Sunday, December 25, 2011

Musings on December 25, 2011

We begin “training camp mode” tomorrow. Lots of swimming after a few days of vacation if not physically and least mentally. Of course, we have had a few, well many! Who took our offer of a short break to the extreme...but that is a story for another day.

What has been running through our minds is how to forge a better more productive training block for the next 10 weeks or so such that our big meet in mid-March will be even more rewarding than our December racing.

We have been reading and thinking. We read to get new ideas. We think to see how we might apply those ideas to our situation. We continue to aspire to original thoughts but alas...

One of the things that have been a constant theme in our readings and therefore our thinking is the theme of “do more with less”.

It seems that as coaches we often lean toward more sophistication in our understanding of what works in our sport. Yet the things that work for improvement aren’t necessarily sophisticated. So while we take a certain measure of personal pride and professional satisfaction about our “advanced coaching”, when all is said and done the results come from rather basic ingredients.

Some if this comes from our recent reading; some comes from our observations (coaches are always observing at the pool); some comes from watching our returning swimmers who have been away at various college programs; some comes from, well we aren’t exactly sure but it does indeed come from somewhere...

  • Kicking: more than less is indeed good for speed
  • Underwaters: off the wall this is critical
  • Work works
  • Fun is A if not THE key ingredient
  • Make things -- sets, instruction, strategy, tactics – simpler, not more complex
  • Technique -- critical
  • Instruction of technique -- keep it simple, make sure you use visual, tactile and verbal cues since not everyone learns the same way
  • Mentor -- everyone needs one; find one and get on board
  • The Top -- not everyone at the top actually knows what they are doing...

Almost time for New Year resolutions... something on this list might be a good starting point... we would love to hear from you. We trust that all is well in your corner of the world, and if for some reason it isn’t, that you will work to make a change... one thing we are certain of,

is that work does indeed work.

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