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View Full Version : New training strategy...LEGS!!!!!!!



Waterdog7946
September 22nd, 2013, 08:27 PM
Need some thoughts on my new training strategy. I've been swimming masters for the last 5 years and had pretty consistent results. I swim my tail off all season, deal with the ups and downs, aches and pains that come with it and have been fortunate enough to always taper well. The one weakness I've have noticed through film, experience, coaches and peers, are my legs. I just don't have any. Always relied on my upper body and height to carry me along. So I've decided to change it up this season. For the most part of the year I've really worked on building my wheels; climbing stairs, squats, etc. For the first part of the season I'm going to spend the first 8 weeks kicking. HARD! The whole entire workout! With a board, without a board, with a snorkel and work those walls. I tried a little of this at the second half of last season when my shoulders were giving me a little trouble. 2 nights a week I just kicked the whole workout and it really boosted my conditioning. Any thoughts on this type of periodization?

Swimspire
September 25th, 2013, 12:07 PM
Need some thoughts on my new training strategy. I've been swimming masters for the last 5 years and had pretty consistent results. I swim my tail off all season, deal with the ups and downs, aches and pains that come with it and have been fortunate enough to always taper well. The one weakness I've have noticed through film, experience, coaches and peers, are my legs. I just don't have any. Always relied on my upper body and height to carry me along. So I've decided to change it up this season. For the most part of the year I've really worked on building my wheels; climbing stairs, squats, etc. For the first part of the season I'm going to spend the first 8 weeks kicking. HARD! The whole entire workout! With a board, without a board, with a snorkel and work those walls. I tried a little of this at the second half of last season when my shoulders were giving me a little trouble. 2 nights a week I just kicked the whole workout and it really boosted my conditioning. Any thoughts on this type of periodization?

Sounds like a great strategy, and definitely boosts conditioning, although you might be isolating your kick from the fullstroke too much with 8 weeks of only kicking. You will probably need to incorporate some variety into your workout - transitional drills (like single arm, or side-to-side which still focus on the kick) and some fullstroke into your sets to make sure that your kicking transitions well into your races. Other kicking drills you could try would be the hyperkick or roll shoulders which do not use the board.

Good luck and keep us posted!

GregJS
September 25th, 2013, 12:18 PM
Yeah - do keep us posted. Might actually inspire this other legless wonder to try working on his "kicking issues."

thewookiee
September 25th, 2013, 01:52 PM
Yeah - do keep us posted. Might actually inspire this other legless wonder to try working on his "kicking issues."

Geek has no legs. I have seem him swim freestyle. His kick quit after the dive. I do have to admit, when I stopped focusing on my kick and focused more on the actual stroke, my swimming started to get better. Geek once said, "kicking is overrated" I have found myself becoming more in agreement with him.

There are some people, like Chris S. and Fort, that are natural kickers, where it is a true weapon for them. For the rest of us, I am not sure how much better swimming becomes by improving the kick alone. The cardio will definitly become better but I don't know how much it will improve your whole stroke beyond that fact.

GregJS
September 25th, 2013, 03:14 PM
Geek once said, "kicking is overrated" I have found myself becoming more in agreement with him.

That suits me just fine. Making any appreciable improvement to my kicking feels like it would be a very, very long and painful haul. So thanks for that reassurance, wookiee.

(Still curious how things go with your new kick campaign, Waterdog)

Swimspire
September 25th, 2013, 04:02 PM
Geek has no legs. I have seem him swim freestyle. His kick quit after the dive. I do have to admit, when I stopped focusing on my kick and focused more on the actual stroke, my swimming started to get better. Geek once said, "kicking is overrated" I have found myself becoming more in agreement with him.

There are some people, like Chris S. and Fort, that are natural kickers, where it is a true weapon for them. For the rest of us, I am not sure how much better swimming becomes by improving the kick alone. The cardio will definitly become better but I don't know how much it will improve your whole stroke beyond that fact.

The idea that "kicking is overrated" reflects a widespread school of thought among many swimmers and coaches who feel it is more productive to focus on the strength of the upper body. Unfortunately, focusing on fullstroke and arms without major focus on strengthening the kick can also lead to shoulder injuries.

Waterdog, you mentioned your shoulders were beginning to give you trouble, which was what lead you to try focusing more on kicking - and you were absolutely right to act in accordance with your needs. The kicking is the engine of the stroke, takes some of the burden off of your shoulders and arms and provides you with both balance and strength. The power you get from your kick is what really gives you an edge over the competition and improves your speed and conditioning tremendously. It may be a difficult process - because in reality no one is a 'natural' kicker - but the difficulty is precisely why many swimmers try to avoid it. Nothing ventured, nothing gained. However, with a consistent approach, you will become a better kicker and your overall speed will improve.

So, Waterdog, your thinking is spot on and I wish you luck!