from a former college swimmer and high school assistant coach, Margaret Cyphers. Click here to view the original article.

Option A

  • WU
    • 200m F/S;
    • 100m Non-F/S;
  • 8x 50m (1H, 1E, 2H, 1E, 3H) 15sec RI;
  • 4x 150m Kick/Drill/Swim Rev-IM order 30sec RI;
  • 2x 50m Drill/Free;
  • 2x 50m Free;
  • 2x 50m Drill/Swim Non-F/S;
  • 2x 50m Non-F/S;
  • 200m CD (1,800m)

Option B

  • WU 2x
    • 200m F/S;
    • 100m Non-F/S;
  • 14x 50m (1H, 1E, 2H, 1E, 3H, 1E, 4H, 1E) 15sec RI;
  • 4x 150m Kick/Drill/Swim Rev-IM order 30sec RI;
  • 2x 50m Drill/Free;
  • 2x 50m Free;
  • 2x 50m Drill/Swim Non-F/S;
  • 2x 50m Non-F/S;
  • 200m CD (2,400m)

Option C

  • WU 3x
    • 200m F/S;
    • 100m Non-F/S;
  • 20x 50m (1H, 1E, 2H, 1E, 3H, 1E, 4H, 1E, 5H, 1E) 15sec RI;
  • 4x 150m Kick/Drill/Swim Rev-IM order 30sec RI;
  • 4x 50m Drill/Free;
  • 4x 50m Free;
  • 4x 50m Drill/Swim Non-F/S;
  • 4x 50m Non-F/S;
  • 200m CD (3,400m)

Start the workout with a Warm Up (WU) start with 200m of Freestyle (F/S), followed by 100m of a combination of the other competitive strokes. You chose which strokes you swim. If you are doing Option B complete this 300m segment twice, or three times through if you are doing Option C. 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 set of 50m reps. Option A has eight reps, Option B has fourteen reps and Option C has twenty reps. Take a 15-second Rest Interval (RI) after each rep. Start off with one Hard (H) rep followed by an Easy (E) rep. Then two Hard (H) reps were followed by an Easy (E) rep. Next up are three Hard (H) reps followed by an Easy (E) rep. Option A finishes at this point. For the other Options, there are now four Hard (H) reps followed by an Easy (E) rep. Option B finishes at this point. Option C then has five Hard (H) reps followed by an Easy (E) rep.

The next set is four reps of 150m. These reps split up to include 50m of kicking, 50m of the drill, and 50m of swimming.do these with fins on. Avoid the use of a kickboard for the kick segment see the video below. For the drill, segment utilise Kick On Side for 25m on each side. The final 50m segment with each rep complete as one of the four competitive strokes completed in the reverse Individual Medley order (Freestyle, Breaststroke, Backstroke, Butterfly). If you aren’t confident or competent at a stroke, attempt it for as far as possible (even if it’s only a few strokes) before reverting to Freestyle. Take a 30-second Rest Interval (RI) after each complete 150m rep.

Next up is a set of two reps (Options A & B) or four reps (Option C) of 50m split as 25m drill and 25m Freestyle. Complete the drill segment utilising 6/1/6 and 6/3/6 (repeated twice each for Option C). Utilise fins for this set.

Take the fins off for the next set which is made up of two reps (Options A & B) or four reps (Option C) of 50m. Swim these as fast as you can, and take as much rest as you need between reps.

Next up is a set of two reps (Options A & B) or four reps (Option C) of 50m split as 25m drill and 25m Non-Freestyle. Complete the drill segment utilising 6/1/6 and 6/3/6 (repeated twice each for Option C). Utilise fins for this set and chose what strokes you utilise for the Non-Freestyle segment.

Take your fins off for the next set which is made up of two reps (Options A & B) or four reps (Option C) of 50m. Swim a non-freestyle stroke and swim these reps as fast as you can, taking as much rest as you need between reps.

For the Cool Down (CD) swim 200m. Unlike the previous sets which have to be freestyle, the cooldown (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 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 12 months ago.

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