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Justin Ritter
September 11th, 2007, 03:24 PM
Hey all, I know this has come up before but my searches didn't really return anything.

I've been swimming with a masters team for a couple years now after a long break from swimming, I quit sophomore year of college after 10 years in the pool. I'm finally starting to get some speed back but feel that I need some more intense workouts to take it to the next step. The next step being to achieve some SCY top ten times and to place better at Nats. I think what I need is mainly more time in the pool and swimmers who are significantly faster than me to motivate me. The main event that I'd like to concentrate on is the 200 Breast but on the side I'd like to improve my 100 and the 500+ Frees. I could probably have a decent 400 IM too. But all of these require some significant time in the pool as compared to 50s and 100s.

I love my masters team and will continue to swim and compete with them but am hoping to practice with an age group team a few times a week to augment this. Has anyone done specifically this before? How have you found the coaches, kids, and parents to be with a 30-something swimming with a bunch of teenagers? And how do most elite age group teams train these days? I'm hoping for 2 1/2 hour workouts in the 10k range (yeah, I know).

I'm going to email a few coaches and see what they say. And I'm bugging some of my coach friends but I wanted to get some opinions from other masters swimmers too.

Thanks for any tips.

swimshark
September 11th, 2007, 03:50 PM
Justin, I moved across the country and found that I wasn't getting enough time in the pool with the local masters team so I asked the age group coach if I could join them. It has been a year now and I love it. I practice with their senior program for 90 min a practice on weekdays and 2 hours on Sat. They have a higher level practice but it's invite only and I haven't been invited. Those kids do 3 hours a day and 3 hours on Sat. I love the kids I swim with. They keep me young feeling (I'm 36). The parents don't seem to mind and some welcome it since I can be a "friendly" influence on their kids. The coaches have been super in supporting me and my goals. They let me taper when I need to and work harder on certain days when needed, too. The team has been so good that I went to their ack to swim picnic this weekend. I'm a part of them!

I highly recommend getting in with an age group team if you need more than what you are getting. Good luck.

Alison

scyfreestyler
September 11th, 2007, 03:53 PM
10K, 2.5 hour workouts!? Good luck with that. From what I hear, Santa Clara has a pretty intense team, perhaps they could accomodate your borderline insane workout requirements!

As for swimming with the team, I have an open invitation to swim with our senior age groupers whenever I want, and when I have things go quite well. There are kids who are faster than you and some that are slower.

Justin Ritter
September 11th, 2007, 04:27 PM
Thanks for replies. I'm glad to hear that it's working well for other swimmers.

How did you guys find your teams and get invited? Does it just happen to be the local team?

As for swimming so much yeah it does sound crazy, I'm not so sure about it myself. But it's closer to what we used to do in college. And as good as my masters workouts are an hour a day doing 3000-4000 is probably not enough for the results I'm looking for in those events. Although I really wonder if there's something wrong in my head. 200 Breast and 400 IM? Yep, I think there is. Maybe this is why the 50s seem to be so popular in usms.

scyfreestyler
September 11th, 2007, 04:40 PM
My daughter swims on the novice team so I just started getting in during that time period and basically became the first person on their Masters team. Shortly thereafter the head coach invited me to swim with her senior group. The rest is history...albeit rather boring history.

Donna
September 11th, 2007, 09:01 PM
Justin, I too have recently switched from the masters group to the age group club for many of the same reasons. My masters group do alot of yardage but most of it is distance freestyle and I want to get my sprints better.

Now I am doing doubles with the age groupers and I do some days distance, some sprints, some recovery and some stoke work. Today was recovery(AM)/fly-sprint(PM) day for a total of 8750. It was great.

Good luck with your decision, if you want to improve it is really the best way to do it.

CreamPuff
September 11th, 2007, 10:27 PM
I've only had very positive responses from all the age group/ senior coaches and swimmers.

I sorta get the best of both worlds - I swim with both masters and senior/ age group.

I'm swimming mornings with the masters group (1.5 hours and we do anywhere up to 5500 yards) and then I'll do doubles twice a week with the senior team (1.5 hours although I'm working on building up to 2 hours and 5 to 6K during afternoon sessions). I find both groups challenging and equally fun and entertaining - while being completely different. I'm going to give it a year and see if it all pays off at the meets. Even if it doesn't, I feel like I'm getting in the best shape of my life in the meantime.

Age group swimming now places a lot of emphasis on SDK, kicking, core body position/ strength and breath control - all things that I am in serious need of! Also, there's an emphasis on the well rounded swimmer, so there's lots of IM going on. When I swam as a kid, we did not even have the term SDK (at least that I was aware of!) :rofl:

Since you are in your 30s (like me), you may look like some of the seniors and even get asked what grade you are in. If you are looking to swim 10K, most likely, you'll shoot for Senior I or the Nat group. Depending on the club and from my experience, I would expect you need to be able to easily hold 1:10 intervals for 100 yard free repeats. But ask your coach what the kids hold so you can gauge if you can hang or not.

I found that emailing the coaches worked well as an intro and then I met them in person. Was easy as pie. Best of luck and let us know how it goes!

Justin Ritter
September 12th, 2007, 02:41 PM
Thanks for all the advice. I'm happy to hear that others have had success with age group teams. Now I just need to find one and hope that my body can keep up.

swimshark
September 12th, 2007, 03:24 PM
Thanks for replies. I'm glad to hear that it's working well for other swimmers.

How did you guys find your teams and get invited? Does it just happen to be the local team?

. 200 Breast and 400 IM? Yep, I think there is. Maybe this is why the 50s seem to be so popular in usms.

