The pool was warm, but the rain continued as the kids did a wide variety of drills to help them maintain a better body position, better head position and kick.
In the first half of the practice, the kids did several kicking and eggbeater drills.
Vertical kicking drills help the kids learn how to (1) kick quickly, (2) kick with a lower amplitude, (3) point their feet and (4) maintain a straight (good) body position.
The 360° eggbeater spins - both to their strong side and their weak side - were meant to help them build a wider "base" when they eggbeater. Many of them point their toes and kick downwards when doing eggbeater - their feet should be alternating and creating circles with the soles of their feet. Here are two Polometrics videos of two USA Water Polo junior national team players who get up high and quickly in the water:
In the second half of practice, the kids were asked to streamline off the water and kick underwater across the pool. This drill will be repeated throughout the sessions in order for the kids to learn to swim with a straight back and their head aligned properly with their torso.
The kids finished practice with dozens of sprints across the pool, including "deck-up" drills where they were asked to sprint across the pool and then pull themselves quickly out of the pool using only their hands and arms. This is a simple strength-building exercise that leads to elevated heart rates, allowing them to also build an aerobic base. Instead of swimming long-distance sets (e.g., 10 x 200 freestyles), we will do many more of these quick sets where they practice swimming fast.
In order to swim fast and move fast in the game of water polo, one must practice swimming fast and moving fast ... day-in and day-out ... so come game time, they move quickly and efficiently without a second thought.
The kids should bring their fins to practice if possible.
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