June 25, 2017 at 12:53 am #3233
Let’s say you followed Dr. Bompa’s model outlined in “Periodization of Strength” or “Theory and Methodology of Training” or Dr. Yuri Verkhoshanky’s “Program and Organization of Training” and you had 2-4 weeks of Anatomical Adaptation (AA), basically just get fit. Then you went into Maximum Strength (MxS) cycle for say 6-8 weeks, where the goal is to get just as strong as you can with little to no increase in mass. Now what? Dr. Bompa, et.al, would have you now convert that MxS on land to event specific power (pwr), muscle endurance short (ME-S), muscle endurance medium (ME-M) or muscle endurance long (ME-L). My questions are: 1.How are we going to get that done in swimming? and 2.Is there a placebo effect with wts and swimming? I get the research doesn’t support it. But it is something to think about. The mind is a terrible thing to waste 🙂
? I child proofed my house and they still get in 🙂June 26, 2017 at 6:15 pm #3234
It’s possible that weight lifting is a placebo when it comes to swimming faster. Weight lifting might make swimmers faster not from some physiological effect but simply from the belief that they will go faster because of the weights. But if weights make you faster, does it matter if it’s all in your head?
The placebo effect is very strong in sports. Athletes can lift more, run faster, or have more energy, instantly upon receiving a placebo. If the athletes believes that they will improve, then they will.
This is a very interesting study done with national level power http://fitnessforlife.org/AcuCustom/Sitename/Documents/DocumentItem/1907.pdf They took 11 power lifers and told them that they were receiving a fast acting steroid and then measured 1 rep max on bench, deadlift, and squat. All 11 hit lifetime best in every lift. A lot of them had significant gains up to 15 kg. That’s tough to do when you are already at a high level. One week later there was a second trail. They told 5 of the participants, guess what? you got a placebo and the increase in your max, you did all by yourself with no aid. The other 6, they gave the placebo pills again and all 6 were able to maintain the high level of increase in their 1rm. The 5 that knew that they got the placebo before were back to their original or slightly above their original 1rm. Although belief that you will improve absolutely makes a difference, it is such an abstract thing. The 5 powerlifters that knew that they got the placebo, lifted heavier on their own, so why couldn’t they do it again? There is no better way to believe something than seeing or doing it yourself. These lifters had proof that they could lift heavier because they actually did it. But when it came time to do it again, they couldn’t do it.
This is another placebo study done with runners. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25412293 The runners performed a 3km race and were given an injection that they were told was “OxyRXB” but it was really just saline water. They improved by 1.2% which is pretty significant. That could improve your placing quite a bit in a 10 or 15 minute race.
There’s no doubt that the placebo can improve performance. When it comes to something unproven like the effects of weights and swimming, if there are improvements from the weight room to the water, it’s hard to measure if they are physical, mental, or a little bit of both. Instead of designing a study that measures swimmers times in the water after going through a weight program, maybe a better study would be having swimmers who have been lifting for a while totally drop the weights and then see what happens to their times in the pool. Would they slow down or stay the same? Even then, it could be psychological if the swimmer thinks they have to lift to be fast. They may slow down if they have that mind set.
But to answer the question of “what now” after going through a strength program. I guess the best thing to do is motivate the swimmer into believing that they will improve because of the increase in their strength. Keep doing the race pace sets and tell the swimmer that they are going to start to improving their race pace sets now and hopefully they actually do.June 26, 2017 at 10:41 pm #3235
I know of the studies and that’s part of why I’m ready to give in and have them lift. Just for nothing else to get them to shut up about lifting. Granted not the best reason for doing it. It’s so ingrained in them that no logic or data you produce has any impact. But it has become so tiresome trying to convince them they will actual swim faster and have better practices because they aren’t expending energy for something that has little to no impact on their performance (use the time for recovery). The interesting thing is the best kid we have has NEVER lifted NEVER and won 3 events and set 3 conference records and would have been seeded in the top 8 at NCAA’s in their event. (We weren’t eligible last year). He just says “I swim fast in practice”. What’s funny (not really) is that we had an 92.65% season best at conference and 84.73% LTB and some of these kids haven’t swum a best time in 2-3 years. I had a 500/1000 swimmer female swim faster every 500/1000, she swam last season. Which has over 10 times and she even went faster at the conference meet and still holds on to “I need to swim longer”. It just blows my mind.
I have the data of lifting vs.not lifting that spans over 20 years (nope, not a typo) 20 years. I did my teams’ rate of improvement when we did 9-11 workouts (traditional mind set back in the 80s) a week which including lifting that was a 10 year project. I then had an occasion to stop lifting because the college was redoing the wt. room and we never went back (figured it was as good a time as any to try). Plus I had a built in excuse :). I then charted the results of not lifting. Because we all know lifting helps with performance 🙂 and low and behold. We actually had greater rates of improvements when we did lift/run/dryland. We just swam fast in practice.
The paradigm of the incoming college athlete is just mind boggling. If I hear one more time I can’t swim that fast in practice or I only swim fast twice a year (maybe) or I need at least 3 weeks taper to be ready. It’s just crazy! Maybe I’m just getting to old to fight this battle.
Just an old guy with a stopwatch
? I child proofed my house and they still get in 🙂June 26, 2017 at 10:53 pm #3236
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