Sunday, February 5, 2012

Gearing Up for a Short Course Championship

T2 Aquatics is preparing for our Short Course Championship meet season!

This year, we are traveling outside of our LSC for our Championship meet. On the weekend of February 17 we are off to the Florida Gold Coast for the Florida Gold Coast Senior Championships! There are a few reasons we have decided to travel out of our own LSC for our championship meet:

1- We want to race Short Course! The Florida Gold Coast is hosting a SCY championship meet format, which is the format we've been planning on since the summer of 2011. Many of our meets this season have been LCM, so it's time to see what we can do in the SCY pool. Certainly, most of our top-ranked athletes have raced LCM since last summer, so it's nice to have a little break.....and as for our developmental Senior athletes -- read on for more of why a SCY championship meet is going to be beneficial.

2- We value competition that allows us to compete in the same course for prelims and for finals. It comes down to learning, and choosing educationally -- sound meet experiences for our athletes. There have been quite a few meets this year in Florida that have been swum as Short Course in the morning, and Long Course in the evening. Of course it is 2012 and athletes are going for Olympic Trial Time Standards, so I can understand this meet format and the concept behind it -- but for our championship meets, I prefer the same course for prelims as it is for finals. There is much more learning, and measured improvement that comes from swimming the same course in the finals as has been swum in the prelims.

Think about it: How often do we swim a decent swim in the morning prelims, and then come back at night to beat the time -- and have a great swim? Often, right?! So, in my opinion, getting involved in too many meets where we swim decent in the morning in the short course pool, then come back at night to swim long course actually prevents us from the type of improvement we could be getting by choosing to swim the same course in the finals as is swum in the prelims.

3- Developmental athletes need to race short course because it is simply a bit easier, in terms of the actual task, to race Short Course well when compared to Long Course. Because of this reality, most athletes have breakthroughs in the Short Course pool before they have breakthroughs in the Long Course pool -- in particular at the developmental level, before athletes are fast enough to swim at Nationals and Olympic Trials. We don't want to miss those potential breakthroughs because we are guided by the meet format into swimming Long Course finals.

Most athletes learn how to race well in the Short Course pool, then transfer that knowledge and experience to the Long Course pool. The United States is the #1 Olympic Team in the world, and has been for years, because our USA athletes are brought up swimming a perfect mix of Short Course and Long Course -- allowing for proper learning and practing of both courses. By starting with Short Course success, we set the stage for Long Course success. Although it does happen occasionally, it's rare for success to occur in the oppposite order.

4- Our future collegiate athletes need Short Course racing to show the NCAA schools what they can do. The NCAA course is Short Course all year, and while the college coaches certainly look at both Long Course and Short Course, they put some added emphasis on Short Course performance when recruiting our swimmers.

Generally, our soon-to-be collegiate athletes get a few time drops in the spring (from the times they did in the fall) -- and we don't want to miss out on this potential oppurtunity!

5- Racing fast SCY is an American tradition! For years, American athletes have been seeing what they can do in the SCY pool -- and we want to be a part of that every year!

No comments:

Post a Comment