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Thread: Dryland Training For Swimmers

  1. #61
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    Re: Dryland Training For Swimmers

    Quote Originally Posted by bzaks1424 View Post
    When you're trying to cause more fatigue - and seeing what your body can handle - you're training more so for endurance (less rest between sets).
    Ok, I can buy that, so here is a related question about fatigue: Should I take the stairs or the elevator? Let me generalize. Suppose a swimmer is diligently doing daily swim workouts and/or dryland sessions. Further suppose that this swimmer isn't trying to lose weight. Does it make sense to use the elevator, so the legs aren't so tired for the next swim or weight workout, or is more leg work better, period? My sense is that it really does matter and that one should preserve effort for the real workouts where it really counts. In defense of this position, I note the urban legend that when in training, Lance Armstrong always used the elevator, even though his apartment was only on the second floor. Swimming isn't as leg intense as cycling, but legs certainly do matter. Then again, Lance was working out many hours each day, not 1-2 like the vast majority of us on these forums.

  2. #62
    Very Active Member scyfreestyler's Avatar
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    Re: Dryland Training For Swimmers

    Quote Originally Posted by Karl_S View Post
    Ok, I can buy that, so here is a related question about fatigue: Should I take the stairs or the elevator? Let me generalize. Suppose a swimmer is diligently doing daily swim workouts and/or dryland sessions. Further suppose that this swimmer isn't trying to lose weight. Does it make sense to use the elevator, so the legs aren't so tired for the next swim or weight workout, or is more leg work better, period? My sense is that it really does matter and that one should preserve effort for the real workouts where it really counts. In defense of this position, I note the urban legend that when in training, Lance Armstrong always used the elevator, even though his apartment was only on the second floor. Swimming isn't as leg intense as cycling, but legs certainly do matter. Then again, Lance was working out many hours each day, not 1-2 like the vast majority of us on these forums.
    I don't train near hard enough for this to matter, but I've heard this a few times with respect to cycling and recovery: Never run when you can walk, never walk when you can stand, never stand when you can sit and never sit when you can lay down.

  3. #63
    Very Active Member orca1946's Avatar
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    Re: Dryland Training For Swimmers

    As a habit , we always do stairs where ever we go !

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    Re: Dryland Training For Swimmers

    Quote Originally Posted by Karl_S View Post
    Ok, I can buy that, so here is a related question about fatigue: Should I take the stairs or the elevator? Let me generalize. Suppose a swimmer is diligently doing daily swim workouts and/or dryland sessions. Further suppose that this swimmer isn't trying to lose weight. Does it make sense to use the elevator, so the legs aren't so tired for the next swim or weight workout, or is more leg work better, period? My sense is that it really does matter and that one should preserve effort for the real workouts where it really counts. In defense of this position, I note the urban legend that when in training, Lance Armstrong always used the elevator, even though his apartment was only on the second floor. Swimming isn't as leg intense as cycling, but legs certainly do matter. Then again, Lance was working out many hours each day, not 1-2 like the vast majority of us on these forums.
    Stairs? Really? It doesn't matter.

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    Re: Dryland Training For Swimmers

    Also, there are some really hilariously pointless dryland routines in this thread.

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    Re: Dryland Training For Swimmers

    Quote Originally Posted by scyfreestyler View Post
    I don't train near hard enough for this to matter, ...
    Are you sure? I used to think that too, but now I am suspicious that there is a discernable difference - lots of stairs = not so speedy in the pool. Here is a related observation: There is a small flight of stairs on the way to the pool that I can't avoid. On days when I find myself spontaneously going up two-(or 3)-at-a-time, I typically find that I have a lot more zip in the pool too. The stairs are like a measure of how tired I am.

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    Very Active Member chowmi's Avatar
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    Re: Dryland Training For Swimmers

    How about something for those who want to do just a wee bit of drylands? This summer my "training" is once per week drylands, 20 min on my Vasa, 2 x swims per week and 1 "flex swim" which means that's usually a 50 free race.

