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Swim Smooth

Author: Swim Smooth

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Welcome to Swim Smooth, where amazing things happen. In the show we aim to bring our highly popular blog to life with tips, tricks and techniques to help you maximise your swimming efficiency and enjoyment in the water. The show's hosts, Adam Young and Paul Newsome, will have interviews with a wide-range of athletes from the very top of the sport to the everyday heroes that espouse what the Swim Smooth philosophy is all about. Thanks for listening!
13 Episodes
Episode 13 - the lengths we go to in training the world's most passionate Swim Smooth Coaches
Today we sit down with 4 of our soon-to-be Swim Smooth Certified Coaches at the end of their 2 week certification course here in sunny Perth and hear all about the training they've received to become one of our 52 international coaches. If you're a coach thinking of taking your swim coaching further, or are a swimmer who's pondered exactly what level of service you're likely to receive with your local Swim Smooth Coach, then this podcast will be very enlightening indeed. And if neither of these scenarios is you, and you're just interested in what values a small business has when it comes to ensuring quality and sustainability for the long-game, well then this might just float your boat too!The training is long and arduous - featuring many 16 hour days all starting with a 4am wake-up call - but the results have been super transformative. We discuss in fine detail what it takes to reach this highest level of premium coaching service that we offer, and don't hide away from the parts each coach found hard (and why) and equally where they felt they excelled. We commence the  podcast with a frank discussion with our coach's mentor, Emma Brunning of Active Blu, who tutors for British Triathlon and the International Triathlon Union literally all over the planet. Emma has a strong passion for ensuring that coaches are able to manage their energy output for a sustainable coaching career and her insights and tutelage alongside Adam Young is what really sets this course apart.We discuss exactly why we hold this final stage of certification only in Perth (despite it's isolation and expense to get to) and why we insist that even the most experienced of coaches who are invited to sit the certification process must complete all stages to ensure a consistency of delivery of our methods in the way they have always been intended. To coin a well versed phrase, "there are no short-cuts". This limits the speed of growth of our coaching program of course, and whilst we fully acknowledge that the easiest way to make a quick buck would be to invite every coach who's ever expressed an interest in our program and certify them all within 4-5 days (especially given the sheer volume of interest), this wouldn't be true to our values as a program, nor as people.We then speak with:Chris Bagg from Portland, OR, USA - a former professional Ironman athlete turned triathlon coach and Head Swim Coach on campus at Nike World HQ where we will be next running our 3-day Coach Education CourseMandi Kowal from Iowa City, Iowa, USA - the former head coach of the University of Iowa's rowing team who turned her back on the sport to follow a passion for triathlon and to regain balance in her lifePam Nichol from Irvine, CA, USA - a passionate triathlon coach from Newport Beach who gave up the corporate life in 2012 to pursue her love for swim coaching, particularly for the over 40s (and often 60s, 70s and 80s!)Toni Saunders from Brentwood, Essex, UK - a very successful triathlete in her own right who goes by the nickname "The Fish" and whom is an experienced swim coach wanting to transform her coaching with more advanced level video analysis and stroke correction and assimilation of the Swim Smooth methodology in her developing programsWe hope you love listening to our host of passionate coaches as we chew the swim coaching fat with them. To learn more about the full process and to sign up for the coaches network, please visit:!Paul, Adam and Emma
Episode 12 - Dave Scott, 6-time Hawaii Ironman World Champion
Is there anyone more synonymous with the sport of triathlon, the Ironman distance, and performance at the very highest level than Dave Scott? If he were British, he'd be a "Sir" for fact, I think we should simply refer to him as Sir Dave Scott, what do you think? Maybe even "Lord"?Winner of a record six Hawaii Ironman World Championship titles between 1980 and 1987 and still to this date some 30 years after his epic "Ironwar" with fellow six time winner, Mark Allen, one of the fastest ever runners off the bike, Dave Scott is simply "The Man" when it comes to Ironman. In fact, even though 2018 was arguably the fastest year on record (weather-wise) in Kona's 40th outing, if Dave put his 2nd place time in 1989 (8:10:13) up against last year's winners, he'd still have finished 9th place, beating the now bike course record holder Cameron Wurf's 2018 time by some 18 seconds. Incredible! 30 years later and he's still a legend of the sport. Think about the times that athletes in other sports were doing 30 years ago...these times and performances have been totally obliterated into the past through the enhancement of sport through technology. Given how technology driven triathlon is and how far it's come in 30 years, this is a real testament to where Dave Scott sits in the history books, being the first athlete ever to be inducted into the Ironman Hall of Fame in 1983. OK, we think you get the idea - he's a god to many of us!Paul and Adam first met up with Dave in 2013 in Boulder, CO as they took a bromance car trip from the east to west coast of the USA after Paul won the prestigious Manhattan Island Marathon Swim. Dave openly welcomed Paul and Adam into his squad and during coffee afterwards, both agreed it felt like they'd known Dave forever. In fact, this is what you always hear about the great man - despite his obvious standing in the sport, Dave always seems to have time for you, recalling important individual features about you and simply taking an interest in what you do. It's a very commendable quality above and beyond all the sporting accolades.So now, sit back, relax and enjoy hearing from one of the very best ever in this open, honest and candid discussion with The Man!
