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  #1  
Old 10-21-2009
1628689 1628689 is offline
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1628689
Default Core Balance: Rotate Just Enough

Hello,

I am currently teaching myself how to swim the TI way from the easy freestyle dvd. I'm on the first lesson, exercise four:Core balance. The instructions for this drill are : To start in Superman Flutter, then to laser lead flutter, then drop a shoulder toward your chiin- keeping your head stable. Rotate just enough for your shoulder to clear the surface. Maintain this position, kicking gently, until you need a breath.

Anyhow, today I noticed that when I rotated to the right I couldn't go forward even though I was kicking. When I rotated to the left I was moving easily through the water, it was great. I don't know why it is not working that way when I rotate to the right! Does anyone know what I could be doing wrong? Thanks!

Luis
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  #2  
Old 10-21-2009
pepperr pepperr is offline
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The best way that may be difficult to do is to ask someone to record you as you test both sides. Probably the best way for a visual learner but I'm not the experts so I hope they come to help!
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  #3  
Old 10-21-2009
westyswoods westyswoods is offline
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I agree totally with pepperr, the video camera is an invaluable tool. I had and still have to some degree the same problem. My right side is much stronger than my left. When I first started TI drills I would go nowhere or even backwards ( yes backwards ). Look for some threads on proper kick technique. Most every drill session I will start with 5 mins of verticle kicking. Using some type of flotation device and holding it at my waist I will try to keep my body line straight up and down, then kick making sure the power is generated from the hips (not knees). Keep legs as straight as possible and withing your hips. Allow your feet to flick through your ankles. If you have never done these using your hip and core for power, a word of caution is they are not easy. Work up gradually through several drills. You may very well find one leg is much stronger than the other. These also work the ankles for flexibility, which I have very little of. With time you should be able to do away with the flotation device. I still at times only for an aid.The good part of all this is that with TI kicking is not viewed as critcial piece of the propulsion process. Mostly for assisting core rotation. Fins are also another option to get you started. In the TI workshop I took probably half of us had the same issue . Hope this helps and hope you view learning the TI way as a journey.

Have a great day Westy
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  #4  
Old 10-21-2009
CoachEricDeSanto CoachEricDeSanto is offline
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The other thing I would, having not seen you yet, is to stand in front of the mirror and rotate from one side to the other as if the mirror was the bottom of the pool. See if you can find any differences in your body position between sides. It is very common that people are uneven in neck flexibility, the way the body moves, holding a straight line in the body, or a whole list of other things. Dry land practice helps identify those.
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  #5  
Old 10-22-2009
pepperr pepperr is offline
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Hey Westy(and to the other members) How do I know if I'm kicking from the core? I don't kick much or have been trying not to. i know I have at least a decent kick and my legs are semi-fluid. I think I'm using my core when I kick but how do I really know?
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  #6  
Old 10-22-2009
eddiewouldgo eddiewouldgo is offline
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You will know as a consequence of where you feel the muscle fatigue from the movement, or at least from prolonged bouts of the movement. You should feel it in your hip flexor, glute, and, to some extent, your lower torso. Not in your quads and hamstrings.
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  #7  
Old 10-22-2009
dtw dtw is offline
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To 1628689 - you may want to try adjusting your forward arm position when on your right side. As it points down (deeper) your legs will float more to the surface. I find that my front arm position differs for each side.

Personally, I am not a fan of a lot of kick whatsoever. It's a bit of an energy waster as what is really propelling you forward in the water is the transfer from side-to-side. This will be proven later with a simple drill: freestyle with hands in a fist and no kick.

To Pepperr - I find what works for me is visualization. I try to focus (visualize) on making my core muscles propel me forward and not my quads or hamstrings. For the most part it works so long as I stay loose.

Good Luck!
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  #8  
Old 10-22-2009
inca inca is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dtw View Post
- I find what works for me is visualization. I try to focus (visualize) on making my core muscles propel me forward and not my quads or hamstrings. For the most part it works so long as I stay loose.

Good Luck!
I think I am moving and kicking from core and if which muscles feel "used" after swimming, then it is confirmed. But I *do* have a problem staying loose while concentrating on staying long and streamlined and propelling myself from the core. Any advice for me?

(Sorry Luis for jumping in on your question, but this response triggered mine)
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  #9  
Old 10-22-2009
dtw dtw is offline
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dtw
Default Staying Loose

By no means is this my strong suit but I work at it. Here are a few tips that work for me:

1. Keep your hands loose - I find that if I concentrate on keeping my hands loose then my arms stay loose too.

2. Aim for the rails - I found that sometimes when my right arm was straight it had a tendency to move off of my rail to the inside. By focusing on staying loose (including my shoulder) I found that my reach stays at shoulder width along the rails. It seems funny to say when swimming freestyle but I really do try to keep my shoulders loose.

3. Stomach muscles - I suppose the trick here is not to contract your longitudinal stomach muscles (rectus abdominis). When contracted, I'm far less loose. To avoid any habits, and I'm not sure if TI coach would agree or not (would be interesting to hear), sometimes I focus on contracting my transverse abdominis, which actually helps my torso stay loose. Again, I don't know if this is right or not.

4. Lastly - stroke thought. My long swims are currently in the 3-4km range and the best way not to get bored is to think about each stroke and staying loose for each one. Sometimes I will hit a zone that I feel so loose that it's like swinging from skate-to-skate. Best feeling. The point is - think about each stroke and play with the nuances.

I hope that this helps.
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  #10  
Old 10-23-2009
1628689 1628689 is offline
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1628689
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Westywoods,

I'm doing the same thing that you said while performing this exercise, going backwards. Is it really the kick that helps this? Are you able to go propel on your right now?
LUIS
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