In just a few weeks, the Milford swim team will hit the pool.
Milford swimming is being led by first-year head coach Meaghan Tyndall. Preparation has begun with winter sports practice earlier this month.
Tyndall and her staff want to make sure they’ve done everything to get ready for their opening meet against Dover Tuesday, Dec. 4 at the State Street Central Delaware YMCA.
While teams throughout the state are working on drills, Milford has taken a more scientific approach. According to Tyndall, the team has been focused on quantifying how hard they are working during practice, using an RPE or Rate of Perceived Exertion scale.
There are many fancy technologies out there that can monitor just how hard an athlete is pushing it when training. However, the RPE scale is a throwback of sorts, relying more on communication from coach to athlete and analyzing data before and after a workout.
“This had been really helpful because many of them have a hard time feeling the difference between swimming slow, moderate and fast, relative to what times they are producing,” Tyndall said. “I really think this is going to make it so that they are more aware of their abilities and ultimately more confident swimming in meets.”
Along with using a different metric to try to get the most out of every outing in the pool, Milford has another advantage. Several swimmers participated in club teams during the offseason, giving them a leg up on the competition.
“They bring a different level of leadership to the pool,” Tyndall said. “They can be good role models for the other swimmers. My hope is to convince more swimmers to swim year round.”
Milford has 10 regular season meets, seven away and three at their home pool at the Boys & Girls Club. When the team hits the pool for their first meet, Tyndall wants them focused.
“I want my swimmers to be confident in themselves and their abilities from the very first meet,” Tyndall said. “I want them to worry less about winning and more about improving each and every week.
“They are incredibly supportive of one another and I think that will pay off in the long run. They’re a great group and I can’t wait to see how they do individually and how we do as a team.”