Troup, J. P. (Ed.). (1990). Selection of effective training categories. In International Center For Aquatic Research annual: Studies by the International Center for Aquatic Research 1989-90. Colorado Springs, CO: United States Swimming Press.

The relationship between speed increases and energy requirements is linear. Four levels of training effects are described:

  1. Endurance one is the level where lactate is produced and removed at an equal rate (AT). This is the minimum speed for endurance development.
  2. Endurance two is the level where VO2max is attained, that is, the maximum pace at which endurance can be developed.
  3. Anaerobic one occurs at the speed which produces lactic acid and accommodates race-specific pace. This is also known as lactate tolerance training.
  4. Anaerobic two occurs at race-specific speed, develops the highest amount of lactate, and trains maximum power (a 100% effort).

The use of an individual's swimming economy profile (O2 uptake as the measure of energy cost related to swimming speed) allows these values to be determined. Their use is for determining what sort of training is needed to produce the capacity change in the proportion required for an event.

Among proficient athletes, the use of oxygen is the major factor in a swimmer's profile for determining success. The swimming economy test provides information on that ability. The test also shows improvements in training and mechanics. Once physical capacities are trained they cannot improve. If a leveling-off occurs and mechanical changes are introduced, then a change in the economy curve should result from being more or less efficient.

The relationship between endurance capacity and performance is relatively low (r = .40), however, economy with performance is much greater (r = .88).

Swimming economy is particular with each stroke because each has specific requirements. Other swimming activities also vary in economy. Pulling with a pull buoy costs less energy than free swimming at submaximal paces. Because of that: i) pulling must be done at slightly faster paces for pace training, and ii) for maximum endurance training it should be done at slower paces.

Long course and short course swimming are very different, short being easier. Short course training can be made to approximate long course training by adding 15% to training distances.

Implication. For all swimmers, programming of training for each stroke should be considered from the viewpoint of each being a different event. The parameters for one are not appropriate for another. (Many interesting tables and graphs are supplied).

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