The Lazy Way to Get Faster

lazy duck

I still remember this phrase from my university coach in my freshman year. It’s such an appealing idea. The Lazy Way to Get Faster. Who could argue with that?

I have to admit that I distrusted the idea at first. Swimming is known for fast freshmen, and of course being teenagers we already knew everything. So being casually told that we could get faster by being lazy was beyond my suspension of disbelief.

However, I can honestly say it works. As long as your definition of lazy is a bit loose.

The idea is that by the time you get to university, any increases in actual swimming speed will take a very hard work. Months and months of very hard work. However, the non-swimming part of races was a different matter. My coach confidently predicted that we could drastically improve our times just by getting better at starts and turns. (These days I’d add underwater kicking but my swim career predated that invention.)

He was right, of course. We spent a lot of time improving our starts and turns, and gained significant time reductions in the process. Far bigger time reductions than we could possibly eke out of the swim portions of our races. So while lazy may not be the correct term, it was infinitely easier to get faster through improvements to starts and turns than through swimming. Unfortunately, all of our competitors worked on this as well, but at least we were all a lot faster while we raced each other.

This all came home to me at our meet this weekend. One of our boys had broken his wrist 2 months ago (see my post on this here), and the cast only came off a couple of weeks ago. He spent the time training surprisingly hard on his kicking and …read more

Source: Rick’s Blog