Tuesday, March 6, 2012

How To Train With 25's Fly

One of the things that we have been doing in some of the groups that I am working with at T2 is a whole lot of 25's Fly.  Rethinking how we can do lot's of Fly in shorter distances.

When doing this, technique and stroke count is key.  Sure we can muscle through 25's Fly, or 50's Fly, or 200's Fly - but with our age groupers we want to set up the training sets to allow for the best technique level that we are at.  As our technique improved, we increased the number of laps Fly that we did in sets like these.  Getting our stroke counts helps us stay in check with our speed and technique.  It has been great to see so many of our younger swimmers "click" with this stroke over the last 6 months.

There are three different things that we do with our 25's of Butterfly:

1.) Continuous Fly Relays.  These are awesome.  Everyone loves relays right?  These work best when there are 4-5 swimmers in a lane.  They swim a great 25 Fly from a dive, climb out, and get ready for their next swim.  Getting out with a "double foot hop out" makes this even more of a workout!  They just go and go and go for 10 minutes, 15 minutes, 20 minutes, 30 minutes.... however long you wish.  I am usually armed with two watches and I can time two swimmers at a time rotating around timing this person or that person and giving out tips.  It is an awesome time to work on Dives, Underwater Kicking, Breakouts, Fly stroke, and Finishes.  Swimmers who are still beginning to work on Butterfly and swimmers who have a more developed stroke like this equally.  There are so many things going on - feedback, climbing out, diving in, talking with and encouraging friends, relay starts........  Everyone does a race 25 fly every 1 minute or so.  It is a great set.

2.) 25's Fly mixing in Freestyle.  We have been using these as progression sets.  These are great because everyone in the practice can do the same interval.  One group can do more Fly and less Free and the other can do more Free and less Fly.  There can be many different things going on as we move together as a group.

Here are three examples from our progressions that we have done to get to our highest level, 100x25's.  Generally we keep the number to 40x25's or lower, but we were doing so well - we decided to give 100 a try.

Set 1:
40x25's on :30
A Group:  1 Free, 3 Fly.
B Group:  1 Free, 2 Fly.
C Group:  1 Free, 1 Fly.

Set 2:
40x25's on :30
A Group:  1 Free, 7 Fly.
B Group:  1 Free, 2 Fly, 1 Free, 3 Fly.
C Group:  1 Free, 2 Fly.

Set 3:
100x25's on :25
A Group:  2 Free, 2 Fly, 4 Free, 4 Fly, 6 Free, 6 Fly, 8 Free, 8 Fly, 10 Free, 10 Fly, 12 Free, 12 Fly then 8 rounds of: 1 Free, 1 Fast Fly
B Group:  1 Free, 1 Fly, 2 Free, 2 Fly, 3 Free, 3 Fly then 8 rounds of: 1 Free, 1 Fast Fly.

This set was great with everyone on the same interval and then joining in on the last 8 25's of Fly at the same time.

3.) Longer distances mixing Freestyle and Butterfly.  The easiest version is 50's of Fly/Free.  The next step is 50's of Free/Fly.  The next step is a set of 75's with Free/Fly/Free.  Then 100's of Free/Fly and so on...  Age Groupers can practice keeping their heart rate steady and alternating laps of Free and Fly - which helps them keep their race technique repeat after repeat.  Eventually we may throw in something like this:  200 of 25 Free, 25 Fly, 25 Free, 25 Fly, 50 Free, 50 Fly to help build confidence in the 200 Fly.

These sets have really been working for us in so many ways.  They really offer us a chance to challenge each individual swimmer as the entire group moves forward.

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