Thursday, September 10, 2015

Variety is the spice of life!

Dear Swimmers

Wow! Wasn't that some amazing weather yesterday?! A taste of summer for sure!

In this newsletter:

  • a new Monday Pure Technique session initiative
  • mega fun planned for tomorrow's early Friday AM sessions - bring a t-shirt!
  • an update on the new app / how to cancel yourself out of a session
  • an update on the proposed Tuesday / Friday 7.30am sessions
  • do you want a session early on a Saturday morning?

Monday Pure Technique Sessions:

If you are registered for the 7am or 9.30am Monday Pure Technique session and were able to attend this week, you'd have experienced a great little session geared around taking off any feeling of need to keep up with our fellow swimmers and get some great feedback and input on some drills and technique work at your own pace. We removed the "ego" and desire to just rip through the drills to get the distance in, and replaced it with some dedicated focus on your stroke, specifically learning how to and the value of the UNCO drill - after all, if something's going to go wrong in your stroke, it'll go wrong when you're breathing. Guaranteed. This session focused on that with most of us being able to improve immediately by 50% (unilateral breathers) or 33% (bilateral breathers) just by focusing on this one simple aspect. Breathing. I hope you enjoyed it.

Everyone was warned that they'd only get in 75% of the normal distance that we'd do on a Monday, but everyone seemed to enjoy the added coaching input. I certainly went away quite pooped!

We have decided that we will do a similar session to this on the first Monday of each month, with the other 3 sessions being similar to what we've been used to but with the added insight of what we go through on the first Monday to assist your development. I hope you find this a useful new direction with the program.

You can read more about the purpose of each session on our weekly program here:!squads/c15ml 

Tomorrow's Friday 5.30am and 6.30am Squads - please bring a t-shirt!

With the success of Monday's session and the feeling that summer is just around the corner, it has prompted me to run a really fun session in tomorrow morning's 5.30am and 6.30am sessions which will gear you up perfectly for the open water and triathlon season.

Our most fun session of the week is the Saturday 1-2pm open water skills session, and it's long been my intention to allow those of you in the early Friday sessions to experience this session and it's benefits when otherwise you might not have been able to attend the Saturday afternoon session.

So tomorrow morning, given the expected high turn-out (as advised by our new system) which actually ADDS to this specific type of session, that is exactly what we're going to do!

The focus will be to condition you to swim well around other swimmers, to draft well and really refine this technique, to do some high-octane efforts and generally have a good bit of fun to start your weekend, after all, variety is the spice of life! Come prepared with all your normal gear plus a cotton t-shirt too! We'll be doing a lot of group exercises, typically splitting the two groups in each lane into two further smaller groups (so about 12 to 16 groups in total!) and might even have some diving (optional) involved too! You'll even get the chance to try and hang with the fastest swimmers in the squad as they work hard to try and drop you off their feet, but with good drafting technique you'll be amazed at how much ground you can save!

There will certainly be a bit of chaos involved, but then when have you ever done an open water event and it not been like this?! Shying away from a bit of controlled chaos is likely to lead to sub-par performances in the open water, which is why this session and Sally's Saturday 1-2pm session is so effective.

Depending on how this session is received, we may look to run this one on a Friday every 6-8 weeks, with warning given of when that'll be!

If you have access to our app, you'll be able to see some of what we'll be doing here: 

Cancellations / New App:

I've just heard that our new bespoke login app (to replace the Connect app that some of you are using to varying degrees of success) is now into it's Quality Assurance Phase (1-3 days), followed by submission into the Apple Appstore (iOS) and Google Play (Android) (4-7 days). So with any luck we should have that ready for your free use very soon. It'll make signing in and cancelling out and registering for 1-2-1 sessions so much easier! Thanks for your patience.

The majority of you have been doing a great job of cancelling out of the sessions you know you can't attend and as such there's a lot of very thankful people in the squad who've been sat on our wait list (in some cases for up to 2.5 years!) who are now getting summonsed for sessions which they ordinarily wouldn't have once a specific session total drops below a certain threshold. This is great and I thank you for your assistance with this. For those of you who have been still no showing, please can I ask you to familiarise yourself with the new system (especially when the new app is available) as it really is super easy to do. See the how-to guide here

Tuesday / Friday 7.30am Sessions:

We are still yet to make a final decision on these. The hope is that we might have attracted some of you from the earlier sessions to look at doing the later 7.30am session in order to best manage numbers in the summer months. Whilst we have had a reasonable interest in these sessions (especially for the Friday 7.30am), the time slot is obviously not as attractive as I thought it might be, or that you're quite happy where you are. That is totally cool of course. 

If however, you have had a change of circumstances and think you could make this session over your earlier spot, please complete the form here:

One of the key advantages that we are starting to hear from those of you who've been recently being bold and choosing to lead your group more frequently, is that the opportunity to lead more will certainly be available in the 7.30am sessions, especially upon start-up (proposed for early October). Everyone who has made the biggest gains in their swimming recently have been the ones opting to lead more frequently, so if you're keen on taking your swimming to the next level and have the flexibility for a later start, this new session could make all the difference.

Saturday early AM sessions:

With the run-up to bigger events like the Rottnest Channel Swim and the Busselton Ironman / 70.3 event, we have investigated the possibility of a long endurance session on a Saturday morning at Claremont Pool. This is something we've only ever done very informally and it's always lacked a bit of group cohesion as a consequence. However, this is a massively costly affair given that we'd need the pool to open 90 minutes earlier than it does and to pay for a Duty Manager and Life Guard during this period, but given recent discussions with some of you, the popularity of such a session might prove viable if we ran it on an enrolment of say 12 weeks, rather than as a PAYG.

How it'd work:

  • the session would commence every Saturday at 5.30am and run for 12 weeks up to Christmas, starting 3rd October
  • it would start off as a 90 minute session, building to 2.5 hours as those of you preparing for Rottnest get fitter / stronger. For those of you doing shorter events (like Ironman / 70.3) you'd be able to get out after ~75 minutes having completed 4-5km. An idea would be for you to have your bike ready in the car park and to then head out on a long - รก-la the perfect long brick session!
  • post-Christmas, once a group is established, we'd venture out into the open water to specifically train in the river / ocean as a group
  • the sessions would be focused on long endurance intervals and would feel almost like a cross between a Tuesday AM session and the harder Wednesday "Red Mist" AM session
  • we'd need a minimum enrolment of 40 people to make it viable
  • the enrolment fee for the 12 weeks would likely be $300, exclusive of pool entry (subject to confirmation of all costs from the Claremont Council)
  • this session would be open to anyone currently swimming in the squad AND also anyone new to the squad too 
  • swimmers should be capable of swimming 1,000m continuously

To register your interest for our planning / consideration, please complete this form:




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