Swimming Fast: Is it your Mission?

At The Race Club we speak often about the importance of mental toughness in excelling in swimming races. We outline five important steps that are essential in developing mental toughness, or what we refer to as the ‘killer instinct’. We start with goal setting.

Goal setting is a vital part of the process of success. After all, you cannot get somewhere if you don’t know where you are going. For the most successful swimmers, those that compete in the Olympic Games or World Championships, there is more to their success than just goal setting. They are each on a mission.

Mission comes from the Latin word ‘mittere’ which means to send. Olympic athletes do not simply feel that getting to or winning at the Olympic Games is a goal of theirs. No, it is more than that. It has become their mission.

When a goal becomes more than a goal, when it becomes a mission, in essence, it defines who that person is. The goal is no longer simply a desire of the athlete to get better, but by becoming a mission, it encompasses the entire being of the athlete; his or her body, mind, and spirit.

In the biblical sense, I think of a mission as either a Catholic church in California that Father Junipero Serra was sent to establish, or I think of a Mormon being sent out into the world to spread his or her faith. Mission is not limited to the biblical or the spiritual interpretation.

No company in the world has ever achieved success without having a mission statement, nor without a strategic plan of how they will carry out that mission. The mission statement essentially defines the company and the plan defines the process of reaching the goals. The plan may change over time. Even the goals may change. The mission statement of the company should remain the same. Otherwise, if the mission changes, we are talking about a different company.

In Lane 4 of The Race Club, we do online coaching where we make certain that each swimmer establishes his or her goals for the season and has a proper plan in place to get there. To do so, we try to shore up any weaknesses in the five important disciplines of swim training, strength training, mental training, nutrition, and recovery.

In the past, I have written about Path A and Path B swimmers, those that are ‘all in’ in the sport of swimming vs those that do so for health, camaraderie and fun. Even among the Path A swimmers, by the end of one season of online coaching, we can usually determine which swimmers are just setting goals and which ones are on a mission. Swimmers on a mission will nearly always perform better.

If swimming fast should become your mission, rather than your goal, that does not mean you need to set your sights on winning an Olympic medal. It simply means that you were sent here to become the best swimmer that you can be. Swimmers on a mission will show the greatest commitment to reaching their goals. They will not allow setbacks or bad swims to get in their way. Rather, they will learn from them and become even more committed to their mission.

To achieve happiness, you must know who you are. To know who you are, you must understand your mission. If your mission is to swim fast, great. Pursue that mission with passion and with a plan. We are here to help you do that.

This week in Lanes 1-4 we released a comprehensive and complementary webisode on dolphin kick that explains some of the nuances of this important facet of swimming. We hope you will enjoy and benefit from this webisode.

Yours in swimming,

Gary Sr.

Freestyle Swimming Strokes: The Magic of 90

Swimming Stroke Rates for Freestyle and Backstroke

Freestyle swimming strokes for freestyle and backstroke involve the number 90.

I believe that everything in the world involves mathematics. The way objects are structured, animate or inanimate, down to their atomic configurations, and the ability and way in which they move, specifically in the stroke rate of swimming, all involve mathematics.

I do not know why, but in nature, when it comes to endurance events, there seems to be something magical about 90. In endurance running, 90 strides per minute seems to work well. In endurance cycling, 90 cycles per minute seems to work well. For swimming freestyle, in the longer events of 400 and 1500 or up, we frequently find elite swimmers holding a swimming stroke rate of around 90 per minute with the shoulder-driven or hybrid technique, which is a cycle time of 1.5 seconds.

In London, at 15, when breathing to her right, using a hybrid freestyle stroke technique, Katie Ledecky won the gold medal in the Olympic Games women’s 800 meter freestyle with a swimming stroke rate of about 86 strokes per minute. Four years later, in Rio, she swam faster and won the same event breathing only to her right with a freestyle swimming stroke rate of about 90 strokes per minute. Both races were swum in world record time.

The swimming stroke rates for backstroke and freestyle are very similar. So are their fundamentals. For the 200 backstroke, the longest official distance of that stroke, we recommend using the 86 stroke rate. Getting to 90 is even better, but 86 seems to be more achievable for most swimmers.

