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Ann Arbor, MI

Race Strategy & Comprehensive Backstroke Camp Series

Sat, Jun, 12 2021 - Sun, Aug, 22 2021

Georgetown Country Club
1365 King George Blvd, Ann Arbor, MI 48108

Introduction

Race Strategy and Comprehensive Backstroke Camp Series – This swim camp series consists of three, 2-day camps. Participants will work with our world-class clinicians learning how to create elite race strategies, developing dynamic race plans to use in practice and work on techniques that will increase their overall speed, power and efficiency. 

June 12-13: Race Strategy Camp: 200’s & 500
June 19-20: Race Strategy Camp: The IM’s
August 21-22: Comprehensive Backstroke Racing Camp

Session sizes are limited to no more than 24 participants to ensure the highest level learning experience!

Session Times (All Days):
Group A: Check in 5:30 AM, Clinic 5:45 AM-8:45 AM
Group B: Check in 9:15 AM, Clinic 9:30 AM-12:00 PM

Suggested Participants

The clinicians will lead two sessions per camp for each group based on your swimmer’s best times. For Group Assignments AND Session Times >>> CLICK HERE

Curriculum

JUNE 12-13: RACE STRATEGY CAMP: 200’S & 500

"How should I swim my race?" It's a question all swimmers will ask many times throughout their careers. To an outsider, this may sound like a silly question... surely the answer is as simple as "fast'. However, there is so much more to it! In order to be an effective and efficient racer, swimmers must go into every race with a plan as well as a deep understanding of the relationship between all of the elements that make up a great race. This camp will be led by Olympic gold medalist Cierra Runge!

    JUNE 12: SWIMMING A FAST 500

    The 500 is unique because it requires an immense amount of focus and intensity! 20 lengths is a long time to maintain a fast pace. Cierra Runge will work with participants to understand the splits, technique, and even the mental components to racing an elite level 500 freestyle. Your swimmer will understand better how to effectively set a pace that is challenging, but still possible to maintain. Even the minor improvements a swimmer can make on every lap will add up to big time drops after attending this session.

    • PACING: Many swimmers start out their 500 too fast and end up getting slower by the end. Other swimmers might start out too slow and end up still having leftover energy after they finish! Learning how to properly pace a 500 to maintain the fastest splits possible takes studying and practice. Cierra will work with your swimmer to help them better understand themselves and what they're truly capable of so that they can split their 500 like a pro!
    • TECHNIQUE: Your swimmer must find the balance between their distance per stroke and tempo that maximizes their speed, efficiency, and endurance for the entire duration of the 500. Their technique must be something they can not only achieve, but also maintain! Your swimmer will engage in drills to gain a deeper understanding of their freestyle to harness the best stroke length and rate possible for their 500.
    • STRATEGY: Does your swimmer have a plan for how many dolphin kicks to do off of each of the 19 turns in their 500? How about their breathing pattern? How strong should their kick be throughout? These important questions must be answered and every swimmer should dive into their 500 with a plan. Work with Cierra to develop a race strategy that plans out each length so that your swimmer will approach their 500 with confidence and enthusiasm!
    • MENTAL COMPONENT: The 500 requires a mental toughness unlike any other race. You have to have the ability to push through the fatigue that will inevitably hit and maintain the focus required to finish strong. Cierra will give your swimmer tools to achieve and maintain a strong mindset for all 20 laps of the 500 free.

    JUNE 13: SWIMMING A FAST 200

    Races over 200 yards and meters are some of the most fun to swim and to watch because of the wide variety of strategies that swimmers can use. Some swimmers will take the race out very fast and hope to hang on at the finish, some will save their energy and finish strong, while others will hit consistent splits to balance those two strategies. Olympic gold medalist Cierra Runge will help participants see which strategy works the best for their swimming as well as how to implement that plan for faster racing.

