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Gary Halls Meinung: Wie ein Sprinter trainieren muss1. März 2006
Gary Hall's opinion: How sprinters should work out1 March 2006
Von / By Felix K. Gmünder
© Felix Gmünder, limmatsharkszürich
Gary Hall ist berühmt für sein
Mundwerk. Er ist aber auch ein aussergewöhnlicher Athlet: 10-facher
Olympiamedaillengewinner trotz Zuckerkrankheit! In diesem Artikel philosophiert
er über den Sinn des Distanztrainings für Sprinter.
| Gary Hall is famous for his straight mouth.
But he also is an extraordinary athlete: 10-times Olympic medallist in spite
of having diabetes. In this article he contemplates distance training for
The last time I swam the 500 free I was a sophomore in high school. That was in 1986! And this is a true story. The last mile I swam, during that same year, I was pulled out of the water half way through the race in the middle of a flip turn, by my feet, by my coach at the time, the man that made me hate distance swimming forever, Pierre Lafontaine, for swimming it too slow.
Did that help my fifty free? No. I would have quit if Pierre didn't quit that same year and go back to Canada. I will note that my personal goal in swimming at that time was to outlast Pierre. The yardage that I did when I was 16 made me decide that I hated swimming. I was wrong, I didn't hate swimming. I hated doing something that I was never built to do, that I was never going to be good at. It took the time after Pierre left to figure out that I didn't hate swimming, I actually liked it. I hated swimming for Pierre.
Pierre, you are a great guy and I love you, but you can't coach a sprinter.
I am really tired of hearing that Tom Jager's first junior national cut was in the mile. So what? Was it a great time compared to his 50 time? Tom was a talented swimmer. If he was trained to swim the 200 fly, his first cut would have been the 200 fly. He was in an era where every coach wanted a Brian Goodell and trained the entire team to swim the 1500.
Tom had the determination to make it through the mile to get to "his" event, the 50 free. Most young kids don't. They quit and by the time they realize that they liked swimming but hated the "formula goal" of the coach, it's too late. Tom told people about his distance past to get people off his back for being a sprinter. Most people think that it's very funny making a smart ass comment about being a sprinter.
I'm not railing against working hard, a positive side effect from distance swimming. I do a lot of aerobic work. I just don't do it in the pool. Define aerobic work. Is it keeping your heart rate up near 200 for over twenty minutes? We do exercise that maintains a heart rate between 150 and 200 for a lot longer than that.
It takes a lot of laps to accomplish anaerobic threshold if you only seek anaerobic threshold through swimming. If you don't go insane first from all those laps then your shoulder will explode eventually. All those laps hurt your stroke technique, which is absolutely necessary in the 50 free. Your heart is too busy pounding away to know what exercise is making it work so hard. You accomplish the same objective and save yourself from burnout and shoulder surgery. At the end of the season in those last 15 meters of the 100 free you'll have the finish your coach is looking for.
The time in the pool should be quality and technique work. Does training for the 1500 help a 50 swimmer? Absolutely not.
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