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Talvi 01-23-2015 08:19 AM

The speed of Shinji
In this: Shinji is swimming at a rate of appx. 1.55 TT. Slow? Well the length takes him a tad over 19 secs so about 1:15 /100m.

There is nothing on the video to confirm the length of the pool is 25m so can anyone out there confirm?

(If it was a 20m pool his pace would be 1:36 - hardly slow for that rate)

wentod 01-23-2015 11:20 AM

Read Shinji's comments : 25m

CharlesCouturier 01-23-2015 03:30 PM


Originally Posted by Talvi (Post 50557)
In this: Shinji is swimming at a rate of appx. 1.55 TT. Slow? Well the length takes him a tad over 19 secs so about 1:15 /100m.

It can be misleading to calculate things this way. Add 3 turns, + DPS loss throughout the 100m (especially if he's maxed out on the first 25). Most swimmers shine their best on a single 25m totally fresh knowing the the video stops after this 25m.

You know, demonstrating the potential in regard to lowest stroke count contest, and swimming one's fastest are 2 entirely different things. Shinji has mentioned a few times, over the last decade, that he was interested into racing at some point (most recently he shown interest toward an AUS OW race, don't remember the distance). Only when he does, will we know how fast he can swim (because then he is going to have to aim for a trade off between SPL and SL). For now, that tad bit above 19sec was beaten by Andy in Norways who reported having swam 18.some on a 10stroke diet. That again, with a few seconds per 100m lost in turns, translates into a critical pace of 1:20/100m, 2:40, 5:20, 10flat, 20flat, given that this SL/SR combination is sustainable over 1500m.

s.sciame 01-23-2015 05:29 PM


Originally Posted by CharlesCouturier (Post 50569)
(most recently he shown interest toward an AUS OW race, don't remember the distance). Only when he does, will we know how fast he can swim (because then he is going to have to aim for a trade off between SPL and SL)

Guess it's the Rottnest Channel Swim, 19.7km, 21 February (less than 30 days left).
So curious to know how a TI coach trains for such a long distance by the way...

CharlesCouturier 01-23-2015 06:13 PM


Originally Posted by s.sciame (Post 50577)
So curious to know how a TI coach trains for such a long distance by the way...

Now that... truly depends on whether one wants to book it real fast or not. For example, given neutral conditions (not favorable, not dis-favorable), achieving 5hfat (about 1:30/100m) would require, from the little bits I know of Shinji, a volume of 20k/week for at least 16weeks. In a pool, marathoners often time trial over 25k, which is usually done below 6h without too much effort. You need some of these long time trials as well to "optimize" the result over a marathon. But then, not everyone dives in at the start to swim their maximum best time. If just finishing the event is the main goal, one could live on a 10k/week diet and still enjoy the venture.

CharlesCouturier 01-23-2015 10:27 PM

One other thing I may like to add about Shinji though, on goodwill. I'm very glad to state this.

What strikes me isn't as much the way he swims, but rather the way he swims given that he doesn't have any previous competitive background. Can anyone on this site quote me many more examples of swimmers having tackled on free, passed, say, the age of 35? Or even 30?

I don't know him well enough to have a clear idea of his potential as a swimmer; that is, would he end up spitting his left lung just trying to keep up with our varsity level folks throughout one single week of training? I don't know maybe. But the possibility for him to rapidly adapt and make his place among what many consider as being elite level is more than real I think. I wouldn't bet on a 43yo to beat a young rooster over 1500, but I've seen at least one occurrence of someone his age, master level (previous background though), training with a young elite squad and he could keep up. Right now, some masters of this age can easily lower the 1500 under 19. Can Shinji do it? The best in our province is worth about that, 18flat, 17:55 (SCM). How would Shinji compete against him? I donno. Holding 1:15 would bring him to the final touch in 18:45. We're very very far from a world record, that's not even worth top 10 in our country's national championship. But still, most folks going under 20 DO have a competitive background. They do. Certainly do.

