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Old 05-10-2010
sbechtel78 sbechtel78 is offline
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sbechtel78
Unhappy Just did my first open water clinic :-(

I just did my first open water clinic - not TI but wanted to get the feel of swimming in openwater prior to my first sprint triathlon event in June. It was in the Chesapeake Bay-used a wetsuit,but OMG! I was horrible!!! I forgot everything that I learned in TI! Of course the wind and the 2 ft choppy waves didn't help - the only thing I did well was make the turn.... I kept on being swept off course by the current, thus ended up swimming way longer than necessary and the waves kept rolling over my head and I ended up swallowing alot of water. My wetsuit worked okay keeping me warm, but it felt so different than what I am used to - I don't think we'll need wetsuits in June in a lake, but am sort of disheartened by my experience. I am taking more lessons offered by ONPoint fitness(teaching TI) and my first class is tonight. Any thoughts or suggestions of what I should do from here until June 27th? The fact that I didn't have any lines to see or just saw nothing but brown water didn't bother me- it was being tossed around like a "weak kitten" by the waves that disheartened me. Thanks for any advice and prayers. Sandra
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  #2  
Old 05-10-2010
naj naj is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sbechtel78 View Post
I just did my first open water clinic - not TI but wanted to get the feel of swimming in openwater prior to my first sprint triathlon event in June. It was in the Chesapeake Bay-used a wetsuit,but OMG! I was horrible!!! I forgot everything that I learned in TI! Of course the wind and the 2 ft choppy waves didn't help - the only thing I did well was make the turn.... I kept on being swept off course by the current, thus ended up swimming way longer than necessary and the waves kept rolling over my head and I ended up swallowing alot of water. My wetsuit worked okay keeping me warm, but it felt so different than what I am used to - I don't think we'll need wetsuits in June in a lake, but am sort of disheartened by my experience. I am taking more lessons offered by ONPoint fitness(teaching TI) and my first class is tonight. Any thoughts or suggestions of what I should do from here until June 27th? The fact that I didn't have any lines to see or just saw nothing but brown water didn't bother me- it was being tossed around like a "weak kitten" by the waves that disheartened me. Thanks for any advice and prayers. Sandra
Sandra welcome to open water swimming at its toughest! It may not have been a good idea for your instructor to put newbies in a lake that was choppy but it brings up a very good point for me that once you leave the lanelines all bets are off! Ow no matter if its a lake, river or ocean can be tough but you can deal with these conditions if you lose your head and don't lose it.

First off lets address the choppiness, a lot of people try to muscle they're way through this sort of water and then realize that they can't. Remember in a fight against Mother Nature she'll kick your butt every time! Remember to slow things down, concentrate on two things of your TI swimming perhaps a clean entry into the water and lead elbow recovery. Just go at your pace and let your TI skills do the rest. You wouldn't think it but the slower you go when its rough the father you go. Why? Because your head is down you are going through the smallest hole and even against the current you'll be making good progress. So next time go slow and let it flow

Secondly, the reason why you went off course is for two reasons more than likely. The first would be that you were not sighting enough and need to work on that in a controlled environment first like the pool. Remember to have a small object o get to and have a larger one behind it so you'll be able to not have to look for the little guy until your right on it. When your in the Lake next time find the turn buoy and see what is behind it that is very large like a mountain, docked boat, house etc and swim towards that large object first and as you get closer concentrate on the buoy. Sight every 8-12 strokes so you don't create a lot of drag looking up and lift your head enough so your goggles are above water not anything else. It takes time but can be done.

Lastly regarding the current, it can be tricky but there is a way to use it to your advantage. If you were pushed off course you probably swam cross-current. In any event, always remember to swim at an angle to the current if it is coming across your body and you'll be pushed back in a straight line and thus go straight ahead towards your goal.

As for your overall experience, I can say that all of us who swim ow have been there and had the same experience at least once. Heck I've screwed up so many swims and been way off I should write a book and I swim ow all the time! You'll get better over time just keep at it. Feel free and learn from other more experienced ow swimmers on site and remember that its not how fast you get ther in ow all that matters is if you make it

Keep Swimming!
Naji
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  #3  
Old 05-11-2010
terry terry is offline
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Sandra
My first question is who is the coach or coaches with OnPoint Fitness. I don't recognize the business name as one of those used by any of our qualified coaches. If they are not listed on this link they're not certified and licensed to teach TI. Beware of imposters.

If you do learn from a qualified TI Coach, you will learn the techniques of what we call Perpetual Motion Freestyle. These techniques not only give you far more physical control in open water, practicing them mindfully also helps you develop what we call the "cocoon of calm" which gives you a sense of psychic control in the unfamiliar surroundings of open water.

We have a downloadable ebook that has 150 pages of advice and insight on how to swim confidently and masterfully in open water.
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May your laps be as happy as mine.

My TI Story
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  #4  
Old 05-11-2010
ewa.swimmer ewa.swimmer is offline
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Terry's advice that as the conditions worsen I should deepen my calmness helped me survive my race last weekend. The first leg of a 1.6 mi. triangular course was like a washing machine. I don't think I had more than two strokes in a row that felt alike. I concentrated on increasing my "moment of stillness" at the end of my stroke to help my streamlining. Keeping relaxed helped me either flow with the water or let the water flow over me. I wasn't jarred around as much.
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Old 05-11-2010
CoachSuzanne CoachSuzanne is offline
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I fully endorse the "Out of the Box" book. Read it at your first opportunity, you can download it right here on the site, it's less than $10
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Fresh Freestyle

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  #6  
Old 05-12-2010
sbechtel78 sbechtel78 is offline
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Thanks for the input from everyone. I have the books and the DVDs from TI - I have read and watched "Outside the Box" a number of times, I have watched over and over the Easy Freestyle DVD and practiced the techniques, and I have watched the 02 in H20 and practiced the bowl thing, but didn't have the mirror. Anyway, I was feeling better about things until that OW experience. Of course, I will be in a lake, not in the Chesapeake Bay so I should have an easier experience, hopefully.

Terry, it is Lloyd that is teaching the class, but he does a couple of things different from what I learned from Betsy and Shane at the two TI clinics that I have attended. He started us on our backs (which did help me regarding my kicking) and he takes us from our backs into skate position which kind of disoriented me since I was used to going from superman glide into skate.

Lloyd thinks that I am reaching to deep in the water, thus not getting a good catch - how can I undo this bad habit? Thanks. You guys are great!!!
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