|As a member of Dalhousie Masters
Swimming, you will be instructed in the four competitive
swimming strokes: Butterfly, Backstroke, Breaststroke and
Freestyle. We will not force you to do anything in
workout that you do not want to do, but we encourage
everyone to attempt to do the sets as given. Learning to
master new strokes is a significant accomplishment in
itself. Also having more strokes in your repertoire makes
possible a better variety of sets, thus allowing for more
diversity in your workouts. If you are unable to perform
a specific task (because of injury, fatigue, or any other
reason) you may substitute a different task that you can
perform without disrupting the flow of the workout for
the others in your lane.
When you first start swimming with Dalhousie Masters, it may sound like a foreign language when the workout is given. This is normal; even seasoned swimmers must get used to new terminology when swimming with different clubs. We advise you to study the terms noted below so that you are familiar with the way your new swim club communicates. However, don't hesitate to ask the coach to explain a set again if you don't understand.
Parts of the Workout
Warm-up - the beginning part of the workout. Usually builds in intensity, gearing your body and mind for more intense swimming.
Kicking - using only the legs for propulsion. Sometimes done with the use of a kick board.
Pulling - using little or no kick to focus on the upper body, sometimes using paddles, and/or a pull buoy.
Main Set - that part of the workout usually 20 minutes in duration in which the heart rate is elevated.
Drill Set - focuses on one part of a particular stroke. Most commonly meant to be done with precision, not speed.
Cool Down - the concluding part of the workout in which the heart rate should be gradually lowered.
Blue Zone - referring to sets that are relatively low in aerobic intensity, usually the warm-ups and cool downs are blue zone swimming.
Green Zone - referring to sets that are aerobically moderate. Often pulling and kicking sets will be green sets.
Red Zone - referring to sets that are the most aerobically challenging. Your face will be red once you have finished one of these sets.
Sprinting - refers to short intense swims of usually not more than 100 metres, usually Red Zone swimming.
Easy - refers to a distance of relaxed swimming, used as part of a recovery from a more intense set of swims.
Build - getting progressively
faster within a swim.
Descend - progressively faster within a set of repeats. Example: 3 x 100 Freestyle @ 2:00 descend, swim times could be 1:35, 1:33, 1:28.
Rest Interval - a specific and constant period one should wait between swims in a given set. For example, (6 x 75 Backstroke @ RI :15) is six 75 yard Backstroke swims with 15 seconds rest afer each one.
Negative Split - swim the second half of a distance faster than the first half. Example: 2 x 400 Freestyle Negative Split-the second 200 of each 400 should be swum a few seconds faster than the first, but there should not be a break between the 200s.
Pace - hold a steady speed throughout a set, often trying to match a goal race tempo. Example: 4 x 50 Breaststroke @ 1:00 holding a 200 race pace. Most people can swim shorter distances at a faster average speed than they can hold for longer distances. This instruction says to swim all four 50s at the average speed one would normally do a 200.
Cruise Interval - used to explain the pace for the lane. For example: all the members of the lane are able to do 100s on the 1:30. Be sure your cruise interval is compatible with the other members of the lane in which you are swimming.
Sculling - a relaxing motion using the hands in a back and forth motion under the water. Used to feel the water, especially for warm-ups, cool downs and easy swims. Use a flutter or whip kick.
Elementary Backstroke - used mainly for cool down and easy swims. Pulling with both arms at the same time; both the pull and the recovery are under the water. Uses a whip kick.
|Other Swimming Terms
Backstroke start - consists of using the starting block while in the water to begin a Backstroke event.
Break out - the transition from the push off mode into the full swimming pattern.
Breaststroke kick, (whip or frog kick) - where the legs and feet come apart in a symmetrical motion keeping the feet under the water.
Catch phase - the beginning part of the stroke where the arms and hands start to propel the body.
Dive Start - using the starting blocks and diving into the water from the side of the pool, as opposed to pushing off from the side while in the water.
Dolphin kick - used in Butterfly where the thrust of the kick comes from the hips and the feet and legs are held together.
Flip turn - competitive racing turn by utilizing a somersault where the feet push off from the wall.
Flutter kick - used in both Freestyle and Backstroke where the feet and toes are pointed and kick the water in an alternating motion.
Individual Medley - refers to an event in which the four competitive strokes are done equally in the order of Butterfly, Backstroke, Breaststroke and Freestyle.
Open turn - noncompetitive turn by touching the wall with one hand and pushing off with the feet.
Push off - refers to pushing off from the wall and into the streamline position.
Recovery phase - the conclusion of the stroke where the hand and arms finish pulling and set up to start the next stroke cycle.
Taper workouts - done a few days to a few weeks prior to an important race (usually at the end of a season). Depending on your training style and plan forracing, your taper workout may be just dropping 200-300 metres off your total metres for your daily workout for a week, or could mean gradually tapering off from 4,000 metres a day to 2,500 metres during the two to three week period prior to a racing period. Many competitive swimmers shave their body hair at the end of the taper period and just before the important race. This is thought to provide less drag, a better feel for the water, in addition to providing a psychological advantage.
Transition - generally refers to the change of strokes in the Individual Medley event. For example the transition from Butterfly to Backstroke.