What you need to know about your Resistance Kit:
- How to decide what size Power Bags to get
- How to decide what size Chute to get
- How to train with all your Resistance Kit
How to decide what size Power Bags to get
- PB12 – Advanced 7-8 year olds, most 9-10 year olds
- PB18 – Advanced 9-10 year olds, most 11-12 year olds
- PB25 – Advanced 11-12, best starter size for EVERYONE over 13
- PB40 – Advanced 15+ year olds with 3+ years of experience
- PB50 – 15-18 can use for PULL sets, College only should use for kick
- PB70 – EXTREME size, Pro and Advanced college swimmers only!!
How to decide what size Chute to get
Bigger is not always better. It is important to account for the laws of water dynamics when you think about a parachute. A chute like our ‘1swimchute’ has mesh in the center and thus water is being pushed in and out at the same time. As a porous swim chute the 1swimchute maintains a somewhat linear relationship between forward speed and resistance. However, normal swim parachutes do not have such a direct relationship. Think of them as a bucket that fills up with water… once full, the new water just spills evenly over the sides. A mesh chute stays straighter but normal solid chutes will swing (or ‘rock’) back and forth and constantly ‘spill’ even more water out the sides.
The problem is that many teams assume that if they use 8” chutes for their 11-12 year olds, then the 13-14 group needs 10” chutes, and 15-16 need 12” and therefore their 17-18 year olds need the 16” chutes. However, the math doesn’t add up for such logic. The surface area of the 8” chute (8×8) = 64 square inches. But the 10” chute is 100 sq inches. So unless the 13 year old is nearly 2x stronger than the 11 year old, you are exponentially hurting your older swimmers with this plan.
There is generically 2 ways to use a parachute:
Speed development. Much like ‘bucket towers’, power towers, or long stretch cords, parachutes can be ideal to train/build the power needed to swim at maximum speeds. And just like adding water to buckets or getting a thicker stretch cord is needed to match the power potential of each swimmer, larger size parachutes are also important. However, the goal here is SPEED, so if a swimmer is not going FAST, then you have loaded too much on them. So just because they CAN pull a larger parachute, does not mean they SHOULD.
Aerobic development. Alternatively some programs like to use parachutes to add load to long aerobic sets. In this case, going too large can also be a negative to the swimmer’s development. Many programs that use parachute tend to evolve into aerobic programs simply because they started out with over-sized chutes and could never use them for race pace training in the first place.
How to train with your Resistance Kit
This is something that sometimes, as a coach, you need fresh ideas and somewhere to start. In the following blog, we explore the different types of resistance and what they are used for. This will help you decide what resistance would work best for you and your swim group. Read Blog Here
For more ideas on how to use the equipment in your practices, here is a free set idea sheet