The main goal of deck-based dryland (or simply “dryland”) within this
program is to increase the overall density of work performed and to increase general working capacities. Another term for this is
Multiple qualities can be addressed with a
Overall GPP can be enhanced through improvements in energy system
An individual dryland training session will include an active warm-up, the work sets of the day, and a cool-down including active and passive stretching. Most weeks will consist of two lifting workouts. Micro and
Other than the planned training session itself, you need very little to perform effective dryland work. A willingness to perform the work as indicated is obviously the most important thing to bring to any training session. For dryland training, additionally you will want comfortable clothing that is easy to move in, workout shoes, an exercise mat and/or towel, and a full water bottle. Effective dryland work can be accomplished with none of the above, but having most or all of these items will make the workout more comfortable. An index card with the full workout written on it is also easy to take to the pool and make notations as necessary. An additional item that you may want for dryland work is a medicine ball. Any med ball, bouncy or “dead”, from six pounds to ten pounds (depending on your strength levels) will work. A med ball can be used in conjunction with many exercises to make work more challenging and can be a great addition to improve core strength and power development. You can lift it, throw it, carry it, bend with it, twist with it, hold it close, hold it away, balance on it (cautiously), and use it to augment almost any movement pattern. If you have only one piece of exercise equipment for dryland or at home, it should be a medicine ball.
If we improve any of the following qualities, we improve our GPP. Increased
dryland ability = improved GPP = faster swimming. Broad definitions of some general work qualities follow.
Energy System- The focus here is on using a large amount of our musculature to produce work. Basic work sets move to longer sets, and then to more dense work. Heavy breathing and a lot of sweat are the norm. Rest intervals vary from half to double the amount of time worked (2:1 to 1:2 work-to-rest ratio).
Strength- The focus here is on improving relative strength, or the ability to move one’s own body. Basic sets move to multiple, short sets, and gradually progress to longer sets with increased density and or intensity. Rest intervals can vary greatly
Core- Improving static, dynamic, and rotational strength in the core of the body (the trunk, or top of the neck to bottom of the hips). Sets can vary, and core work should always be included liberally within a given workout. Rest intervals are very short (4:1 or less).
Power- Increasing the rate and magnitude of force production is the focus here. Short, multiple sets will gradually progress to longer,
Mobility- Increasing the body’s ability to move efficiently through a full range of motion is the focus here. This quality is improved with increased exercise
Now that the list of GPP qualities is defined, it is important to note that the
specific qualities trained in a given session are less important than simply
putting in work at an
Similar to the
Why do we train some qualities (i.e. energy system work) in dryland when
we can train many of these same qualities in the pool? The best answer is: to avoid over-training in the pool. Including an effective dryland (and weight training) program with a swim training program can help avoid
in its favor, or (less commonly) drop a
Design your program now. Get more information in the Crosstraining book and /or the back chapters of the Faster Swimming book. Both can be found here: