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Triathlon Training: How to Improve Your Freestyle Swim Part 2

It’s “dreamin’ season’ and many triathletes (and masters swimmers) are planning  their training strategies to strengthen their swimming weakness while improving stroke technique.  Many also need to find a smooth transition from outdoor training to indoor. The upcoming winter months can prove to be difficult just to get to a pool and open water is not an option in most places, like here in Vermont!  

Over the past 25 years, thousands of athletes have come to rely on Vasa Swim Trainers and Vasa Swim Ergs to maintain consistent, high quality swim training to supplement or even substitute pool time.  While this will increase your stroke power & stamina, athletes can also improve their swimming technique to swim faster.   In our “Better Freestyle for Triathletes Swimming Technique” training video series, you will learn the essential techniques, drills and workouts to develop an efficient, powerful Freestyle swim for triathlon open water swims of any distance.


This instructional video, featuring Level 4 ASCA and multisport Coach Eric Neilsen, demonstrates some of the step by step progressions needed to obtain proper swim stroke mechanics. These simple focus points can be included in warm up, part of a main set or cool down. By breaking the stroke down into components, it helps you identify not only your strengths, but your weaknesses. Is my entry to wide, too narrow? Am I setting a good catch or dropping my elbow? Is my recovery relaxed? Sometimes just focusing on one of these can help reset your swimming stroke and help you find balance in the water. Repetition through deliberate practice swimming on the Vasa Swim Erg and in the water will help you maximize your training time.

Swim technique guru and world champion masters swimmer Karlyn Pipes demonstrates how to achieve the most efficient high elbow catch freestyle technique.  She also shows what not to do and how strength diminishes when the elbows are straightened or hands are pointed outward or inward. The position most likely to cause injury is when the hands get ahead of the elbow, whereby too much internal rotation can be very damaging to the shoulder.

In this Freestyle swimming technique training video, Karlyn Pipes demonstrates the essential techniques needed for developing an efficient, powerful Freestyle swim with the Vasa Swim Ergometer swim training system.

Coach Tim Crowley of TC2 Coaching,  explains how to use the data obtained from the Vasa Swim Erg Power Meter to improve your swim training, technique, testing and swim coaching. The Vasa Swim Erg’s Power Meter provides objective feedback that cannot be obtained while swimming in a pool or open water. It measures the Left / Right arm power balance, average workout power (watts), stroke rate, time, distance, pace, and stroke length. This data can be transmitted using the ANT+ technology, and then recorded and analyzed to diagnose weaknesses and make corrections in technique and training.

The Vasa Swim Ergometer is ideal for indoor triathlon swim-to-bike brick workouts and for practicing triathlon transitions. Triathletes are often time-crunched, restricted by schedule, darkness, and foul weather. It’s a challenge to do actual swim-to-bike bricks from the pool or open water, especially with those conditions. Swim training with the Vasa Swim Erg solves these problems while also delivering high quality Freestyle swim endurance, power, and improved stroke technique.

Coach Tim Crowley explains and demonstrates simple and effective swim-specific core stabilization exercises that can be integrated into workouts using the Vasa Swim Erg or Vasa Trainer. These key conditioning exercises improve body posture & core stability while also building fatigue resistance & durability for sustained powerful distance swimming.

Since 1988, Vasa has produced premium quality exercise training equipment for sports, fitness and rehabilitation. For decades, World Champion Professionals, Olympians, and amateur swimmers, swim coaches, triathletes, triathlon coaches, Physical Therapists, doctors and conditioning coaches worldwide have selected the Vasa Trainer and Vasa Ergometer to dramatically improve performance for swimmers, Ironman triathletes, surfers, SUP paddlers, kayakers, nordic skiers, and those seeking total-body fitness.

We hope you enjoyed our video playlist series. If you would like to see our other training resource videos, please visit our Vasa YouTube Channel.