He choose TI as a vehicle, and it turned out to be a great choice for him. Would it be conceivable to reach the same level without TI, I doubt so.

Now, with all that said, freaks exist all over. The best swimmer (potential wise) may not even know how to swim yet, and may be passed 25yo, who can tell. Shinji has demonstrated outstanding proprioception, flexibility, and understanding of what it takes to swim the free.

2nd, in Japan, there's a strong culture of gesture. it is more than probable that in spite of having tackled on swimming at late age, he did commit in childhood to activities that involved growing this exceptional flexibility/proprioception.

Nevertheless, someone that has as primary mission to bring a non swimmer into the world of competitive swimming like me, it is very motivating to know that at least someone "did it", with outstanding result.

I continue wishing that he might some day compete for real, and not just show fancy slow rate clips. But what he's done thus far remains a great, inspiring, achievement.

Talvi 01-24-2015 03:18 PM


I haven't seen Andy's video otherwise I'd have posted that. I'd really like to see how far he's come.

What I was referring to in my query was the apparent ease of Shinji's stroke. Like you Charles I wonder how long he can keep that up but there is a demo of him open water swimming that looks very similar.

Interesting thought that on his kmost famous video he does 12 strokes for 25m and on this video 9 strokes. They don't look (to me) to be so different. Yet a 33% stroke rate increase must be down to something.

Am I just looking for the Alchemist's Stone of swimming?

Zenturtle 01-24-2015 04:23 PM

From all the TI videos, Shinjis studets shine the brightest. He sure deliivers some swimmers who are swimming almost as well as he does.
Younger ones might be faster then the teacher.
After watching normal swimmers and seeing him swim his 9 stroke 26m, his uncanny streamlined vessel never fails to amaze.

sclim 01-25-2015 12:49 AM

Throughout this whole discussion about exactly how fast Shinji was going, and exactly how fast he could actually do a 1500m and the Rottnest 19.7k, I sort of tuned out, because it didn't matter to me, it was way beyond any conception I could dream of.

However a further comment did catch my attention -- whether his current video of 9 strokes a length is sustainable or is his famous video of 12 strokes more like it. It never occurred to me that 9 spl (an incredible number in the first place) might not be sustainable, because he looks so damned relaxed. But if it is not sustainable at 9 spl, why not? It then occurred to me that of course it was not easy, otherwise every one and their dog would be posting videos of themselves doing 9 spl.

So, really at 9 spl, despite looking relaxed and smooth, he is working way harder than I am imagining from just looking at the smooth relaxed aspect of it. Where is the hard work happening (apart from exquisite mental concentration to get that elegant balance, timing and streamlining)? It's at the shoulders and chest, right? That's what will tire first, raising his spl, right?

CoachStuartMcDougal 01-25-2015 03:10 AM

Hi Sclim,

That's a question for Shinji whether he can sustain 9 strokes in 20m (25m -5m push) for longer distances. In the 9 stroke video he's swimming at 1.8 sec/stroke tempo. That translates to a 1:21/100m pace (without walls), e.g. 9 x 1.8 x 5 = 1:21 100m pace.

His 12 stroke viral video, Shinji's swimming at 1.35 sec/stroke tempo that translates to 1:21 100m pace, e.g. 12 x 1.35 x 5 = 1:21. Both (9 & 12 SPL) put him roughly at a 20 min 1500m swim provided he could sustain that tempo and maintain stroke length.

I believe Shinji's open water 'sustainable' SPL and tempo is 15 SPL at 1.0 sec/stroke tempo; that translates to 18:45 1500m, e.g. 15 x 1.0 x 5 = 1:15 100m pace (x 15 = 18:45).

Regardless of the athlete, swimmer, runner, cyclist, hockey, basketball, soccer, etc - mastery makes it looks so easy, movement economy. This is the toughest perception to shift to for swimmers trained in conventional, popular methods of more yards, harder sets, faster turnover can only make you faster.

I love math, physics AND swimming :-)


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