Swimming World Presents “Special Sets: Training for the 200 Butterfly with Sean Farrell”

Special Sets - Mia Leko - Derik Hamilton - 200 Fly

Special Sets: Training for the 200 Butterfly
with Coach Sean Farrell

Sean Farrell has been head coach at the Cheshire YMCA/Sea Dog Swim Club in Connecticut since 1999. Prior to that he held the same post at Sun Devil Aquatics in Tempe, was assistant coach at Arizona State and a D-II All-American at Southern Connecticut University.

In that time, he has produced senior national qualifiers, four Olympic Trials qualifiers as well as individual and relay YMCA national champions. In addition, his athletes have earned more than 450 individual and 200-plus YMCA top-20 honors.

In 2018, his girls reprised their 2017 YMCA national long course championship, thanks in part to a strong showing in the 200 meter butterfly by Mia Leko (first, 2:15.15) and Julia Stevens (fifth, 2:21.84.)

“We expect all our swimmers at one point or another to compete in a 200 fly,” Farrell says. “It isn’t an expectation that everyone will be a 200 flyer, but we want everyone exposed to all the events. Our goal is to avoid any unreasonable fear of the 200 fly. Of course, all of this depends on the type of animal the swimmer is. Athletes who can swim longer repeats fly without any breakdown train differently than those whose fly stroke breaks down quickly.”

“Our training for the 200 fly follows a basic foundation. With a few exceptions, our longer straight fly sets revolve 25s, 50s and 75s repeats. Only once in a great while will we challenge athletes with longer distance fly repeats,” says Farrell. “We also do longer sets and/or repeats that involve free, fly drill or breast (short axis) mixed in.

Examples are:
• 6 x 150 @ 2:00 (100 free-50 fly, descend) or
• 3 x 300 @ 4:30 (25 free; 50—3 strokes fly, 3 long strokes breast; 25 fly; build each 100) or
• 6 x 100 @ 1:30 (50 free, 25 UW recovery fly, 25 fly, descend by 2’s or work the last 25)

“The goal is to work fly conditioning, but avoid any stroke technique deterioration.” Farrell adds, “I believe that any racing approach has to be refined in practice. Racing the 200 fly requires maintaining a smooth rhythm—but not a slow rhythm. Trying to swim fly slowly often results in loss of momentum. Swimming fly too fast often can cause a swimmer to run out of gas.”

To access the full article with Farrell’s full conditioning sets,
check out the May 2019 issue of Swimming World Magazine, available now!

Swimming World May 2019 Cover Cal Golden Bears NCAA Division I Swimming and Diving Championships Stanford Austin Texas

[PHOTO CREDIT: PETER H. BICK]

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FEATURES

016 NO LEDECKY…NO MANUEL… NO PROBLEM
by Dan D’Addona, David Rieder and Andy Ross
Relying on a younger team—with 10 underclass-men—Stanford still won its third straight women’s NCAA Division I swimming and diving team title. It’s just that this year’s margin of victory was much closer than the previous two.

WOMEN’S NCAA DIVISION I MINI-FEATURES:

018 BROOKE FORDE: MAKING THE EXTRA EFFORT

019 BEATA NELSON: UN-BEATA-BLE NELSON

021 ABBEY WEITZEIL/CAL BEARS: THE OTHER CHAMPIONS

022 LILLY KING: LILLY’S LEGACY

024 WOMEN’S NCAA DIVISION I PHOTO GALLERY
photos by Peter H. Bick

026 THE COMPLETE PACKAGE
by Dan D’Addona and David Rieder
The depth of Cal’s Golden Bears was on full display at this year’s men’s NCAA Division I Swimming and Diving Championships in Austin, proving they were the best team in the nation.

MEN’S NCAA DIVISION I MINI-FEATURES:

028 DANIEL CARR: SECOND CHANCE PAYS OFF

029 SILVER LININGS FOR SECOND-PLACE TEXAS

031 DEAN FARRIS: DEAN OF THE POOL

032 MEN’S NCAA DIVISION I PHOTO GALLERY
photos by Peter H. Bick

034 STILL NO. 1
by Andy Ross, Cathleen Pruden, Olivia Wile and Grace Nordquist
All of the schools that won college national championships last year for NCAA Division II, NCAA Division III, NAIA and NJCAA repeated as champions in 2019. Their winning streaks range from two to 45!

038 ’59 MICHIGAN TEAM STILL “THE GREATEST OF ’EM ALL”
by Bruce Wigo
For overall strength as well as balance in all the strokes, distances and diving, no team in history has ever dominated the men’s NCAA Division I Swimming and Diving Championships like the 1959 University of Michigan Wolverines.

COACHING

010 LESSONS WITH THE LEGENDS: FRANK KEEFE
by Michael J. Stott

014 SWIMMING TECHNIQUE CONCEPTS: CONDITIONING TO OPTIMIZE TECHNIQUE (Part 2)
by Rod Havriluk
As explained in Part 1, there are three types of sets that are critical to emphasizing technique: skill sets, transition sets and test sets. Part 2 presents strategies to integrate these three sets into a conditioning program.

041 SPECIAL SETS: TRAINING FOR THE 200 FLY
by Michael J. Stott
Coach Sean Farrell’s recent success with distance flyers at the Cheshire YMCA/Sea Dog Swim Club in Connecticut results from having good athletes, a defined sense of how to train them and a philosophy focused on training the whole athlete.

043 Q&A WITH COACH DAN MASCOLO
by Michael J. Stott

044 HOW THEY TRAIN JULIA STEVENS
by Michael J. Stott

JUNIOR SWIMMER

046 UP & COMERS: MORGAN RAZEWSKI
by Taylor Brien

COLUMNS

008 A VOICE FOR THE SPORT

009 BEYOND THE YARDS

013 OFFICIAL WORD

040 DID YOU KNOW? ISHOF’S FIRST HONOREES: A “SPORTS SPECTACULAR”

047 GUTTER TALK

048 PARTING SHOT

25 comments

  1. Katie Maloney

    Adam McIntyre interesting read

    • Adam McIntyre

      Katie Maloney it is. Hopefully some of it looks a bit familiar 😜

    • Katie Maloney

      Adam McIntyre oh for sure it does! 🤷‍♀️😜

  2. Patrick J Willey

    You have to train your mind for the 200 fly.

  3. Sarah Davison

    Sarah Moore, one for you 😊

  4. Sarah Davison

    Sarah Moore, one for you 😊

    • Sarah Moore

      Sarah Davison maybe for next year … 🙄

    • Sarah Moore

      Sarah Davison maybe for next year … 🙄

  5. Joel Rittenhouse

    The 200 fly is one event that i like to watch. It amazes me that swimmers love to swim it!!!

    • Joel Rittenhouse

      Watching a prelim final meet knowing that 18-24 young adults will be glad to swim 200 fly twice in one day just always blew my mind.

    • Anita Draves

      Shannon Stefani, were you “glad”?

    • Joel Rittenhouse

      I loved watching her and Billy swim this event

    • Joel Rittenhouse

      Anita Draves Her time trail swims where the best!!!

    • Anita Draves

      Unforgettable moments. 😍

  6. JD Abercrombie

    Randy Reese classic: 8 x 200 fly on 3:30 LC.

  7. Jason Hensley

    Daryn Glasgow
    Makenna Hensley