Thursday, February 11, 2010


Hello Parents!

We are going to be winding down the swim season for most of the guys over the next 3 weeks, and I wanted to take a minute and share with you what is happening in the pool. We start our taper this week, and it will last until the conference meet. For the current state qualifiers, their taper will start in 2 weeks.

If you're wondering what a taper is and why it's important, you're probably not alone. Basically, the idea is that we reduce the yardage and intensity of the training we do in practice until the competition that we're targeting. We will focus on more race specific things like sprinting, starts, and turns. The last few days before the meet, we won't be doing much more than warming up and doing a few sprints. The reason we do this is so that we can be rested and swim FAST!! It is an inexact science, and the results vary, but we generally are happy to see time drops of between 1 and 2 seconds per 100 yards of race length.

The most important components to a good taper are (listed in order):
  • Training. All the hard work and hours of swimming we've put in since November have been the building blocks for the taper we are about to do. In general, guys that push themselves the most in practice while swimming with proper technique are the ones that benefit most from taper.
  • Positive mental attitude. The swimmer must believe he will perform well and feel great in the water. Also, he must have a strong desire to swim fast.
  • Rest. The swimmer should refrain from strenuous activity outside of swimming during taper, get good rest at night by staying on a regular sleep schedule.
  • Balanced diet. Eat well - lots of carbohydrates, protein, fruit & vegetables. Stay away from junk food and pop.
  • Be prepared. Shave down, use a suit that isn't stretched out (creating additional drag), use goggles that you trust.
  • At the meet: Create adrenaline by getting excited to swim fast, sit down and relax before races, visualizing a great race. Think positive rather than creating nervousness and pressure upon yourself.
Expect the boys to have a lot more energy during can be tough to get them to rest because they've been wiped out every day for the last 10 weeks, and now they have energy again! Please help your son out by encouraging him and providing for some of the things listed above.

The guys have worked very hard this season! All the coaches have been continually impressed with the many good attitudes we have on this team. Thank you so much for supporting the team and your son throughout this season. We look forward to an exciting last few weeks!

Coach Keith

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