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woodbldr 09-06-2009 04:58 PM

Swim cords/tethers for hotel pools
Hello everyone,

First time poster and TI beginner. I started my TI instruction as part of a triathlon class, and was the first time I have ever tried to swim (I'm 45). Now that the triathlon is done, I want to continue to build on my progress. The problem is that I often travel for work and can only access hotel pools. I can work on drills in the pool, but would like to start to expand the drills to work on my breathing. Has anyone used swim cords/tethers in hotel pools, and if so, are there any manufacturers you recommend? Thanks in advance for any help.


CoachEricDeSanto 09-06-2009 09:25 PM

I posted about this once before. I would say there can be a place for tethers, but not where you suggested. Breathing is one place you must be moving forward to do correctly. Otherwise, you will not be creating the bow wave you need to find the correct amount of rotation. Balance will be tricky because most tethers can affect your balance some. I can see using the tether to work on timing, rails, relaxed recovery, patient catch, kick timing, etc. The added resistance of the tether might even increase the firing of your nerve circuits and imprint the correct action more quickly. But you must be extra careful to be doing it right.

I don't know of any that won't limit rotation at least a bit. The single cord styles such as Stretch Cordz - short cord slider would probably be the best.

The thing I like doing best in a short pool is being really picky about the basics. Just how slowly can you kick and still maintain balance? Just how straight can you get your body in skate? Just how easily can you hold that skate?

The other thing I think might work is to plan your training around your trips. Can you use the trips to do more drill work on new focal points, then return home to try to incorporate those into your full stroke? Can you find hotels that have lap pools?

woodbldr 09-06-2009 11:11 PM

Coach Eric,

Thanks for the reply. I hadn't thought of the points you brought up on breathing. I will reserve that for when I can spend time in a lap pool. I will keep hotel pool time to drills only.

I can schedule my travel around my training to a certain extent. I am limited to company approved hotel chains, and none typically have a relationship with a fitness center either. I have looked at national fitness chains (eg Golds Gym, YMCA's, etc) but none have a nationwide option, at least from reading their websites.


eddiewouldgo 09-07-2009 05:10 AM


Check 24Hour Fitness. The selection of cities is somewhat limited (but growing). If they are in places you travel to regularly, that could be worthwhile.

There are several things you can do with short pools related to breathing. One is to experiment with your exhalation control -- e.g., a switch drill, wall to wall, exhaling gradually so that you empty the last air on the last stroke. Its debatable whether "no-breather" type sets do anything for you physiologically, but psychologically, they can accustom you -- mentally at least -- to functioning with a little less air than you'd like to have, which can help in the inevitable instances where you mistime a breath, get some water in the pipes, etc. Once you have convinced yourself that those circumstances are not cause for panic, learn how to spit water out under the surface, and so forth, they stop being cause for panic and stroke breakdown. Another is timing -- even a few strokes is enough to focus exclusively on the timing that generates the best bow wave and allows the lowest head position for you. Lastly, they are often good environments to practice flip turns, and the airway control necessary to accustom your body to doing them -- approach, nasal exhalation, and coming out of the turn strong and confident.

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