Tues 2 Hours Pace Training

Working to set times over three lanes at @800m, @400m and @200m Pace. To establish the differences PBs from a swimmer in each lane were used to set targets. It took some running around but I then got the times, to the nearest second, that were being achieved.

HSC Tues 8 Oct 19


Hailsham SC Head Coach

It is taken a good decade longer than I expected to take on a Head Coach role, or even at substantial coaching role with a swimming club. This is entirely down to the need to keep my other interests and activities going, not least a day job. Swimming  Coaching is not kind to the working day with the likelihood of early morning training, evening training and weekends at galas.

The opportunity at Hailsham suits because the club swims out of a private pool and so has hours that are far more favourable to the working day: I can hold down a day job, take coaching and still get to bed in good time.

My philosophy for teaching & coaching swimmers comes down to one organisation, two people, two books and an academic sports science paper.

Swim England (formerly the Amateur Swimming Association) has been my guide and source of all training since 2002. Through the ASA, and then Swim England I have taken Level I & II Teaching and Coaching qualifications, and completed 10/11 parts of the Senior Club Coach Level III certificate too. And many other CPD days: coaching swimmers with a disability, transition to competitive swimming, Child Safety and Diving come to mind.

The books I swear by are The Swimming Drill Book by Ruben Guzman for swim teaching.

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And Championship Swim Training by Bill Sweetenham.

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My biggest influencers as a coach are the former Head Coach at Marlins SC. Beth Ross, and the current Head Coach Stephen Murphy.

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It was Steve who introduced me to ‘A Swimming Technique Macrocycle’ by Brent S Rushall Ph.D. This paper, his Ph.D dissertation I believe, put sports science and  human bio-mechanics first. This is how to nuance a swimmer’s technique towards perfection. We are always a long, long way short of this.

This translates into my sessions as an emphasis on basics such as streamline, on perfecting technique and then swimming at speed – as it is corrections to technique at speed that counts in competition, rather than overdoing swimming slowly doing drills which are best kept for learning levels.



Coaching Tips from Bill Furniss

Tips from taking T1/T2 Nova with Bill Furniss during Senior Club Coach Level III training

550m Warm Up (Drill ike and aerobic)

Repeats 100ms on 2:00 or 1:30 pb15

x3 of






100m easy in between

Motivation: they need to want it (Belief)


Improvement of competitive performance

Planned and coordinated programme of preparing and competition (orderly)

Player preparation and performance










Share Knowledge




Data Collection







Arena 2

Nic Piper – lead coach

Lee Hammond – pre pool warm up [Shiverers, Level I & II)

Jonathan Vernon – skills recorder

Dan – Team Manager

+ Sarah

See Head Coach Notes

Poolside team kit

Not mobile devices – support your team

Warm UP

Set them up to ensure no gaps

Self-directed to complete in 10 mins, then practice divess.

Split 50/50 with a large team (15/12)

Also outside lanes 1 & 8

Had hoped for 2nd or 3rd place but won

Impressed by:

Quality of dive and transition

Quality of stroke/body position



Taking my Level I & Level II Assistant Swim Coaching Certificates by RPL

I ought to have completed my Level III Coaching Certificate with the Institute of Swimming by 2011 or 2012 … but life got in the way.  I had successfully completed 10/11 of the modules and only had to organise a poolside assessment. However, I took a job at the Open University and was working away from home for a year. I tried to find a club, but that would have meant spending weekends away from home not just through the week. When I came home I struggled to get a coaching slot with my club and by then my son needed taking to football coaching and games instead- so I stepped back from swimming for a further year.

Here we are six years later and I am poolside and making myself available. I have kept up the teaching, and for the last year 1 3/4 hours coaching with our ‘Training Groups’ and 2 hours with Masters.

Having done these 10/11 modules the IoS will let me submit evidence of my coaching experience, practice and understanding. It works thus:

Level II Coaching

Being in contact with our Club Manager and Head Coach I hope to be able to find the time poolside. I have offered to go to early morning sessions, and to work any evening through til 9.00pm. I have a day job and live 30 mins from the pools so don’t want to be staying out later.

The issue will be working alongside my fellow coaches who already take county, regional and national squads, and our Youth I and Youth II Training Groups.

Convert to Go Swim

7 years ago a friend and I drew up blue prints for a model for sharing video clips of swimmers. Clips like these were exactly our desire.

Using these with swimmers, where I have been able to stream a sample clip, I have found it highly effective.

Showing a swimmer what to do in a video clip is far better than my trying to demonstrate poolside, better even than getting swimmers out of the pool to watch someone who can do it.

Go SwimSwim TV PricesGo Swim 3

GoSwim FC

I use a variety of drills for FC and always love trying new ones. This from GoSwim is brilliant as it is so effective – even more so with my Grade 5 swimmers age 8-11 than young teens.

The swimmer does 8 kicks then a single arm pull. Then 8 kicks and the other arm.

A Masters Swimmer describes it as catch-up slowed down – but I hate catch-up as a drill because the hands tend to be brought above the head rathe than at shoulder width.

Masters Thursday 18 Jan 2018 MASTERS B COACH & POOLSIDE COPY


Phase Activity TRT/Rest Dist: Dur: Total
W/U 3 x 100m as:

1 x 100m FC, 1 x 100m BC, 1 x 100 BR

FC: Eyes looks DOWN. Hips at same level as head. Steady flutter kick.

BC: Eyes look straight UP. Hips up. Steady flutter kick.

BR: Head and shoulders low on the water. Inhale fast, extended streamlined glide.

30” after each 200m 300 8 8
MAIN 3 x 100 @ FC Steady pace 2:30 200 /500 8 16
EASY: 1 x 100m FC ‘Zip it Up’ Drill 100/600 3 19
3 x 100m @ BC Steady pace 2:30 200 /800 8 27
EASY: 1 x 100m BC ‘Slomo’ Drill 100/900 3 30
3 x 100m @ BR Steady pace 2:30 200/1100 8 38
EASY: 1 x 100m BR ‘Extended Glide’ Drill 100/1200 3 41
8 x 25m CH Sprint 1:00 200/1400 8 49
S/D 3 x 150m as:

1 x 50m Kick, 1 x 50m Arms Only, 1 x 50 Swim.

450/1850 11 60+

A sessions that ran like clockwork. They particularly liked the REST built in four times during the session.