Rest Interval & Results

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  • This topic has 18 replies, 4 voices, and was last updated 8 years ago by doc.
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    Lefthanded swimmer,

    Are you saying that you are moving the rest from 30 to 20 seconds within the same set? I would keep it consistent at the same rest interval throughout the set. If he is doing 28 reps on 20 rest, he is ready to move the pace down. Go to 14.25 with 20 rest for the whole set. It may be very difficult at first but don’t panic. The first few times he does the set, his body is going to have to adapt to the new stimulus. But he should be able to progress at 14.25 pace if he is doing in the upper 20’s on 14.75.


    I have done it with club kids and college kids numerous times. I do it to keep them from over swimming the first 4 and (exploding the set) seems to help manage their speed. e.g. 50s on 1:00, with first 4 on :50. That 10 second difference gets them a little more focused and then when you give them back 10 seconds they think that’s great and do a really good job the rest of the set.

    There is nothing “magical” about the rest interval. We’ve tested, as in lactate testing, and found little to no difference in lactate readings with 50s on :50 or 50s on 1:00. So, it’s not going to hurt him one way or the other.

    Find something and stick with it. Record the information for a season and see what happens. The key indicator is always does it line up with what they do in a race? That’s the bottom line and you make your adjustments from there.

    ? All that is not shared... is lost.

    lefthanded swimmer

    Hi Marlin,
    I realize the mixed rest periods aren’t ideal but, for some reason, at the exact same pace, 20 seconds shuts him down in about 10 repeats and he hits over 25 at 30 seconds easily. I switched the set in the middle to get him a little more race pace work as this happened with 2 of the 25 sets. Probably not ideal but made it where we weren’t just swimming 800 yards race pace for the day! 🙂 We will try 25 second rest (in between) for the next repeat of the set.


    I see your reply on rest times. Any idea why the above would happen? Is it normal? My goal was to nail a time with an easier than 1:1 ratio of work/rest and try to duplicate that with a closer to 1:1 rest before dropping a target time.

    Does anyone look at stroke cycle pace a lot? I like to look at it. My son has had such a slow pace from “survival swimming” and we have put a lot of emphasis on it.

    USRPT seems very suitable for short course with heavy use of under waters. We really have focused on exactly the number of kicks we want, where are we surfacing, what is the time underwater, kicks per second (ideally around 2 kicks per second). Things he could never ever think about until race time before.


    Not sure exactly why that is happening. But I do have to adjust the rest interval for my sprint male swimmers. It can be a couple times a week some weeks. Just the individual.

    “Stroke cycle pace” We call it “Tempo” or Stroke Rate” e.g. 1.00 tempo would be 60 rate. You get the arithmetic. We use tempo trainers all the time in practice and there a number of different ways you can set them up and get pretty creative and the kids seem to enjoy it. FINIS makes them and Swim Outlet usually has the best price $35-40. The Pro has more functions and you can change the battery yourself. With the old ones once the battery went out you had to spend another $40. Pissed a lot of coaches off because some of us had 30 of those things.

    As you get better with this you can start adding more metrics to generate “outs” miss if you can’t hold cycle (we have done sets that cycles and tempo are the objective), miss if you miss tempo or if you miss cycle and time your out. You can screw it down to the point they have to be perfect. Not sure I’d go that far with a younger swimmer and coach.

    You can play what we call “beat the beep” works very well for 25s. The kids say the 50s sets (BTB) we do give them nightmares and it’s mentally stressful. You want pure 1:1, use a tempo trainer.

    ? All that is not shared... is lost.

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