This week, in Lanes 2 and 3 of our Race Club subscription service, you will find a webisode on how we teach the 86 stroke rate in backstroke. You will also see world class backstroker, Luca Spinazolla, training at an 86 stroke rate, using beautiful swimming technique. To help maintain his swimming stroke rate at 86, he also uses a wonderful swimming stroke rate monitor and training tool, called the Tempo Trainer (Finis). It may be the most valuable piece of equipment that ought to be in your swim bag.

I am not sure why 90 works so well in so many different sports, but it does. To be able to hold 90 strokes per minute in endurance races, that means you will need to train at 90 strokes per minute. Or close to it. Check out our webisode and find out how you can do that.


Yours in swimming backstroke faster,


Gary Sr.


Three Pearls for a Faster Approach to the Freestyle Flip Turn

There are four parts to the freestyle flip turn: the approach, the tumble, the underwater and the breakout. Mistakes in all four parts are commonly made by most swimmers. Here are three of my favorite pearls for the approach to the wall that will help you improve your freestyle flip turns.

The Approach

  1. Accelerate to the wall. As swimmers approach the wall, most will slow their stroke rates or, even worse, glide into the wall. In either case, the swimmer will lose valuable momentum and time. Try to hold your stroke rate as you near the wall, increase your kicking speed and lengthen your neck on the final long stroke before tucking your head down for the flip. Avoid the short, choppy final stroke if you can. Carry that extra momentum through the turn.

  2. Look no higher than the bottom of the cross. To judge the distance to the wall properly, the swimmer must look at some part of the wall. Otherwise the risk is too great of missing the wall, either too close or too far away. Most swimmers look straight into the black cross on the end of the pool before making the flip, lifting their heads substantially and slowing themselves down. If you look only at the very bottom of the black cross to gain that perspective, rather than straight forward, the head lift is considerably less. This enables the swimmer to maintain more speed and momentum going into the flip
  3. Don’t breathe while starting the flip. In sprints, it is advisable to not take a breath on the last stroke or two going into the turn. In the 200 or longer events, a swimmer needs all of the oxygen he or she can get. So taking a breath on the final stroke approaching the wall is typical. However, some swimmers will take the breath and initiate the tumble at the same time, causing them to lose their perspective of where the wall is. Even if the breath is taken on the final stroke, make sure the head is back down before initiating the flip.


Yours in swimming,

Gary Sr

Flip Turn Swimming 101

How We Create Energy to Swim Faster

Introduction: Physiology 101

In order to swim faster, we need energy; lots of it. Whether awake or asleep, our bodies depend on a constant production of energy for all its functions, such as vision, sleeping, eating, thinking, breathing, digesting, or any physical movements we make. When we step on the blocks for a fast swimming race, we are about to increase the energy demands to a very different and high level and, if we expect to swim fast, our bodies need to be capable of producing it.

The energy for our body functions, including muscular contraction, is mostly in the form of adenosine triphosphate (ATP). ATP is to our muscles what gasoline is to our cars. We can’t function without it any better than our cars can run without gas. We have three sources of providing energy for our muscles; stored energy, the anaerobic system and the aerobic system.

Three Sources of Providing Energy

The first source is stored energy, which comes in the form of ATP or Creatine Phosphate (CP). Stored ATP and CP are the most readily available energy source in the muscle, but are in very limited supply. We run out of stored energy after about 10 seconds or less of maximal exertion.

The second source of energy comes from the anaerobic system (without oxygen). This system is primordial, presumably developed before we had oxygen in our environment. To produce 2 molecules of ATP, the anaerobic system requires a molecule of glucose, but no oxygen. It also produces a byproduct called lactate, which frees up a hydrogen ion, making the body more acidic. Once the swim race begins, the anaerobic system is activated and begins to produce ATP almost immediately.

The third source of energy, the aerobic system, requires a molecule of glucose and a molecule of oxygen to work. For each molecule of glucose, the aerobic system will produce 36 molecules of ATP. Once the swim race begins and with it the demand for increased energy, the aerobic system gets activated, but it takes longer for this system to produce ATP.

Unless we are demanding a lot of energy for our bodies, like when we race in swimming, we can produce enough energy from our aerobic system to provide for most of our daily functions. When we race and try to swim fast, however, and it is ‘all hands on deck’, we need to produce as much ATP as we can get. From the first effort off the starting blocks and the early swimming strokes, we quickly begin to use up our available stored energy. Both the aerobic and anaerobic systems immediately get activated and begin to produce ATP as quickly as possible.


