Games and Gimmicks
From James Reiser, Columbia, SC
To encourage quality pacing in our aerobic training, I came up with this game to make the sometimes-monotonous interval work a little more interesting and meaningful. The game is actually a form of "pop quiz." Each practice that we do an anaerobic threshold set, we randomly draw two swimmers names from a hat. The swimmers do not find out whose name is drawn until the end of set is over. During the set, we secretly record the pace of every swim and the rest interval. At the end of the set, the coaches reveal who was selected and his/her results are announced (i.e., "The first swimmer drawn was Don Bunch. Heres what he did: Pace 1:15, R.I., :10; 1:14, :11; 1:15, :10; 1:16, :09; 1:14, :11, etc. The other swimmer drawn Steven Luckie. Heres what he did: ""). If the set is trained properly and the swimmers selected ace the quiz, the squad earns a point. These points will go toward the incentive/rewards system below. In addition, every athlete on the squad gives the "hero of the day" a high five. If the swimmer is unsuccessful, each swimmer in the squad gives them a handshake and word of encouragement. Once the squad accumulates the goals below, the squad is rewarded with a little fun on that Friday!
The research in education on testing demonstrates that when you hold one accountable for their actions, they tend to perform better and apply themselves more effectively. The game, "Pop Swim A quiz," not only encourages better efforts by holding the athletes accountable for their actions, but it also teaches the value of loyalty and teamwork.
6 pts. Coach Reiser does 1.5 with clothes on at the conclusion of Friday practice.
9 pts. Mr. Starin and Mr. Luckie do cannon balls off high dive with clothes that Friday.
12 pts. Team of parents play water polo against travel squad on Friday.
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