For many decades now, people have been enjoying swimming as a pastime in rivers, seas and now more popularly pools. This water sports is based on movements powered by self-propulsion, with the main objective of finishing a specific distance within the fastest possible time. In fact, swimming workouts will help persons to burn a good amount of calories; lose weight; it is easy on the joints; will strengthen the muscles and energy levels; boosts heart fitness; ideal for cooling off during summer and is a safe activity to keep fit in senior years. Don’t forget to wear even kids goggles to protect your eyes.
Many people participate in swim competitions just for precedence or fitness as opposed to speed, for example traversing across the English Channel. It is worth mentioning at this time that this activity is actually distinguished from various other water sports activities like diving, water polo and synchronized swim meets; all of which involves swimming actions but the main objective is not for endurance or speed.
Learn more about the competitive side of this sport
The competitive activities include four strokes, namely the butterfly, freestyle or front crawl, backstroke and breaststroke. In the event that all of these strokes are performed in a race, this is referred to as a medley.
Here is an in-depth look at each of these races:
This stroke requires a swimmer to bring his / her arms close to a full expansion and then let go at the waist. Just as the arms start to pull up, this person head will come up for breath. When the water passes the hip section, the swimmer will bring his or her arms upwards and out in a recovery position as the head returns downwards. After this, there will be a series of undulating or dolphin kicking with both feet in unison doing two kicks for each arm stroke. Generally, there is also a kicking action when the arms are fully extended and then another one during the recovery position while the arms are resting on the hip section. Swimmers are required to touch the end walls using both hands and will be disqualified if the arms are not clear from the water simultaneously.
During this performance the swimmers have the freedom to utilize any kind of stroke. The majority of them opt for the front crawl, since this is the fastest and also the most effective one. Typically, a front crawl involves breathing on one side with one ear remaining within the water, both legs kicking alternately and arms pulling in a switching style. Flips or tumble spins are permissible and are practically utilized globally. While, these races have standard distances it is common for four persons to do this in a relay formats.
This competition is somewhat similar to that of the front crawl, with the exception of the back movements. This stroke is performed with both feet kicking at the same time with continuous action, while the arms move individually in windmill movements at the side the body. When swimmers reach to the ending of the walls, they are allowed to do flip turns, but the two hands touch will not be necessary.
Swimmers will perform this stroke with their legs kicking out in a frog-like position, but it look more like a whipping action with the knees close together. At the same time, the hands would scoop water towards the upper body and then pushed to the front of the body before the kicking action is repeated. During this time, breathing begins just as the arms pull from its full extension, head pulls up and after that returns downwards when the arms push forward. At the end, the two hands should make contact with the wall at the same time just as the butterfly action. However, some adjustments was made to the pullout from underwater after the Olympics in 2004, which allows one dolphin kick downwards and this would be executed in unison with an arm pull.
During this race each swimmer has to finish a quarter of the entire distance doing all the three styles, which are butterfly, breaststroke and backstroke and also one section in freestyle. There are different turns included in a medley, these are open turns to change style; flip or bucket turns performed in a backstroke and flip freestyle turn with two similar strokes. All of these parts should be finished in its own style prior to switching to another. Besides, the individual medley it is also possible for this race to be performed as a relay with four persons doing four different strokes. Generally, relays are performed in 4 by 50 or 4 by 100 distances and will follow the order of backstroke, breaststroke, butterfly and then freestyle.
Some equipment required for swimming
Swimsuit: These days, both man and woman can find a wide variety of swimwear. The fabrics are specially designed to provide minimum resistance in the water; will last much longer and can withstand fading even if worn regularly in heavily chlorinated pools. If you think that you are going to be uncomfortable in skimpy suits such as Olympians gears, you are able to get more moderate outfits at the local stores and many online suppliers.
Goggles: When you are in the water it is good to get protection for your eyes and the goggles are ideal to shield from chlorine and other particles, as well as allow you to have a clearer view of where you are going underwater. In the event that you have to wear medicated glasses, it is also possible to get prescription goggles.
Bathing caps: Most people will get this gear for a number of reasons. In order to swim in certain pools, individuals are required to wear these caps to avoid leaving hair in the water. On the other hand, you could wear a cap if you want to protect your hair from strong chlorine.
If you are unable to swim, you can find many flotation devices along with other accessories on the market that will help you to improve your skills to the point of even entering into competitions. These equipments will also help you to stay afloat and also swim slowly while working on different strokes without sinking or becoming fatigue. Some of the devices available in the stores include kickboards, pull buoys, fins, hand paddles, gloves, water dumbbells, noodle, aqua jogger, water treadmill and more.
