Amazon.com: Customer Reviews: Swim Speed Workouts for Swimmers and Triathletes: The Breakout Plan for Your Fastest Freestyle (Swim Speed Series)
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on March 8, 2013
I have just finished the first six weeks of the workouts and they are really making a difference to my swimming. Each workout has a purpose and focuses on proper form, something the solo swimmer forgets to do one their own. I was a strong swimmer to begin with, but these workouts are taking me to a new level. Highly motivating and instructive (especially when also watching the online vidoes). Something every serious swimmer and triathlete should try.
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on October 31, 2013
I am a retired coach and was asked by my daughter to put together some training programs as she was competing in an 1.9 km open water swim. I started browsing the web and found these fully water proof training cards and thought Id try them a long with another set.

My daughter and I both love these cards and don't use the other ones at all. I hurt my back and hadn't been swimming for a month and couldn't believe the improvement in my daughters speed after only 4 x weeks!!!

Other people where we train have been questioning her technique and asking her her secret.

Well worth the purchase and if you are like me (I'm 49) and just want to keep fit it takes the boredom out of just doing lap after lap up and down a pool.
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on February 24, 2014
I learned to swim freestyle two years ago when I joined a triathlon team. I was coached by a fantastic former collegiate swimmer/ certified triathlon coach. There I learned the fundamentals of freestyle swimming. Two years have passed and I no longer swim my workouts with my team. For months, I've met a friend at the pool twice a week and we swam random pool workouts that we picked up here and there. However, we wanted something a little more systematic. So I picked up Swim Speed Workouts.

It is incredible how fast my friend and I have improved using these workouts. The drills included in the workouts have changed our strokes for the better, especially the one arm drills. We noticed right away how weak our left arms were the first time we did this drill. Within two weeks we see a much stronger and coordinated left arm pull. We also notice with the breath work that we are able to swim the length of the pool with no breathing easily. This is something we could never do before.

These workouts seem like lots of little drills and swim sets and yet the payoff we've seen in our strength and speed have been amazing. And after we are done swimming, we are wiped out. We are definitely making the most of our time in the pool. Thanks Coach Sheila.
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on May 5, 2013
Bought Swim Speed Secrets and then was fortunate enough to be selected as part of the test group for Swim Speed Workouts. I had hit a wall in swim progress in terms of time. No matter what I tried, my times stayed the same. This program changed all that. After only a few weeks I was hitting my old max times with an easier effort. Then when I did some all-outs I hit times I never thought I'd be able to achieve. Be warned, when doing this program others may offer advice. If they are not coming from the same school of though, thank them and stick with this program. It really is great. Bottom line, we all want to go faster. This will make you a faster swimmer. Period!
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on July 30, 2015
Haven't had a chance to actually swim these workouts yet, but I've tried the tubing.
I've looked through all these cards. The Tool kit and drills offer helpful advice on improving your stroke and kick.
These cards look a little difficult for a beginning swimmer, but workouts are easily adjusted. It's a shame that the workouts don't build up on distance. The first workout expects a 2150 or 2650 meter workout. Not an easy feat for someone starting out. These cards would have had more potential if they started out easier and built up, like 1000-1200 a day the first week, 1400 the next, etc. instead of expecting over a mile the first day. Not everyone is an Olympian.
These cards are difficult to me, but I'm sure that the pay off will be great for anybody who commits to all 16 weeks of workouts.
I was expecting laminated cards, but these are coated paper that easily scratched. I was doubtful in the beginning, but tested it; they are waterproof.

