The Word on the Deck
Photo Courtesy: Tim Binning | theswimpictures.com
So you’re a week out of your big meet. Your teammates around you are bouncing off the walls talking about how “fresh” they feel. You smile and nod, too scared to let on the secret you are holding in: you feel horrible!
First thing to do is to take a deep breath; this is one of the most common things you will experience in your swimming career – the infamous “Taper Funk” or “Taper Blues.” Odds are, some of your friends who are talking about how good they feel, might even be hiding some insecurities about their taper as well. It is all going to be okay. Here are some helpful things to apply when that doubt starts to creep up on you…
If you’ve ever been around the sport of swimming, you know the dedication and commitment it requires. Both of which are incredible life lessons. And this is one of the best things about participating in sports; you will learn many great things along the way that are far more important that your techniques and drills. All of the time and commitments breed more than just medals and ribbons, it teaches valuable life lessons. But at the same time, swimming certainly doesn’t teach you these 3 things:
1. Swimming will not teach you how to take short cuts.
It’s the part of the season that everyone waits all year for. Where your body and mind constantly goes back and forth between feeling amazing one week, and not so hot the next…
It’s taper time.
Tapering in swimming means that you have reached a point at the end of your season, after countless hours of intense swim practices, where you finally get to begin to rest and recover. The idea behind tapering is that it allows your body to recover from being broken down all season long so that it will be at 100% when it is time to race at your big meet. Throughout a career, swimmers will get to witness it all. And that’s what creates this roller coaster of a relationship with the lovely sport of swimming! There will always be those seasons where you don’t hit your fullest potential and others where you couldn’t have hit your taper more perfectly.
Here are 5 Tips to Hit the Perfect Taper:
Swimmers are a rare breed. They have the willpower to wake up before the sun rises to jump into a cold pool, and still conquer a day filled with school, work, and probably another round of practice. You’ve probably been around a swimmer (or smelled one), even if you didn’t realize it. How can you identify a swimmer if you aren’t sure? Here are 10 ways that you can easily spot a swimmer:
This is usually a good indicator that you’re in the presence of a swimmer. In fact, if you’re with a female, odds are her hair is in something called a “swimmer bun” (the original, though less-fashionable, version of a “top-knot”).