June Newsletter

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So we have been back at our OW facility, Stubbers  in Essex for a week now. Very exciting to be back at some kind of work and out doors. If this does not work for you location wise then you can join us for free stretch cords sessions each week. Just email dan@swimfortri.com each week for the invite. You can find all the old sessions uploaded here – https://www.youtube.com/user/swimfortri

The response to our COVID safety policy has been overwhelmingly positive keeping swimmers safe through registration and into the water. Sorry no changing rooms are available but most are coping. If you have sessions booked with us (fitness, or courses etc) please get in touch if you would like to swap them to OW with us at Stubbers. We swim

Tues and Thurs 7-9am – Saturday 7-10am – Hope you can join us.

APP

We have been busy developing our online training plan website into a phone app. This should be available soon with the addition of a 12ooo word ebook on breathing and swim technique. Once the pools reopen please be sure to make use of the free ‘return to fitness‘ training plan to get you back on track re your swim fitness and technique

PODCAST

The podcasts have been going well and keeping us busy and  entertained as we have spoken to old and new friends, colleagues from the world of swimming and Triathlon. We have covered diet, psychiatry, psychology, coaching, tales from a 34yr + tri vet and more recently a chat with Ben, our favourite Green team member from Club La Santa who is branching out into more specialised coaching. The Anchor link will then enable you to find a preferred Spotify/Apple link etc

PINK

A new session in a bottle is on its way! who does not love a pink water bottle. This has some pretty big mainsets on it focusing on the 3.8km distance. Ideal to help your return to fitness once the pools reopen. Drop me a line to register your interest, we hope it is year by the end of the month since the Tacx plant has reopened.

Returning to the Water.

We have been back at our lake for 3 sessions now, having finally reopened with lots of new smiling faces enjoying OW for the first time. Many or our regulars are back having not swum since FEB/March and the feedback we have been getting has has been positive, most while tired and unfit suggest it was not as bad as they were imagining.

You will feel clumsy/mechanical/ out of sorts but it won’t be as bad as you imagined. We often experience this with our swimmers at xmas and the two week break. One year I was convinced peoples minds were trying to trick them back onto the sofa ie talking them out of it. We filmed quite a few and most agreed their tech was not as bad as they thought.

Start Easy

Nice and slow and build up. Take this opportunity to work on your technique, try to point the toes back not down, keep the kick small and hidden behind the body, keep the head still unless breathing or lifting to sight, Keep the palms pushing water back towards the feet by keeping the fingertips pointing down towards the bottom when pulling rather than the palm which will bounce you upwards.

Make sure you are comfortable in your wetsuit if you are wearing one. We have had temps in the low 20s so quite pleasant with or without. Check the May entry for details on making your wetsuit more comfortable.

Maybe don’t stress about time/distance or speed. Just enjoy the first few after so long cooped up. Enjoy something that you probably have been completely deprived of. Walking running skipping, indoor cycling and other strength/conditioning activities have various cross overs. Swimming is the really unique one and it will have been missed.

I hope the peace and tranquility of being out in nature make up for the lack of clarity, the warmer temps of a pool and lack of a black line but for those missing the reassurance of the pool I urge you to go again, try again it does get easier the more familiar you become with swimming in OW. 

 

MAY NEWSLETTER

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MAY NEWS

I trust everyone is doing ok and keeping sane/active/not bored/fit/healthy/amused, delete as applicable. We are busy trying to rewrite Risk Assessments and how we might make use of our lake etc as and when we return. More dryland sessions are appearing on Youtube and more content on our Training Plans page. We are doing our best to keep in touch. I am particularly pleased to finally add a podcast which you will be able to find on spotify/itunes etc but the simple link is here on ANCHOR The first is a little more of an amusing trip down memory lane to 1992 and how I got involved in Triathlon.

SYDNEY OLYMPICS

Next up we spoke to Coach Steve Trew about his early Tri career and his involvement at the Sydney Games. You can also hear from Simon Griffiths, the founder of Outdoor Swimmer magazine. More guests to follow. Please let me know the kinds of people you would like to hear interviewed? pro triathletes? more coaches? designers, inventors.

LOCKDOWN

We have since spoken to Dr Claire re coping with Lockdown as her background in Sports Psychiatry gives her some great insights. With Physio Dan Smith re swim tech/injury prevention etc Also for those who have swum with him (Mile End, Putney and London Bridge over the years) Scott Coey who started with us in 2003 and worked his way up to Kona qualification.

SPOTIFY LINK.