This week, in Lane 3 of our subscription, you find our podcast interview with swimming exercise physiologist, Trever Gray. Trever, a former world-class swimmer, discusses his recently published article on how much to hyperventilate before swimming a race We hope you will find this interview interesting. In upcoming articles, we will discuss how each of the three energy systems work and how we can prepare ourselves to use them most efficiently to swim faster.

Yours in Swimming,

Gary Sr.

Swimming Butterfly Technique Video for a Faster Swim

Butterfly Technique

Our latest butterfly swimming technique video sheds some new light on this difficult stroke. While swimming proper breaststroke may be the toughest swim technique to learn or teach, from an energy expenditure standpoint, swimming butterfly is the toughest stroke to perform. Butterfly is a difficult swim stroke technique to do well. It is even a more challenging one to keep doing well throughout a race. Butterfly is an exhausting stroke.

One of the main reasons that swimming butterfly is so difficult is that it does not conform well to the law of inertia. It is an inefficient swim stroke. Because most of the propulsion in swimming butterfly coincides with the two down kicks during the stroke cycle, there is loads of down time when little or no propulsion is going on. That means that the swimmer’s speed is vacillating significantly between the two high points during the down kicks and the low points in between them. Because of the fluctuation in speed, swimming the butterfly technique requires lots of energy to keep going.

Swimming butterfly, like breaststroke, is also a very kick-dependent stroke. Unlike freestyle, where elite swimmers, like Gregorio Paltrinieri, can essentially pull their way to a great 1500 meter freestyle, no one can pull his or her way to a great 200 fly. Even less likely can one pull a fast 100 fly. Because in butterfly so much effort is required from the legs, these are the first thing to go in the race. In fly, once the legs go, so does the swimmer. End of race.

For anyone interested in improving butterfly technique, we start with the kick. Using Velocity Meter technology, Olympian Kelsi Worrell Dahlia taught us that there are actually four different points in the dolphin kick cycle where a swimmer can accelerate or increase propulsion; two on the down kick and two more on the up kick. Very few swimmers will capture all four points of acceleration. Most get one or two of them.

How to Improve your Butterfly Technique

Improving the dolphin kick while swimming butterfly is a process that takes time. It demands focus on improvement in three very different areas. First would be ankle plantar flexibility for the down kick. Second focus on the correct technique which would be undulation of the hip and bend of the knee. And finally tremendous strength and fitness is needed of the hip flexors, extenders, and the knee extenders.

This season we will produce many upcoming webisodes and write many Aqua Notes on the development of a strong dolphin kick. It is an important subject and there is a lot to discuss and teach. The strength of the second down kick in butterfly not only depends on the three factors that I mention above. It is also influenced by the kinetic energy from our upper body, arms and head, the so-called coupling motions. How the head should be positioned in butterfly is particularly controversial. Soon we will release a webisode featuring National Champion butterflier, Amanda Kendall. Using Velocity Meter technology we will show how the aggressive head snap down increases her propulsion.

This week in Lanes 2, 3 and 4 of our Race Club subscription, you will learn about an important drill to increase the energy of the coupling motions in butterfly. Kelsi demonstrates how to do this drill properly. Remember that coupling motions work well only when they couple with a strong propulsive force. That means for better technique, you need to work both down kicks and both up kicks in every swimming butterfly stroke cycle to get the most from your coupling energy.

Yours in swimming,

Gary Sr.

The New Breaststroke

I love watching Adam Peaty and Lilly King do breaststroke. It is the new breaststroke. You might call it a high octane breaststroke, as it is a powerful technique for the 50 and 100, primarily (Adam doesn’t even swim the 200 breast). This new breaststroke should be fast in both tempo and speed.

Having a fast stroke rate in breaststroke does not necessarily equate to having speed. It is pretty easy to spin your wheels in breaststroke and waste a lot of energy without having much to show for that effort in terms of speed. Breaststroke is the most timing-sensitive of all four strokes. It requires a completely different set of tools to do well, which includes hip, ankle, and lumbar spinal flexibility. It is also a stroke where, in order to do well, neither the arms nor the legs ever get to rest. For all of these reasons, breaststroke is the most difficult stroke to teach and learn.

Lilly and Adam have several things in common in their breaststroke technique. Both swimmers are very strong in the pull and the kick. Both swimmers use their upper bodies and heads extremely well to couple with the pull and the kick. Both swimmers have lightning fast legs.

