Your legs give you that extra edge. A competitive swimmer’s ability to kick quickly, regularly and efficiently is essential.
This article was originally published here.
The legs demand a lot of training in order to achieve proper coordination with arm movements and breathing. Working hard on the legs is also important to accustom your body to making an effort that demands enormous quantities of oxygen.
A good leg session will tone you up, build muscle, burn calories and improve your heart rate! No need for moderation when it comes to exercising your legs for swimming!
So let’s get on with it! Shows us your skinny thighs and into the water!
1H10 - 1H20 SESSION
WARM-UP (20 MINUTES)
Warming up is the most important thing you do for your body before you enter the pool. It prepares you and your body for the session ahead. Warm up for about 20 minutes to wake up your joints, muscles and stabilise your heart rate.
It is essential to warm up before training and using any training equipment. Warming up keeps your body safer and less prone to injuries.
1. 12 x 50 metres, alternating:
- 50m crawl (25m kicking without a board / 25m normal swim)
- 50m backstroke (25m kicking without a board / 25m normal swim)
2. 4 x 100 kicking without a board:
- 25m kicking on your right side
- 25m kicking on left side x 4
- 25m fast, kicking on your front
- 25m slow, kicking on your front
SERIES (35 MINUTES)
These exercises, with and without equipment, will increase your awareness of your leg movements in the water, will help to correct your movement, and then to automatically use the right kicking technique.
30 seconds static kicking (1 minute with fins)
6 x 50m progressive kicks from 1 to 3 (1. Slow / 2. Moderate / 3. Fast / 4. Slow / 5.Moderate, etc.)
50m slow (with or without a board)
Repeat this series of exercises at least three times. Without any equipment the first time, then with a board and, lastly, with a board and fins to enjoy a taste of high-speed swimming.
Do not forget to hydrate yourself during your rest periods... cramps can come on fast!
TOTAL: 1,050 metres
REST (10 MINUTES)
Wind down by keeping moving so that the body reduces its effort little by little. Prioritise relaxing your muscles, get your breath back and focus on your swimming technique.
350 metres kicking (50m big-toe kicks / 50m underwater kicks)
TOTAL: 350 metres
SESSION TOTAL: 2,400 metres
Give yourself a pat on the back! The workout is finally over! More than 2 kilometres in less than an hour and a half. Hats off to you! If you want to get stuck into a more substantial workout, you can adapt it to your desires and/or needs. You can also repeat the “Series” more than three times. In fact, I would encourage you to do so!
This type of swimming work-out focussed on the legs is a great way to improve your technique and swimming power, but also to improve your heart rate and to burn lots of calories! Give it a try. Your body will be grateful!
Finally, don’t forget to stretch and hydrate yourself to prevent muscle aches the next day. And don’t hesitate to take a cold shower to increase circulation and speed up recovery.
It is important to refuel yourself self and eat to recover those lost calories. Grab a bite to eat and do not starve yourself.