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  #1  
Old 08-07-2011
Danny Danny is offline
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Danny
Default need advice about Tempo Trainers

Well, I have finally reached the point where I am starting to think about buying a Tempo Trainer, but I don't swim with a bathing cap and I don't want to start using one. Supposedly there is a clip so you can put it on your goggles, but I hear that these tend to break and don't last long. The other thing I hear is there may be issues with the batteries. Can anyone give me advice on this? Are there any competitors to the tempo trainer that might offer better solutions to these problems?
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  #2  
Old 08-07-2011
CoachSuzanne CoachSuzanne is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Danny View Post
Well, I have finally reached the point where I am starting to think about buying a Tempo Trainer, but I don't swim with a bathing cap and I don't want to start using one. Supposedly there is a clip so you can put it on your goggles, but I hear that these tend to break and don't last long. The other thing I hear is there may be issues with the batteries. Can anyone give me advice on this? Are there any competitors to the tempo trainer that might offer better solutions to these problems?
the clip will break if you step on it. It also tends to wiggle & drag anyway when you push off. There is nothing wrong with the battery life, but every once in awhile there is a dud. Just send it back and Finis will typically replace it no questions asked. The TT is adjusted with a button press. The other device requires a magnet I believe, and still requires a swim cap anyway.

As far as I know they are the only two options. Wearing a cap in order to train with a tempo trainer wouldn't be the worst thing in teh world (it might improve your swimming!)
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  #3  
Old 08-07-2011
mandll mandll is offline
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I have used the TT for about 8 months now by clipping to my goggles. It did take a few tries to figure out the tricks to keep it from coming off but once I did it only rarely happens. Here's what has worked for me: 1) make sure that you have the open end of the clip facing the direction you are swimming I towards top of head). Otherwise the drag on the TT with gradually work the clip off the goggle strap. The drag cause it to pivot around the trailing edge so placing it this way forces it on not off. 2) sometimes the TT doesn't seat well in the clip and it pops out of it. Make sure it is seated well after snapping in place by rotating it in the clip, 3)clip it in the rear just off center line. If you bring it to far forward such that it is on the side it is in an area of greater drag and it gets pulled off easier. Putting it to the rear at the base of your head seems to be the place of least drag.

As far as battery life goes: The battery life has not been an issue and it has never inadvertently been turned on in my bag. In fact you have to press and hold the button for a few seconds before it will respond so just bumping it wont turn it on.

Give it a go. It is worth the money. Regular use will teach you a lot about your stroke and how to improve. It provides variety to your workout and can be used to help you gradually increase your stroke rate while maintaining efficiency..i.e..it will help make you a better and faster swimmer:)

Hope this helps.

mark
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  #4  
Old 08-07-2011
Alex-SG Alex-SG is offline
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Hi Danny,

My TEMPO Trainer has been working very well so far but the CLIP did break. It is similar to those plastic pens that you put in your left pocket on the chest and after a while the clip breaks.

If the Clip does break, here is the solution: use goggles with 2 straps.
The upper part of the TT sticks out by about 1cm. You can put that under the upper strap. You then cover the TT with the lower strap. It is quite stable that way.

I think the TT is a must have. I now swim very well at a slow stroke rate of SR=1.60 but I need to bring this down to SR=1.3 which seems to be the a more practical swimming rate. I will do this by swimming laps and progressively reducing the SR by small intervals. ALEX
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  #5  
Old 08-09-2011
Danny Danny is offline
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Danny
Default TT advice

Thanks to everyone for your help. Here is what I decided. I will buy a TT and a bathing cap, but I will try to make things work without the cap. Some of the advice above will certainly be a big help.

A couple of months ago, I started trying to swim super slow as a balancing exercise. The idea was to swim so slow that I could freeze my motion at any point and hold my body position there. This is, of course, hardest just as the entry hand is about to go into the water, because that is where you usually use gravity to propel yourself forward. Anyway, I got a lot out of this exercise, but I lost the ability to increase my stroke rate as colateral damage. I'm hoping the TT will help speed me up without losing my progress on maintaining balance and a good extended front arm.
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  #6  
Old 08-09-2011
westyswoods westyswoods is offline
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Location: Rio, Wisconsin
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westyswoods
Default Residual of Slow Drills

Danny,

I had the same exact experience you write of. Having practiced at very slow rates for a couple of years, when I attempted to pick up the pace it just plain felt awkward.

My baseline started at 1.5 which felt normal. Enter TT and quicken the rate was at first frustrating due to my inability to process the beeps and coordinate some part of the stroke with it. There is a learning curve, many on this forum seem to have picked it up much faster than I.

A couple of suggestions:

1. Be patient and initially just focus on tempo.
2. Don't use for the whole session.
3. Play with syncing different sections of stroke with beep. Find piece that
works for you.
4. Don't attempt radical jumps in tempo as it takes time for neuro circuits to
adapt.
5. Start with short distances 25's and see how the increase impacts you.

The TT does work, I am currently working at 1.2-1.3 and have just decided to start going to 1.1. Unthinkable six months ago.


Swim Silent and Be Well
Westy
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  #7  
Old 08-10-2011
Danny Danny is offline
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Danny
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Westy,

That all sounds like good advice, and I'll give it a try. I ordered the thing today, so it will probably be 8 to 10 days before I get it and can try it out.

Danny
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  #8  
Old 08-16-2011
Alex-SG Alex-SG is offline
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Hi Westy,

Looks like I am going down the same path, but I am a few months behind you.
My baseline was SR=1.60.

I have been doing sets of 4x25m at 1.60, then 1.58, then 1.55
The next day I try to go 1.58, 1.55, then 1.52.....

In my mind the desired GOAL is to achieve:
a. a Shinji-lie relaxed cruising rate of SR=1.35-1.40
b. a slightly faster SR=1.20 perhaps for the second half of an Open Water Race

I have the feeling that below SR=1.2 it is more difficult to stay coordinated and it will take a lot more time if I ever try. ALEX
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  #9  
Old 08-18-2011
saadbox13 saadbox13 is offline
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I have been using the TT for about 4 Months since Shane introduced it to us at the TI workshop 2.0 in Greenwich CT. It truly helped me improve my pace, I reduced my tempo from 1.6 to 1.26 over 3 Months of practice.
However I believe that I have reached a plateau, anything below 1.20 does not make my swim relaxing in any way...It simply feels rushed and does contradict the principle of Zen-like swim. In any case I am much happier to hover around 1.35 even in OW race conditions :)
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  #10  
Old 08-18-2011
terry terry is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CoachSuzanne View Post
Wearing a cap in order to train with a tempo trainer wouldn't be the worst thing in teh world (it might improve your swimming!)
If you don't like latex or silicon caps, wear a lycra cap, expressly for Tempo Trainer practice. I prefer swimming capless too, but I have some mesh fabric caps from TI Japan which I like for TT practice. I swim capless when doing sets in which I focus only on SPL and Time. I put on the mesh cap for sets involving TT - which has been about 60 percent of the time this summer. This week I began doing mostly TT practice in open water. It really brings structure and focus to OW swimming and makes the time (and me) fly.
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