Having the right hip and ankle flexibility enables a breaststroker to push the instep of the feet backward with greater surface area, resulting in more propulsion. Having more lumbar flexibility enables a breaststroker to elevate the shoulders higher out of the water, while still keeping the legs pointing backwards. The higher the shoulders climb, the harder they fall. It is in the falling of the upper body and head where the timing becomes crucial for the kick.

If the swimmer is to take advantage of all that energy of the upper body and head crashing down, there is precious little time from the end of the pulling propulsion; when the shoulders are fully elevated and legs pointing backwards, until the start of the subsequent kicking propulsion, when the upper body should be striking the water. Shortly after that, the kinetic energy of the upper body goes to zero. If the kick didn’t happen in time, you just missed the dance. That is where the lightning fast legs comes into play.

Recently, using Pressure Meter technology at The Race Club, we measured the force on the pulling hands of world class Croatian breaststroker, Nikola Obrovac. By increasing his stroke rate by 4 strokes per minute (53 to 57) and by increasing the speed of elevation of his shoulders by 9% (207 degrees per second to 227 degrees per second), Niko increased the pressure (force) on his right hand by 9% and on his left hand by 3%. We will feature all of Niko’s results in an upcoming webisode.

While Niko’s shoulder elevation is a coupling motion for his breaststroke pulling force, we presume that coupling will work for his kick, also, if the timing is right. To develop lightning fast legs for breaststroke requires great strength and training. Then, with those fast legs, to augment the power of the kick, the head must snap down hard and the body press forward vigorously.

This week on Lanes 2, 3, and 4 you will find one of our favorite drills for teaching and improving the coupling motions of breaststroke, with Olympian Mike Alexandrov demonstrating this technique so well. We hope you will enjoy learning how to develop this important breaststroke technique.

Yours in swimming,

Gary Sr.

The Proof of Coupling Motions

For several years I have written many Aqua Notes at The Race Club pertaining to coupling. I have come to believe that coupling motions are extremely important in swimming all four strokes and on the start to enhance power. I have never been able to prove that belief is correct…..until now.

Recently we invested in some technology at The Race Club that enables us to measure propulsion (pressure) on the hands during the pulling motion. The technology also measures the speed and degree of body rotation (angular velocity) with each stroke. We synchronize those measurements precisely with the swimmer’s video so we can see how much propulsion and body rotation are happening at each .02 seconds during the stroke cycle. No one has ever done that before. We call this technology the Pressure Meter and it is now available to any swimmer that wants to use it at The Race Club.

This week, in Lanes 2, 3, and 4, you will see in our webisode how one of the three and perhaps the most powerful coupling motions on the start, the back-leg kick, has a profound impact on the start of elite sprinter, Aaron Greenberg.

Aaron had never used a meaningful back leg kick in his sprint career until we recently worked with him. In just two hours, he completely changed the intensity and height of his back-leg kick, resulting in greater peak velocity and acceleration off the block, as well as increasing his distance to entry and decreasing his time to breakout. Using Velocity Meter technology, we were able to compare Aaron’s old start with the new one. You will find all of the details of the outcome of this comparison, along with a comparison with Brad Tandy’s start, on this new webisode.

As interesting as that information might be, since we didn’t actually measure the forces off of the starting block, it doesn’t necessarily prove that the leg kick increased those forces, even though the back-leg kick was the primary difference in the two start techniques. It is suggestive, but not proof.

When we recently tested several elite athletes from Indiana University’s post grad program, we used the Pressure Meter technology for the first time. Soon, we will release our first webisode publicly on this technology that does prove the relationship between coupling energy and pulling propulsion, showing Zane Grothe, one of the world’s fastest distance freestylers, and Margo Geer, one of America’s top female sprinters.

We are excited to share this new information with you. Hop in Lanes 2, 3 or 4 to check out the back-leg kick and enjoy our entire library of great swimming technique videos. Stay tuned!

Yours in swimming,

Gary Sr.

The Spin Turn for Butterfly and Breaststroke

When it comes to doing the fastest open turns, another law of physics (besides Newton’s Laws of Motion) comes into play. It is called the Law of Conservation of Energy.

This Law simply states that within an isolated, rotating system (like a swimmer turning on the wall), whatever amount of energy that is generated by the swimmer to make that turn happen will remain constant. The amount of the energy in that system can neither be created nor destroyed.

