I love data, I love numbers, I love the development of systems and models, and at the moment I am in my element crunching through ten (10) years of time trial data from the Triathlon Australia Junior program. Now this data set this includes performance records for athletes from short high intensity anaerobic 30 second efforts through longer aerobic efforts, and the element that has piqued my interest is the decay (or fatigue) rate of performance over time is an interest to me both as a measure for performance and an important element for the construction of individual training plans. […]

The Ironman™ World Championships is over for 2017, and we have seen a changing of the guard in the men’s race, with Patrick Lange, Lionel Sanders and David McNamee taking over the podium positions. Not to forget our own local club member Cameron Wurf and his record breaking bike split of 4:12:54. I thought I would take this opportunity and have a look at the times and modelling from our race prediction article utilising the resources from www.trirating.com and www.bestbikesplit.com, and see how their predictive modelling stacked up. One point of interest, Lionel Sanders mentioned in one of the many […]

Ironman™ World Championships are on this weekend, streamed live via Redbull TV from Kona, so I thought I would have a bit of a look at some the statistics and race predictions that are floating around the old “Interweb”. Thorsten from www.trirating.com has published his Kona report and there have also been some interesting data published by best bike split www.bestbikesplit.com, and I thought it would be worth having a look at the analysis that these sites have undertaken. The team at Best Bike Split, have published a series of data utilising their bike split modelling tool, predicting times for […]

  We often think that our stroke is like a metronome, consistently hitting that 1, 2, 1, 2, left, right, left, right rhythm, however for many swimmers who come to swim squad for the first time as an adult; their stroke timing is anything but. The crux of this problem is that as the swimmer rotates to take a breath, their lead arm will often slip through the water, dropping their elbow and catching no water that means a shortening of their total body length. This slippage makes it difficult to maintain body position especially whilst desperately gasping for that […]

So last week we introduced a number of new drills, including the ballet kick, torpedo push offs, torpedo kick, 616 and 636 drills, if you missed the article you can find it here. Today we are moving on and we are going to introduce some drills to help you develop a feel for the water and develop your catch. The first drill is called long dog, some people also calls this drill doggy paddle, but no matter the terminology it is a great drill as it forces you to develop an early bent elbow catch. Again it is of no […]

Last night I had the opportunity to help out and coach the Triathlon South swim squad, it had been a little while since I had been on pool deck in a hand’s on role, and I had a great time. Working with relatively new swimmers, especially with a new group with whom you need to build connection and a framework for communicating can be a challenge, but I feel we quickly slipped into phrasing we all understood. The session really took me back, it is one thing to design and take a session for experienced swimmers, it is an entirely […]

The process of coaching is complex, it is both an individual and social construct (Cushion et al, 2003), with a multifaceted mix of meanings, values and practices. In part, this is because humans are inherently different, they participate in sport for a myriad of reasons, exhibiting behaviours and traits that are driven by their individual complex psyche. This can equally be applied to coaches, why is your coach a “coach”? Do you have an understanding of their motives, philosophy or training principles? Do you care? As a coach I hope you do. Athletes face a challenging pathway in their pursuit […]

In this article I want you to start to consider a couple of key matters in regard to training and racing, specifically perceived effort and cognitive strategies for racing and training. Firstly, it is worth understanding that your perceived effort will change, that is how hard you feel you are going. Rajeski (1981) suggested that effort or perceived exertion, as it relates to sports performance, is determined by both psychological (e.g. cognitive strategies, individual differences, motivations) and physiological (e.g. heart rate, lactate, Vo2max) factors, and as such, the way in which individuals perceive effort or intensity of exercise can be […]

ABSTRACT Performance is affected by a wide variety of factors; the external environment and psycho- physiological/social stressors within an athlete’s life impact greatly on both training and competitive performance. It has proven challenging for coaches to systematically capture these extrinsic non tangible factors and conditions to ensure we focus on an athlete centric approach to coaching including a mix of wellbeing, capability and performance. This paper proposes a set of variables, condition mapping and practical connections to improving coaching. INTRODUCTION Measuring and managing training methods to track the loading of athletes has been the charge of coaches for eons, be […]

As coaches we put together our training plans to aid the development of the athlete to achieve a new, higher level of performance. In endurance sport, this task is usually undertaken after creating a plan based on a year round cycle, coaches dealing with strength or speed disciplines may well use shorter cycles. The careful assessment and monitoring athletes is integral throughout the entire training process, and this methodical approach will allow the coach to make informed decisions in regard to the effects and consequences of their training and planning decisions. The principle of individualisation proposes that athletes adapt differently […]