    We bought an office building in late spring! It's totally awesome. I really feel like I have Made It To The Top when I own something that requires 2 handicap spaces and 2 bathrooms to meet code. I have put most of my emotional energy into that, so just maintaining exercise thru the summer.... Sooo......for those of you who are like me these days and working really hard in everything except the water & drylands, here is my Summer of 2011 Drylands When Not Using My Vasa!!!

    My new thing: with limited time and quite limited energy, I wanted to mix it up and do something fun and but still geared towards Swimming Transference:

    ROLLS! There is is something just so satisfying and you get that feeling of accomplishement when you GO somewhere.

    1. "Core rolls" - lie on your back on a mat that is quite long lengthwise (the direction you will be going). Cross your arms on your chest mummy style. Lift your legs and bend at the knees, like you are going to do a crunch. But instead, amaze your gymmates as you start "shrimping" down the mat sideways. Resist using your elbows, and move in a controlled fashion. Make sure you are going straight - you will tend to veer off the mat as your hips or your upper torso do more work.

    2. "Yoga Pulls" - go to the yoga room when not in use. Get a yoga blanket and put it on the floor. Lie on it. Lift your legs (straight or bend) and then put your arms out like you are going to swim. Palms down, your forearms on the ground, too. Now, anchor, and pull yourself across the floor! (Sort of like the army crawl) Intimide everyone doing traditional yoga as you swiftly "swim" across the room!

    3. "Mummy Rolls" - this is quite fun! Probably not too challenging, unless you can go fast enough with enough control. Same mat as #1. Lie mummy style again, legs straight. Now, roll, 360 turns! All the way down, with control, using all your core and stabilizing muscles to go perfectly straight, which is not as easy as it looks! Amazing everyone in the gym and you will likely scare most people away from the mats with this one.

    4. "Moving Pushups" - this is fun! Get in pushup position, same start as #1 and #3. Do a push up, and as you are pushing up, hurl your body 1 position down in a controlled and even movement. No cheating and lifting or thrusting with your butt! You can add difficulty by adding a clap or going faster, as long as you can control it.

    In all, make sure to turn around and go the other way to work the other side!

    And my bonus - in addition to my cartwheels, I have added the crabwalk, alternating the traditional crab and the upside down crab. You can vary this by lifting your bottom more, not sinking into your shoulders, or doing variations of leg lifts with the upside down crab.

    Totally fun!

    Practically speaking, it's not always easy to monopolize the entire stretch/exercise mats. I usually can't get them all in one day unless there's really no one there. So for #4, I often do a pyramid of pushups. If you go 1 through 10 and back down, that's 100 pushups (someone check my math). I usually just do 1 to 5 (1 2 3 4 5 4 3 2 1). Going up are normal pushups, going down I do with a clap. 25 is just right for me.

    For those who read these forums and think the recommendations are too "elite", I hope you enjoy these! You can start with a small pyramid or a few rolls!

  8. #68
    Very Active Member ourswimmer's Avatar
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    Re: Dryland Training For Swimmers

    Quote Originally Posted by chowmi View Post
    3. "Mummy Rolls" - this is quite fun! Probably not too challenging, unless you can go fast enough with enough control. Same mat as #1. Lie mummy style again, legs straight. Now, roll, 360 turns! All the way down, with control, using all your core and stabilizing muscles to go perfectly straight, which is not as easy as it looks! Amazing everyone in the gym and you will likely scare most people away from the mats with this one.
    My Pilates teacher taught me a similar exercise with arms overhead in the streamline position. Lie face up, put the arms overhead, tighten up your core, and then lift both arms and legs just a bit so that the body is in a crescent. (If you can't lie on your back and lift both legs six inches without arching your low back or sticking out your stomach, you aren't strong enough to do this exercise.) After you flip, lift arms and legs again just a bit to make a crescent but face down; then flip again. Don't use arm- or leg-waving to generate the momentum to turn over. It's fun, and it's also a lot like flipping from back to front at the beginning of a backstroke turn.

