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The Fatal Mistakes Part II

In part I, I introduced the notion that triathletes make two fatal mistakes when aiming to improve their swimming in the pool. These mistakes arise when triathletes ignore the realities of Triathlon Swimming.

In part I, I addressed the 1st of 2 fatal mistakes triathletes- needlessly complicating their approach to improving their technical skills.

In this article, I'm going to tackle a related mistake that is just as dangerous, if not MORE dangerous.

Mistake #2. Most triathletes approach their swim training the same way they approach their run and bike training.

Many triathletes start swimming after finding some success in cycling, running, or both, and decide to pursue triathlon. Because, it’s all they know, they apply the same training strategies that worked on land to their training in the water. Simply training harder and longer on land tends to result in faster and faster performances. Seeing how swimming is just as much an endurance sport as cycling and running, the same approach should work in the water.

The problem is that this approach doesn’t work. Theory meets reality.

While there is some skill involved in cycling and running, it’s not that significant. Fitness is the primary driver of performance. Relatively speaking, swimming performance is much more driven by skill than fitness. Technical efficiency is more important than physical capacity. The slower you are, the MORE this is true. As this is the case, basing your training on improving fitness is going to fail. If you’re not orienting your swimming training towards improve your skills, you won’t improve as much as possible.

To recap, there are two main mistakes that you need to avoid in your quest to improve your swimming and realize your triathlon goals. You have to resist the urge to complicate your swimming technique, and you need to resist the urge to ‘train’ your way to faster swimming. If you can accomplish these simple (not easy!) tasks, you’ll be well on your way to accomplishing your swimming goals.

In upcoming articles, I'll show you the guidelines for avoiding these fatal mistakes to ensure that you can improve your swim, and accomplish your goals in triathlon.


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