One of Scotland’s leading authorities on swimming and coaching, Alan Lynn, was back in Shetland last weekend to run the second in a series of three training weekends for Shetland Swimming Association. Coaches from five Shetland clubs, swimmers from the county training squad and some members of the development squad were involved in an intensive weekend at the Clickimin Centre.
On Saturday morning the three sessions were focused on coaches and the county squad. The education session covered competition strategy and how to make the best of swimming meets. This was of particular interest with the challenges Shetland swimmers face, having to travel longer distances than their rivals to compete in mainland club, district and national meets.
The land training session which followed focused on dynamic warm up and power circuits. It was then into the pool for a two hour session in which Alan concentrated on improving aerobic capacity in individual medley events, training skills and stroke efficiency. The swimmers then had a lunch break while Alan led a discussion on Shetland swimming development with the coaches.
After lunch the county squad were joined by some members of the development squad. A very informative talk and discussion was then held about nutrition for training and competitions. Swimmers learnt about the best drinks and food to eat, when and how much. They then had the chance to sample food, which would enhance their training and performance.
The next land training session involved games warm-ups and group circuits and after a short break they were in the pool. Alan again covered stroke efficiency with mixed individual medley challenge sets and kick tests in a challenging training session. He also got the more experienced swimmers to mentor the younger ones for a time mirroring what they do at the club he coaches at, Stirling ASC.
Sunday morning saw everyone thinking about his or her own competition strategy including a mentoring exercise. The land session which followed caused much hilarity with a big fun element in the exercises they took part in. The final two hour pool session started with only three lanes being used to replicate a competition warm up where things can get very crowded. This was followed by speed development, aerobic maintenance in the front crawl and back crawl and recovery swimming.
Feedback from the swimmers showed how much they had learned over the weekend with Alan.
Swimmers and coaches would like to express their thanks to Alan Lynn for coming up to Shetland and Clickimin staff for their assistance. Thanks also to Kevin Jones for his photos throughout the weekend which captured all the hard work and fun. These training weekends have been made possible by a lottery funded Awards for all Scotland grant. Shetland Swimming Association is very grateful for their support for this swimming development project and is looking forward to Alan’s next visit.