Coach Pete

Expert advice for Swimmers, Triathletes, and Coaches

How to Swim Successfully at the Big Meet Part IV

  Prepare for the worst !

If things don’t go to plan, you should learn skills to adapt to any situation and to deal with difficulties.

Can you learn to race fast without being fully warmed up?….Do you have any plans for arriving late at the meet, long waits, buses not showing up, lane space not available, forgot your goggles, lost your swim bag?….A good exercise for Coaches and swimmers to utilize are the WHAT IF– scenarios. About a month before the big meet, have a meeting with all the swimmers going to the meet and raise the issues that concern them, for example: What if we get to the pool and there is no space to warm up?…What if we get to the pool and I can’t find my Mom or Dad?…What if we get to the pool and my goggles snap and break during warm up’s?

The team could work through these problems of “WHAT IF” questions and solve them as a group. Practice some of these “WHAT IF” scenarios at minor meets leading up to the big meet.

  • Practice dryland warm up
  • Practice eating and drinking between races to see what works best
  • Practice recovery techniques like stretching and warm downs
  • Practice pool warm up
  • Coaches should help swimmers prepare for the infamous over crowded lanes common at most big meets by having all the team warm up at a workout in one lane maybe two times a week one month before the big meet. This will give them a good understanding of having to work together to get a good warm up. To take this one step further, to teach swimmers how to race fast after warming up in a crowded pool, have them “race” in training immediately after the all in one lane warm up practice.


January 11, 2008 Posted by | Age Group | Leave a comment