One of the best components to a dryland training program is training for power. Starts and turns are the two times during a race where a swimmer can produce the most force. Taking advantage of developing these two aspects of a race in dryland can give athletes an advantage, especially when sprinting.
We add power exercises to programs for many reasons. Basic power exercises can help improve coordination, increase neural drive and activation, as well as increase the rate at which you produce force.
When adding plyometrics to a dryland program here are general rules:
- Do your power exercises first
- Keep the ground contacts to no more than 25-30/session.
- Learn landing techniques first
- Execute movement slow to develop form
- Progress to rhythmic movement
- Increase speed
- Add External Load (Dumbbells, Weight Vest etc.)
Check out this basic Power Tri-Set for Dryland.
A1: Box Blasts 3x5ea
A2: 3 Way Ankle 3x3ea position
A3: Medicine Ball Toss 3x5ea
For a swimmer, building core strength and core endurance is vital in maintaining a strong posture and power when executing your strokes. When I refer to an athlete’s core, I am talking about stability and optimal range of motion from the shoulders and hips as well as strong obliques and abdominal muscles. The demand of swimming can require an athlete to withstand thousands of strokes in a given week which can be brutal on your shoulders and core. Dryland exercises should look to combat the repetitive movements and positions in swimming to reduce risk of injury and improve performance.
Common issues I see in swimmers are shoulder pathology and postural dysfunctions like kyphosis and lordosis. Here are2 examples of corrective exercises for increasing core strength and improving posture.
If you are already doing planks in your program and executing them well, try the
Chloe Sutton - Sharing my experience of 20 years of competitive swimming including 8 years on the National Team and 2 Olympic Games.