When swimmers don't see much improvement in their strength and race times, many often think they need to engage in a major training overhaul. According to Connecticut-based U.S. Masters swimmer David Samuelsohn, however, getting better more often involves breaking a few bad habits.
In an article on the U.S Masters Swimming website, Samuelsohn detailed the components of swimming that can be easily improved. We've listed some of his suggestions below:
According to Samuelsohn, many swimmers miss out on the benefits of a warm-up because they're in a rush to train harder, but they may want to slow down.
"Warming up well will improve your whole workout—your performance, your result and your satisfaction," Samuelsohn wrote. "[…] This is the absolute best time to really focus and work on your stroke – while your mind is fresh and before your muscles are fatigued. Do some drills, remember the tips and corrections you've been given, focus and swim as perfectly as you can."
A clean and strong entry into to water is often what separates the most successful swimmers from their competitors. Swimmers should think of their entry the same way a competitive diver would. The body should be streamlined, toes pointed and the splash should be as small as possible.
This may seem difficult, but you want to try to breathe in the same way in the water as you would on land. The most important component of this approach is creating a regular rhythm so you never feel like you're gasping for air. This is a good habit to have for anyone who regularly races long distances.
Are you ready to improve your skills in the pool? All you need to do is grab some competitive swimwear and hop in!