Prefer a good read rather than a listen? I just added 5000 words here in our latest FAQ – ‘Wetsuits – the Ins and Outs.’
Don’t forget you are all welcome to Stretch Cords at 6pm, M/W/F each week. Free session that will help minimise the distress when we finally get back in the water. You can catch up on all the existing classes here YOUTUBE
Pls email dan@swimfortri.com for the Zoom link

SOME OFFERS FROM OUR FRIENDS FROM THE WORLD OF TRIATHLON

here’s a 15% discount code for Scienceinsport.com >>> AMB21JBR
Sundried offer – 50% offer code SWIMFORTRI
Catch up with Pilates with Jem on ZOOM
More Physio advice from Dan Smith
Food and nutrition from Claire.
We are offering 3 sessioninabottle for the price of 2 for SFT swimmers at the weekends. You can get them here SFT SHOP
Order 2 orange and I will add in a silver etc I am trying to only go to the Post Office one day each week so pls take advantage of the offer so I can get them wrapped and just head in on Monday !
Enjoy and hang in there, fingers crossed we are swimming again soon.
SFT

Swimtips from the Stairwell – WETSUIT INSIGHTS

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So for this weeks #swimtipsfromthestairwell I wanted to focus on something a little more positive after weeks of lockdown. I wanted to talk about something positive, something we can do in preparation of going outdoors and swimming at some point. I am sure many of you will not have checked your wetsuits since last year unless you got a sneaky training camp or race done back in January. Let us check our wetsuits ahead of that first swim. In the stairwell lecture I talk about simple repairs, avoiding the dreaded neck scraping and why you might upgrade and spend a little more money on your next suit if you are going to be swimming further.

The Lecture

Over the years we have worked hard at understanding wetsuits fully and making them more comfortable. Here we go beyond the usual fitting guide and look more indepth and how to make them more comfortable and fit better.

A more indepth look at swimming faster in them, making them work harder for you to improve your swim

I have written extensively on the subject of wetsuits and here bring all those thoughts together. You should not miss the section on ‘taking advantage of the properties of your wetsuit and should your FC technique change in a wetsuit.’

A humorous look at what happens if you forget your wetsuit lubricant!

The Spring and it’s glorious weather could not have more cruel as we sit indoors missing our lakes and rivers but fingers crossed it will not be long. Get your wetsuit out, check it, repair it or contemplate an upgrade if you are swimming further this year.

 

 

Swim Tips from the Stairwell – Legkick

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HI All,

I hope you are all managing the lockdown as well as can be. I have been adding STftSW (swim tips from the stairwell) to Facebook and Youtube but neglected the blog. Doh….You can catch up with all our stretch cord sessions here

Technical endurance MONDAY

Strength and Prehab WEDNESDAY

FRIDAY- the hard one – Fitness

pls email dan@swimfortri.com for the zoom invite to next weeks, sessions take place at 6pm

LEGKICK

After all the stretch cordz focus and arm work how about a little time on your legs? Some theory and dryland to get on top of a few of the issues before you get back in the water. The nice thing about a FC legkick is how small and quite straight forwards the movement is.  To get the hang of  this while out of the water is an opportunity and it really can be mastered on dryland.

Kick Pointers

Most over do the size of movement at the hip, it should be tiny. The bigger the movement here the more energy travels down the legs and splays the kick.

•Legs straighter as you lift them back up the surface, it is a glute movement, minimal hamstring. Don’t bend the knees.

•Feel the big toes lightly brushing against each other to generate more surface area as the feet work together while kicking.

•Mobilise the ankles so you can improve your streamline and point them. Preferably while relaxed to avoid cramping.

Work on a stronger core region so you can limit and reduce a big out of control kick. Usually the emphasis for Long Distance FC is not bigger stronger movements but restrained smaller movements.

Key Issues –

There are two key issues we see during lessons – sinking and splaying. These previous videos should illustrate.  Why they sink and drag down is an early issue in a swimmers development as they try to take run or cycle movements of the legs into the water. As for the dreaded splay this usually is a counter balance or a reaction to something happening elsewhere in the stroke. No harm in addressing the legs now and improve them while the other issues can be looked at when back in the water.

Dryland Movements

These can help activate previously unused muscles groups and so deactivate those that were previously creating incorrect movements (the hamstrings.) If we build up some repetitions of a few basic movements we should pick up the correct movements and take them into the water when we next swim. Unfortunately the kick is often forced out of position due to the lack of helpful body movement or incorrect arm movements. The classic is what the straight arm push down can do to the legs when assisting your breathing. If you can isolate the FC legs with the following at least it gives us a chance to learn what the correct movements are.

Key Drills

Use the following to help – can you see the similarity between the Pilates Swimmer and the Glute Kick drill? Not difficult. We literally stole this drill from the world of Pilates.

PILATES SWIMMER

Alternate the legs in a small up and down movement. The floor will stop the kick sweeping too big on the downsweep, the range of the Glutes will limit the upsweep.

 

 

SWIMPLANK

We were looking for a compact all round exercise that covered many of the swimming muscles. The narrow press up is quite tough, maybe build up towards this from a knee down position. Once in the straight arm plank position you could sweep a single arm up wards to rotate the hips and bring some FC rotation into the mix

Enjoy your dryland, but fingers crossed we are back in the pool soon

All good wishes

Dan and the team