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Five Benefits of Coaching with Real-Time Data for Swimming

by Scott Dickens, Two-Time Olympic Swimmer


5 Benefits of Coaching with Real-Time Data for Swimming

Triathletes are accustomed to using data while they run and bike; through their watches, power meters, bike trainers, and bike computers. This enables them to make adjustments to their training in real-time based on how they feel on a given day or session. But, when it comes to swimming, many athletes still train without real-time data. Why?

In this article, we cover the top 5 benefits coaches see when their athletes use real-time data in the pool and open water. 


1. Getting feedback when you need it most 

Most swimmers rely on post-interval and workout swim data to understand their pace and performance. While this is helpful, it begs the question of why not train the same way as you do for running and biking. Using a watch in the pool is a great way to measure performance and capture swim data, but it’s difficult (some might say impossible) to see your watch while you’re swimming. When you only rely on feedback after you’re done an interval or swim training session, it’s already too late. Olav Aleksander Bu, Olympic Coach of Triathlete World Champions Kristian Blummenfelt and Gustav Iden, shares, “We need to provide our athletes with feedback as they are swimming. I want my athletes to see, while they are swimming, how efficient they are in the water.”

2. Eliminate guesswork 

When triathletes train for running and biking, they’re continuously getting real-time feedback to understand how efficient they are. In swimming, seeing your real-time data while training was such an untapped resource. Swimming is the hardest leg for most triathletes because it is often not a sport they grew up doing. Seeing your real-time swim feedback improves your efficiency and consistency, which ultimately elevates your performance and pace.


3. Maximize training performance 

When a triathlete is training for the run and bike legs, it is much easier to know how they're doing in real-time. Seeing their data in the moment enables them to better follow the training protocol prescribed by their coach or training plan. It would be much harder for a triathlete to gauge a run outside if they didn’t have their watch on. Swimming is the same; if you don’t know how you’re doing within an interval, there’s a high degree of variability and inconsistency in your pace, stroke rate, effort, and heart rate. All of which can have a major impact on overall performance. 


4. Increase awareness of strengths and opportunities 

Data provides a frame of reference and allows you to be more intentional while training. When you learn more about how you train, it helps identify areas of opportunity and improves the quality and consistency of your training. Seeing key metrics in the moment (like pace, splits, stroke rate, stroke count, and distance per stroke), a swimmer can make correlations and connections to find their optimal level of performance. Coaches also appreciate the level of engagement, enjoyment, and accountability FORM provides for their athletes.


5. Knowing vs feel 

Making connections between real-time metrics and how you feel in the water is a huge opportunity for triathletes. Everyone’s goal is to find the optimal stroke-to-pace ratio for a given level of effort in order to become more efficient and consistent. Achieving this makes swimming easier; by using less energy through increased efficiency. If a triathlete is able to conserve more energy while swimming, they’ll have more energy to finish their race strong. You can’t win the race by only winning the swim, but you can lose the race with your swim. 



The FORM Advantage 

So how do you get real-time data while swimming? FORM Smart Swim Goggles with a built-in, heads-up display, which allows you to identify areas for opportunity while you swim vs. when you are finished swimming. 


FORM takes the guesswork out of training by providing real-time data, workouts, and training plans—all at a glance in your goggles. Swimmers know how they’re performing from interval-to-interval and workout-to-workout; making their training more efficient and consistent. 


About FORM


FORM is a swim platform powered by smart goggles; featuring a display that floats right in front of you. It’s the first swim training tool that not only displays your performance data in real-time, but also guides you through a workout. Whether you’re a fitness swimmer or an elite triathlete, FORM will make your swim training more efficient, effective, and engaging.


If you are interested in taking your swimming to new levels with FORM, click on the link below.


Buy Now

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