How to select the right swimming paddles for beginners
Most times beginners have to get equipment to help them in water and paddles are one of them. For this reason, this information was put together to help them select the right swimming paddles from the options available on the market these days.
There are different sizes and shapes and it is important that you know what you are searching for in order to stay away from the paddles that might cause damage when are learning pose techniques. This type of swimming involves changing of support similar to pose cycling and running. When there is no change in the support, you will not have forward movements which will be unfortunate for many people since this unknown belief will mean that they have little idea of what is involved or even the way it feels. The good news for most swimmers is that paddles are available to help with this activity.
When it comes to the pose method, this equipment will help you to recognize, understand and embed the concept of support during swimming. As a result, it is essential to make use of the right paddles based on the level of your swim skills. Besides that, when you are using the incorrect paddles this can have an impact on your technique and will result in injuries for your shoulder.
First, try to avoid the larger and wide size paddles that offer the most resistance. In the initial stages of your learning you might think that this size would provide a much better opportunity for you to feel support and this can get you into trouble. A highly powerful support will backfire as it will offer far more resistance than you are able to physically manage at the start and will end up hurting your shoulders. On the other hand, when you are at the more advanced level in swimming the larger ones will provide the resistance that you need.
Another one to avoid is the finger swimming paddles. The design of this one will put unnecessary strain on your fingers and will not be able to support your bodyweight or supply any kind of resistance.
Next, stay away from paddles with a protruding or keel bottom. In order to learn about the right perception for support while you are in the water you must get simple and flat ones. This will prevent any interference when you are trying to get the right placement and make the right moves with your hand while you are in the water.
Finally, get paddles that are about the size of your hands. One of the benefits of getting one that is almost the same size of your hand is that this can improve your support and help you to learn about it, while feeling the sensations as you are executing the different strokes.
Tips To Perform Swim Drills
In the event that you want to swim much faster or enter competitive meets, then you should consider doing some drills. Swim drills can help you to put emphasis on several freestyle techniques in order to make improvements to them. This means that you are paying closer attention to your kicks, strokes or correct body positioning. When this is done repeatedly, you can commit the techniques to memory and execute them without a great deal of thought.
The following information will provide some tips on doing swim drills:
First, it is possible to perform one arm drills when doing normal freestyle, but you are only pulling with one arm. While doing this, the free arm can be at your side or stretched forwards. You can perform a certain amount of strokes using one arm and then repeat the same number for the other arm. Keep in mind that breathing should be done on the same side where your arm is pulling and allow your body to roll so that you can turn your head enough to breath and then return forward.
Note that when you are bringing your elbow upward, you should not take your fingers totally out of the water. While you are completing the stroke, ensure that you are dragging your finger tips on the surface as this will feel like they are in connection with your body.
This final suggestion will help you to complete arm strokes and improve your freestyle movement. Stretch your arm backwards to get a full stroke and then allow your thumb to touch your thighs in the area that it would reach while standing. Next, stretch your elbows from the water in order to finish this stroke.
Here are some things to keep in mind when doing drills:
Never allow your hips to sag.
Make a straight line in between your armpits and ankles by strengthening your oblique.
If you put one foot over the other this will make a drill far more challenging. With your feet spread apart this will give you more balance, but less core strength.
Guide for triathlon swimming training
Even though triathlon is a popular sport, it is considered to be somewhat young because it started during the early part of the twentieth century. This is essentially not a self-sufficient activity, since it combines three distinct disciplines, which is swimming, running and cycling. These disciplines are physically demanding and must be completed in a consecutive routine without time intervals in order for it to be successful. As a result, if you want to learn this sport you are required to be mentally and physically fit to be competitive and succeed in this activity. Continue reading this article to find a brief guide for triathlon swimming training especially for beginners who want to get the basic concept.
Swimming is easily the most strenuous discipline in this activity, since you have to forcibly perform freestyle techniques as your stroke. As a result, the first step is to attempt a number of freestyle routines for a prolonged time period until you are comfortable. A good recommendation to master this style is to gradually increase your pace, so you could maybe try for 100 meters while maintaining a steady pace. After this, you can increase this pace until you are comfortably and progressively swimming up to 2,000 meters without taking short breaths.
Allowing your body to become accustom to this kind of workout is really the key to master triathlon swimming. At this point you should be aware that on an average, a human body at normal fitness level will be able to endure this kind of physical exertion but this would be at a cost to muscular strength and endurance. If you want to be competitive in triathlon it is best to train in this manner so that you are not exhausted after emerging from the water. You should note that the standard swimming time for triathlon, based on Olympic specifications is around 1,500 meters.
