Splash - March/April 2013 - (Page 14)

STARTING BLOCKS STRENGTH & CONDTIONING DRYLAnD 101 Prepping for college isn’t confined to the classroom. by Mike Mejia CSCS t here’s no denying the fact that heading off to college is a huge adjustment. Besides having to deal with that whole homesick thing, you’re also somehow expected to choose your courses, become acquainted with your professors (not to mention their lofty expectations) and fit in socially with your fellow students. With all of that on your plate, the last thing you need is something else that’s going to take major time getting used to. So, do yourself a favor and start prepping yourself for a collegiate-level strength and conditioning program now, while you’re still in high school. In my years as the dryland conditioning coach for the Team Suffolk swim club here in Long Island, New York, I’ve noticed that high school swimmers’ attitudes towards keeping fit tend to run the gamut. While there are always those dedicated few who hit the gym, and/or track a couple of times per week in addition to our teambased workouts, (which tend to focus heavily on mobility and core strengthening through the use of suspension trainers, medicine balls and dumbbells), there are just as many who are content to let these bi-weekly workouts serve as their sole means of exercise outside of the pool. Imagine their surprise when they show up for the first day of dryland with their college team, only to be thrust right into a 4-5 day per week lifting program, chock-full of Olympic lifting, plyometrics and heavy weight training. The truth is, however, they’re not the only ones who get caught off guard. Many of the aforementioned “gym rats” also struggle, due in large part to the fact that the bodybuilding-inspired training most teens tend to favor is nowhere near adequate preparation for the likes of cleans, tire flipping, battle ropes and the other forms of functional training that are so prevalent in collegiate strength and conditioning programs today. Add in the fact that all of this is typically accompanied by a radical increase in practice yardage, and it’s easy to see why so many freshmen struggle. There is a way to avoid this scenario, however, and get yourself prepped and ready for whatever your college strength coach will throw your way. 1 shoulders, lower back and knees from all of that heavy weight and increased yardage requires strengthening everything on the back side of your body. This will lead to much more balanced physical development and better structural support for your joints. Be sure to include plenty of rowing variations, reverse flys, glute ham raises and other exercises that target these often neglected areas. I’m especially fond of drills like the squat to row and the TRX unilateral squat with reverse fly. These exercises work lots of muscle mass by combining several motions at once. Improve mobility around the ankles, hips and shoulder girdle: One of the easiest ways to get hurt in the gym is attempting to execute Olympic lifts, or other advanced free weight exercises when you’re tight as a drum. Lacking the lower body mobility to get down into a proper squat, or being unable to get the bar in a good “rack” position during cleans is a recipe for trouble . So, before you just start loading up, take the time to increase your range of motion with some non-traditional mobility drills specifically designed to address these areas, such as the three-way hip flexor series, barbell roll-unders and the dowel ankle mobility drill. 14 2 strengthen everything you can’t see: Protecting your SPLASH • March/April 2013 3 Gradually increase the volume of your workouts. You can’t go from hitting the weight room 0-2 days per week and jump right into training 4-5. Start out slowly and look to increase your workout volume over time. If you’re currently training two days per week for 45 minutes at a time, shoot for three for the next few weeks. Then extend the workout duration to a full hour for a while, before adding a fourth day and so on. Even if you’re currently not doing anything besides swimming, if you start now, by the time September rolls around, you should be ready for just about anything.

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Splash - March/April 2013

Splash - March/April 2013
Table of Contents
Mike Gustafson
Swim Briefs/Justin Case
Top Ten Tweets/Point-Counterpoint
Strength & Conditioning
Mental Tips
Training With
Keys to Success
Your Photo
Athletic Foodie
Book Reviews
NCAA Championships Preview
Hanging With Schmitty
The Perfect Fit
2012 Top Ten Lists - LCM
Swim Nut Zeke
Best Race Ever
Getting To Know
America’s Swim Team Athletes

Splash - March/April 2013