200 IM Race Strategy

By Meghan Satterstrom

We talked to coach Kelly Kremer, co-head coach of the University of Minnesota women’s swim team, about his approach to training his swimmers for the 200 individual medley.


Coach Kremer says the race strategy he teaches is pretty consistent from swimmer to swimmer, and finds these things to be most important:

  • You have to be off the blocks fast and have a great fly leg, but the race starts on the fly-back transistion. He encourages his swimmers to accelerate into the wall and explode off it.
  • Do not over swim, but this race is a sprint.
  • Coach Kremer likes many of the drills above because of their attention to turns and wall work. He says swimmers have gotten so much better at using walls over the past several years, so great 200 IMers are going to be great off every wall.  “You watch the best 200 IMers now, and they are probably on top of the water for only half the race,” Kremer said.  “So we focus a great deal of our attention on walls and how we use them.”

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