Dryland Training Program: 5 Keys to Success with SURGE Strength

The results speak for themselves – a dryland training program, when done well, can increase a swimmer’s potential in the sport of swimming. But what ingredients are needed for a “efficient and effective” dryland program? Here are the 5 keys to check in your dryland training program, and they’re what we use to orient our online, customized dryland training programs from SURGE Strength.


5 Keys to a Successful Dryland Training Program

1) Injury Prevention

Ensuring a swimmer can continue to swim, as hard, as fast and as often as they want is paramount with a dryland program. Because a dryland program that doesn’t address the most common injuries for swimmers isn’t one you want to follow. Building shoulder strength and maintaining or increasing mobility is vital so keep this at top of mind.


2) Balanced Movements

Swimmers mainly experience “overuse” injuries. And to avoid overuse injuries you need to have a balance of the different exercise movements in your dryland workouts. Keeping a balance of “pushing” and “pulling” exercises is a part of this concept. The second part of the equation is ensuring balance between “hinging” and “squatting” exercises.


3) Proper Periodization

Periodization must be addressed both at a macro (season) and micro (daily) level. Errors in periodization usually fall into two categories. So the first one is changing too many variables and usually changing them too often. And the second is not changing anything for weeks on end or even the majority of the season. How much you change the variables depends on both an athlete’s level of adaptation and their level of experience.


4) Customized Workouts

The more closely a dryland program can be tailored to an individual athlete the better the results will be. And if you’re just concerned with your personal training or a handful of athletes this isn’t very difficult. Because the challenge comes when you’re training a large and diverse group of athletes. Customizing workouts doesn’t have to be complicated, so don’t make it that way! But it does take a focus so make sure you look over your dryland program and see where else you can add some customization.


5) Compliments Swimming

The entire point of dryland training is to improve performance in the water. So it makes no sense to create a dryland program separate from the training that happens in the water. And even worse would be to put too much emphasis on dryland training at the expense of swim training. Keep your dryland training goals simple, like creating more athleticism and strength so it can be put to use in the water. And it’ll also help keep your dryland from being over complicated.



How to Get Started with a SURGE Strength Program

SURGE Strength has been providing online, customized dryland training programs to swimmers and swim teams for over a decade. We have refined the system and the results that the athletes and coaches we partner with speak for themselves.

Let’s lay out the process of starting a SURGE Strength Program so you can decide if it’s right for you:

1) Fill out the initial form

The first step is to submit a quick questionnaire about your current dryland program and the goals you’re working towards. Because at SURGE Strength we don’t have “cookie-cutter” programs. We don’t create your program until you start with us.


2) Schedule a call with Chris

Once you submit your initial form you’ll be able to schedule a call Chris. He’ll review the different program options we have. These options mainly revolve around how much communication or access you’ll need with your Dryland Certified Coach as well as the frequency of when you’ll receive your workouts. After you pick the best option for you, you’ll then be connected with your Dryland Certified Coach.


3) Perform Movement Assessments and Performance Tests

Before your Dryland Certified Coach can create your program you’ll need to complete the SURGE Strength Movement Assessment and Performance Tests. These results will be a tremendous help to create your customized program, avoid injuries, compliment your swim training and most importantly – lead to big improvements! This process takes about half an hour and once you’re done you’ll send the videos to your Dryland Certified Coach for them to review.


4) Strategize with your Dryland Certified Coach

Here’s where your dryland training program starts to take shape. Your first call with your Dryland Certified Coach will focus largely on reviewing the results from your Movement Assessment and Performance Tests. Don’t think of this as a “pass/fail” assessment, but rather orienting the map to begin your journey. Your goals are the end point but you first need to understand where you are on the map. This is where your Dryland Certified Coach really helps you with their expertise. After reviewing the results your Dryland Certified Coach will talk about how your dryland program will look as you begin and of course answer any questions you have.


5) Put in the work and enjoy the results!

From here it’s the start of a collaborate effort where you put in the work and your Dryland Certified Coach ensures your workouts matter and are moving you in the right direction. Being tired and sore with no results to show is demoralizing or worse yet if you injury yourself. When you start a dryland training program with SURGE Strength you can have confidence that we’ll lead you towards your goals.




Dryland Training Programs

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SURGE Strength - Dryland Training for Swimming

Courtesy of SwimSwam’s exclusive dryland training partner, SURGE Strength.

SURGE Strength is swim-specific, strength training by Chris Ritter. SURGE Strength builds better athletes and faster swimmers through Dryland Programs, Courses and Certification.

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About Chris Ritter

Chris Ritter

Swimming has always been a part of the life of Chris Ritter, founder of RITTER Sports Performance What Chris discovered after his swimming career, as he entered his swim coaching career was how important dryland training for swimmers can be. Chris has earned numerous strength and conditioning certifications, including: CSCS, NASM-PES, USAW …

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