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  #1  
Old 03-16-2018
david1swe
 
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Default Help to improve technique and avoid injury (video)

Hello everyone,

Thought I'd try this out. I've been practicing swimming quite intensive last year, usually swim 4-6 times a week, and now do the front crawl 1500m in slightly less than 25m. Last weeks I've been struggling a bit, and also been bothered by vague discomfort/ache in the left upper arm, so I decided to post this and see if anyone here has any advice.
Ever since I started swimming more seriously about a year ago I've had some trouble with the upper left arm from time to time. Not painful, but rather like a vague discomfort or slight ache every now and then. Maybe someone can see some issue in my technique that may cause this?
Oddly when I watch these clips it seems like my left arm technique is better than the right arm technique, as I'm bending my palm more on the right arm...but I don't know.

Any tips to improve technique in any aspect would be welcome.

Here are two clips:

https://youtu.be/5K7ESmAWzvo - underwater, side angle, left and right
https://youtu.be/f5Mlecojj9c - underwater, angle from front and below
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  #2  
Old 03-16-2018
WFEGb WFEGb is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Hamburg
Posts: 1,104
WFEGb
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Hello David,

1500m in 25min is a very respectable swim! Think many here in the forum are a little bit jealous about...

What jumps into my eyes related to your question when watching the videos: Your spear is definitely too high and you're pressing down your straight arms against the water. That might be a cause of your discomfort. You should give the deeper TI-spear a try:

When you're reaching/spearing forward with your hand/arm this movement should be with no/least resistance/pressure all around your arm to target where your fingertips are just deeper than your belly (deepest of your whole body) wrist above fingertips, elbow above wrist and shoulder above elbow. Immideately after full but relaxed stretch your arm should drift into the catch. Should just happen without being forced. At least it will present you some less drag (from your actual upspear and little waver up) and less stress to your upper arms.

Not sure, why your discomfort is only on the left side, because the catch and press of your left side seems better, wider and more on the rail than your right, where you're sometimes crossing your midline. Maybe you're righthanded and your right side is more resilient.

Give it a try integrated in your very good work!

Best regards,
Werner
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  #3  
Old 03-17-2018
Mushroomfloat
 
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I'll tell you straight up in my stroke critique style which i have been flamed for by people who only want to be told by those who wear T-Shirts with "Coach" written on the back in big white letters.

Ok
Your left arm is pushing out and down whilst breathing you are stretching and hyperextending your humerus inside the shoulder socket, this is where your discomfort / impingement is ciming from.

Correction:

Do not let the left arm collapse whilst breathing to the right

Your must breathe earlier

When your left finger pierce the water that is the time to turn aways from that arm to air,
you need to turn your head and intake air whilst that left arm is soearing directly forward in front of the left shoulder,

You need to turn face back down to look at the black line in time with the left arm making catch lock on

you should see your left arm make catch out of the top left of your left goggle

The left arm can be dropping lower under its own weight as you breathe but not pushing out wide to the left to support a lunge to air
(which is what your doing in your video)

Take my critique as you find it
No need to come back with a "oh i've tried that and it don't work" or "My "Coach" says i'm doin well" etc etc
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  #4  
Old 03-17-2018
Mushroomfloat
 
Posts: n/a
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P.S your right arm is crossing over the centre line at entry then pushing out to the right

Enter in a "Y" position because when rotated what you tink is in front of your shoulder is actually inside the shoulder line when you pass through "flat" on your way to the other side / edge.
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  #5  
Old 03-17-2018
novaswimmer novaswimmer is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 228
novaswimmer
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Quote:
Originally Posted by david1swe View Post
Hello everyone,

Thought I'd try this out. I've been practicing swimming quite intensive last year, usually swim 4-6 times a week, and now do the front crawl 1500m in slightly less than 25m.
Any tips to improve technique in any aspect would be welcome.
I did not look at the videos, but can you describe the location of your pain better?
What part of arm/shoulder? Could it be the anterior part of shoulder where the biceps tendon passes? If so, then sounds like tendonitis. Does it ache more at night than in the day? Are you left-handed?
Do you always breathe to your right side?
Looks like you may not rotate enough to your left side and your arm has to work extra hard to come out of the water.

Last edited by novaswimmer : 03-17-2018 at 02:00 PM.
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  #6  
Old 03-17-2018
david1swe
 
Posts: n/a
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by WFEGb View Post
Hello David,

1500m in 25min is a very respectable swim! Think many here in the forum are a little bit jealous about...