Episode 11 - Matt Koorey, Beyond Your Boundaries
Today we speak with Coach Matt Koorey about all things swim and triathlon coaching, starting with a deep-dive into the anxieties and phobias many of us have around swimming in the open water but are often too embarrassed to admit to and talk about.Recorded on Australia Day, this is the perfect discussion with the perfect Australian coach who was inspired by his own father, John Koorey - the first Australian male to swim across the English Channel in 1969 in a brilliant time of 10h32m - to follow his passion for sport. And let me tell you, there is no one more passionate about this sport of triathlon than Matt (please excuse the odd expletive - it's the passion bubbling to the surface!).Matt has completed both the 3-day Swim Smooth Coach Education Course (2013) and also spent 2 weeks in Perth with Head Coach, Paul Newsome (2015) completing our Certified Coaches program. Whilst not currently operating a swim squad or 1-2-1 sessions, Matt's philosophies and experience very much echo Paul's and the rest of the Swim Smooth coaching team, and to that end, they are very good mates.Matt spent several years being mentored by coach Brett Sutton (arguably the most decorated coach in triathlon history with athletes such as Chrissie Wellington, Nicola Spirig and Daniela Ryf to his coaching credentials). Matt's first for knowledge and improving himself as a coach, athlete, Dad and husband come pouring out of this interview, so we really hope you enjoy!From Matt's website:"Matt Koorey has thirty-five years’ experience as an elite level triathlete. Nineteen years as a professional triathlon coach. Dozens of IRONMAN 70.3 and IRONMAN age group victories to his name. Coach to pro triathlete’s Michael Fox (8h11m IRONMAN) and Alex Polizzi, plus multiple age-group Kona qualifiers.Triathlon isn’t just a sport for Matt. Triathlon coaching isn’t just a job. This is what he was born to do. He’s more passionate about this sport than anyone else on the planet. Working with Matt Koorey isn’t a quick fix, it’s about consistency and commitment for long-term gain.It won’t be easy. He demands focus. He demands excellence. There is no hand-holding. No sugar coating. He tells you what you need to hear because he is as invested in your success as you are. While you don’t need to be a rock-star triathlete with extensive experience, you do need to be dedicated, with a winner mindset, driven to achieve your new personal benchmarks.Matt Koorey’s triathlon coaching programs aren’t open to just anyone. Places are exceptionally limited and he takes on only those who are 100% committed to his philosophy and 100% committed to achieving success. If you’re ready to take your triathlon and/or IRONMAN training to the next level – and experience world class coaching – Matt Koorey is the secret weapon you’ve been looking for."We couldn't agree more!Find out more about Matt at 
Episode 10 - Simon Lessing, 5-time World Triathlon Champion and total legend of the sport of TRI!
