When you’re putting in the hours with your swimming lessons, you really want to make sure that you’re doing the things in and out of the water that are going to make the biggest impact on your technique.
Learning the secrets to stroke development and upping your swim fitness in our swim coaching classes is all good stuff. But when you put in the effort during the rest of the week as well, you really do start to see amazing results that take your technique even further.
At our Swim For Tri classes we really love watching our students improve over a course of 1 2 1 lessons. It’s all about the hard work and dedication, and the progress you see when swimmers finally head out for open water swimming speaks for itself.
Based on some of the attributes we’ve noticed in our most improved swim students over the years, here is our top ten list of practical tips and winning attitudes that help you get the most out of your swim coaching. If you’re going to do something then do it properly, and advancing your swim technique is no exception!
1) Arrive on time
Arriving on time really is crucial. Not just so you’re not wasting your money and enjoying a full class, but also if you make a point of arriving a little early it really helps you to get your head in the game. When you arrive in good time you’re in a much more relaxed mental place, which means you can really work on your stroke technique and enjoy an unhurried class. Park the day’s stress in the locker room, and take a moment just to breathe and collect yourself. This will help you focus on your swim more.
2) Don’t forget your spare goggles
The thing about goggles is that they always seem to break just when you need them. We would highly recommend having some spare ones kicking around at the bottom of your gym bag so you don’t have to waste a session if the worst happens.
3) Do your homework
Time and time again we see incredible results from our students who commit to doing their homework, and do it regularly. When you’re paying for swim coaching you’re often booked in for just 1 swim per week, which means you have 6 days out of your week unlearning how to swim. Beat this formula by keeping your head in the game even when you’re not in the water, and get the homework set by your swim coach done and dusted.
4) Listen to your coach
Perhaps we would say this, but you should always listen to your coach and avoid overanalysing and complicating your practice with an onslaught of swimming technique information from Youtube or elsewhere on the internet. A professional coach will be drawing on years of experience as well as real life knowledge of you to give you personalised advice, so sometimes it’s best to trust in your coach and follow their advice to the letter.
5) Swim a full length
Don’t be a lazy swimmer! Try not to glide in to the pool edge, or stop early. When you think about all the swimming distance you’re skipping out on by cutting corners it really does add up over a year, so swim your full lengths and make the most out of your time in the pool.
6) Start each length with a great streamline
Start each one of your lengths in the pool with a really well executed streamline to set up an accurate length of swimming. It’s worth getting this piece of technique right to benefit your swim in the long run.
7) Be positive and realistic
When you’re learning something new it can feel like an uphill struggle at times, but keeping a positive attitude in mind means that putting in the effort it takes to vastly improve will be a lot easier. Remember that you can always improve – everyone can – but it will take some time. Be realistic and be prepared to put in the work to get to where you want to.
8) Invest time and reap the results
Improving your swimming technique is like learning a language or a musical instrument – the more time you put in the faster you will improve. Time invested wisely with good instruction from a great swim coach will result in huge improvements. Think about the amount of driving lessons it took to pass your test, and then how much longer it takes to really relax as a driver. It’s all about the week in week out effort and commitment to really get the results you want to.
9) Be mentally present
Having a bit of focus in your mind regarding your swim practice is one of the best things you can do to make all of these different elements slot into place. Prepare yourself mentally for your swim coaching by arriving with plenty of time, keeping a positive attitude, and psychologically committing to the process of improvement. Keeping a clear head in the water and being in the moment will have huge benefits for your stroke technique too.
10) Enjoy yourself!
Finally, our most important tip has got to be make sure you’re enjoying yourself! Remember to have fun with your swim journey. We’re much more likely to be disciplined and committed to physical activity practices we really enjoy, so make sure you’re appreciating how your body feels after a good swim and giving yourself a pat on the back for your achievements when you notice those improvements.
Thank you for reading this blog post about getting the most out of your swim coaching, we hope you’re getting all that you can out of your swim sessions.