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    Re: Dryland Training For Swimmers

    I seek the comments of the forum community on the following matter:

    I'm attempting to find a set of exercises that I can do to accomplish two objectives. I suspect that these are related:
    1) improve my shoulder flexibility so that I can perform a better streamline off each turn.
    2) recover from some shoulder trouble that I have been told is "probably tendonitis - likely the bicep tendon" and prevent reoccurrence.

    Exercises I have experimented with include:


    The "full can" exercise is described in Salo's book, "Complete conditioning for swimming". In this exercise the arms are lifted from the sides with locked elbows and thumbs pointed upward. It cautions to avoid the "empty can" version with the thumbs pointed down, suggesting that this can irritate the tendons in the shoulder. On the other hand, the "empty can" exercise is recommended here: (http://www.active.com/fitness/Articl..._Shoulders.htm)
    I find that the full can version causes clicking in my shoulder, the empty can version does not. What gives? Which is really better?

    I have found very little advise about how to improve shoulder flexibility.
    Here is an exercise advocated by someone named Alan Arata to improve flexibility for butterfly:
    (http://www.seaserpents.org/Articles/...0Butterfly.pdf)
    Essentially the same exercise is shown in this YouTube video:
    ( )
    I can see that doing this exercise regularly might improve shoulder flexibility, but is it safe? It looks pretty scary. My thoughts appear to be shared by those commenting on this video:
    (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=giK9ahm8TyY)

    Is that exercise a good one? I tried it - more clicking in my shoulders. If it isn't a good choice, what is?

    The funny thing is that my shoulder trouble started shortly after I made two changes in my training.
    First, I decided that while I had never had shoulder trouble, "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure" and that I should start doing rotator cuff exercises as part of my drylands to ensure that I have many good years of swimming ahead of me. Second, I decided that the most significant limitation on my swimming speed is the quality of my streamline so I started to try to do a much tighter streamline off every wall. Within about 2 months of these changes, my L shoulder started to hurt, and my shoulder flexibility has gotten worse.
    Last edited by Karl_S; March 30th, 2013 at 12:59 PM.

  10. #70
    Very Active Member Jimbosback's Avatar
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    Re: Dryland Training For Swimmers

    Quote Originally Posted by Karl_S View Post
    I seek the comments of the forum community on the following matter:

    I'm attempting to find a set of exercises that I can do to accomplish two objectives. I suspect that these are related:
    1) improve my shoulder flexibility so that I can perform a better streamline off each turn.
    2) recover from some shoulder trouble that I have been told is "probably tendonitis - likely the bicep tendon" and prevent reoccurrence.
    My first two years back, I could not put one hand on top of the other in streamline position. My shoulders (and entire torso) were too tight from weightlifting. What helped best was simply hanging from a bar at intervals (ie 3x 20 sec, resting about a minute in between).

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    Very Active Member mcnair's Avatar
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    Re: Dryland Training For Swimmers

    My suggestion would be to go with very light weights (or cables) and extremely careful movements on any of the preventative exercises, and that, while these and other strength exercises can be helpful for stabilizing the joints, as you noted, Karl, it doesn't take much for those same exercises to cause additional problems.

    The strength exercises won't deal with the flexibility issues though, for that I would suggest something more like yoga... a lot of the poses help out with the shoulder, but you have to be careful about those too. If you get into a routine with a series of yoga stretches (especially after you're already warm, maybe post-swim), they can really help out... I know when I'm more regular with my yoga, I feel great and don't have nearly as many tweaks and twinges in the joints during swim practice. Not that i've been good about that lately, but I'm trying to get back into it. Check out Yoga Journal's website, where you can even search for poses based on "anatomical focus":

    http://www.yogajournal.com/poses/fin...ocus/shoulders

    I think the practice is more effective if you incorporate the shoulder exercises into a general, full-body routine.

