Archive for January, 2012
Welcome to 2012. I would like to thank everyone that has supported Fit&Abel and helped share in my passion of swimming over the last 12 months. May we spend more time in the water in 2012, may the sun shine brighter, may we swim further, faster and have a lot more fun doing it. Is that all too much to ask? The next 12 months will tell.
For those of you who have followed Fit&Abel you will be aware I am currently based in New Zealand. It is 26 degrees as I write this and I have just spent the afternoon swimming with clients on lake Pegasus. It is fair to say I am happy with my current location. For Southern Hemisphere residents you will be gearing up for the numerous Triathlons, open water swims and Ironmen events over the next few months. Two great swim events to help you prepare for other events this summer: Don’t go past the 4km swim event run by David at www.surfnturf.co.nz on 5 Feb at Pegasus Lake. Then on 19th Feb is the La Grande Open water swim in Akaroa www.oceanswim.co.nz . This is part of the State NZ Ocean Swim series, a great swim in a beautiful location. The NZ Ocean Swim series is the premier open swim series in NZ, don’t miss it.
For Northern Hemisphere based followers Fit&Abel will return to London from April in time for a gorgeous spring. Now is the time you should be finding a quality indoor pool and focussing on refining your technique and building up the fitness as you build toward your swimming goals of 2012. Whether you are preparing for a SwimTrek adventure swim holiday, an Ironman, an open water swim race or the London Triathlon Fit&Abel will have advice and support to help you. Details and bookings for May 2012 onward will be listed on fitandabel.com from March.
Need I point out 2012 is Olympic year! London will be host to Triathlon, Open water swimming and some amazing pool swimming. The Brownlee brothers have been top dogs in Triathlon in 2011, I will also be watching New Zealands Andrea Hewitt closely, she had a great 2011. Kerianne Payne , the current world champion will be looking for an Olympic Gold in the womans 10km. In the pool… we have an enormous amount of talent from all over the globe, it will be Phelps last swim meet, Ian Thorpe currently on the comeback trail will he be there? Two famous Olympic gold medal winning USA female swimmers in Janet Evans and Dara Torres both in their 40’s looking to make the American Olympic team. Sun Yang the Chinese swimmer who smashed Grant Hacketts long standing 1500M Freestyle world record, what will he bring to the Olympic games?
For those who follow twitter apart from @Fitandabel here are two really informative twitter accounts to follow; @swimmerscircle does a great job blogging and updating elite pool performances. @openwatersource does the same for open water swimming.
So much swimming news, what a great start to 2012. What are you waiting for? Get swimming!
Swim cords; I believe they are one of the biggest assets to your swimming training and development . I use them, I rave about them. Why? Read on…
I wrote briefly about swim cords mid last year, now here we are at the start of 2012 and I still find myself introducing swim cords to swimmers and hearing their positive reaction when they realise how much of an asset this simple, cheap but very effective training tool can be.
Muscle balance and stabilisation; swim cords can be utilised to develop back muscles offsetting the pectorial development present in swimmers. Sore shoulders are often the result of stabilisation issues within the rotator cuff muscle group. A daily routine of 3- 5 minutes can help develop and stabilise the shoulder and can dramatically reduce the risk of developing a swimming shoulder injury.
Going travelling and have limited time or no access to a pool? Swim cords pack easily in your travel case, they weight next to nothing. You can set them up inside or outside on a lamp post or tree. You can complete repeat sets mirroring your swim stroke gaining resistance and cardio benefit reducing the effects of your time away from the water.
Resistance training ; Swim cords can be used to perform a simple but effective resistance workout using a combination of isolation exercises such as triceps, biceps and row exercises (back muscles) along with body weight exercises such as the press up, burpees and plank.
Pre swimming warm up; You can use swim cords as part of your warm up routine, using swimming related movements to help increase blood flow and prepare the body for higher intensity activity.
Swimming technique; You can use swim cords to practice sections of your stroke such as the pull phase, ensuring a high elbow and maximising catch. Using Swim cords to practice this phase of the stroke prior to getting in the water helps develop your nuero pathways (your nervous system learns to ‘recognise’ the correct movements), helps strengthen appropriate muscles and can assist in reducing technical errors in your stroke.
Don’t underestimate how effective swim cords can be as a simple and effective tool to enhance your swim program. For more information on how to acquire or use swim cords e-mail me firstname.lastname@example.org and look out for my swimfit dryland classes coming soon.