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Our set of the week features a 300-yard (or meter) mini set that works great as part of a taper. It helps you focus on several key aspects of a good race: achieving easy speed; getting a solid, streamlined pushoff; maintaining speed through the breakout; being aware that lengthening your stroke can be way more effective than churning your stroke.

For the 25s, use a sendoff/turnaround that gives at least a 1:1 work/rest ratio...up to a 1:2 work/rest ratio. Barbara's masters swimmers use :40 during the season and :45 during taper for SCY. For SCM, use :45 or :50.

Do the same stroke throughout.

4 X 25; count strokes per length
#1: Use a nice long stroke, but make it feel like swimming, not drilling
#2: Add 1 stroke
#3: Add another stroke
#4: Add another stroke and be sure to get your time

100 easy recovery

4 X 25
#1: Swim at your highest stroke count from above and be sure to get your time. This is your TARGET TIME.
#2: Take off 1 stroke, but hold your target time
#3: Take off another stroke and hold your time
#4: Take off another stroke and hold your time