The amount of kinetic energy in a swimmer turning on the wall is related to the swimmer’s mass, the square of the swimmer’s angular velocity (speed of the swimmer turning around), and the square of the swimmer’s length (diameter of the turning circle).

The mass of the swimmer is fixed, at least for this one turn. Since the last two factors, angular velocity and diameter, are exponentially related to the energy determination, that means changing one will dramatically impact the other. In other words, if we shorten the diameter of the swimmer on the turn just a little, the resultant angular velocity will increase significantly, in order that the energy remains constant.

That is precisely what the spin turn does. This technique enables the swimmer to shorten his or her diameter slightly by tucking the knees under the chest more than with the vertical turns of the past. The result is an incredibly quick turn-around.

With the spin turn, rather than elevating upward against the gravitational force, the swimmer remains in a more horizontal position with hips held higher and the head held in a lower position. To make that happen, the swimmer tucks into a tighter ball and turns the head back toward the wall as the body spins around, enabling the mouth to be above water for the breath. No more ‘elbow your brother and phone your mother’, as was taught with the slower vertical turns.

For an excellent tutorial on how to do a spin open turn, hop in Lane 2 or 3 on our subscription service. In this week’s webisode, you will see Olympian Kelsi Worrell Dahlia doing a fast butterfly spin turn and some of the great drills we offer at The Race Club to help teach this fast, open turn technique.

For those that subscribe to Lane 3, this week you will also find a tough static abdominal exercise that was taught to me by one of the fastest Masters swimmers of all time, Rich Abrahams. We hope you will enjoy them.

Yours in swimming,

Gary Sr.

Ten Ways to Make Swimming a Bigger and Better Sport

Part II

In 1996, shortly after the Olympic Games of Atlanta, I wrote an article that was published in Swimming World Magazine with same title as this one. In case you were wondering if you missed Part I, that was it.

Chuck Wielgus, former Executive Director of USA Swimming, once paid me a huge compliment by stating that that article in 1996 provided many of the ideas that he implemented during his 18-year tenure.

I will recap the original 10 suggestions now and provide an assessment of where we are today, some 22 years later, with new suggestions on how we might make swimming a bigger and better sport.

  1. Create a nine-month season for swimming.

Swimming is more of a year-round sport today than ever before, so that has not happened. Yet our sport still suffers from a large incidence of burn out; swimmers that quit the sport way too early. The impetus for this suggestion was to provide some time each year for young swimmers to not look at a swimming pool and to engage in other sports; to get a mental and physical break. I still believe that would be in swimming’s best interest over the long run.

  1. The age group workout limit

This concept of restricting both the number and duration of workouts was really designed for the 10 and under swimmers, yet might be a good idea for up to age 12 or so. The idea was to help prevent burn out, and also to help protect children from the overzealous parents that unknowingly contribute to their children’s early retirement from the sport. While this has not happened, I would say that most swimming coaches are pretty good about restricting the number and intensity of practices for children.

  1. Develop a three-hour age group meet format (one hour of warm up and two hours of competition)

Meets are run far better today than they were then, but we still run too many of those long, tiring 3 and 4 day meets that only the most dedicated parents or swimmers can tolerate. That meet format has not helped to grow the sport. While we may need a few of those types of meets each year, the majority of meets should be quick and fun.

  1. Minimize the conflicts between swimming’s governing bodies

The hope here was to coordinate and consolidate the seasons of school swimming programs to not conflict with the USA swimming schedule. Since the USA Swimming schedule is now year-round, that is no longer possible. School swimming seasons for high schools remain extremely variable. Collegiate swimming programs extend further than ever before, starting essentially as school begins and ending in the end of March. The biggest difference today is that the majority of our Olympic athletes today are post graduates and not affected by the school swimming schedule.

  1. Save America’s greatest resource, our swimming coaches

The concern here was that the majority our best coaches would take collegiate jobs, where their ability to coach post graduates or coach year-round would be restricted. Fortunately, that has not happened, as some of our best collegiate coaches today include post graduate programs. In addition, we have managed to develop an abundance of incredibly capable club coaches that continue to develop the talented pool of young swimmers in America.