    • DISTANCE PER STROKE: One way to increase efficiency is to take fewer strokes. Counting the number of strokes and improving technique to decrease that number will save energy. On the other side, it may be faster to take more strokes per length, especially in shorter events.
    • TEMPO: Your swimmer’s tempo is how fast or slow they complete each stroke. Having a slower tempo allows swimmers to conserve energy by taking fewer strokes, while a faster tempo is more tiring but much faster. Changing tempo based on event distance and fatigue level will help your swimmer swim as fast as possible.
    • PACING: Every swimmer strategies their 200 yard races differently, and Cierra will demonstrate the advantages and disadvantages of these main approaches. Whether your swimmer likes to go out hard or finish strong, having a pre-race strategy will help make sure they are ready to swim each race confidently!
    JUNE 19-20: HIGH PERFORMANCE IM RACE STRATEGY

    Fast racing is all in the details. Over two days, swimmers will focus on each component of racing fast in the IM! Saturday will cover strategy and pacing for the butterfly and backstroke legs, underwater dolphin kicking, and open turns. Then on Sunday, participants will work on finishing strong in the breaststroke and freestyle legs of the IM, breaststroke pullouts, and the crossover turn. This camp will be led by NCAA All-American Mokhtar Al-Yamani!

      JUNE 19: BUTTERFLY & BACKSTROKE IM STRATEGY

      Many swimmers struggle with how to pace the first half of an IM so that they're racing as fast and efficiently as possible without spending too much energy. NCAA All-American Mokhtar Al-Yamani will help participants to understand the proper pacing for butterfly and backstroke so that they can race faster in each of their IM races. He will also work with the swimmers on underwater dolphin kicking and open turns to get in and out of every wall faster!

      • BUTTERFLY to BACKSTROKE IM STRATEGY: In this session, Mokhtar will work with participants to find the right balance of rhythm, length, and power to maximize the speed of the butterfly and backstroke legs of their IM. They will help swimmers understand themselves better so that they can start fast without spending all of their energy. This is a very strategic skill that can make a big difference in your swimmer's IM.
      • UNDERWATER DOLPHIN KICKING: Many swimmers push off the wall and simply go through the motions of dolphin kicking without creating much power. At this session, Mokhtar will work with each swimmer to learn the proper muscle activations, size, and frequency of their underwater dolphin so that they can accelerate through the breakout faster than ever before.
      • OPEN TURNS: Technique for a great open turn starts over 5 meters out from the wall by making sure that swimmers time their last stroke to touch at full extension. Then from there the open turn is a backwards spin initiated by driving your knees aggressively into your chest and tucking your chin. This process allows a swimmer to carry their momentum through the turn and into an even faster streamline.

      JUNE 20: BREASTSTROKE & FREESTYLE IM STRATEGY

      Finishing strong is so important to racing a fast IM. The key is finding the right tempo on the breaststroke and freestyle lengths to allow a swimmer to accelerate to the finish without losing momentum. This session is all about the pacing and strategy on the last half of the IM as well as breaststroke pullouts and the fastest turn your swimmer can do to transition from back to breast: the crossover turn.

      • BREASTSTROKE to FREESTYLE IM STRATEGY: Building speed through the back half of an IM is all about understanding how to increase tempo while maintaining length. Mokhtar Al-Yamani will work with participants to play with their tempo and length in both breaststroke as well as freestyle for a more efficient finish to their IM races.
      • BREASTSTROKE PULLOUTS: The best breaststrokers are faster under the water than on the surface! Learn the components and sequence of movements that make up a fast underwater breaststroke pullout. With the proper body position and timing, a swimmer's pullout will take them almost to the other side of the pool faster than you could imagine.
      • IM TRANSITIONS: The crossover turn is the fastest way to transition from back to breast in an IM race. It has made headlines lately with even the top swimmers getting disqualified for doing it incorrectly. Mokhtar will ensure that participants are aware of the rules and able to execute the crossover turn FAST and EFFICIENTLY.
      AUGUST 21-22: COMPREHENSIVE BACKSTROKE RACING CAMP

      This is a two-day high performance swim camp focused on racing faster in every backstroke race (plus improve in the IM!). The first day will focus on fast and efficient backstroke technique. The second day will cover applied speed and race strategy, as well as backstroke starts.