This raw, lengthy (2h45m!) and in-depth interview with Simon Lessing, 5-time ITU World Triathlon Champion - and Head Coach, Paul Newsome's former training partner - is over 18 years in the making and over a decade since he gave his last audio interview, so be ready for something really special as we dig into the following areas:Simon's background growing up in Apartheid South Africa - what he witnessed and experienced and how this shaped his early yearsHis coaching role model, David McCarney, and his first experiences with swimming one of the world's most prestigious open water swims (the Midmar Mile) at the tender age of 9yrs old and how his stroke technique (which he also terms "Swinger" interestingly enough) really suited him well for open water swimming. We discuss the importance and relevance of this vs the commonly held view that  many people are blinded by aesthetics when it comes to understanding what truly makes someone economical in the great outdoorsMoving to Europe to race the prestigious French Grand Prix series but the reality and brutality of doing this on zero funds with very little support which Simon attributes positively to his approach to his "do or die" attitude to having to commit and do everything possible to make the best of his talents, hard work and opportunitiesA run-down of his 5 ITU World Triathlon titles starting in 1992, through 1995 (x2 - Standard and Long Course), 1996 and 1998. Simon also finished 2nd (and denied a 6th title) in a sprint with the Kazakhstan athlete, Dmitry Gaag, who was later banned for the use of EPOArriving in the UK and how he wasn't universally accepted as being "British" especially up against his great rival, Spencer Smith, who between the two of them, won 8 world titles throughout the 1990s. Simon's mother is British and he is always proud to claim that he never raced for any other country, including his birth country of South Africa. It's easy to look at the 2009 to 2016 period in British triathlon history with the dominance of the Brownlee Brothers and say "that's when Britain really took off in triathlon!" but that would in fact be totally incorrect - Simon's supreme dominance in triathlon over every distance over a period of 20+ years is what truly paved the way and gave everyone in Britain the belief that we could be a true force on the world sceneMoving to Bath University as part of the World Class Performance team as funded by the National Lottery in '98/'99 in the build-up to the 2000 Sydney Olympics Games. How effective was this move? How effective was the environment? Was it necessarily the best place for Simon to have been? How did various personalities and agendas play out in arguably the world's leading triathlon training facility at that point in time. Simon's raw and unfiltered look at this period is highly refreshing and gives Paul a wee kick up the bum to boot!Preparing and racing the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games. What was the new draft-legal environment like? Did it suit Simon? What was the game plan? How did it unfold? History shows Simon's place of 9th overall was a huge disappointment for himself and everyone that supported him (including Paul Newsome on his couch in Bath with his student mates - including a young Leanda Cave - watching in eager anticipation in the wee hours) and Simon candidly digs into this whole period as we also reflect on the adjustment to Simon's training methodologies to prepare for what was essentially a brand new sport (draft legal) where everything was very new tacticallyLife after competing and what Simon brings these days to the athletes that are lucky enough to be coached by himYou can read more about what Simon is up to these days at It is with great appreciation that we thank Simon for this excellent interview!
Episode 9 - Joe Skipper: PRO Ironman and Swim Smooth Guru user
In today's show we chat with Joe Skipper, multiple Ironman podium finisher, Ironman UK winner and 7th place Hawaii Ironman finisher. Joe is basing himself over here in sunny Perth with the Swim Smooth Perth Squad for the southern hemisphere summer after discovering Swim Smooth online some 2-3 years ago and using the Guru to help him dial up a 50 minute Kona swim split this year to couple up with a 4h15m bike and 2h54m run.Joe is an avid technology user when it comes to training and tells us how he's used this to help develop an innate ability to pace himself exceptionally well in races. Currently, there's a bit of a debate raging online on the advantages vs disadvantages of using technology when it comes to knowing your body, but Joe's insight together with both Paul's and Adam's experience should help you fathom out what is best for you.This is a no-holds barred interview with Joe - one of the most open athletes out there who discusses openly the nitty gritty of his training and racing preparation. If you're an avid Training Peaks / technology user yourself, you'll love some of the in-depth discussions on these points.You can find out more about Joe at and he can be followed on Strava also where he posts all his workout information.It's been really exciting for the squad having Joe train here alongside all the members, so we really hope that you also enjoy this candid interview where you get to know much more about one of the real prospects for a future Hawaii Ironman podium.Any coaches wanting to apply for our next three 3-day Coach Education Courses (5-7 April, Portland, OR, USA / 11-13 April, Sydney, Australia / 23-25 May, Mallorca, Spain) can do so at this link: where we'll also get down to the nitty gritty on how our coaching system is helping produce some of the world's best triathlon and open water swimmers like Joe.Cheers!Paul & Adam
