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  #1  
Old 03-04-2014
abregov abregov is offline
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Join Date: Nov 2011
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abregov
Default Masters or TI swimming?

I have a question regarding TI swimming and masters swimming. I have read the TI book, watched the CD and done the TI drills. It has made me enjoy swimming for the first time in my life (age 50). I have completed 12 triathlons (Olympic and sprint distance races over the last two years). I am gearing up for my first IM and want to improve my swimming.

Here is my question, I have joined two triathlon swim classes and both have been coached by US Masters Coaches. I do not enjoy swimming with a pull buoy, hand paddles or kick boards.

When I swim using my TI methods I enjoy swimming. When I go to these classes I feel they are trying to make me a Phelps type of swimmer and I do not enjoy it at all. The methods and drills seem the opposite of how TI makes me feel. Am I doing myself harm by not sticking with this type of training? When I talk to fellow triathletes they tell me they are doing these Masters Type classes.

I do not swim fast (100 yds @ 1:50 to 2:00) and not really looking to win my age group in triathlons. I just like participating in triathlons and want to get out of the water under the cut off time and enjoy the bike ride and run.

I have signed up for a TI workshop coming to my area in a few weeks and looking forward to it. What I want to know, do I need to stick with these Masters type swim classes or is TI swimming good enough. When I swim on my own, I normally just swim nonstop TI style for an hour and get to about 3600 yds (that is what my Garmin says at the end of an hour). Just confused and conflicted. Thanks for any input or feedback.
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  #2  
Old 03-04-2014
ifican ifican is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2014
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ifican
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You have answered your own question in the process of asking. I have never enjoyed swimming more then after learning TI principles and methodologies. But i too learned early on that i did lot like masters classes. Joined one went twice and dropped it. You sound alot like me, enjoy the enjoyment of just doing what makes you happy. So my friend continue doing it, dont let the rest of the lemmings draw you off path. Continue down your road enjoying yourself along the way. When you want to go faster you will, you will figure that out as well, there is no way you cant if you just practice.
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  #3  
Old 03-05-2014
CoachSuzanne CoachSuzanne is offline
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I train, swim & coach because it's fun. If I have an athlete that is not making coaching fun, I find a polite way to "fire" him/her. If I am with a training group that is not fun, I find others or train on my own.

Who says you need to swim in a masters group?

You get to decide how you spend your valuable time.

Quote:
Originally Posted by abregov View Post
I have a question regarding TI swimming and masters swimming. I have read the TI book, watched the CD and done the TI drills. It has made me enjoy swimming for the first time in my life (age 50). I have completed 12 triathlons (Olympic and sprint distance races over the last two years). I am gearing up for my first IM and want to improve my swimming.

Here is my question, I have joined two triathlon swim classes and both have been coached by US Masters Coaches. I do not enjoy swimming with a pull buoy, hand paddles or kick boards.

When I swim using my TI methods I enjoy swimming. When I go to these classes I feel they are trying to make me a Phelps type of swimmer and I do not enjoy it at all. The methods and drills seem the opposite of how TI makes me feel. Am I doing myself harm by not sticking with this type of training? When I talk to fellow triathletes they tell me they are doing these Masters Type classes.

I do not swim fast (100 yds @ 1:50 to 2:00) and not really looking to win my age group in triathlons. I just like participating in triathlons and want to get out of the water under the cut off time and enjoy the bike ride and run.

I have signed up for a TI workshop coming to my area in a few weeks and looking forward to it. What I want to know, do I need to stick with these Masters type swim classes or is TI swimming good enough. When I swim on my own, I normally just swim nonstop TI style for an hour and get to about 3600 yds (that is what my Garmin says at the end of an hour). Just confused and conflicted. Thanks for any input or feedback.
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Suzanne Atkinson, MD
Level 3 USAT Coach
USA Paralympic Triathlon Coach
Coach of 5 time USA Triathlon Triathlete of the Year, Kirsten Sass
Steel City Endurance, LTD
Fresh Freestyle

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  #4  
Old 03-05-2014
CoachKevin CoachKevin is offline
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abregov, It doesn't have to be one or the other. Why not just keep going & do your own thing? You could say something to whoever runs the session to let them know that you appreciate the effort they put into planning & running the session, but you'd like to yadda, yadda, yadda... This way you still get to enjoy the social aspect of group swimming & you may even open some minds with your swimming. Make sure to take along your focal points, Tempo Trainer & imagination! There are lots of (TI) creative ways to "fit in". Might be a good idea to look for a traditional masters group rather than a triathlete group unless you only (want to) swim freestyle.
Good luck & let us know how you get along.
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Dubai, UAE
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  #5  
Old 03-05-2014
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CoachGeorgeRandall CoachGeorgeRandall is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2013
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Hi abregov and welcome!.

That's a great question and one I can realate to.

Before TI came into my life I signed-up for the Masters swim program at my local YMCA to learn how to swim and to prepare for my first sprint triathlon. It didn't take me long to realize that this is not what I want to feel from swimming. I think to I was a little insecure and intimated by whole thing. Here I was amongst 8-12 swimmers I couldn't swim, was fearful of the water, and literally felt exhuasted after 25 yards of survival swimming...This was not the path of discovery I was seeking.

That being said I do want to mention that I know and swim with many masters swimmers. Im usually the only TI'er among the group in our open water swims :-)..Im very comfortable with that!
There are are many wonderful people in the masters and they do do allot good for swimminig..which is a good thing.

Unfortunatley there are cultural walls that exist between Conventional/Triathlon/TI methods. You will face some pressure, resistance coupled with tunnel vision from groups and other swimmers that TI is not the right way to swim and if you want to be fast then you have to swim this way.

I can't decide which path you should take that wouldn't be fair to you. I can tell you which one I would take(that's a no brainer!). You need to chose what feels right for you and stay the course. I also think its important in your learning is to have an open mind, don't be overly judgemental, and be flexible. There are alot of skilled and intelligent Coaches/Swimmers that can offer a vast array of knowlege and experience...Ultimatley though your in charge of your own destiny

Good Luck on your journey
Happy Laps
Coach George
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  #6  
Old 03-05-2014
abregov abregov is offline
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Join Date: Nov 2011
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abregov
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Thanks for your input and feedback. I have no ill will towards the Master Coaches. I respect them and they are all great coaches. I am just trying to figure out if we are both getting to the same end result using two different methods or philosophies.

I enjoy TI swimming and it just feels more calm and energy efficient. When I do the masters swim training methods I feel they are geared towards making me a pool swimming sprinter.

What I want to do is finish my open water triathlon swims with the energy to complete the balance of the race. I swim in a local pool and a local fresh water lake. When TI swimming I feel calm and relaxed. When I go to master classes, it is do 200 yds, now 400 yds. Now 200 pull buoys, now 400 hand paddles, etc. I know I get the conditioning, but form suffers and simply it is not as enjoyable as Ti swimming.

What I am hearing is TI swimming will get me to the same place that a masters class will. It is just a different style of swimming, both methods are swimming and will get me to the finish line. I much prefer TI swimming to anything else. Thanks for your input.
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