GAINcast Episode 266: Training camp (with Chris Webb)

The training camp is an integral part of the training process in many sports. But how can you get the most out of it? On this week’s GAINcast we share ideas around planning training camps to get the most out of them with swim coach Chris Webb. In addition, we look at optimal planning of multiple short training sessions, strategies to increase training quality, how much warmup is needed, and more.

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Chris Webb leads GAIN Swimming, where they focus on helping swim clubs install holistic long-term preparation plans to help their swimmers become better athletes and reach new levels. Webb was previously a coach with Fort Collins Area Swim Team, Carmel Swim Club, Carmel High School, SwimMAC, T2 Aquatics, and University of Pittsburgh (his alma mater).

Related resources

The following links were referenced in the podcast or provide some additional reading material on the topic:

Key quotes and topics

  • 0:00 – Introduction.
  • 1:30 – Adapting single sessions to multiple sessions.
  • 5:00 – Special strength and specificity in athletic development.
  • 8:00 – Rethinking training camps: “We got to the end of the week and it wasn’t like, we had to throw a whole workout away.” “Training camps should not be about digging yourself a big hole and getting tired. A lot of what makes a camp work is between the sessions: more time for education, bonding, analysis, and rest.”
  • 11:00 – VHQ Very High Quality: “I’ve misinterpreted the idea of using smaller sessions. You’re not just trying to take what would be a normal session and cram that much work into the 20 minute session. It’s about executing similar volumes with higher quality, rather than similar volumes in shorter time.” “As Wolfgang Ritzdorf said, intensity is a percentage of a 100% and quality is a percentage of perfect.”
  • 17:00 – Five in five.
  • 20:45 – How much warmup do you need?
  • 29:30 – Structuring camps and final thoughts.

Complete transcript

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