Open Water Workouts
first of all, a big thanks for TI, for opportunity to learn how to swim better. I've been fallowing TI technique for about 2 years now.
So, Im from a poor Country, and there is no pool to train and no school that teach's swimming. So the only way to train is in the open water with my buddy.
The good thing is that the water is always warm, all year long baby even when the temperature is a bit cold. Just put a cap and its all good to go.
My main objective in training is to compete for open water events held in my country (A few international guys and girls participated).
Last year I competed (for the first time) in 2.5km event. And finished 14th with 45mn'55seconds. The first place finished with 30'12 (he was a international dude).
I really apreciated all the efforts the the TI team put into teaching the techniques from the Dvds.
So guys, i hope you can share your knowledge on, how can I train better.
At this point:
- We go to the beach 3 times per week.
- 3 times per week to the gym.
- we warm up with the drills from TI.
- 2 times per week(Tuesday and Thursday), the main set, is to swim 5x300meters (I measure it with Canmore GT-740FL).
- And on Sundays we swim 2.5km (measure with the buoy at the beach), or we do some speed training, with the distance of main set.
Thank you guys. If you can help us it would be really good.
PS: I dont know if its possible to upload images. But if yes, i can put here the images from the GPS and the beach's where we train and compete. Maybe you can come can compete too.
Can Someone Help?
Hello guys, i hope your pratice is going nice and smooth. But i really need some help...
Can someone share their experience with open water workouts?
Welcome to the Forum. I think you will find that TI swimming isn't really about doing specific workouts. It is about learning fundamental skills in this order:
Balance (first and most important)
Propulsion (only after balance and streamline are established)
Then, perfect those skills (a never-ending journey). TI is about becoming as perfect as you can. Speed is a by-product. It comes from skill, not from fitness or "working out."
Have you checked the TI green zone chart? You can find out about it here at Coach Mat's blog.
Until you are swimming somewhere in your green zone, I'd suggest that most of your practice be focused on increasing the length of the stroke until you are. It is easiest and most convenient to measure stroke length in a pool, but even in open water you should be able to measure off 20m to do a test to find you SPL (strokes per length) and see if you are in your green zone.
Once you can swim comfortably at a variety of SPLs in your green zone, start using your skills to gain speed. Speed = stroke length x stroke tempo. So you can get faster using a longer stroke, or faster using a faster stroke rate. There is an optimal stroke length and tempo for each event, depending on how fast and how far you want to swim. Having a tempo trainer and a measured distance is a good way to work on increasing your stroke rate while still keeping your SPL within your green zone.
Here's a good discussion from Terry Laughlin, TI's founder, on how to work on improving stroke length. It will take some creativity to adapt these ideas to open water practice, but it will give you some idea on how TI focuses on improving skills rather than on "working out."
A long complicated non-answer, I know. But mastery is not a simple, "do this workout and you'll get faster" process. Good luck, and enjoy the journey!
Another thought: are you using a 2-beat kick? There are lots of discussions about the timing of the kick, and timing of the arms, in the Forum right now. Check them out.
I'd say a properly timed 2-beat kick is essential to long distance open water swimming. You can see an example in Coach Mandy's video.
A last thought:
In my own practice, I have found that using many short repeats (25m, or for open water, maybe 20 arm strokes depending on your green zone and SPL) is better for working on skills than long repeats.
It would really help to have a measured distance of 25m or so to swim repeats with, so you can see what effect your technique has on your SPL as you try different focal points.
Adapt the concepts to open water
Thank You Tom,
I will try to understand and adapt these things to open water, and see how it goes.
Cause we dont have someone to train or watch the way we do the drills and give us some feedback its a bit hard so see the errors, and where we need to improve.
But the concepts about the balance propulsion and streamline we understand, and our focus is to pratice it and try to master it.
I really apreciated your answer.
Here is the the facebook page of the group that make the open water competion, check it out
I just checked out Tarrafal swim. It looks fabulous. (I am fluent in Spanish so reading the Portuguese is no problem). Swimming is great because you just don't need much. Though I have weak eyes and so need goggles to protect my eyes in open water. I love you approach and great that you can have a boat around to support people. It reduces the risk and also give new people security to try stuff they might not otherwise.
My experience is that any swim drill that works in a pool can be done in open water, as long as you aren't pushing yourself to the point of exhaustion. (which I don't think is particularly productive anyhow)
I am pretty new to open water (only a couple of months) and I find the head-game of it is really important. You can't breath effectively when you are freaking out and if you can't breath you can't swim. As you get more comfortable you can start doing more 'drill' (Such as increasing the pace for set distances, fist drills, one-arm drills etc) but nothing is ever as satisfying as just getting in the water and going.
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