4 Things We Love About Preseason

Photo Courtesy: Jena Johnson

By Kelsey Mitchell, Swimming World College Intern.

Preseason is a crucial time to build a cohesive collegiate swim team. Through preseason workouts and bonding experiences, teams are able to get back into shape after the summer while getting to know their new teammates. It is one of the most fun and exciting parts of the year, yet it is also important for athletes to use this time to prepare for the upcoming season and academic semester. Here are four of our favorite things to do during preseason:

1. Captain’s Practices


Photo Courtesy: Emma Schoettmer

Captain’s practices are one of the most defining characteristics of preseason. Restricted by NCAA policies, many coaches leave preseason practices up to their captains’ discretions. Though they often use some of their team’s usual sets, captains are able to pull from club, high school and their own coaching experience when writing sets. By drawing from so many different sources, captain’s practices offer sets that are a refreshing change of pace from club or in-season practices. Depending on how the team is doing as a whole, captains are also able to ease their team back into higher amounts of yardage at an appropriate pace. Along with this ease, early year practices are also a great way for new athletes to ease into the flow of their new team’s personalities.

2. Creative Dry Land Workouts


Photo Courtesy: Victor Freitas

Though they can be difficult, preseason dry land workouts are often an exciting learning and bonding experience. Because many teams often have a more open practice and academic schedule during preseason, captains are able to organize more unorthodox forms of dry land training, ranging anywhere from guided classes to intense capture the flag games. These workouts, often new to many athletes, allow for the team to bond through learning a new skill or exercise while also breaking up the monotony of the weight room.

3. Easing Into an Academic Schedule


Photo Courtesy: Tookapic

Preseason doesn’t just allow for swimmers to ease into higher yardage – it also allows them to ease into their academic schedules. Rather than being swamped with two-hour-plus practices two times a day, swimmers are able to ease into their work load with the shorter and less frequent practices of preseason. Athletes are able to get a feel for their course loads and boost their grades before they get back into the swing of season. The relaxed schedule of preseason also allows for athletes to reconnect with friends, explore their campus or town, check out clubs and student organizations and become situated in their new living quarters.

4. Team Bonding

Team Bonding

Photo Courtesy: Kristy Kinzer

One of the most gratifying aspects of swimming, team bonding is strongly emphasized during preseason. With new additions to a team, both transfer and first year, preseason provides the perfect opportunity for them to integrate into their new swim family. Through all of the preseason captain’s practices and dry land workouts, new athletes have the opportunity to bond with their older teammates and learn about any expectations their new team may require. New athletes are also able to bond with their teammates outside of the pool through shared meals, parties, game and movie nights and the occasional excursion off campus. For students new to college, these early bonding experiences provide an immediate group of friends despite their new surroundings.

The bonds formed during preseason continue to grow throughout the season, helping to motivate and guide the team throughout the season to achieve their goals. What are your favorite parts of preseason?

All commentaries are the opinion of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Swimming World Magazine nor its staff.

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Annabelle Ancheta
5 years ago

Can’t wait the boys HS swimming ?

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