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Tarzan
January 10th, 2005, 10:48 PM
I was reading an article that was telling me how I should use some drills to improve my reactions on the starting block. Just what type of drills are these?

craiglll@yahoo.com
January 11th, 2005, 11:53 AM
In, I think, USA Swimming website or Western Australia's, I got a really good article that talked about the two foot positions & also arm movement. Unfortunaetaly, I don't have the article with me.

thisgirl13
January 11th, 2005, 04:30 PM
When I was in age group swimming, and even up into early high school, one of my coaches was hired specifically to work with us on our starts.

His brilliant idea was to utilize what he called the "teamwork" drill. Here it is: one person stands on the blocks, positioned for a start. A second person stands behind them on the pool deck and uses a kickboard to create a starting noise, usually by hitting the step-up onto the block. Said person with said kickboard then swings kickboard at person on block's hiney.

That said, this drill worked better for us when it was a teammate we didn't particularly get along with. If you got caught by that kickboard, you remembered it, and eventually, you learned to get the h-e-hockey sticks off the block when you heard that sound.

I'm not sure just how HR that is, but it works. Plain and simple. LIke Pavlov's freaking dogs.

:D

mattson
January 12th, 2005, 02:59 PM
Originally posted by thisgirl13
Said person with said kickboard then swings kickboard at person on block's hiney.

Yeah, I was thinking of the same drill (from college). The problem was, it didn't help my starting reaction time, as much as improve my ability to whack someone with a kickboard very quickly. :D

Tarzan
January 14th, 2005, 12:18 PM
Hmmm, never heard of that one. I should definately try it :) Sounds fun! Thanks guys.

shark
January 14th, 2005, 12:44 PM
Coach had a clicker. Not sure what it was. But, it clicked really loud. You would stand acrossed from another swimmer, in a wrestling fashion. Like you were going to take down the other guy. When coach clicked, you had to touch your ear faster than the guy acrossed from you. First left hand and then right. Click, click, click-click, clickity click, and so on. Also, you would stand in a line next to each other and have to spin 90 degrees to the right or left. Each time coach clicked you moved in the fashion that was directed. It increased your reaction time to the sound of the click. I still have the notion to touch my ear whenever I hear a loud click.

Also, we did the kickboard thing except for the hitting of the block first. A coach would extend a board at arm's length to just touching the bottom of the swimmer on the block. Then on "take your mark" the coach would wind up like he was swinging a bat. On the sound of the start, the coach would swing the board.

You learned how to get off of the blocks fast with these two drills.
Plus with the start drill I have mentioned in a previous thread, you learned how to get off the blocks fast and in the water clean.

breastroker
January 15th, 2005, 02:56 PM
Dr. Sam Freas wrote "Sprinting - a coaches challenge" that has many reaction drills. I highly recommend this book.

One thing for starts, get a beeper that closely matches the sound of the starting beeper. Saying go DOES NOT prepare you for the sound of the starting beep.

I bought a hand held beeper that has a flash, beeper and stop watch built in.

Bob McAdams
January 16th, 2005, 06:39 AM
Originally posted by breastroker
One thing for starts, get a beeper that closely matches the sound of the starting beeper. Saying go DOES NOT prepare you for the sound of the starting beep.

I bought a hand held beeper that has a flash, beeper and stop watch built in.

Of course, it also helps to have a pool that actually lets you use the starting blocks during at least some of your swim wokouts. ;-)

breastroker
January 16th, 2005, 12:03 PM
I don't believe you can be a great starter without at least 5 starts per day. Doing at least 10 would be much better than 5.

It would be much smarter to do start drills after warmup. Doing them at the end of practice as so often happens, means all the fast twitch muscles as depleted and tired. Starts and sprinting 25's should be done before a half hour runs out of workout.
But that is not the way it usually works.

If you have a pool that won't let you practice on the starting blocks, use the pool deck or grass. Get is a start position, CLOSE your eyes, and then have someone beep you. Then jump into the air straight up. Remember to listen to the sound with your eyes closed. The staring strobe flash is not for you

Also at swim meets, before your race go and listen to the starter to listen to the beep in your mind, and listen to his cadence.

Check out my articles on starts at http://www.breaststroke.info and http://www.breaststroke.info/BRST6.htm