Now, we will look at cycling which is the second discipline. A number of people believe that cycling is the easiest section of this exercise but this could not be further from the truth. One of the main reasons why this is considered difficult during triathlon is the simple fact that it has to be performed after swimming. When you look at cycling as a competitor it will be much easier for you to take the lead in this event since you will be focusing mainly on the cycling aspect. The easiest way to develop a good speed is always to control your breathing and then learn how to cycle routinely until you increase your speed.
Finally, running is by far the most tiresome discipline. A good recommendation is to build up a steady running tempo and avoid doing short sprints if you want to master this discipline. During triathlon training you are encouraged to perform at a steady pace to increase endurance and stamina levels. For this reason, the most effective advice that you could get for running is to use the optimum span of your arms and legs. Additionally it is essential to sustain a consistent rhythm and gradual pace when running.
In the end, remember that in order to finish this event you need to get the best triathlon swimming training and be persistent with your movements. Keeping your routines at a steady pace will be the best solution and if you are determined it will not take you long to improve your performance.
Swim workouts for Triathletes
When you are learning triathlon techniques swimming can prove to be a difficult sport. Since this is mostly based on endurance, if you are not familiar with cycling and running the moves will not come naturally. Even though we are used to splashing in the pool, in order to effectively swim multiple laps and maintain timing this could be really challenging. Most people will tell you that you need to have endurance to become a good swimmer, but the truth is having the right techniques will be even more important and the same can be said for triathlon activities.
The right techniques include combining interval training workouts and drills. The following will highlight some swim workouts for triathletes that could help you to swim efficiently and improve your speed, especially if you are a weak swimmer.
For this exercise you are required to have good concentration, as the main objective is to keep a stable pace while attaining higher technical skills. Even though it might seem simple, it could be really hard for you to maintain steady, non-stop exertion throughout a given distance. The required speed should be race strides or slower and the same speed must be kept over the distance.
Workout: You can try this exercise over a 750-meter distance every two to three weeks with shorter lengths in the initial stages. At the end, you will boost your fitness level and feel much stronger, despite the fact that you doing swimming for the same time.
You might be able to master this technique because it is designed to encourage a quick race start up, changing to moderate speed throughout the middle meters and then somewhat higher speed towards the end.
Workout: Can be performed every four to six weeks and will involve various experiments to simulate the earlier, middle and the later part of races. Even though the first fifty strokes needs to be moderate to higher level, you should execute the middle portion while maintaining moderate sustainable levels and increase this to much higher at the end. In the end, your fitness level and heart rate will increase which will in turn boost your overall swim time.
This routine can be useful for lowering the number of strokes as a result of varying the actual speeds from slow to much faster than a race pace, when you are trying out stroke rates and distances.
Workout: This can be carried out weekly and will involve swimming for about 10 X 25 meters with 15 to 30 seconds rest between sets. The goal would be to lower your overall time for every 25 or 50 meters during workouts.
Hopefully these simple techniques will help you, but keep in mind that swim workouts for triathletes must always include 5 to 10 minutes technique work, easy kicking and swimming to warm-up. On the other hand the cooling down techniques will take a little more time. When these workouts become a normal exercise, you will discover that this will significantly improve your techniques and at the same you will be more confident and comfortable in the water.
USA swimming times
Every year, there are standards put in place to establish USA Swimming times for all major meets ranging from the tender age groups through to the Olympic Trials. If you are interested in this sport and want to know more about the competitive aspects, then you can find some helpful information below.
In case you are not aware, the USA Swimming is actually a national body which governs swimming competitions in America. They are responsible for selecting the Olympic team and every other team that will officially represent this country, in addition to the general organization and functions of other groups involved in this sport.
The different meets
There are many different levels and types of meets, but basically they are all guided by local committee and individual clubs with the exception of those at the top level. The following are some of the meets that you should be knowledgeable about in order to prepare for competition.
In this meet, all the individual events are scored depending on the performance of each swimmer on a particular team. Generally this is limited to two teams; however there are times when different variations are allowed to have more. Additionally, there is more often than not an established limit for the amount of activities that a particular person can participate in and also for the amount of swimmers that specific teams can enter. In most cases, there is just one heat for each event and all the teams have to alternate lanes to enable swimming in half of the pool, regardless of the speed of each swimmer. Since the standards for the USA swimming times are basically never applied to these activities, it is nearly always classified at the lowest level. However, it can be regarded as a high level event if both teams are extremely fast and possess swimmers with especially high level ranks, such as college meets.