        AUGUST 21: HIGH PERFORMANCE BACKSTROKE TECHNIQUE

        Your swimmer understands the core components of backstroke, now begin to master the subtle skills that will help your swimmer compete at a higher level. Participants will practice using their core to create rotation as well as a stable and balanced stroke, build a powerful pull with a strategic use of stroke rate, and use their kick as a dominant propulsive force.

        • BODY POSITION: Participants will work with Elite Clinicians to feel and understand how to maintain a neutral spine and head position for less drag and better full body connection in backstroke.
        • ROTATION: The fastest backstrokers in the world use a powerful rotation to create more power and increase their tempo. Learn how much to rotate, when to rotate, and how to use it for maximum speed and power.
        • KICK: Have you ever noticed how many swimmer's knees break the surface when they kick in backstroke. This means that the swimmer is kicking with their knees which is less efficient than kicking from their hip. Clinicians will help swimmers maintain maximum propulsion with the proper kicking technique.
        • PULL: It is very important for swimmers to bend their elbow very early in the pull so that they can get an early catch for an immediate and powerful press back into the water.

        AUGUST 22: BACKSTROKE APPLIED SPEED & RACE STRATEGY EXECUTION

        Take your backstroke racing to the next level by learning different strategies for approaching any race. Elite Clinicians will work to take the solid backstroke foundation developed on day one and teach sprint and distance variations for fast racing specific to any backstroke event. The session will end with a strategically crafted training set to highlight fast and efficient backstroke technique.

        • DISTANCE PER STROKE: One way to increase efficiency is to take fewer strokes. Counting the number of strokes and improving technique to decrease that number will save energy. On the other side, it may be faster to take more strokes per length, especially in shorter events.
        • TEMPO: Your swimmer’s tempo is how fast or slow they complete each stroke. Having a slower tempo allows swimmers to conserve energy by taking fewer strokes, while a faster tempo is more tiring but much faster. Changing tempo based on event distance and fatigue level will help your swimmer swim as fast as possible.
        • PACING: When racing, many swimmers will prioritize tempo over distance per stroke, which causes them to take a higher number of shorter strokes on each length. This is a very inefficient way to swim and can cause a swimmer to race much slower and fatigue quicker. At this session, the clinicians will help participants refine their stroke count and tempo so that they can utilize their strengths to race faster in any distance!
        • BACKSTROKE STARTS: Getting into the right ready position utilizing the backstroke ledge with a straight back, hips high on the surface of the water, and feet positioned to get maximum power is extremely important to being able to execute a fast and clean backstroke start. Your clinicians will work with swimmers at this session to achieve a beautiful back arch over the water so that they can have an advantage in every backstroke race!
        • TRAINING BACKSTROKE: Also included in this session is an elite workout designed by your clinicians and the Fitter and Faster Coaching Team. This workout is specifically designed to challenge your swimmer’s backstroke and help identify strengths and weaknesses in their training, which will ultimately transfer into becoming a better racer!

        ASK QUESTIONS

        Swimmers and parents are invited to ask their clinicians questions during a Q&A session. Gain insight into their training regimen, diet and nutrition, and recovery tactics.

        WATCH THE CLINICIANS

        Observe your clinicians swim at full speed and demonstrate a progression of perfectly executed drills to achieve powerful, efficient and fast swimming.

        PUT YOUR SKILLS TO THE TEST

        Swimmers will get to practice what they've learned by taking their stroke to your top speed with some of the best swimmers and coaches in the world! They'll work on holding onto their form while challenging themselves.

        Take a photo with the clinicians, get autographs, and ALL PARTICIPANTS receive a FREE Fitter and Faster Collector’s Bag Tag for each day they are at the camp. Collect all 37 and trade with your friends!

        Inquisitive, Educated Swimmers are Faster Swimmers! Sign up today!