Prior's Field September 2018

Olympic Swimmers Train at St Mary's

Published Tuesday 4th of March 2014 09:42:18 AM

Olympic Swimmers Train at St Mary�s

In a joint collaboration British Swimming has teamed up with Southampton University and UK Sport to put the latest theories about bio-mechanics to the test and St Mary�s Shaftesbury was the perfect venue to host their elite performance swim tests this week, 24-25 February.

Over a two day training session, swimmers have been towed and video�d underwater to analyse every stroke to establish if science and engineering can improve individual performance in the pool for our next Olympic hopefuls. With swimming races being decided by only fractions of a second, many different methods of testing and training have been devised. According to Ben Holliss, Performance Scientist for British Swimming; �It�s all about hydro-dynamics to identify ways to make swimmers as streamlined as possible in the water. The techniques we are trialling here are part of a five year research project to give our elite swimmers the competitive edge.�
The Senior swim team at St Mary�s were able to observe Olympic swimmer Lizzie Simmonds being towed on a velocity reel through the water whilst the A-Level PE class witnessed Olympic silver medallist, Michael Jamieson being put through his paces. British swimming�s Head coach from the National Centre at Bath, David McNulty commented, �We are pioneering new techniques all the time to get ahead of the rest of the world and combining Science in the pool is another way to find marginal gains.� They chose St Mary�s because it offers a wonderful facility, where they can really focus.

St Mary�s is a member of the North Dorset Schools Sports Association and is committed to promoting healthy sports in the community. The school currently hosts a number of local swimming clubs, including the Gillingham Turbos for their weekly training and in addition, a number of local primary schools enjoy the facilities for their swimming lessons. There is also an annual Primary school swimming gala to encourage more children in the area to participate. Mrs Boyer-Castle, Director of Sport at St Mary�s commented, �St Mary�s Shaftesbury is extremely proud of its 25m, six lane swimming pool, built seven years ago and we are always looking at new ways to share the benefits of our pool with the local and wider community. We are also looking forward to hosting the North Dorset English Schools Swimming Gala again in June�.
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