personally I don't use paddles or any other equipment, but I know some coaches have their swimmers swim with just paddles. I think it's good to do it that way because you can kick.
Most people can swim with paddles faster than they can swim because their hands have more surface area which equates to greater power per pull. I've also heard of coaches assign sets with paddles and fins. I know Mike Bottom has given fin/paddle sets. This allows swimmers to swim at shaved and tapered race pace or faster. I think anything you do can help.
on your question about fast sets with short rest.
for me that would be a set like
6 x 100 on 1:05; make it
or 10 x 200 on 2:15; make it
or as many 150's that you can make on a particular pace then if you fail, rest one and try again.
if you're training for 200's and up sets like these are very helpful.
They get you used to swimming hard and fast.
I don't think sprinters need to do them as much as
distance and middle distance swimmers.
These sets are very hard. They are great when you're making them and on a roll, they suck when you're hurting. They give you a good chance to coming close to race like conditions. It can shock your system and force it to become better.
But the key thing is variation
the factors we've got to play with are
Distance per swim
intensity / effort
# of repetitions
mental focus during the set
5 x 300's on 3:30
even split them and get at least 10 seconds rest
adjust the intervals for what you can make.
I read somewhere where it's good to do half distance
like if you're training for the 500 do 250 repeats
200 do 100 repeats.
i don't think you need to do those kind of sets every day
but several times a week is probably a good idea.
I know they are what I have to do to improve my 500.
Originally posted by gull80
Hi Ande. I have two questions:
1. Is there any benefit to swimming sets with a pull buoy (no paddles)?
2. How important is it to include sets with the shortest/fastest interval you can make, instead of sets with, say, a 5:1 work:rest ratio?