We were having a conversation with our training group last week about how to get where they want to go. We had talked two weeks ago with them using the lines from John Leonard’s recent article about the Real Limits on kids in swimming; “A swimmer with quality technique has NO limits to their ultimate performance. A swimmer with under-developed technique…has nothing BUT limits.”
This resonated with us since our collective coaching philosophy revolves around swimming well. We love fast swimming; be certain about that. But every time we see REALLY fast swimming, from our gang or those on other teams, we see technique carrying the day.
So we have been asking them to stay focused in workouts on their technique. We encourage them to be better swimmers at the end of workout than they were at the beginning (see a recent blog about the 1% improvement from the BritishNational Cycling Team). We even have them do swims where all they do is focus on one particular item. We do these swims as minutes rather than intervals/distances.
For example, do a 10 minute swim where all you do is breath below the surface of the water. We start our stop watch and blow a whistle 10 minutes later. One thing we are figuring out – thanks to The Rise of Superman book – is that all athletes in the flow are totally present. This is one of the ways we are working on it.
But we digress…so in this conversation this week with our training group we said to them that there are only two things, in our opinion, that we have total control over:
We control our attitude.
We control our reaction to how we deal with the things that happen to us.
All of the rest of the stuff of life we have little or no control over. So we asked them to consider staying on point; work your attitude and work how you handle things that go on around you or to you.
Easier said than done but it is a really good way to stay on point in one’s quest for greatness and success. Our opinion is that as coaches this is what we are doing; preparing people, young and old alike, for greatness and success.