Watch Paul's Open Water Swimming Masterclass

Just getting back to swimming? Swim Smooth founder Paul Newsome recently collaborated with Triathlon Victoria to deliver a Swim Smooth Open Water Masterclass for coaches in Australia.

The recording of this seminar has just been put online here:

If you are a budding coach or a swimmer wanting to understand their sport better then don't miss out on Paul's golden nuggets of information contained within. 

This presentation includes Paul's insights on:
  • The difference pool and open water swimming

  • What does true efficiency look like in the open water?

  • Getting your stroke right for open water
  • Structuring open water sessions
  • Protocols for getting back to the pool

Enjoy and Swim Smooth!


Swim Smooth Coaches Are Coming Back Online!

As fellow swimming enthusiasts, we completely understand how difficult it has been not being able to dive into the pool or enjoy the open water over the past few months. But we finally have some good news for you - nearly half of our Swim Smooth coaches are back up and running!

What better way to kickstart your swimming than booking in for a 1-to-1 video analysis session or joining one of our many Swim Smooth squads?

Swim Smooth St Albans' Coach, Emma MacDonald

See all the services that our coaches all around the world are offering:


Name: Merle Taviste
Location: Singapore
Services: Squad Sessions, 1-to-1 Video Analysis and Stroke Correction
Contact Details:

Name: Paolo Mangilinan
Location: Dubai
Services: Squad Sessions, 1-to-1 Video Analysis and Stroke CorrectionContact Details:

Australia/New Zealand

Name: Paul Newsome
Location: Perth, Australia
Services: Squad Sessions, 1-to-1 Video Analysis and Stroke Correction
Contact Details:

Name: Russell Smith
Location: Hamilton, New Zealand
Services: Squad Sessions, 1-to-1 Video Analysis and Stroke Correction
Contact Details: 


Name: Anna-Karin Lundin
Location: Gothenburg, Sweden
Available Services: Squad Sessions, 1-to-1 Video Analysis and Stroke Correction
Contact Details:

Name: Rob Kwaaitaal
Location: Nijmegen, Netherlands
Available Services: Squad Sessions, 1-to-1 Video Analysis and Stroke Correction
Contact Details:

Name: Gabi Minarikova
Location: Prague, Czech Republic
Available Services: July and August - 1-to-1 Video Analysis and Stroke Correction, Children's Commuter Camp and Camp for Junior Competitive Swimmers. From 1st September - Squad Sessions
Contact Details:

Name: Filip Rigole
Location: Belgium
Available Services: Squad Sessions, 1-to-1 Video Analysis and Stroke Correction (from September)
Contact Details:

Name: Maxine Strain
Location: Co. Kildare, Ireland
Available Services: Open Water Group Coaching, Open Water 1-to-1 Coaching, Open Water Coaching for Triathlon Clubs. 1-to-1 or 2-to-1 Video Analysis and Stroke Correction from mid-August.
Contact Details:


Name: Laura Ansell
Location: Kent
Available Services: Introduction to Open Water Group Coaching, Open Water 1-to-1 Coaching, Open Water Coaching for Youth Group. 1-to-1 Video Analysis and Stroke Correction from September 3rd.
Contact Details:

Name: Lucy Lloyd-Roach
Location: Manchester
Available Services: Open Water Group Coaching. 1-to-1 Video Analysis and Stroke Correction, Squad Sessions returning soon.
Contact Details:

Name: Emma MacDonald
Location: Bedford
Available Services: Introduction to Open Water (Group and 1-to-1), Open Water Skills & Technique Improvement (Group and 1-to-1). 1-to-1 Video Analysis and Stroke Correction and Squad Sessions returning soon.
Contact Details:

Name: Julian Nagi
Location: Acton, London
Available Services:  Squad Sessions (from 27th July), 1-to-1 Video Analysis and Stroke Correction. 
Contact Details:

Name: Toni Saunders
Location: Essex
Available Services:  Squad Sessions, 1-to-1 Open Water Coaching
Contact Details: 

Name: Russ Smith
Location: Guernsey
Available Services:  Squad Sessions
Contact Details:

Name: Jason Tait
Location: Swindon
Available Services:  Squad Sessions, Endless Pool 1-to-1 Video Analysis and Stroke Correction, Open Water 1-to-1 Sessions
Contact Details:

Name: Morgan Williams
Location: Yorkshire
Available Services:  Open Water Sessions, Open Water 1-to-1 Video Analysis and Stroke Correction. 
Contact Details:

Name: Brent Perkins
Location: East Midlands
Available Services:  Training Camps (October 2020)

North America 

Name: Gemma Hollis
Location: Woodlands, Texas
Available Services:  Squad Sessions.
Contact Details:

Name: Mike Jotautas
Location: Louisville, Kentucky
Available Services:  1-to-1 Video Analysis and Stroke Correction (in person and via Zoom), Virtual Squad Coaching.
Contact Details:

Name: Penny Mullan
Location: British Columbia, Canada
Available Services:  'Get Back In The Pool' Swim Session Series (6 sessions), 1-to-1 video analysis and stroke correction. 
Contact Details:

Swim Smooth!

