February 15, 2017 at 11:42 pm #3166
Has anyone dealt with their athletes hitting a speed barrier? I’m specifically talking about in their max speed sets training for the 50. I’ve been doing 25s on 2:00 and 25s from the blocks 3-4x a week. We start with just two and build up to 6-8. Once they’re consistently making their pace for peak numbers we drop it and restart the set at a faster pace. I’ve had a couple athletes get stuck at a certain speed and not be able to go any faster. I’ve added race suits but that only solved the problem for a week or two.
In the Science of Sports Training, Thomas Kurz explains that the speed barrier occurs when the athlete performs numerous repetitions of the same speed exercise, which forms a “dynamic stereotype” in the central nervous system. I’m wondering if there is any way around this with? I’ve thought about adding gear but I think that will just take me down a rabbit hole. Anyone else know a solution?February 16, 2017 at 5:05 pm #3167
Yes and interesting you quote Thomas Kurz as not many guys have read the book. I also believe Dr. Tudor Bompa discusses it in his book Theory and Methodology of Training as CNS inhibition.
Development of maximal speed. Thoughts on the problem.
1. Have you tried work at shorter distance with higher m/s? This is more a track thing. But should work with swimming. Its tedious work and probably with a small group.
2. Use tempo trainers set at 6-8 seconds (ATP-PC) and ask for all out maximum efforts?
3. Use tempo trainers with varying settings i.e. 1.00, 1.15, 1.20, 1.25 etc. To try and open CNS pathways? Make a scale and have them go up and down the “scale”.
Your thoughts on “adding gear” to try and address the “force production” issue is tricky at best. Form all the research I’ve read paddles are not the answer (most are too big, they can’t achieve race or above race speeds and issues with SR & SL). Tubing assisted and resisted has issues with load determination and SR & SL. Parachutes are in the same category. Again from all the research I’ve read any time you start tying stuff to swimmers bad thing happen within the stroke technique.
The only two positive things I’ve found are Power Racks (not towers) and a system developed by Toussaint and Truijens. The Power Rack study is to large to attach so you can find it at JSR 1993, use google scholar. Toussaint study attached (let me know what it cost :)) I’ve also attached (hopefully) an article written by a track coach on the pros and cons of assisted/resisted training in track. If you think of your shoulders as hips and hands as feet it does make you think.
One last idea. Cut-off tee-shirts. I’m using smalls for the guys with the sleeves cut off. Thought there is less technical issues. Still have load problem. We’ll do 3 HH fast, 3 smooth/form and repeat sequence. Hope that makes sense.
Just food for thought
? I child proofed my house and they still get in 🙂February 16, 2017 at 5:11 pm #3169
sorry. if you send me an email address I’ll attach the file. It’s an interesting read.
? I child proofed my house and they still get in 🙂February 17, 2017 at 4:53 pm #3171
Thank you for the feedback! Regarding the books I’ve been lucky enough to have a very smart coach point me in the right direction with where to find quality information 🙂
We’ve done 10-15m efforts with higher velocity than the 25s. We’ve also done 6 second max effort swims both with limited underwater work and full underwaters. We’ve also done 6-8 cycles at a time with tempo. On these I told them to try and get more distance each rep with the same number of strokes/tempo.
I will try implementing some varying tempo work as well. We’re 5 (women) and 12 (men) days out from our conference meet so I’m assessing some of our results.
I’ve attached the tracking/testing for our 25s on 2:00. This is every set + number made since our mid-season invite (the rest is in a different workbook). We retested yesterday. The one swimmer I thought was at a speed barrier actually improved but very minimally (10.11 to 10.08). Any feedback you or anyone else has on the workbook or maximizing those improvements would be greatly appreciated!February 18, 2017 at 12:29 am #3173
You just don’t get many coaches reading this stuff (which if you think about it is sad or just flat lazy). Couple of other books, one written by Dr. Frank Dick and another is Programming and Organization of Training by Dr. Yuri Verkhoshansky, this book will unscrew your head with regards to the detail the USSR and what they expected coaches to understand and the recorded keeping is just off the charts. He’s now dead but his daughter still maintains the website. Just search his name and it should come up. While not an Eastern European, I was strongly influenced by the detail they expected. i.e. East Germans and Eastern block countries. I’ve been VERY fortunate to have met, developed a relationship with and watched a number of former USSR and East German coaches and scientist over the years. Enough of the past.
