3x 75m as 25m FC kick, 25m FC drill, 25m FC swim                       45/60

3 x 75m as 25m BC kick, 25m Bc Drill, 25m BC swim                      45/60


Emphasis on streamlined drive off the wall with extended UW phase in turns

1 x 25m Fly Kick UW for as far as possible, scull to breathe.

8 x 50m in IM order as 50m of each twice:

(Possibly lane clear/or as a relay so up to 2 mins rest between each set)

FLY Drill/Swim

BC Drill/Swim

BR Drill/Swim

FC Drill/Swim

1 x25m FC UW for as far as possible, scull to breathe.


1 x 100m FC kick                                                                  r.10

1 x 100m FC Zip up drill                                                           r.10

1 x 100m FC arms only                                                              r.10

1 x 100m FC swim                                                                         r.10


TURNS Mid Pool Start

3 x fc

3 x bc

3 x br

3 x fly

(RELAYS IF THERE IS TIME/or 25m sprints)


100/200m as 2 x 50 or 2 x 100 as reduced stroke on FC

or Silent swimming on FC/BC


Teaching Breastroke: Teaching and ‘Training’ Groups


I’ve just completed my week of poolside teaching and coaching breaststroke.

Over the week, in 45 minute and 1 hour sessions I’ve worked with 41 kids age 7-12 learning breaststroke across the grade range of our club’s grade 3 to 7 (NPTS 5-10) and 32 young teenagers 13-15.

By Saturday morning there’s a pattern.


Warm up

FC/BC 40/100m smooth

BR 50/100m Observe their Breaststroke


Main Set

Pick through a choices of my six favourite drills

Apply the drills

Adjust according to how they respond

For teaching groups include some ‘fun’ after 15 mins, at 30 mins and to end.

For training groups (non-competitive squads) the ‘fun’ comes in the form of the variety of drills, STFs (Starts, Turns and Finishes) and sprints against the clock.


G3/G4 Breaststroke arms standing(Poolside, or shoulder high in the water) Establishes the correct arm action. Begins to address swimmers who pull down to their thighs. Clear demonstration. I may lean over a bar, or woggle or just the edge of the pool
G3/G4 Breaststroke arms with a woggle (noodle). An excellent way to give swimmers a physical barrier to their arms which otherwise may drop to the waist. Doesn’t always work! Push of gently so you don’t lose your noodle. Hand out only one colour to avoid hassle who gets what colour!
G3/G4G6 Kick with a float. Hands over the top. Use as pull-buoy as a variation on this and before kicking without a float at all. Steady kick. Always kick into a streamlined glide. Explosive inhale, blow out slowly.
G6/7T2 Backstroke arms with a FC flutter kick Keeps the body horizontal and moving forward making it easier to develop what may at first be a weak arm stroke in front of the shoulders. Keep the flutter kick steady.
G6/7T2 Backstroke arms with a dolphin kick Creates a fluid, rolling action. Useful to get the swimmers to feel they control what their body can do. Keep the dolphin keep from the hips and continuous.
All groupsTeaching and Training Two Kicks OneArmpull2KP To develop the kick and put emphasis on the gliding action. Make them work. Do it a few times, as 25m, 50m or 100m until they do the drill perfectly.
Extended glide. Glide for one, or two seconds counting ‘One Mississippi’ Many cheat and so making it a two second glide is more likely to achieve the desired effect. Be emphatic about streamlining the glide.
STFs Starts, turns and finishes on BR Mark the middle of the pool. Dive and transition to the mid point. Turn from the mid-point and back. Finish from the mid-point. At a competitive pace. Keep doing until they have the dive and transitional right, typically going for a three second count on the first glide and a two second glide on the second.



Mixed set T2 Thursday 18th December

Teenage Training Group Session. One Hour.

UW phase & rotational turns


4 x 100 F/C Kick 25 Explosive 50 Moderate 25 Explosive 1:45
1×100 FC Full Stroke 2:00
1×100 BC Full Stroke 2:15
1×100 FC Zip it up 2:30
1×100 BC Roll Shoulder 3:00
3 x 100m

as 25 Kick, 25 Pull, 50 Swim

4 x 25 Fly/BC    Streamlined kick 1:00
RELAY PLUNGE + Dolphin kick to 12.5m
2 x 100m Bilateral breathing every 3,5,7,9,7,5,3

Mixed set for a teen training group. 2000m One hour

Mixed set for T2  









800 2X100








75 Free / 25 Fly

75 Free / 25 Back

75 Free / 25 Breast

100m IM





200 8 x 25 Alt Fly KOB, Kick on Front @1:15 10
X2 FC 150 Smooth and easy R30


X2 CHOICE 75 BC/BR/Free @1:45
X2 Form (2nd) 50 Focus on fast turn @1:00
750 STF 50 MPS 2:30
200m F/C SWIM DOWN 4

Total Distance


Total Time

60 mins


Training Groups (T2 then T1)

T1/T2 NOVA 1 HOUR SESSION (8pm 25 NOV 08)                (MSM SC T2/T1  27 NOV 2016)

I followed this exactly six years ago. Poolside under the supervision of Bill Furniss with double gold Olympian in the lane. There are eight of us on the ASA Level III Senior Club Coach course which I had chosen to do up in Nottingham where NOVA trained. Tonight I’ll try it on our top Training Groups – not even competitive squads, but strong athletes all the same. It’ll be interesting to see by how I water it down during the course of the evening. At the Triangle, Burgess Hill.


