>I have a seven year old kid and he swims
>approximately three or four times a week 3500 -
Is this total meters per week, or total per workout? I hope it's not
total per workout, that seven year old would be exhausted!
>He has the same attitude as your kid.
>One of the advantages of working with kids is that
>you cannot overtrain them (physically).
Where did you get this idea? Do you understand what the definition of
physical overtraining is? If so, please explain to me how a child
cannot be physically and physiologically overtrained. It has been my
experience (and covered in my coursework, FWIW), that anyone can be
overtrained if the training program is not properly designed with
adequate loading and unloading periods taking place. Granted,
children do have differing adaptive capabilities based on their
physical development. However, to generalize that kids cannot be
overtrained is not only inaccurate, but dangerous to the health of
these young athletes.
> A child stops training hard when it is in pain...
Maybe in some cases, but not in others. I have coached young athletes
who would compete hurt at a very young age. I have observed two
extremes...the young athlete who does not recognize that they are hurt
or in pain, and the young athlete who wants to get out because they
feel the slightest tinge of fatigue setting in.
>BUT you can overtrain him (mentally): so keep it
>funny for the kid. Maybe he won't make the same
>progress in the first upcoming years but he will
>keep on swimming until he is at the age where real
>champions are made.
Agreed. The emphasis at a young age should be on fun, and if keeping
it that way for a significant period of time. Focus on improving the
individual, and you can't go wrong. Ribbons, medals, etc, will all
come with time, but if you don't enjoy it and focus on personal
improvement, the athlete will be long gone before you can make them
into a champion.
However, for a six year old going sub-40s for 50 free (if this is
possible, it seems somewhat unlikely, although I suppose it could
happen), the trick will be holding his interest in an activity for
which he may find to be boring because he dominates it so.
Sean Hardiman - Victoria, BC, Canada
4th Year Kinesiology - University of Victoria