The .03 improvement is pretty good. When you think about it. I was just discussing this one of the young assistant coaches the other day. There is a problem with the system and that’s not only that you’re going to know when they’re going to swim fast. But also swim slow and there can be numerous reasons for that; turn speeds (to slow), underwater work(too much angle on undulations or energy in the wrong place) and the list could go on with numbers done last year vs. this year, speed last year vs. this year. I pretty sure you get the idea.
You really seem to be on the right track and are trying to cover every base possible. I would say this, stay with what you had planned at the start of the season. I know its hard because you want the kids to swim well. But if you change I’ll say more than 10% of what you had planned then you really won’t know what actually worked or didn’t work. I’m in the same boat! You get nervous, start to doubt and I’ve run the system for over 20 years.
On your tracking sheets. They are really rough to read (not meant to be mean). I’ve attached a file I use that tracks training speed, race performances, average performance speeds thru the season, number offered, number made, season offered and made plus % made for season. It looks like a lot but once you make one sheet its just copy and paste. This gives me a quick snapshot of how we are doing with training pace to race performance (it has to line up somewhere).
I apologize for chapter one of the book I’ll never write 🙂
We leave Monday for conference for both W & M.
Best to you.
? I child proofed my house and they still get in 🙂February 18, 2017 at 12:50 am #3174
Sorry about that. I wish to hell that that we could attached files above 512 to this site. I had to cut so much information that it’s ridiculous.
Like anything with coaching and coaches I’ve found that the “flavor of the month” only last so long.
? I child proofed my house and they still get in 🙂February 18, 2017 at 1:19 am #3176
Timely thread for me–I’ve hit a barrier in my training. I can really only do one session/day (100s or 50s at 1650 pace), due to time limitations. I’m not fast, so I’ve reached a wall at 1:35/100, where based on the number of successful repeats (routinely reaching almost to last offered) I should now be dropping the pace, but I can’t seem to go any faster (even trying 50s to get used to the newer speed), with scattershot results to third (or 2nd consecutive) failure. Any thoughts? I do occasionally train for 500 free (currently 50s on ~:46), so it’s not that I can’t go any faster, period…
? APFebruary 19, 2017 at 4:16 am #3177
izSwimming, I would refer you to Swimming Science Bulletin Number 39 (Rushall, 2015):
Eventually, swimmers will not be able to improve any more from the physiological adaptations produced by the microcycle-based progressive overloads. When that occurs, training performances for the set will not change. The programming response in those circumstances likely should focus on altering technique features (e.g., increased streamlining to reduce resistance; increasing acceleration within the propulsive-phase of the stroke). The point behind changing technique is that the performance efficiency of the swimmer should be improved. Two effects are possible.
1. A reduction in resistance allows a swimmer to progress further each stroke with the same stroking frequency and effort, that is, the swimmer swims faster.
2. An increase in effective force allows a swimmer to progress faster if the stroke frequency is maintained.
The second alternative (increasing force application) is only appropriate when it also is reflected in swimming efficiency. The simple factor of increasing swimming effort usually works only at reduced velocities. When near or at maximum velocity, increased effort rarely translates into performance improvements (Capelli, Pendergast, & Termin, 1998). It only makes a swimmer more tired sooner. (pg. 43)
It is suggested that you review your swimmer’s techniques and make changes/refinements where, and if, possible to increase performances. Be aware, that it is expected that performances will temporarily decrease whilst the changes/refinements are being made. However, with repetitious practices improvement beyond baseline can be expected soon after.
Hope this is of some help.
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