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06/05/2017

All athletes need an off-season to recover from the mental and physical rigors of their sport’s season. This time of year also provides athletes with an opportunity to build on their foundation of strength, address sport-specific movement skills that will improve economy and efficiency, and improve their mobility to increase their functional range of motion and recovery, so they may absorb their last work-out. 

Swimming is a low resistance, highly repetitive motion that requires athletes to absorb a great deal of volume at every age. As swimmers move from youth to club, and high school to college, weekly training volume and intensity increases. Strength training helps the swimmer prepare for the next season’s increased training volume while reducing the risk of injury, and developing the explosive power and muscle stamina required to improve performance. 

Dry-land strength training provides a welcome variety to laps in the pool, a social training experience with more than lane-mates, and the opportunity to build muscle strength in both the over-used and the under-developed areas of the body to bring better symmetry and more power to the pool. 

The off-season is the time to work on the movement skills required to swim faster and swim longer. The movement patterns that define pulling, pushing, jumping, rotating, streamlining, and accelerating are difficult qualities to address while training to compete. Utilizing the off-season to develop the sport-specific movement skills that define swimming will reduce drag and better apply force to improve efficiency and race day performance. 

The continuous stress of the swimming stroke strains the shoulders, hips, back and core. All swimmers know that maintaining flexibility is important to a competitive stroke, but so is improving the range of motion, especially in the shoulders, hips, and ankles. Mobility work that targets the Pectoralis, Piriformis, ankle, calf and thoracic spine muscles combined with a recovery routine that includes hydration, sports nutrition, compression, and rest allows the swimmer to begin preparing for the next work-out the minute they finish their last work-out.   
Athletic Republic trainers are certified to help athletes increase strength, efficiently and mobility, while also keeping them motivated through-out the off-season so they are ready to reach their competitive goals in-season. Next season starts now!