Swimming improves under veteran triathlete’s tutelage

Those taking part in the scheme will take part in the Great East Swim on June 21

Those taking part in the scheme will take part in the Great East Swim on June 21


My swim training continued last Sunday (March 30), and with the introduction of retired champion veteran triathlete Barbara Leverett as a coach I quickly began to see how my swimming can improve.

Following on from the previous week’s initial session we had been split into two groups, and this week the six of us warmed up by seeing how many lengths of the 25 metre Haverhill Leisure Centre pool we could manage in ten minutes.

We were then split into two groups, with four working on stamina and myself and another entrant working on technique under the observation of the previous St Edmundsbury Sports Personality of the Year Leverett.

It was interesting to hear the little tips that I could tell would make a big improvement.

Front crawl had always seemed a sprint to me, and I found myself breathless with throbbing quadriceps after two lengths, yet I can manage breaststroke all day it feels.

Leverett instructed me to be keeping my head under the water – to exhale in full facing down underwater before twisting my head to the side every other stroke to inhale.

Although easy to understand it was tricky to put into practice at first, particularly given the propensity for water to trickle into my ear with each breath.

I was beginning to mast it and front crawl did feel a lot easier.

Using the technique I was finding it considerably easier, my muscles felt comfortable and I was not short of breath.

My next step is a pair of ear plugs and hopefully over the coming weeks I will see my swimming develop further.

The swim scheme is part of a subsidised initiative this year being run in Haverhill and newmarket (for young people) aiming to participate in the Great East Swim on June 21.

The subsidised offer is worth over £200 but costs £25 and is available for those aged 12 to 25 in Haverhill and Newmarket, with training at both leisure centres culminating in the Great East Swim.

Those under 16 need parental/guardian’s permission and can only do the half mile swim.

The young person’s Sportivate programme is funded by Sport England’s Sportive initiative and delivered in partnership with Suffolk Sport and Suffolk County Council.

If you are interested in taking part contact programme coordinator Corinna Hudson on 07905 829162 or e-mail corinna@greenleap.co.uk

For all the latest news see Thursday’s (April 3) Echo.




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