Nova Centurion Squad Session (Early season – October)

Nova Centurion Squad Session October 08 2 HRS

Just like you to an outsider the set on the white board is cryptic. But you use the same language.

Just like you there are clear periods within the programme of intensity or drilling, slowing right down and using snorkels and fins.

Bill operates with an A1 sized portable white board held together with duck tape which he props up somewhere poolside that is convenient for 4-6 lanes to see.

Self-regulation is key with a squad of adult athletes.

The set is given to them in three parts, sometimes four: Warm Up, Main Set (sometimes in 2 parts) and Swim Down.

Whilst Warm Ups are self-regulated, the coach will pick up on anyone who isn’t swimming as required – i.e. even pace when required to go for a low stroke count and a smooth swim. The main set is also self-regulated with Bill keeping an eye on everyone with two stop watches running on splits & stroke counts while he pays attention to ONE swimmer for the entire session.

This was a tolerance set, so not full on, as they are SEVEN weeks into this cycle.

Some will still not be anaerobically fit enough for something heavier.

The are given plenty of recovery time.

The trainee coaches … were advised that returning in TWO WEEKS time we would see that they will have adapted and the programme will be far, far more tough.

Observing a swimmer during the warm up achieving a stroke count between bursts of 21.8, or around 16 per 25m and impressed by his silent, smooth, controlled, fluid, easy, gentle, crafty & probing style I picked this lane to work with.

This lane was made up of three swimmers: Andy Mayor (200m Fly, Scottish International, Ex. Newcastle City), Sam Hynde (Paralympian) & Rachel George.

The parting note to his trainee coaches from Bill Furniss was ‘Application of Knowledge is crucial.’

WARM UP

500 FR

with 1 x 10m BURST each 100m

400 (4 x 25 IM Fins) Speed Rotate 25s

300 kick 25 Max 75 Easy

200 Fly – FR (25s) Acc 5 in FLY, May 5 out Turns FR

200 Loosen Choice

Having briefed the swimmers Bill Furniss then briefed his trainee coaches thus:

The things you will say in order to help your swimmers meet the objectives that have been set might be:

Try to reduce kick on 1st 50m

Try to increase kick on the 2nd 50m

Increase stroke rate on the last 25m/15m

Achieve your negative split

but

‘Don’t swim to destruction.’

i.e. swimmers have to control & trust their pace, turning the pace up or down as required so that they know exactly what they are doing and what they can achieve.

MAIN SET

5 x 100 @ 1:40 FPP FR

2 x 150 ICS REC 2 3 MINS

4 x 100 FPP No. 1

2 x 150 All FR

3 x 100

2 x 150

2 x 100

2 x 150

1 x 100

2 x 150

All 100s are NEG SPLIT with +ve stroke rate for last 50/25m required.

Swimmers were told how to swim it and are advised that they will be picked up if they don’t achieve the negative split. This was our job.

Is anyone interested in the Stroke Rates achieved by these THREE swimmers???

On the first set of 5 x 100 this is what we got:

Andy Mayor’s stroke count drifted from 36.2, to 34 to 40.

Whilst increasingly his stroke rate Coach felt he could do more with his kick in the last 25m/15m. Coach later felt that Andy was still settling into his new club but would need to ‘tune in.’

Rachel did as required with a stroke rate picking up from 35, to 37 to 43 over the 100m with the kick coming in for the last 15m. Used to Bill she has done this kind of set many times before.

Sam is Paralympic medalist. He wasn’t please with himself, or me, to be advised that his stroke rate went from 54 to 42 to 52 … i.e He swims at S6 and has next to no kick, I’d liken it to swimming with a pull-bouy and a single foot in a fin.

On the second set of 4 x 100 we got this:

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