A Swimmer’s Summer: Tips For Improvement During Long Course Season


A Swimmer’s Summer: Tips For Improvement During Long Course Season

The school year is nearly over and spring is in the air!

That means that it’s almost time for USA Swimming’s long course swim season to begin. This long course season starts in late April and runs until early August, taking up most of the spring and summer months. Spring and Summer can be exciting and productive times for everyone, so young swimmers should try and make the most out of them by staying positive.

Lets “dive on in!”

Change Perspectives

During the school year, many high school and college level athletes remain very busy. This causes them to have to balance their swim life with other duties, such as school work or jobs. From their perspective, the summer time can be seen as a way to wind down and relax. It can also be a good time for swimmers to focus on themselves and their swimming in more detail.

“For advanced swimmers, summer is a great opportunity to fill schedules with additional pool sessions that are not available during the school year. Practice is crucial to progressing in the sport, and athletes can focus on honing new skills or improving ones that gave them difficulty during the previous season,” Asphalt Green writes in an online article about the benefits of summer swimming.

Improving your swim skills can help you develop a passion for the sport before any other obligations get in the way.

Passion is important! Being passionate about a sport is what fuels competitive growth and achievement. If you enjoy what you’re doing, you’ll want to do it more often – leading to you attending more practices. And as the old saying goes, “practice makes perfect”.

But how does a summer season connect to all of this?

Well, more often than not, most high school and college level athletes are used to short course swimming. That means the idea of swimming long course – as professional athletes do – may seem exciting to them. It’s a new challenge and a fun challenge at that. Why not try and tackle it?

Get a Fresh Start

Most swimmers have a few weeks of off time between the winter and summer USA swim seasons. It is because of this that each season can feel like a fresh start. The old times and races that you once had no longer matter as much. A new leaf has been turned.

Anything can happen in the new season, as it is not limited by previous records. If you do find yourself being troubled by an event you struggled in during short course, talk to a coach and try to move past it. Only you control your own mindset.

Summer should be a time for relaxation, however it should also be a time for personal growth. Developing traits such as positive self talk and a strong work ethic will only aid swimmers in the long run. Becoming bogged down because of a bad habit is never a good thing and often times, it is avoidable. The swimmers who achieve the most success in and outside of the pool are the ones who are willing to put in the effort to get better. They are also willing to shake off a bad race in order to move forward.

As stated previously, a change in viewpoint can help someone become a more motivated and positive individual. Set goals for the summer months that you never would have set in January. Make a list of things to improve. Write uplifting notes to your teammates. Work on new techniques in the water. All of these can be counted as good habits.

Each new season is a new beginning, so dedicate yourself to becoming a better person and swimmer. And don’t worry about times quite yet. With time, patience, and grit, times eventually drop. Trust the process, stay healthy, and have a good time.

Get Out There!

Above all, every swimmer should enjoy their sport and the fun times that come with it. Summer swim seasons can foster a sense of belonging and community in teammates. They are meant to be enjoyed, and the memories that come from them can last a lifetime.

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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Robert Niebauer
1 year ago

Ms. Dunn continues write interesting articles for this magazine. I always find her articles interesting and she finds other authors or actual swimmers comments to support her opinions.