Episode 8 - Professor Greg Whyte OBE - Achieving the Impossible
Happy New Year! Here's the podcast you need to kick start your 2019 with a massive bang!Today, we're very lucky to be talking with Professor Greg Whyte OBE - a legend in the Sports and Exercise Science world and a guy who has helped raise in excess of £40 million for Sport / Comic Relief with over 30 amazing challenges of human endurance with some of the world's most famous celebrities. Greg was Swim Smooth Head Coach Paul Newsome's sports physiologist as part of Chris Jones's One Vision triathlon team back in the mid-90s and the inspiration behind Paul following his path in sports science and coaching.Greg's book "Achieve the Impossible" is exactly what you need to kick start your year the right way. It's a brilliant compendium that seeks to help you set yourself some objectives for the future and then go after them with the type of tenacity that allowed Little Britain comedian David Walliams to swim the English Channel in an amazing 10h30m and to then swim the length of the River Thames (some 140+ miles in 8 days). You can see more about the book here: go into great depth about how to take on these amazing endurance events and look at how 4 "normal" ladies from the UK (all of whom have faced various personal challenges in their life), go from swimming head-up breaststroke to swimming the English Channel in under 14 hours in some terrible conditions. WARNING!! This is super inspirational and you can observe the full documentary on this here: hope you love the podcast with Greg and that it sets you up for a great 2019!Cheers!Paul & Adam
Episode 7 - an interview with the Queens of ÖtillÖ SwimRun, Annika Ericsson & Kristin Larsson
Ever wondered what this crazy-looking new sport of SwimRun is all about? You know, the world's biggest growth endurance sport that is turning heads and being rated as the single-hardest one day endurance event on the planet? Yeah, that one where you see people running around in their wetsuits, supposedly "cheating" with their pull buoy and paddles, and then weirdly swimming in their trainers from island to island?Well wonder no more as today we are joined by the triple world champions, Annika Ericsson and Kristin Larsson who know a thing or two about the sport and are here to share their experiences and a wealth of knowledge and hopefully inspire you to take part in what has rapidly become Swim Smooth Head Coach Paul Newsome's favourite new sport!Paul met up properly with Annika in Bali at the recent Bali-Hope SwimRun event where he was promptly beaten into submission by Annika and her male partner (on this occasion, Peter Aronsson, who smashed Paul & Andy Blow by 30 minutes in September) by just over 2 minutes. This followed a beating of nearly 8 minutes over the brutal 75km ÖtillÖ World Championship event in September (with Kristin at the helm) and by 20 minutes back in June 2016 at Paul's first event on the beautiful Isles of Scilly, UK. Needless to say, Paul has a new hero and it's that hero we're going to be speaking to today! So sit back, relax, enjoy and let's learn a little more about the sport of SwimRun!You can learn more about Annika and Kristin at these links: of the biggest and best SwimRun events can be found at the following links:https://otilloswimrun.comhttps://www.brecaswimrun.comhttp://www.rockmanswimrun.com and Merry Christmas!Paul & Adam
Episode 6 - interview with Andy Blow, Precision Hydration - tips on better hydration for endurance
Today we are joined by Head Coach Paul Newsome's long-time friend, fellow Bath University Sport & Exercise Science graduate, British triathlon team member, founder of (to name but one of his many exciting ventures!), and most recently, the guy who dragged Coach Paul around the world's toughest single-day endurance event, the infamous Otillo SwimRun World Championships in Sweden!!Listen to Paul and Andy chew the fat about Sport Science and how / where their paths in this discipline diverged (Andy - more towards physiology, nutrition and testing; Paul - more towards biomechanics and coaching). Andy's story is super exciting from being a prospective Leicester City youth team soccer player in his early teens, to becoming a formidable force in triathlon in the early / mid-2000s, to now helping tens of thousands of athletes in sports as diverse as baseball to biathlon improve their performance through a better understanding of their hydration requirements. You'll notice a distinct similarity in Andy's work with individualisation in this regard to our own Swim Types ( coaching methodology, which was the primary prompt to interview Andy for your listening pleasure.Andy shares some interesting insights into his time working with the Bennetton Formula One racing team and Porsche (much to Adam's excitement, being a massive F1 fan himself) including superstars such as Giancarlo Fisichella and Jenson Button and their cross-training pursuits into triathlon.We look at simple hydration strategies that will really make a difference for you (as well as how to avoid pitfalls such as hyponatremia which can be life threatening).Andy has put up a great article at which is well worth a read - you can even take their sophisticated online questionnaire which will help you pinpoint where your hydration requirements most likely lie.For additional hydration tips and strategies and to follow some of the amazing athletes who use Precision Hydration to get their edge, follow them on @thesweatexperts on the usual social media channels.Enjoy!
