Coach Connection Newsletter #11 - 3/15/19

Coach Connection Newsletter #11 - 3/15/19

 | Monday, March 18, 2019

Last Call: #SwimBiz Club Marketing Award Nominations

Due Friday, March 15, 2019

We want to hear about the best and the brightest promotional efforts in 2018 from the swimming community. Be sure to nominate your Club or LSC for the ‪#‎SwimBiz Club Marketing Awards by March 15th! TODAY!!!


•        Best Use of Social Media (Club Award)

•        Best in Sponsorship (Club Award)

•        Best in Fundraising (Club Award)

•        Best in Multicultural Marketing (Club Award)

•        The SwimToday Award (Club Award)

•        Marketing Club of the Year (Club Award)

•        Marketing LSC of the Year (LSC Award)

Nomination Form

Deadline: TODAY

For more information about the #SwimBiz conference

Helping Children Manage Stress in Sports

By David Benzel, founder of Growing Champions for Life, March 2019

Note: USA Swimming has a partnership with David Benzel and his Growing Champions for Life organization. Coaches, you should let your parents know about this free webinar from David.

Register Now to reserve your spot for this FREE event

This month’s Teaching Life-Skills Webinar is hosted by David Benzel, founder of Growing Champions for Life.

Date: Thursday, March 21, 2019

Time: 9:00 PM Eastern Time, 45-minute live webinar plus Q & A. 

Topic: “Helping Children Manage Stress in Sports”

All athletes endure stress in sports, but why do some children have less, or handle what they have so much better than others? Identify the primary stressors in your child’s life, at school, in sports, and socially. Learn about the hidden resources your children already have available. Discover how to use three strategies for coping with sport-related stress and greatly reduce the side effects of not dealing with stress properly. Your child’s body, mind, and spirit will thank you later!

You will learn how to:

• Identify primary stressors.

•Use effective strategies for coping with stress and reduce the negative effects.

• Gain the necessary skills for embracing stress so as to live a productive, satisfying, and happy life in a complex world.

David will connect the key life skills of the lesson with winning on the field, and in life. 

Register Now to reserve your spot for the event. 

More information

Women’s Leadership Summit

The Women's Leadership Summit provides female coaches with an opportunity to grow both personally and professionally. The Summit will be a weekend retreat designed for amazing women to convene, connect, brainstorm with others and grow their network. This summit will recharge your life and career with focus on your development both on and off the deck.

Where: La Foret Conference & Retreat Center in Black Forest, CO

When: April 12-14, 2019

Cost: $225- includes summit fee, lodging, meals and ground transportation (to/from Colorado Springs Airport)

Register here

She LEADS Summit with National Team Athlete Leah Smith!

Our She LEADS Summits are designed to inspire leadership in our female athletes and build their confidence to achieve success both in and out of the pool. These summits are open to 10th, 11th and 12th grade female swimmers.

Where: La Foret Conference & Retreat Center- Black Forest, CO

When: April 5-7, 2019

Cost: $225- includes summit fee, lodging, meals and ground transportation (to/from Colorado Springs Airport)

Register here

Clean Sport

United States Anti- Doping Agency (USADA)

The information below should be shared with your athletes and their parents. Please distribute it via email, a club newsletter, or link to the articles on your team webpage.


Why does USADA hand out 90 ML stickers at #antidoping education presentations? Find out:

Step 2 of the sample collection process is when the sample is shipped to a WADA-accredited lab for inspection and analysis. Learn about the full journey of a sample, from collection to storage              


USADA has always been concerned about how poor supplement regulation could impact athletes. Check out the legislation we've supported on this front to help protect clean athletes and consumers from tainted #supplements:

#Supplements for muscle building, weight loss, energy, and sexual enhancement are at the highest risk of being spiked with drugs or illegal ingredients. Always be cautious when using dietary supplements. #Supplement411    

Tips for Fueling Vegetarian Teen Athletes

By TrueSport, March 12, 2019

Being a vegetarian might seem at odds with also being a competitive athlete, but it’s becoming far more common, even at sports’ highest levels.

Visit our website

Build-A-Pool Conference 

April 13th & 14th. 2019 

Join Mick and Sue Nelson, USA Swimming and Kevin Post, Counsilman Hunsaker to learn what it takes to build a functional and sustainable aquatic facility.

The BAP Conference is the Saturday and Sunday before the NDPA Education Conference.

You do not have to attend the NDPA to attend the BAP Conference but if you are interested in learning more about Water Safety & Drowning Prevention this is the conference to attend.

Not ready for New Orleans visit our website to learn the dates and location

of the other BAP Conference.

Questions contact Sue Nelson 

How to Fuel at Competitions

By TrueSport, March 7, 2019

From all-day competitions to weekend-long tournaments, packing nutritious meals and snacks for young athletes can be tough. 

We've partnered with the University of Colorado Colorado Springs’ (UCCS) Food Literacy Program, The Flying Carrot, to create printable travel pack grocery lists of perishable and non-perishable foods that will help fuel your athletes for their competitions. 

