View Full Version : what and when is the catch?

July 5th, 2003, 09:18 PM
Thanks everybody for your suggestions so far. Given that this sport is really my last opportunity to keep racing (due to other injuries), I want to make sure I don't blow it. Lately my shoulder have been feeling "funny"...I'm not quiet sure if they're sore, or have onset of injury. And, I'm suspicious that the reason is pulling too hard too early, and extending the arm too far.

Many of you have mentioned pulling at the catch. In rowing, the catch is when the oar hits the water. What is the catch in swimming?

And, does anyone know the guideline for increasing mileage?

In running it's 10% per week. Is there a similar rule in swimming?

Thank you all so very much for everything.

Jerrycat ;)

Gareth Eckley
July 6th, 2003, 04:32 AM
A question of "what is the catch" is really better answered by reading a book on swimming. Any book on swimming will explain, using diagrams, photos of actual swimmers and lots of words the catch in swimming.

This forum cannot give you the detailed info that you want, Sorry!

However, increasing training volumes is a hard question to answer. You may need technique improvement before taking on higher training volume.

A coach would work out a yearly plan based on the events you will enter. This would be broken down into a 2 or 3 season plan. Next the Macrocycles, Mesocycles and Micro cycles would be planned out. Then of course the Taper is worked out. These would be adjusted by a good coach as you progress through the season.

Without the benefit of a coach i would suggest that you swim a Microcycle of 3 sessions with volume & intensity steadily increasing, then a recovery session of lower volume with 60% drills.

Also in each session swim mainly Aerobic work, but have some Anaerobic and some Lactic work. Simply put mix easy, medium pace and fast swimming in each session. Emmet Hines book - "Fitness Swimming" treats this in an easily understood way.

Build up the overall volume by 2.5% a week and make sure to taper for at least 2 weeks before a major competition.

There is a lot more to this, coaches spend years learning and refining periodisation. I can safely say that without season planning of your workouts you are probably wasting about 30 - 40% of your effort.

July 6th, 2003, 08:33 PM
Thanks for the response Gareth. So far I have read two books, and several articles, plus info on this site. I agree with you about joing a team with a coach. Right now I'm investigating the Cincinnati area, trying to identify the right team, etc. It seems that is the best route, rather than the "testing and tweaking" that I've been doing so far.

Also, I've read alot of your responses, and have learned a great deal from them. Thanks again, and I appreciate your time.

(JoAnne) ;)

July 6th, 2003, 10:36 PM
Gareth is right that to get a complete and detailed explanation of the "catch" and how to do it you should consult a book on swimming. But I think I can give you a rough explanation of what the people in this forum are talking about when they mention it.

Any swimming pull, regardless of the stroke, begins with the hand moving slightly forward and down after entry, until it's in position to start pulling back. The "catch" is the point when the hand reaches that position and the actual pulling begins; unlike rowing, the catch is after entry, so you don't start pulling immediately.

The detailed parts that really can't be explained here are the subtle changes in hand position and angle that take place at that time. You really need a book with drawings, photos and diagrams showing them.

July 6th, 2003, 10:49 PM
can anyone recomend one... a book or maybe a website with good diagrams?


July 6th, 2003, 11:16 PM
I'd recommend "Swimming for Total Fitness" by Dr. Jane Katz. It's a great book for beginning adult swimmers, with loads of drawings and diagrams of swimming techniques. There's also a web site at http://www.swim.ee that has photos and videos, but the explanations can be very technical and confusing.

July 7th, 2003, 03:26 PM
Thank You. I have the book, and have visited swim.ee and agree they are good.