Many think drills are included in a workout so that you can become more efficient and improve your form in the water. This would be true for drills like finger tip drag and shark fin drill which you are supposed to do slowly and methodically with complete focus. However, some drills can also build strength and speed while improving form.
Below here are some great drills to build strength for swimming that you can include in between main sets or before main set:
- Doggie Paddle Sprints : Look at this video made by my college swim coach: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qZhCL2XsQNI In this drill, your arms do not come out of the water so the water gives your arms a lot of resistance as you “stroke.” Consequently, it is great for building strength and improving hip rotation
- Tarzan or “water polo sprint”: Similarly, the tarzan drill where your upper body is out of the water can build shoulder strength. It also helps you see where your hands enter the water to prevent cross over. For a visual, check this video out: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vJWD81-DveM Notice how the swimmer does not let his lower body sink but uses his core to keep his chest up.
- Fist: while you can do this workout slowly, doing it with a hard effort can boost your workout. The point of this drill is to force you to use your forearm and not just your hands, so when you sprint doing this drill, it makes you work harder.
Try including a set of 5-10×50 with 30s rest at a hard intensity in your next workout and you will be panting as if you had sprinted a 500.
Coach Chris and Kev