  12. #72
    Very Active Member joshua's Avatar
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    Re: Dryland Training For Swimmers

    I have been following this thread and here is my 2 cents: I am a 59 year old fitness swimmer who also has active and sometimes demanding work and family commitments. I swim because I enjoy swimming. I used to swim less and lift weights but as I got older I was injuring myself too many times in the gym. Of course, this could have been the result of my somewhat masochistic approach to lifting. I also never actually felt that there was direct transferability between the gym and the pool. In fact, I would be very interested in hearing other opinions on this. Has anyone really seen a direct ratio between progress in lifting (weight, reps, sets or any other benchmark) and improved swimming times?

    Be that as it may, I have discovered that as I get older, stretching after swimming is my main dry land activity. I try to do a complete stretching routine (about 10-15 minutes) after swimming and sometimes stretch while watching TV. I feel that as one gets older, one naturally loses muscular suppleness and ROM. It is essential to prevent this from happening.

  13. #73
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    Re: Dryland Training For Swimmers

    Here are some swim-specific exercises (link below). Please skip the first 2:45 minutes (talking points) Anyway, I've developed a different routine using these exercises and I use a different set for my 10 and unders, middle school and high school swimmers. I found that I needed to get in the weight room for leg exercises because I felt the cords didn't work them enough.


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    Re: Dryland Training For Swimmers

    Quote Originally Posted by Jimbosback View Post
    My first two years back, I could not put one hand on top of the other in streamline position. My shoulders (and entire torso) were too tight from weightlifting. What helped best was simply hanging from a bar at intervals (ie 3x 20 sec, resting about a minute in between).
    How often did you do this bar-hanging set? How long did it take before you got noticeable improvement in flexibility? Are you still doing shoulder stretching and if not, do you lose flexibility quickly after you stop? I've really gotta improve my shoulder flexibility.

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    Very Active Member Jimbosback's Avatar
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    Re: Dryland Training For Swimmers

    Quote Originally Posted by Karl_S View Post
    How often did you do this bar-hanging set? How long did it take before you got noticeable improvement in flexibility? Are you still doing shoulder stretching and if not, do you lose flexibility quickly after you stop? I've really gotta improve my shoulder flexibility.
    I would do that whenever I was in the gym -- 2-3 times a week, generally. It was about a year of this (plus a lot of swimming and post-workout stretching) before I got to really feel like my upper half was loose. I can now streamline easily, and I don't regularly hang. I don't even feel the stretch from hanging now. My flexibility has not reverted to my former bodybuilder-like knots, through a couple of cycles of in-shape/out-of-shape for swimming. I now only do, occasionally, raises and rotations for shoulders.
    On taper since 2012

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    Very Active Member smontanaro's Avatar
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    Re: Dryland Training For Swimmers

    > I now only do, occasionally, raises and rotations for shoulders.

    Raises and rotations? Can you describe? I do something where I extend my arms out in front or to the side and rotate in both directions (small circles). I never knew what they were called, but that sounds more or less like it could be what you do.

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    Very Active Member Jimbosback's Avatar
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    Re: Dryland Training For Swimmers

    Quote Originally Posted by smontanaro View Post
    > I now only do, occasionally, raises and rotations for shoulders.

    Raises and rotations? Can you describe? I do something where I extend my arms out in front or to the side and rotate in both directions (small circles). I never knew what they were called, but that sounds more or less like it could be what you do.
    Raises: I do, as a group with light dumbells: one-arm forward raises, where you lift from arm at sides to 90 degrees forward, alternating arms; lateral raises, arms at sides raised to 90 degrees sideways; and reverse flyes, which are done bent-over, arms hanging toward the floor and lifted 90 degrees out to the sides.

    Rotations: Internal and external rotations (with bands). Arm is bent 90 degrees at elbow with upper arm against side of body. lower arm moves from pointing forward (like gunfighter) horizontally across body (internal) or from across body to gunfighter (external).
    On taper since 2012

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