Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Envious we are, when we see a bird flying gracefully in the air. Swimming – or rather flying – in the sea, diving under the water and turning in each and ever direction we desire is perhaps the closest feeling that portrays free-flying… And until man is able to soar in the blue, our wing heaven remains the water sky.


At any age, even from barely a few months old, one can enjoy the pleasure of swimming. But when one is physically fit, short breath and fatigue will be absent, and swimming would have a much more thrilling flavor. Swimming involves just about every muscle in the body. Specifically, 80% of swimming strength comes from mid-section up to the arms. Good swimming requires well developed whole body strength operating as one unit. However, the emphasis – in this particular order – is on the back, chest, shoulders, arms, abdominals, hips and thighs. The following conditioning drills are designed to strengthen your upper body and to help you develop resistance and stamina which are essential for swimming.


Make sure to include a running program in your workout because swimming and running promote each other and boost your endurance level. Setting the fixed bar at the heights described in each exercise will enable you to do high repetitions (20 reps minimum) making your training endurance oriented. Perform slow long strokes because fast strokes will not make you a faster swimmer.

One legged squat
One legged squat
Set fixed bar a little less than your height. Stand on left leg with the right leg raised as high as you can (ideally parallel to the floor). Bend the leg you are standing on (keep the heel down) to bring the thigh parallel to the floor while keeping the other one in the front without letting it touch the floor; with the help of your right arm return to the standing position. Do 20 repetitions on one side then alternate to the other side. This exercise works the quadriceps and the biceps (while supporting and pulling your body up).
Inclined push-up
Inclined push-up
Set the fixed bar between 1 and 1 1/2 meters off the floor. The lower the bar is, the more challenging the exercise becomes. Remember these drills are about doing as many repetitions as possible (no less than 20 reps). Grip the fixed bar with your arms in a straight position and your hands shoulder-width apart. Hold your feet slightly spread. Bend your elbows as you inhale until your chest touches the bar. Keep your elbows close to your body to emphasize on triceps. Repeat until you tire the muscles. Do 4 to 6 sets, and rest for 30 seconds between sets.
Pull up row
Pull up row
Set the fixed bar at arm’s length off the floor. Lie on the floor, chest lined up beneath the fixed bar; arms fully extended gripping the bar, exhale while pulling up your body until chest touches the bar; inhale as you return to starting position while maintaining your body in a straight posture and your heels on the floor throughout the exercise. Repeat until you tire the muscles. This exercise targets the back and it works the posterior deltoids, arm flexors and biceps. Do 4 to 6 sets, and rest for 30 seconds between sets.
Side bend trunk
Side bend trunk
Set fixed bar about 20 centimeters off the floor. Cross your feet and wedge them under the bar. Put arm around your head with elbows opened. Raise your body about 50 centimeters off the floor while exhaling, then lower your body all the way back to the floor. Repeat until you tire the muscles, and then alternate to the other side. Do 3 to 5 sets, and make sure to do an equal number of repetitions for both sides. Swimming endlessly will make you a better swimmer by enabling you to develop swimming speed and technique. But with all the swimming methods you may build up, it will all be missing the touch of strength and endurance, which you can climax on the land much faster than in the water.
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