For me it was just the local age group team. With family and time issues I couldn't have looked for another team really.

As for your events, join the club. I've been a 200 breast-er since I was 11. I added the 400 IM this past year. With age group, we do a lot of fly so it's good practice (3x200 is typical).

Alison

MichiganHusker
September 13th, 2007, 01:36 PM
Just avoid the team I tried working out with this summer - workouts that started with a 1500yd breast stroke as the warm up. Had there been a sane coach with achievable workouts, it would have been a great experience.

swimminlyn
October 3rd, 2007, 04:55 PM
I am wanting to start swimming with the age group team again. I swam this summer with them and registered with USA-S because I did a couple meets with the kids. I am not planning on doing any USA-S meets this fall or winter. So my question is...

Does my USMS card cover me to practice with an age group team or do I still need to sign up with USA-S? I am trying to save as much money as possible.

Blackbeard's Peg
October 3rd, 2007, 10:56 PM
Does my USMS card cover me to practice with an age group team or do I still need to sign up with USA-S? I am trying to save as much money as possible.

I wouldn't think so, unless they're running concurrent masters workouts or are operating under the same umbrella.

Donna
October 4th, 2007, 07:28 AM
Linda, most USA clubs require you to join USA Swimming.

swimshark
October 4th, 2007, 08:13 AM
Page 15 of the USA Swimming Insurance Coverage handbook.

"Masters Swimmers at Practice
Question: A member of the United States Masters Swimming, Inc. practices with a USA Swimming team. What is the status of the liability insurance for the USA Swimming member club and its members? Answer: This would be an insured activity. There is an agreement between USA Swimming and USMS allowing their members to practice with either organization. "

We, USMS members, are covered as long as the USA team is covered. the age group team I swim with does not require me to join USA-S as I am valid with USMS. Although I did join USA-S this year.

Alison

Blackbeard's Peg
October 4th, 2007, 08:33 AM
wow - Thanks, Alison!
That is good to know. Glad to see the two organizations are working together.
(mollie, yes, i know, i was WRONG! - you happy ;) )

swimminlyn
October 4th, 2007, 09:14 AM
Thank you Allison. I really appreciate you posting that.

art_z
October 4th, 2007, 10:13 AM
I train with my local college team when they are in session. I find it much more challenging trying to keep up with kids 1/2 my age, but also alot more satisfying to lead the lane on a set.

I've been doing this for four years now and I must say my body cannot recover as well as it used to. This week was avg 6k a night, with alot of fly/IM sets, and I need to take tonight off as I am getting pretty sore and don't want to risk hurting something.

swimminlyn
October 11th, 2007, 10:13 AM
Went to my 1st age group practice last night. Wow my legs are still sore. We had to do a 10 minute kick. I did a 500 in that time. I was not the slowest. Most of the kids were getting 22-25 so I didn't feel bad. I was either 2nd or 3rd in my lane and shared with 5 other kids. It was a good time and I am ready for more.

swimshark
October 12th, 2007, 08:22 AM
Went to my 1st age group practice last night. Wow my legs are still sore. We had to do a 10 minute kick. I did a 500 in that time. I was not the slowest. Most of the kids were getting 22-25 so I didn't feel bad. I was either 2nd or 3rd in my lane and shared with 5 other kids. It was a good time and I am ready for more.

Sounds like a good practice. My age group coach likes to have us do 10x100 kick, no fins on 1:30. For every 2 people that make it under 1:30 we get to knock one off the end. We usually end up doing 5-7 of these. A few weeks ago when we started, I was coming in around 1:50 (slow kicker) now I can make it in 1:41!

Alison

swimminlyn
October 12th, 2007, 10:27 AM
Allison,
I am a slow kicker too. I could not do 100 on 2:00, but since swimming with the kids over the summer in long course I have became alot better. I can hold a 1:45-1:50 for 10x100. It would be nice if I could get faster.

hofffam
October 12th, 2007, 02:19 PM
I would get my ass kicked in my son's age group workouts. I can race 50 free SCY in 24.6 but I cannot do 10x100 on 1:15 or faster like they do.

I enjoy being around the kids but I also like whining about various pains like other masters swimmers and talking about good beer and fast cars.

craiglll@yahoo.com
October 12th, 2007, 03:18 PM
When I swim at night, there is an age group team practicing. I'm not sure I really want to swim with teenagers or younger. What sort of feedback do you tend to get fromthe kids on the team?

swimshark
October 12th, 2007, 03:36 PM
Allison,
I am a slow kicker too. I could not do 100 on 2:00, but since swimming with the kids over the summer in long course I have became alot better. I can hold a 1:45-1:50 for 10x100. It would be nice if I could get faster.

Lida, that's a good pace and time. Keep it up.

Alison

swimshark
October 12th, 2007, 03:38 PM
When I swim at night, there is an age group team practicing. I'm not sure I really want to swim with teenagers or younger. What sort of feedback do you tend to get fromthe kids on the team?

I get great feedback. The kids call me the group mom. I'm 2 to 3 times their age and can keep up easily. When I came back after my surgery I got hugs from the kids. It was awesome. We do Secret Santas and yes, I participate. For me, it keeps me young and I really do like the kids. They are fun and challenging at the same time.

If you get with the right group, training with kids is awesome.

Alison

swimminlyn
October 12th, 2007, 04:03 PM
I too get alot of positive feed back from the kids. I went to meets with them this summer and they were very encouraging. Even the teenagers from other clubs were alot of fun. The coaches are very positive also. They are just as hard on me as they are on the kids.
I have had several of the parents talk to me about swimming masters.