Practice + Pancakes: Thomas Heilman Dazzles in Cavalier Aquatics Speed Practice

Thanks to presenting partner SPIRE INSTITUTE, a scholastic boarding school where individuals: excel academically, master life’s necessary personal skills, experience tomorrow’s emerging career opportunities and exceed expectations in their sport or other passion specialization.

Recently, SwimSwam got the opportunity to travel down to Charlottesville, VA to do a bit of filming. This included going to the new-look Cavalier Aquatics under head coach Gary Taylor and getting a peak at what then 14-year-old (he has since aged up to 15) NAG-record slayer Thomas Heilman is doing in workouts.

Cav Aquatics had a fun warm up full of drills and speed work before getting into some 100 pace. This included 3 rounds of 50s at 100 speed (Heilman was holding under 24 on nearly all of them swimming fly) and a 100 off the blocks (Heilman was 48-point on all 3).

See the full workout below:


2 x 150s FR with LG RT Paddle at :15 rest: br. every 4 to LT
2 x 150s FR with LG LT Paddle at :15 rest: br. every 4 to RT

3 x 50s STR Drill with SM Paddles at 1:00
3 x 50s STR Drill with GBalls at 1:00: same Drill, DPS

6 x 50s FR/BK with Saxis Tumblers at :55: fast UW
12 x 25s build to fast Rev. SS at :35: O-FLY, E-BR
6 x 50s middle 25 fast at :50: 1 FLY-BK, 1 BR, 1 BR-FR

4 x 25s (3 Cycles BLAST Spin STR + AER FR) with Fins at :40: 1 UW DK
4 x 25s (5 Cycles BLAST STR + AER FR) at :40: 1 UW DK


Speed Work:

4 x 50s STR at 2:00: GO, work “little” details
2 x 25s STR at 1:00: GO, work “finish” details
100 Dive STR
200 (100 FR/50 BK/50 Str. BK Kick); AER REC

3 x 50s STR at 2:00: GO, work “little” details
4 x 25s STR at 1:00: GO, work “finish” details
100 Dive STR
200 (100 FR/50 BK/50 Str. BK Kick); AER REC

2 x 50s STR at 2:00: GO, work “little” details
6 x 25s STR at 1:00: GO, work “finish” details
100 Dive STR
200 (100 FR/50 BK/50 Str. BK Kick); AER REC

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2 years ago

Always enjoy practice + pancakes! Wondering if it’s impressive to have high-schoolers focusing on college and pro concepts though. Maybe those concepts should be left to college and pro swimmers? Thanks for the interesting content

Au burnnn
2 years ago

Where’s all the Gary Taylor hate?

2 years ago

They did this on a school day morning. These club teams different now

Reply to  Joe
2 years ago

Albemarle County HS start at like 9 which is nice. Elementary schools start at 7:20ish

Tom Dolan Fan
2 years ago

Well it is truly nice to see news about an up-and-coming rising young star. But (sorry there is always a “but”), his coverage on this site is taking on the aura of Michael Andrew at that age. So go ahead and trash me for negativity (which is not intended toward him), but please spend less time on a 14-year old and promote the other hard working swimmers who were not prodigies at 14. Maybe I am in the minority, but a 14 year-old workout is not newssworthy. Best of luck to him and Ihope the early praise does not go to his head.

Reply to  Tom Dolan Fan
2 years ago

I agree with you somewhat. Not to make this too negative but is anyone else here worried about the amount of hype/attention surrounding a 14 year old? I think he is absolutely incredible and his accomplishments should be celebrated, but as a coach I wonder how or how much his coaches are insulating him from the praise/hype he’s getting now. Coaching a kid like that must be incredibly gratifying, but maybe it’s a double edged sword (speaking from the perspective of a coach who is thrilled when his kids make JOs, so maybe I just don’t know).

Reply to  Tom Dolan Fan
2 years ago

Didn’t Michael Andrew make the Olympic Team? I think if this platform was around back in 1999, we would have seen stuff from another 13 year old named Michael Phelps. I think alot of us would have loved to see some of those workouts back then. Just sayin’

2 years ago

That workout was absurd. I’m reluctant to heap pressure on a HS freshman, but this kid could absolutely make noise in Paris 2024.

2 years ago

Where are the UVA commits and OT Qualifier? Thought we’d see them too.

Ex Cavs Swimmer
Reply to  Hydrodynamic
2 years ago

Izzy, Matt, and Grey were all featured for a couple seconds but weren’t focused on

X Glide
2 years ago

It looks like Thomas Heilman has a Dressel-esque butterfly technique

2 years ago

Coleman, was Ledecky‘s video the last footage you had from Florida or can we still expect a special gainesvillian P&P episode to be uploaded later this week?

About Coleman Hodges

Coleman Hodges

Coleman started his journey in the water at age 1, and although he actually has no memory of that, something must have stuck. A Missouri native, he joined the Columbia Swim Club at age 9, where he is still remembered for his stylish dragon swim trunks. After giving up on …

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