Adjusting Your Philosophy to Combat Sports Parents

By Scott Kugi,, March 2019 

Eight areas to focus your time to avoid conflict

The athletic director’s phone rings, sending a Pavlovian shiver down the spine. The scenario is familiar, as experience indicates the caller may be an aggrieved parent about to deliver conflict. Today’s athletic director needs the wisdom of King Solomon coupled with the patience of Gandhi. Unfortunately, in our “culture” and “system,” wisdom and patience are seldom enough to resolve conflict. 

Learn more

Three New Stroke Videos

By Glenn Mills, GoSwim Video of the Week, March 2019

Backstroke - Freestyle Pull on Your Back


Article -

If you’re having a hard time identifying a good backstroke pull, this drill may help.

Why do it:

Making sure you’re using a nice bent arm catch in your backstroke is very important. Not everyone can really identify how to do it, or what it means. Many of those same people have a nice freestyle catch, so that’s a good place to start.

How to do it:

1 - Start on your side with your face looking down. Fins make it easier to focus on the sculling hand, so put some on if you find you’re kicking too hard.

2 - While on your side, initiate a freestyle front scull with the lower arm.

3 - Try to keep the upper arm very still, from the shoulder to the elbow, and only use the forearm and hand to scull.

4 - When you feel comfortable with the freestyle scull, rotate your head UP to air. You’ll notice that when our swimmer rotates the head up, the body shifts more toward the side.

5 - Continue sculling on your side, starting with the more familiar freestyle scull, then rotating the head up.

6 - The important part of this drill is to try to maintain the feeling that is set up with the freestyle scull as you move more toward a backstroke scull.

How to do it really well (the fine points):

The idea here is that the arm can initiate the catch in freestyle and backstroke the same way. For certain swimmers, thinking of freestyle on the back helps them make that connection of the early, bent elbow catch.

To move this forward, start the length on your side with your head facing up. Focus on the same scull you’ve been doing, only this time, about half way down the length, initiate a backstroke recovery and start swimming backstroke. Repeat, drill, repeat, swim… then swim backstroke with a better bent elbow catch.

Training - Water Polo Block


Article -

Working the inner thigh for breaststroke as well as developing quick explosive power for starts turns in general racing is always a great idea but sometimes tough to do in our sport.

This drill borrowed from our friends in the water polo community is tough and accomplishes pretty much all of the above.

Why do it: 

Water polo block is not only tough but fun as well. The egg beater type kick allows swimmers to work the inner thigh with less chance of injury and the explosiveness of trying to climb out of the water helps you build some of those quick muscles we sometimes miss with long training.

How to do it:

Start with simple egg beater kick while treading water.

When the coach tells you to start. Reach up and out of the water as high as possible with your right arm.

Come back down for a couple of kicks then explode out of the water again reaching as high as possible with your left arm.

Continue alternating for as long as your coach wants you to.

How did do it really well:

The fine points. Don’t just use your legs to lift out of the water. Also brace and press with the hand that’s still in the water to push you up higher.

Try to get as much of your suit or any if you’re a guy out of the water. Maybe even position yourself under the flags for a real challenge.

Breaststroke - No Underwater Pullout


Article -

Click here to watch more videos on the complete breaststroke underwater pullout.

The beautiful underwater breaststroke pull... it’s long... it flows... it’s relaxing... and IT CAN STOP YOU. After thousands of breaststroke video evaluations, we’ve named the recovery of the breaststroke underwater pull as the MOST disruptive movement in the entire sport of competitive swimming.

Mostly, this means, you better be focusing on it, or it will cause you to come to a complete stop in the water. But... is there another option?

Why do it:

We saw another case of skipping the underwater pull at the SEC Championships, and here’s an article from 2016 describing another instance where it was used effectively.

Skipping the breaststroke underwater pullout can have multiple benefits, but we’ll just focus on 2. First, you may be able to maintain better velocity. Second, you’ll get more air.

How to do it:

1 - It’s actually very simple. Push off the wall and do a dolphin kick like you off every other wall.

2 - Take the first pull of breaststroke and start swimming.

How to do it really well (the fine points)

If you’ve been practicing normal underwater pullouts, you’ll need to make sure you push off more shallow than you usually do. If you go too deep, waiting to get back up to the surface will cause you to lose that momentum you’re fighting for. Also, watch the head position. With younger, aggressive swimmers, this shortened action may cause them to attack too quickly and lift the head. Keep the head down until the insweep of the first stroke.

If you’re swimming a very short race, like a 50 on a relay, you may also opt to skip the breath on the turn. You’ll be getting to air very soon anyway, so that’s just an option to work on.

This is also a massive benefit for “aging swimmers”. Let’s say you’re a 57-year-old Masters swimmer with good underwater pulls. Maybe you don’t (or can’t) want to go that far off every wall. This gets you to air more quickly.

Will this work for you? The ONLY way to determine if a non-traditional technique for swimming will work for you is to experiment. Have your coach time you to a point, and try both ways... over and over again. Balance that out with the addition strokes you’ll take, and the additional breath you’ll get. 

Also factor in the pause, loss of momentum, or stopping that may occur in your own underwater pullout. Getting back up to speed also takes energy.

There is no easy answer, but at least there are now more options.



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