30 Seconds Faster In 4 Months?

This video today is an athlete that I’ve worked with for the last four months. His name is Greg. He is training for an Ironman in a few weeks time. Greg started off around 2 minutes 30 per 100, and he’s now got himself down to around 1:50 to 2-minute pace per 100. So quite a big jump, quite a big improvement and obviously, it depends on where you’re starting from and how much you are swimming beforehand, and with Greg, he was doing very little swimming before this, but now he’s increased his swimming. He’s increased his fitness, his strength, and his technique has improved quite significantly. So those factors combined together are how a lot of people begin to make big changes like this.

This is the first video that we took when we first met up. A couple of things that will stand out to you.
1. Body Position – You can see his legs and his hips are sitting quite low in the water. Some of it is caused by his recovery. Some of it is caused by his lead hand not staying out in front long enough and also his breathing, you can see he is looking up quite high.

2. Timing – You will see that his left arm isn’t staying out in front long enough, so he doesn’t have that left arm to really balance on while he’s taking the breath. What we wanted to work on was the timing of the stroke and the timing that we want for most people, especially anyone doing more than 200-meter races is the 3/4 catch up type of timing. If we can start to keep his left hand out for slightly longer, giving a bit more balance, change the balance of his body in the water, that will help bring the legs up and get the heels out of the water every couple of kicks.

3. Entry – The elbow hits the water first, the palm goes in and then the fingertips last. We want to change this around, we want the fingertips to be first, and then the elbow to enter.

4. Recovery – The elbow begins to drop a bit too early. The elbow hits the water firsts and then the hand last. IF we can keep the elbow up a bit more to change the angle of the entry, it’s going to give him a much cleaner entry and it will help him carry the weight of that arm over the top.

5. Catch and Pull Through – You can see his left arm has come under the body, it crossed the center line, and so his balance is being thrown off. We want this arm to be almost like a triangle on the side.


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Brenton and Mitch were great to work with at the clinic, Good to get video analysis to work on straight away, practice some new drills and go home knowing what you need to work on.

Alex McFadyen