Head Coach Notes October 2012..........

Head Coach Notes from October........

I hope you have all enjoyed reading about what the swimmers have been up to via the coaches’ squad blogs from October.  I wanted to cover some more general points applicable to all squads.

Many congratulations to all the swimmers who have raced during October, there have been lots of outstanding performances and it is encouraging to see so many personal best swims this early in the season.  The key now is to use these performances as a base and look to improve on something in every session.  All swimmers need to have individual goals and I know that the coaches have been and will continue to work on this with their squads.  For me the first and most important element in this is that the swimmers know their own PB’s and I would encourage keeping a log book of these.  The first feedback a swimmer gets after a race is looking at the clock and they need to know at that point whether or not they have just done a 10 second PB! J

On a slightly negative note I was disappointed to see the snacks that some of the swimmers had with them on Saturday morning to eat between swimming and land training.  Chocolate bars and crisps are not the food of champions; we have done a lot of work at summer camps and on education days to help the swimmers make the right food choices as this is a very important part of their training.  This will definitely be a topic at the next education day.

All squads now have a dedicated land training programme appropriate to their age and level of swimming.  Please can all swimmers bring their skipping ropes to every session.   Kayleigh McGurk is taking the lead for land training for Bronze B, Bronze A and Silver and is working with the squad coaches on the delivery of this.  Angela McCowan and Kevin Wright lead on the land training for Gold and SIPS squad respectively.  Land training is a key part of the programme in Stirling and I believe it is as important as the swim training.  Recently we have been focussing on control and posture and are very lucky to have Natalie Garry working with the swimmers on Pilates on Saturday mornings. 

I am still working on the new training timetable and hope to have confirmation from Active Stirling this week regarding the extra pool time that we need before I know which version to publish.  The intention is to publish this as soon as possible so that everyone is aware of the changes and then to implement this from January onwards.  Thanks for your patience and understanding on this.

As winter approaches and it is darker and colder outside, can I ask parents to make sure they are at the pool to pick up swimmers for the end of the session rather than 15-20 minutes later.  This way the coaches will not be concerned about swimmers, especially the younger ones in Bronze and Silver Squads who train at the school pools being left outside unattended.

There is a lot to look forward to in the coming weeks with more meets, our own Club Championships and the Scottish Short Course Championships in Edinburgh at the end of December.  This may be an opportunity to bring swimmers not racing through to support their team mates and see some of the best swimmers in Scotland race whilst parents get in some last minute Christmas shopping!

Finally I would say to all swimmers, keep up the good work, find out your PB’s, remember your skipping ropes and challenge yourself at every session.