Simple Swim Workouts
by Marty Gaal
What are a few simple swim workouts, and what are some simple sets or tips that can help increase my speed?
Swim training for triathlon and open water racing does not have to involve mind-twisting structured workouts, but your workouts should be more detailed than swimming 40-60 laps non-stop in a pool.
Swimming for ten, twenty, or thirty plus minutes non-stop is good general exercise, and will help you increase your speed and strength from a baseline level. However, without including some form drills and swim sets with rest in between intervals, you will plateau in speed and fitness in just a few weeks.
40 laps in a standard 25-yard pool is 2,000 yards. (A lap is 2 lengths of the pool). A very simple swim set that you could turn this into would involve a specific warm up, a few drills, and then what coaches and athletes call a main set. If you are unfamiliar with drills, there are plenty of online videos and instructional DVDs describing these.
are plenty of other ways to break up your laps.
However, most good swim workouts will be based on some variation of the
above theme: Warm up, Drill set,
Simple sets to increase speed include main sets like the above example, as well as drill sets, which work on the streamline or hydrodynamic component of your swimming ability. Other simple sets to include are sets like:
You could do these as your main set, as part of your main set, or as a final set after your main set.
See you in the pool!
Gaal, CSCS, is the founder and head coach of One Step Beyond (OSB). Marty and
his wife Brianne live, coach, and train in