1. Maintain a streamlined position in the water, with high hips, minimal bending of the knees while kicking and no energy-wasting side to side movement.
2. Ensure you have good stroke mechanics: arms should not cross the centre line, the elbows are high throughout the stroke and the recovery phase is relaxed.
3. Master the ‘catch’ at the front end of each stroke and apply power backwards throughout. It may require a lot of practice but the results will be worth it.
4. You will need to develop an effective kick through improving ankle flexibility and hip strength, areas often neglected by triathletes in their training.
5. Practise increasing your arm turnover rate while maintaining good technique. You will never bully your way through water but don’t over-glide, either.
6. Use the ramp test to determine your optimum ‘stokes per minute’. A friend will
do the recording, so you just concentrate on swimming.