SwimSwam recently paid a visit to the University of Minnesota to watch as the Golden Gophers prepared for the Big Ten Championships.
Last week the Minnesota women placed 4th in their Big Ten Championships hosted by Ohio State University.
The Gopher women broke six school records throughout the four-day competition, and diver Sarah Bacon was awarded co-Diver of the Meet honors, which she shares this year with Northwestern’s Olivia Rosendahl. Bacon was Big Ten champion on the 1-meter board (353.80 points) and runner-up on the 3-meter board (383.40).
Tomorrow, the men’s Big Ten Championship will kick off at the University of Minnesota, with competition lasting through Saturday. The Gopher men are fortunate to host not only this year’s Big Ten Championship but also the NCAA Championship, which will take place March 21st-24th.
The video highlights the middle-distance and sprint groups’ preparations for the Big Ten Championships.
When SwimSwam visited, Head Coach Kelly Kremer’s 50 and 100 stroke group was running through a set of 4-10 25s from a dive for time, each of which was followed by a 75 easy. Coach Kremer let the athletes decide for themselves how many repetitions they wanted to do, depending on how they felt that day.
The 200-and-up group, meanwhile, was cycling through a series of 9-12 “openers,” meaning each swimmer would do a maximum of 4 x 75, 4 x 50, and 4 x 25 from a dive. For all tapering swimmers, the 4 x 75 portion of the set was intended to emulate the first 75 yards of their race, while the 4 x 50 and 4 x 25 portions of the set were simply at max effort. All non-tapering swimmers did the entire set maximum effort. Ultimately, all tapering women were only instructed to do 2-3 of the 75s, 2-4 of the max 50s, and 2-4 of the max 25s, each of which was followed by some easy swimming. Tapering men were instructed to do slightly more, but still only 3 opener 75s, 3-4 max 50s, and 3-4 max 25s.
For the sprint group, Senior Associate Head Coach Terry Ganley explains how warmup has become more precise and technical as the team prepares for championship season, and Associate Head Coach Gideon Louw’s sprinters cycle through a series of transitions where one swimmer sprints into the wall and another dives in and swims a fast 75 for time.