  1. Marketing, Marketing, Marketing

Swimming had been and continues to be a poorly marketed sport in America. During the Michael Phelps era, the greatest Olympian of all time, membership in USA Swimming barely grew. That trend is not just in swimming. Nearly every Olympic sport has had declining membership. The challenge is that we have a different generation of youth and parents in America; ones that are not so interested in having six dedicated days each week of training for anything, not just sports.

I believe that newly appointed CEO Tim Hinchey is on the right track in focusing on developmental swimming. Those are young swimmers that want to become proficient in swimming, but not Olympians, training once or twice each week for 45 minutes or so. That market has millions of potential members and hopefully, out of that pool of swimmers, will emerge our future Olympians that decide to go all in.

  1. Clinics, Clinics, and more Clinics

On this point, we have done well. While there were few clinics available in 1996, today there are hundreds throughout our country every year for both swimmers and coaches. Some focus on motivation, others on training and some, like The Race Club, focus on technique. In addition, there are now online resources available to help educate swimmers, coaches, and parents. In the education department, things have improved tremendously.

  1. Capitalize on the Olympic Games

It is curious that swimming goes from one of the most popularly viewed sports of the Olympic Games program, to a relatively obscure sport for the remaining 3 years in between. The World Championships, Commonwealth Games, Pan Pacific Championships, and all of the other major swimming competitions do not even come close to the same viewership. I am not certain what the solution is, but perhaps we have just not yet discovered the right format to show off our Olympic stars in a shorter, more digestible and entertaining competition. Out of sight, out of mind. We need to keep our Olympians in front of the camera and have people want to watch them.

  1. Recreate the international drama of the Olympic Games every year.

It is a bit frustrating to see golf and tennis each having four major international championships every year, while swimming has one every four years. Major events take time to build, but they must be built in the right format. All of the other major swimming competitions, including World Championships, Commonwealth Games, Pan Pacific Championships, European Championships etc. are either too regionalized or too long for the Olympic Games viewers to watch. It would be nice if swimming had at least one major international competition each year that captured the Olympic Games viewer.

  1. Increase the frequency of the Olympic Games and World Championships

In 1996, the Olympic Games and World Championships were held every four years. Today, the Olympic Games alternate every two years and there are both short course and long course World Championships. The IOC was smart to move the winter and summer Olympic Games (after 2000) to alternating two-year intervals, as viewers no longer need to wait four years to get their Olympic fix. The cost of running the Olympic Games has escalated so much, that few cities today are even capable or interested in hosting it. The solution will not be in having more frequent Olympic Games nor World Championships, but by creating sustainable, serious and entertaining international events that include the marquee names and that steadily grow in popularity.

This week, in Lanes 2-4 in our subscription, you can find great underwater video on one of the world’s fastest distance freestylers, American record holder Zane Grothe. You will also see one of our favorite drills on how to keep your head down, like Zane does so well.

Yours in swimming,

Gary Sr.

How to Kick Start Your Race

Of the ten points we teach at The Race Club for a better start, the kick up of the back leg is perhaps the most powerful and under-utilized technique out there. Depending on the age and size of the swimmer, the leg weighs anywhere from 20-40 pounds and can form a lot of kinetic energy with the right effort.

Most swimmers and coaches concentrate on the upper body’s motions and positions for the start, but it is with the lower body that most mistakes are being made. The back leg-kick is one of the three coupling motions that can be used on the start. The other two are the head lift and the arm motion. Of the three coupling components, the legs have the most mass, so can generate a tremendous amount of kinetic energy that will augment the force of the front foot as the swimmer leaves the block.

In this week’s Race Club webisode (available to Lanes 1-4, Lane 1 is free), you will see how Olympian Brad Tandy uses a ferocious up kick to help him reach the water over .5 meters further down the pool than the other elite athletes we tested. That is a pretty significant lead, particularly in a sprint. You will also find some of the unique drills we use at The Race Club to help teach this important coupling motion.

After just a few tries with elite sprinter, Aaron Greenberg (Yale graduate, 19.2 50 yard freestyle) and world class butterflyer, Marcus Schlesinger, both were able to improve their starts with a more aggressive kick up of the back leg. You can see how they learned this technique in the webisode this week.

For a faster start, practice kicking your back leg high into the air off the blocks. You will feel and see the difference that this important technique can make in your races.

For those of you in Lanes 3 and 4, you will find a great dryland exercise this week to help strengthen your lower back for breaststroke, another important coupling motion.

Yours in swimming,

Gary Sr