Friday, January 16, 2009

Long-Distance Olympian Speed

We were fortunate to witness a great pool workout between the Korean Olympic 400-meter gold medalist Park Tae Hwan and the Tunisian Olympic 1500-meter gold medalist Oussama Mellouli at USC.

Although we have talked about pool training programs of elite open water swimmers, from Maarten van der Weijden to Mark Warkentin, Park and Mellouli, who does open water events like the RCP Tiburon Mile, were really pushing each other in a long-distance workout.

Under the direction of Trojan Swim Club coach Dave Salo, Park and Mellouli did a long series of 75-yard sprints on 45 seconds followed by a set of fast 100’s and 200’s. The speed that they were swimming was incredible: between 39-42 seconds on the 75-yard swims and finishing with a 51 seconds on the final 100.

Whether it is in the pool or open water, observing great athletes performing incredible long-distance feats is something to behold.

Photo of Park by Adam Pretty of Getty Images.

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