Coach Pete

Expert advice for Swimmers, Triathletes, and Coaches

How do we coach the 10 and under Phenom

DSC_0001  jo cuts 006  Dsc_0005 Emma Lincoln

Jenna Moodie        Andrea Vallejo      Bogdan Cioanta       Emma Lincoln

I have coached all of the above swimmers,  Junior Olympic Champions, National Top 16, and Florida Gold Coast All Stars….all accomplished as 10 and under’s. Are they off to the Olympics? and are they superstars? should they be treated any different than the rest of your 10 and under’s? My experience coaching young age groupers has been, to not get too excited about the Phenom. Many parents get very excited at this early success and that is understandable. However as a coach you have to take things very slowly and with little pressure on the child. The burn out ratio of young age group swimmers is extremely high. Many swimmers who have had great success as age group swimmers never get passed the aging up process. I have known swimmers that quit the sport by the time they were 15 years old due to too mush pressure to soon by both parents and coaches.

Be patient and let them be ten years old, have them do the same workout that your entire group is doing, don’t start loading them up with more yardage. Be very patient, and the end result will be a great reward. Work very hard on the foundation of proper stroke technique, rather than beating them up with intense hard long workouts.

Teach them the value of being patient, and work with their parents as to what your game plan is for their swimming Phenom. 

January 23, 2008 - Posted by | Age Group, Parents

1 Comment »

  1. You and I have had this conversation many times- and we lived the evidence a time or two. You know how I feel. I’ve been a swimmer (who loves the sport, had some success, yet never made it to the olympics!); a parent (who has had to walk the fine line between supporting my child and letting them choose thier “own” goals); and lastly, a coach (who must motivate and ALLOW developement in each swimmer’s own time). I believe swimming is a sport for everybody- all thier lives. All of my best and lasting friendships in some way are linked to swimming. If you are a runner, biker, soccer player, etc- there will come a time when your body can not handle your sport anymore. But swimming is a sport for life! Nothing makes me happier than doning my cap and goggles and sharing the pool with other “masters swimmers” who have loved and practiced thier sport for 20 years or more!!

    Let’s tell these parents and kids that if you are lucky- life is LONG, and swimming can be part of ALL THOSE YEARS!

    Comment by Coach Anna | January 24, 2008 | Reply

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