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Workouts

One-Hour Workout: Race-Specific Swim Skills

This unique swim set is focused on preparing an athlete specifically for the challenges of an open-water race.

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Every Tuesday we’ll feature a different coach’s workout you can complete in 60 minutes (or less!).

This week’s swim workout comes from strength and multisport coach Bjoern Keller of Rehab United in San Diego, Calif. “This swim set is focused on preparing the athlete specifically for the challenges of an open-water race, as well as accommodating to race pace,” says Keller. “Starting off without pushing off the wall mirrors the start of an open-water race while taking off after doing a somersault in the water challenges orientation in the water and thus prepares the athlete for the frenzy of starting off in a group in a triathlon race.”

“The main set also plays with varying the pace, which simulates a race in which the athlete probably has to swim the first 100 yards very hard to find some open space or the slipstream of a another competitor, as well as learning to switch from constant natural pace to a short sprint when passing slower swimmers in the race.”

RELATED: Open-Water Training In The Pool

Warm-up
400 yards easy

6×50 drills as 25 yards drill (e.g. right/ left arm only, fingertip drag), 25 yards free

Main Set
– 3×50 water start (no pushing off the wall) as 25 yards increasing speed, 25 yards easy
– 3×50 somersault start as 15 yards max effort, 35 yards easy
– 8-10×100 fartlek swim (vary your pace within each 100 from very hard pace to your base pace to easy recovery pace)
– 4×100 slipstream swim with partner, base pace (swim right behind your partner and at some point within those 100 yards pass your partner with a short sprint; take turns)

Cool-down
400 easy

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