Tumble on kick and tight streamlining + perfectly executed turns and transitions

Swim 4 x 50 FC T2 T3
as25m  FIST (Hands in fists drill)25m  CUP (Catch Up) @ 1.30 @ 100 / 1.15
Swim 3 x 50m BC @ 1.30 @ 1.00/1.15
High REC – stretch and reach with the shoulder
Kick 2 x 100m @ 2.15/2.30 @ 2.00/2.15
as 25 FC, 25 BC


Do you know you PB for 100m FC ? Hold Stroke Count  Inc: last 25m

T2 (?) T1
6 x 100m
@ on 2.00  PB + 15 @ on 1.30  PB + 15
1 x 200m IM
Slow FLY then Fast BC, BR & FC.
Last 25m FC to be same as last 25m on 100s
@ 4.00 @ 3.30
100m Easy BC 900m


T2 T1
4 x 100m
@ on 2.00  PB + 15 @ on 1.30  PB + 15
1 x 200m IM
Slow FLY then Fast BC, BR & FC.
@ 4.00 @ 3.30
100m Easy BC 700m


2 x 100m
@ on 2.00  PB + 15 @ on 1.30  PB + 15
1 x 200m IM
Slow FLY then Fast BC, BR & FC.
@ 4.00 @ 3.30
100m Easy BC 500m


T2 T1
2 x 50 FLY @ 3.00 @ 2.30
2 x 50 FLY Kick on back @ 2.00 @ 1.30
2 x 50 FC MAX



T1 550m + 2100m + 300m = 2950m (Probably pushing it by 600m)

T2 550m + 1200m + 300m = 2050m (May reduce the warm up to 400m)


The session worked well as a blueprint for our T2 and T3, though half the distance was covered. It was easier to adjust to suit the swimmers simply by reducing the number of repeats in the main set and/or increasing the rest interval. I even did a diluted version with five teenagers in our G8 teaching group.


NOVA Centurion 1 HOUR SESSION (8pm 25 NOV 08)

T1/T2 NOVA 1 HOUR SESSION         (8pm 25 NOV 08)

Swim 4 x 50 FC     @ 1.00/1.15
as     25m                FIST        (Hands in fists drill)
25m         CUP        (Catch Up)

Swim 3 x 50m BC     @ 1.00/1.15         High REC

Kick    2 x 100m     @ 2.00/2.15
as 25 FC, 25 BC

Tumble on kick & tight streamlining & perfectly executed turns & transitions



6 x 100m    @ on 1.30  PB + 15  Hold SC Inc: last 25m
1 x 200m IM    @ 3.30
Slow FLY
Fast BC, BR & FC.

Last 25m FC to be same as last 25m on 100s

100m     Easy     BC

2nd Repeat 4 x 100m

3rd Repeat 2 x 100m

900m + 700m + 500m = 2100m


2 x 50 FLY            @ 2.30
2 x 50 FLY Kick on back    @ 1.30
2 x 50 FC MAX


TOTAL  550m + 2100m + 300m = 2950m


Jonathan Vernan has certainly made a huge impact here at the Marlins over the past 3 years taking on many roles.  He has overseen the monumental and very important ‘Swim 21′ Teaching, Skills and Masters’ accreditations, been the Principal Teacher @ the Dolphin (until 31st Dec 2010) and taken a leading role in our enviable Training Group structure.  All of these roles are extensive in their own right however Jonathan has enthusiastically embraced everything even on the backdrop of holding down a demanding freelance job, embarking on an Open University Masters degree and virtually completing his the Level 3 UKCC/ASA Senior Club Coaching badge.

Jonathan (left) with Bowman at the Dolphin 15th Jan 2011
The press officer caught up with him at the Dolphin this morning  to get the low down of his current status and insight into his exciting new role for the club.  As from 1st January 2011 Jonathan became our new ‘ Work Force Development Officer’.  He explained  ‘it will be a one stop shop for anyone in the club, or externally, who wants to start or continue their development in teaching or coaching.  I will be responsible for looking after courses and making sure that appropriate information is available’.   For all you parents out there please stand by for emails and other communications inviting you to get involved with the programme.  He revealed ‘ we need 5 or 6 new people to come on board each year to keep up with the demand on poolside, I will doing everything possible to try and secure new people to join our staff !’
Whilst the post is mainly administrative Jonathan will be keeping his poolside presence, still teaching at the Dolphin and taking the Sunday Skills Group and coaching Mini-Squad and Training Groups, including the newly devised and exciting T4 (more on this to follow). In addition, he will be heavily featuring in our pursuit of Competitive Development  ‘Swim 21’ accreditation. He revealed ‘getting Competitive Development accreditation is going to be very tough for this swimming club, we already have many of the boxes ticked however we require 6 swimmers to obtain a top 20 National ranking for 3 consecutive years. It won’t happen overnight, but if everyone buys into it we could be there in 5 years time !’
Away from the swimming club, Jonathan lives in Lewes with wife Wanda and two children Zoe (14) and Toby (12). He makes his living as a ‘Professional Video Director’ in the Training environment.  Along with his Masters Degree he doesn’t get a lot of spare time however he really enjoys getting outside and walking the family dog ‘Evie.’
It is very clear that Jonathan is passionate about the Marlins Swimming club and rapid progression of our swimmers through to their full potential. We are very lucky to have him on board.  On behalf of the committee and membership I extend him the best of luck with his new and important role.

A slice of session plans – competitive – age groups

From jamie’s year.