Feb. 3, 2010
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IOWA CITY, IA – Ask any swimmer for their favorite time of year and the answer will be taper. The University of Iowa swimmers are starting their preparation for the most important time of the year; the Big Ten and NCAA Championships, which take place in late February and March. Workouts decrease in volume and more rest is implemented in an effort to peak for these competitions.
Strength and Conditioning has become an integral aspect of this sport. College swimming occurs in a short course (25 yards) pool which requires more turns than long course (50 yards) events such as the Olympics. Explosive leg push off the walls and in starts can make a big difference in performance. UI swimmers implement total body explosive lifts and heavy strength work to improve this aspect of training.
“A great emphasis is placed on proper posture with the lifts and achieving straight lines,” explained strength and conditioning coach Bill Maxwell. “This posture emphasis creates a safer environment and enhances the streamline position, which is a critical aspect for swimmers to reduce drag in the water.”
The weight lifting is immediately followed by running and pool training. This close proximity of weight room and pool training allows Hawkeye swimmers to work coordination and timing of swim technique after strength work. The result will be a greater transfer of strength and power to the sport and ultimately more personal bests at the upcoming championship events.