Episode 5 - an interview with the world's fastest female Ironman swimmer, Lucy Charles and her coach
What an amazing interview we have lined up for you today with the fastest ever female Ironman swimmer, Lucy Charles (UK) and her coach and partner, Reece Barclay (also a professional triathlete)!Interestingly enough, Swim Smooth’s Head Coach, Paul Newsome’s best mate and former swim training partner (Roy Shepherdson), was one of Lucy’s favourite swim coaches back when she was 14 / 15 years of age and Lucy credits Roy with him directing her away from sprint freestyle into distance freestyle and eventually out into the open water. So we thought it’d be pretty cool to bring Coach Roy in on this chat to give an exclusive never-before-heard account of Lucy’s development as a swimmer to being today one of the best swimmers the sport of triathlon has ever seen! How’s that for a coincidence “small world” scene setting scenario!In just the first 60 seconds of this podcast, Lucy’s thoughts and comments epitomise everything that Swim Smooth is all about. Listen to how she refutes the need to look pretty to be effective in the water as she very much embodies our “Swinger” Swim Type (“People would probably say that my stroke, looking at it from the outside, is a fairly messy stroke - I’ve got a very high turn-over (stroke rate) and I haven’t got much of a leg kick either, so most coaches I ever had would tell me off for not kicking my legs (which I always found quite funny) and no matter what I did - I tried to work on it - but because the front end of the stroke was moving so fast, I just didn’t have the coordination to do that with my legs as well. I think it seems to work pretty well for open water - it’s definitely served me well so far - the key thing is, it might look a little bit messy from above the water but everything under the water is doing what you’re supposed to do and is quite a strong, powerful pull. I think when I was more of a pool swimmer, it was probably a bit of a neater stroke, but I’ve adapted it without really realising it for the open water.”You can read / watch more about Lucy’s stroke here, including a full analysis by Paul Newsome of her stroke:Super-Fish Lucy Charles - The World's Fastest Female Triathlete In Water? (July 2016)We thought it would be even cooler to tag on a short 2 minute segment at the end with an interview between Paul Newsome and Britain’s best ever pool / open water swimmer, David Davies, who took a bronze in the 1500m freestyle in Athens (2004) and a silver in the 10km open water event in Beijing (2008) before famously failing to qualify for the London Olympic Games (2012) due to a new team of coaches who tried to make David look prettier in the water, only to see him do the one thing that his original coach (Dave Haller) said to never do: change what worked for him:“When I swam 1500m in Athens in 2004 (where he won an Olympic bronze medal) I would swim with 40 strokes per length and a stroke rate of 94spm and that was my optimum stroke rate. I could increase my stroke length and look better, but I could never sustain that. When I met Paul and we had this chat it was like “wow, someone understands me and my stroke”. The way I swam was a little different and I used to swim next to Grant Hackett one of the best freestylers of all time - I looked a little like a rag doll next to him but I came pretty close to him in Athens and that was the best way for me to swim. When I started swimming I had a very experienced coach (Dave Haller) but people used to say I had a spider stroke - a very high turn-over and my hips used to swing a bit - but my coach said don’t ever try and change your stroke - that’s the way you’re supposed to swim.”You can watch more about David’s stroke here: (February 2014)Enjoy and thanks for listening!
Episode 4 - The History of Swim Smooth - an extended special to celebrate our 14th birthday!
You might find the supporting links, articles and websites in chronological order useful as a reference point:▪2004 - is launched with our first product: ▪2005 - Paul & Mish (now Paul’s wife) head off around the UK running clinics and 1-2-1 sessions▪2006 - the “Flame Wars” on reach boiling point between Swim Smooth and Total Immersion▪2007 - Adam attends his first Swim Smooth 1-day swimmer’s clinic▪2008 - Paul and Adam’s friendship builds and Adam drives the online presence in a way that Paul hasn’t been able to do himself. Our first Learn To Swim DVD is produced in sunny Essex, UK ( ) and the idea for “Swim Types” starts to germinate.▪2009 - Adam’s brainchild (the Mr Smooth animation) is launched ( ). Increase in awareness of Swim Smooth starts to build, ultimately rising to a subscribership of over 125,000 weekly readers of our FREE blog▪2010 - British Triathlon announces Swim Smooth as their coach education partner and the first 3-day Swim Smooth Coach Education Course ( ) is run and we officially launch▪2011 - Our third DVD, the Catch Masterclass goes on to being the fastest selling swimming DVD on the internet and we run our first 2-week Certified Coaches Course ( ) in Perth. We partner up with HUUB Design to create the world’s best wetsuit (as used by the Brownlee Brothers: )▪2012 - We launch our very first Certified Swim Smooth Coaches ( ) of which we now have 48 worldwide (and growing) - make sure you register at Wiley & Sons (the world’s biggest book publishing company) approach Swim Smooth to write a book on swimming which quickly becomes one of the best selling and highest rated books on swim coaching of all time (▪2013 - Paul wins the world’s most prestigious marathon swimming event and cements Swim Smooth in the history books as not just an effective way to swim, but a FAST way to swim too! ▪2014 - The International Triathlon Union announces Swim Smooth as their coaching partner ( ) which sees Swim Smooth being put out around the world in 119 countries via the various triathlon governing bodies. We launch our biggest project to date, the Swim Smooth Guru ( )▪2015 - Work commences on our Swim Smooth Kids program▪2016 - The Swim Smooth Guru is refined, tweaked and improved to contain exciting new features such as CSS Tweaking and Fitness Tracking ( )▪2017 - Filming commences on the Swim Smooth Kids program and we begin developing our coaching presence in the USA▪2018 - We launch the new Swim Smooth podcast ( ) and also our brand new trip of a lifetime to Perth ( )
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