What jumps into my eyes related to your question when watching the videos: Your spear is definitely too high and you're pressing down your straight arms against the water. That might be a cause of your discomfort. You should give the deeper TI-spear a try:

When you're reaching/spearing forward with your hand/arm this movement should be with no/least resistance/pressure all around your arm to target where your fingertips are just deeper than your belly (deepest of your whole body) wrist above fingertips, elbow above wrist and shoulder above elbow. Immideately after full but relaxed stretch your arm should drift into the catch. Should just happen without being forced. At least it will present you some less drag (from your actual upspear and little waver up) and less stress to your upper arms.

Not sure, why your discomfort is only on the left side, because the catch and press of your left side seems better, wider and more on the rail than your right, where you're sometimes crossing your midline. Maybe you're righthanded and your right side is more resilient.

Give it a try integrated in your very good work!

Best regards,
Werner
Thanks for feedback! Yeah, I noticed too when I saw this recording that something wasn't quite right in the entry phase, esp. right arm. I'll try to lower it a bit.
Indeed I am right handed, so I guess it could be a reason that only my left arm is troubling.

At first I thought it may be some rotation issue, but watching this video it seems like I do rotate quite a lot, and maybe even too much in the hips - compared to pros who seems to have a more stable lower body.
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  #7  
Old 03-17-2018
david1swe
 
Posts: n/a
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mushroomfloat View Post
I'll tell you straight up in my stroke critique style which i have been flamed for by people who only want to be told by those who wear T-Shirts with "Coach" written on the back in big white letters.

Ok
Your left arm is pushing out and down whilst breathing you are stretching and hyperextending your humerus inside the shoulder socket, this is where your discomfort / impingement is ciming from.

Correction:

Do not let the left arm collapse whilst breathing to the right

Your must breathe earlier

When your left finger pierce the water that is the time to turn aways from that arm to air,
you need to turn your head and intake air whilst that left arm is soearing directly forward in front of the left shoulder,

You need to turn face back down to look at the black line in time with the left arm making catch lock on

you should see your left arm make catch out of the top left of your left goggle

The left arm can be dropping lower under its own weight as you breathe but not pushing out wide to the left to support a lunge to air
(which is what your doing in your video)

Take my critique as you find it
No need to come back with a "oh i've tried that and it don't work" or "My "Coach" says i'm doin well" etc etc
It's OK, any critique is welcome. And I don't have any coach, so haven't got much instruction on how to do things properly.
I'll try and test your advice. Not quite sure how to time/change my breathing, as it tends to come quite naturally, but I'll try.
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  #8  
Old 03-17-2018
david1swe
 
Posts: n/a
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by novaswimmer View Post
I did not look at the videos, but can you describe the location of your pain better?
What part of arm/shoulder? Could it be the anterior part of shoulder where the biceps tendon passes? If so, then sounds like tendonitis. Does it ache more at night than in the day? Are you left-handed?
Do you always breathe to your right side?
Looks like you may not rotate enough to your left side and your arm has to work extra hard to come out of the water.
It's a bit hard to explain as it is a vague discomfort. When I first had problems it was in the shoulder region, but more recently it's rather been around/slightly above the elbow. Went to see a physioterapist last week, and they couldn't find anything in particular. But they helped me work out a programme of gym exercises to strengthen the shoulders, so hopefully that can help if I take the chance to actually start going to the gym...
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  #9  
Old 03-17-2018
david1swe
 
Posts: n/a
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by novaswimmer View Post
Do you always breathe to your right side?
Looks like you may not rotate enough to your left side and your arm has to work extra hard to come out of the water.
I prefer to breath on my right side. When I started to swim crawl regularly this spring I breathed bilaterally every third stroke, but since this summer/autumn I've transitioned to breathing right side every second stroke. Still I've been practinging some other breathing patterns too, but breathing right every 2nd is what feels easiest to me now.

I've been thinking too it may be a rotation issue. It seems like my hips are rotating quite a lot, but maybe not torso as much?
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  #10  
Old 03-17-2018
Danny Danny is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 1,442
Danny
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There's definitely some asymmetry in your spearing, probably due to breathing only on one side. I would try swimming one length breathing right and the length back breathing left. That way you get to breath every second stroke but you can compare what you are doing on both sides. You may also be raising your head a little when you breath, but the first thing I would work on is breathing on different sides on alternating lengths and comparing what you are doing with your spear in each direction.

You may be pushing down with the opposite arm when you role to breath in order to raise your head. Not sure if that is what might be hurting your shoulder?

Good luck!

Last edited by Danny : 03-17-2018 at 10:10 PM.
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