Commit Swimming Set of The Week: Main Stroke Aerobic Work

Photo Courtesy: Peter H. Bick

Welcome to Swimming World’s Set of the Week sponsored by CommitSwimming.com! This week’s set is a good aerobic maintenance set for your mid-distance stroke group. Take a look at the set below and the description that follows:

2 Rounds:

2 x 200’s as:

#1 – 50 cruise freestyle / 50 cruise main stroke

#2 – 200 full stroke, focus on DPS (fly go drill/swim by 50)

4 x 50’s main stroke as 25 drill/25 kick fast

3 x 150’s as 100 cruise freestyle, rest :10 on wall 50 main stroke @ 200 pace

1 x 50 easy to regroup

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This set works through two rounds of some quality high end aerobic work that is great in either a long course or short course pool. The set begins with 2 x 200’s. The first 200 is alternating cruise freestyle and main stroke by 50, while the second 200 is all main stroke working on finding a long and strong cruise pace. For flyers, have them go drill/swim by 50 on the second 200 with a focus on finding a solid rhythm in their stroke.

Next swimmers will go into 4 x 50’s as 25 drill to hold onto the feel in their stroke and 25 fast kick in their main stroke to bring in the legs. Each round ends with 3 x 150’s as 100 cruise freestyle, 10 seconds of rest on the wall, and then the last 50 main stroke at 200 pace. Put these on an interval where your swimmers will get 15-30 seconds rest so they can really get up on the last 50 and use the 100 cruise as an active recovery.

Take an easy 50 between rounds to reset and regroup. It may take some of your swimmers a round to get their strokes ready to get up to 200 pace, so in that case you can change the focus in the first round to a more moderate intensity while the second round is focused more on getting up to a high intensity. This is a flexible set that you can incorporate across all stroke groups, keeping your whole team together while letting them specialize on what they need to work on. Happy swimming!

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Author: James Sica

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James Sica is the Men and Women's Assistant Coach at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He has been an assistant coach at CMU in Pittsburgh, PA (2015-2017), a volunteer assistant coach with the Harvard women’s program (2014-2015) and an assistant with the Ithaca College men's program (2012-2014).

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