Overall
Good workouts to improve your freestyle.
Don't expect it to be easy; Get in shape first.
You're expected to swim over 1.5 miles the first day and 2.5 miles by the 3rd.
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on March 30, 2014
I am an amateur swimming with no formal training and few years of experience via self-training (thank you Internet videos). This workout program is great. It provides structure to my workouts and is challenging for someone not used to swimming over 2500 yards during each session. The plan includes various sets of cards and a short book, all of which are waterproof and are included in a plastic holder that drains water from the bottom (i.e., all are suitable for the pool deck). The book provides a great overview of the plan (highlights from the author's paperback book). There are cards describing the basic terminology she uses in the plan (the Tool Kit), cards describing the drills in the plan (the Drills), cards for the 16 weeks of workouts - 3 workouts per week (the Workouts), and cards for the tubing discussions (the Tubing). I was a little skeptical about the waterproofing of the workout cards, but they are waterproof. I take them as-is to the pool each time and no issues. The workouts themselves are great since they vary in distance and drills. Each workout is broken down into a warm-up, drill/main set, a bonus set, a warm-down, and the tubing exercises. The author does a good job breaking up the monotony of swimming laps with the variety. She includes an overall purpose of the workout, the suggested intervals for each drill, rest times, percentage of effort, and an occasional short motivation statement. The "she-ra" sessions at the end of the week (these are what she calls the most challenging workouts of each week) are around 4000 yards and give you a great sense of accomplishment once you're done. I would highly recommend this plan. My opinion is that this plan is well worth the $20 I paid. Best of luck.
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on June 4, 2013
This workout set is amazing! Paired with Sheila's book "Swim Speed Secrets for Swimmers and Triathletes," the only way you can not improve your swimming is by not implementing the theories presented. I wish I had bough it sooner!
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My master's swim program just ended for the summer and I was looking for ways to keep going without paying to continue at other pools. This is a great alternative! I think I'm at the point where I want to swim alone and on my own for awhile working on technique, and this program offers that. I agree with other reviewers that it's not the best "beginner" program. When I was a true beginner, which was only a year and half ago, I could figure out how to read a workout sheet 10 x 25 pull with buoy, catchup, kick, whhhhaaaatttt????!! A beginner may feel intimidated with this book. If you sit through it, I'm sure there are ways a beginner could figure it all out because the drills are well detailed, PLUS there are videos you can watch! So don't be discouraged from buying this set if you are a true beginner, just know it's okay to be confused, we've all been there.

I like the program lay out and will be working through this full set doing the two times a week workout (maybe three). What I didn't like are the cards. When my four year old pulled them out of the box and ALMOST got them all mixed up, I realized I have a potential problem. You could put them back in order, but it would take time. SO, I bound mine!

One thing is that each workout includes time to tube. I recommend this set: AmazonBasics Resistance Band Set with 5 Bands, Foam Handles, Door Anchor, Ankle Straps, and Carrying Case. I like using the resistance bands, but I'll be the first to admit, I'm not going to do this at the pool, for so many reasons I won't mention, all related to my own insecurities, but I will gladly do them at home :) Plus, I need time to work that part of my workout out since I've never done it for swimming before.

Overall this is a GREAT set, and I can see now why it has so many five star reviews.
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on August 26, 2015
Love this set of waterproof card workouts! We started using these this year (after 6 years of tri training) and found the workouts are well thought out and progress in a logical fashion. The distance of the workouts in about 2100 yds to somewhere around 2700 yds (plus a handful of longer ones.) It's easy to scale the distance up or down as needed. Her drill workouts are really good and helped me improve my form & speed. I plan to work through these again and again. I've stopped using my "Workouts in a Binder for Swimmers, Triathletes, and Coaches" because these workouts seem to do a lot more for me and the distance for the workout is more reasonable.
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on July 1, 2013
Shelia Taormina's insight into the swim stroke brings to the common swimmer what had always been reserved for the talented athletes that started swimming in elementary school. But now she has made it so people like me who didn't begin swimming until age 50 can understand, in real terms, what is happening during the swim stroke. She discovered what almost no one knows, including the very good swimmers, and that is how to develop shoulder rotation. Every lesson or swim coach I have ever had has told me to reach reach reach, but that is not what the good swimmer do, it's rotate rotate rotate! The Drills, tubing instructions and workout and of course the swim workouts are fabulous. They are on small easy to read waterproof sheets that you can take to the pool with you. If you want to improve your swimming, you must get this package now! I met Sheila at the expo before Tri Rock Austin two years ago and can tell you she is as down to earth and talented in person as this book shows she is. If you don't purchase the Swim Speed Workouts, you will be left on the shore.
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