Use A Smiley Face To Improve Your Swimming

Here's a super-simple visualisation to improve your swimming - it might seem really basic but it can help any level of swimmer from beginner right through to elite competitor:

The Smiley Face Visualisation

Start by grabbing a sharpie to draw a smiley face on the palm of your hand:

Now, when you jump in the water and swim, think about where that smiley face is pointing. During your pull through underwater, focus on keeping the palm of your hand showing the smiley face directly back behind you, to the wall you pushed off from:

By pressing the water backwards in this way you are propelling yourself forwards. But press water to the side, down (or even up) and you will working hard but not gaining any forward movement from the effort.

Keep Things Super Simple

Compared to other sports, it's extremely easy to over-coach swimming with too much complicated advice. Having too much to think about at any one time is a sure fire recipe for slow progress.

Much better to work on one simple thing at a time and really focus on it. That's why visualisations like this are so effective.

Try this one the next time you swim!

Swim Smooth

Short, Simple Sessions To Get Your Swimming Back On Track

For many people, we are starting to get a glimpse of normal life in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic. From the regular contact we have had with the 50 Swim Smooth Certified Coaches across the world, the situation is looking more optimistic for our coaches and swimmers. It has been great to hear that some of our coaches are now able to offer some sort of swim training, whether that is Seamus Bennett,  (Felixstowe, UK) and Lucy Lloyd-Roach (Manchester, UK) running open water sessions or Merle Taviste (Singapore) and Linda Bostic (Florida, US) running reduced capacity squad sessions at the pool. 

Swim Smooth Dubai's, Paolo Mangilinan is back on the pool deck
Swim Smooth Dubai are back in the pool

In a recent conversation, Mary Jessey, from Swim Smooth Calgary, said pools were beginning to open up and are offering 30 minute slots for swimmers to book onto. Even though Mary's squad swimmers are jumping at the opportunity to get back into the water, they were asking for some inspiration to get the most out of their short training session. 

At Swim Smooth, we have just the thing for a short, sharp, intense training session with minimal equipment. Exactly what you need to get back into the swing of things!

Swim Smooth Suffolk's open water sea swim

The Perfect Pyramid

Equipment: Tempo Trainer set at CSS pace

Complete each of these swims at CSS pace with 5-6s rest in between. If you finish before the 30 minutes is up, repeat with 50m intervals (50m, 100m, 150m etc). See how far you can get and try to beat your distance in your next swim. 

1) 100m 

2) 200m

3) 300m

4) 400m

5) 300m

6) 200m

7) 100m

If you need more ideas to keep you improving in your short training sessions, check out our "Quick 'n' Easy Lunchtime Swims" on the Swim Smooth Guru (subscription required).  

We'd love to hear how you are getting on with your return back to swimming, so email or tag us in your posts on Facebook (Swim Smooth: The World's Most Passionate Swim Coaching!) and Instagram (@swimsmooth). 

Swim Smooth!


I Wasn't Quite Fit Enough To Keep Going!

Have you ever said that to yourself after a training set? It started so well, you hit all your times, then in the second half you struggled and missed them by quite a stretch.

The easy conclusion to draw is just that - you weren't quite fit enough and next time will be better. That's it, end of story.

But the truth is otherwise - if you couldn't sustain a pace then you paced the set badly. And as a result you didn't get the same fitness gain from your set as you should have done and what's more, you re-enforced the habit of bad pacing.

If like most of us you've had an enforced break from swimming due to the Covid-19 crisis then you will have lost fitness and you'll find this even more of an issue than normal. 

You might find the temptation to try and hit your times from a few months back - don't do that. Train to the fitness level you have NOW - that's all the matters. Do that and your times will quickly come down again.

Pacing isn't a sexy concept (it's actually quite boring) but good pacing is a critical skill if you want to get the most from your time in the water and achieve your best performances.

Swim Smooth!

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