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Three Tips to Help Parents Deal With the Dreaded Plateau

By Elizabeth Wickham, SwimSwam, 01/05/18, 12:00PM CST

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Swimmers may see success and get best times in events they rarely swim. Also, they worked on specific things in practice like underwaters or breakouts. When swimmers focus on improving technique, their times will eventually get faster.

The ever-dreaded plateau. It’s almost as bad as the “shank” in golf. I shanked every iron shot for months. I felt frightened every time I stood over the ball.

The plateau for a swimmer also can be a scary time. No matter what your swimmer does, he or she doesn’t drop time. One of my swimmers was stuck at 1:00 on her 100 free for what seemed to be a lifetime. In reality, she was 13 and it lasted for more than a year.

"Coaches and parents of older swimmers told me it’s normal. Plateaus can happen to anyone — 13-14 year olds, high school swimmers or college students. If swimmers stay in the pool, they will break through it. But, it can be very discouraging and some give up."