Scientific Triathlon Podcast & Our 3 Key Posts On Swimming More Confidently In Open Water

Podcast: Swim Training Structure The Swim Smooth Way

Swim Smooth Head Coach Paul Newsome was featured on The Triathlon Show / Scientific Triathlon podcast this week discussing how best to structure your swim training for best performances. We love Mikael Eriksson's show ourselves and hope you enjoy Paul's interview:

Listen to part 1: here
Listen to part 2: here

Paul discusses what types of workouts triathletes should include in their swim training, what a typical weekly swim training structure might look like for triathletes, the case for focusing on your threshold speed/Critical Swim Speed (CSS) and much more besides.

3 Key Posts On Swimming Confidently In Open Water

If you are a triathlete or open water swimmer in the northern hemisphere then you will know that the open water season is well underway and your key race or event of the season is probably coming up fast.

Hopefully you've been developing your swim fitness and refining your stroke technique but have you given much thought to your open water skills? If not then practising drafting, navigating and swimming straight will be the missing ingredient in you having a brilliant swim in open water.


Swimming in open water is VERY different from swimming the pool - don't believe anyone who
tells you otherwise! It's a skill you can (and should) work on, just like any other.

If you are nervous about swimming outdoors then working on some of these skills over the coming weeks will make all the difference to your performance. Come race day you will swim more confidently, be faster and have a much more enjoyable experience.

The Swim Smooth Blog is nearly 9 years old and in that time we've posted out over 425 unique articles to help you improve your swimming. If you are new to the blog that's a lot of reading to catch up on (!) so with the goal of improving your confidence and effectiveness in open water, here's our pick of three key posts since the blog started in 2009:





First up, check out our June 2011 article on how to sight forwards effectively whilst swimming:


Developing this important skill makes seeing forwards as you swim much much easier. Become good at it and you will swim far straighter, sighting will have less impact on your stroke itself and you will be much more confident in tracking around the course.





Next, a nice post from April 2013 on getting used to swimming in close proximity to other swimmers - IN THE POOL.

Perhaps you live a long way from a good open water venue or just can't get there easily. Now you have no excuse as we showed you how to work on your drafting skills in your local swimming pool:


This is a lot of fun and when you do get into open water you'll immediately feel more at home swimming in close proximity to other swimmers (which is unavoidable outdoors and very much part of the sport).

Plus there are huge performance gains from drafting other swimmers - it can save you up to 38% of your energy expenditure in fact! 1







Lastly our 2015 classic on why your SHOULDN'T glide when you swim:


Whilst it became popular in the 90s to try and actively glide when you swim, trying to add a pause at the front of your stroke actually makes you less efficient, not more! This is even more the case when swimming in open water where waves and chop slow you down even further between strokes.

In fact when you swim outdoors you should aim to maintain good punch and rhythm to your stroke - it will increase your stability and make you a much more effective swimmer.





Have a great race season ahead - and let us know how you get on through the website, facebook, twitter and instagram!


Swim Smooth!

[1] CHATARD, J.-C., and B. WILSON. Drafting Distance in Swimming. Med. Sci. Sports Exerc., Vol. 35, No. 7, pp. 1176–1181, 2003.
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