Coach Pete

Expert advice for Swimmers, Triathletes, and Coaches


A humpback whale slapping the surface with its tail.

You train a swimmer, you watch him get faster and you watch his skills get sharper, you watch his stroke technique improve and you watch his work ethic produce faster times for his particular events. Then you watch him hit a plateau it goes on for some time, you wonder why? His stroke is efficient, his workouts have not changed, his attitude is strong and yet his times remain stagnant. What’s the answer? Do we let up on workouts? Do we give him a day off? Coaches wish they know. What works for one swimmer, does not work for another. Then out of the blue at a meet or during a workout he has this phenomena that we call a BREAKTHROUGH.He breaks his time by a huge amount of time. What caused it? Why did it happen? I wish I had the answer, I wish there was some rational explanation.

I have talked to many swimmers and coaches and no one seems to have a definitive answer. The only advice we have for swimmers is to be extremely patient during these trying times.

If any coach or swimmer out there can come up with a reasonable explanation of this phenomena….please comment on my BLOG I would love to hear from you  


February 2, 2008 - Posted by | Coaches, Uncategorized

1 Comment »

  1. When swimmers hit a wall, and everyone does to some degree, it has to do more with genetics than anything you can really control. I remember going to the championship meet and not improving any of my times, my father was disappointed. Then, he noticed me, tripping over myself, while talking to my coach. It was hard to tell in the water, because my stroke still looked as graceful as ever, but my body was adjusting to my new size. After my growth spurt, I got really discouraged. Now that I was tall, I wouldn’t be able to be fast anymore. Once my body got used to my new height, I was even longer in the water, even stronger… even faster!

    Comment by leah woodard | September 24, 2009 | Reply

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