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Old 02-11-2012
Mike from NS Mike from NS is offline
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Default Practices that propelled relaxed advancement

Please see Terry's post below ~ "How to Develop Ninja-Level Pacing Skill" and Todd's reply for a more serious or advanced practice set than what I'm about to offer. But not knowing which conference this question might best suit, this one seem most likely - and here it is !.

Something I wondered about is what people (who can remember beginning swimming as an adult) did that seemed to instantly promote advancement. I'm talking mostly from a beginner's viewpoint here. However I suppose stated another way; what did you do that propelled yourself from any given plateau? I feel advancement in swimming comes with greater confidence which comes through being comfortably relaxed in the water. TI has taught me this. I'm constantly trying to expand my comfort zone to promote a relaxed state.

Something I "practiced" yesterday which indeed gave me instantly a new confidence and even that feeling of "letting the water support me", is why I ask the question. Most here will see this as very trivial, however for me it promoted a significant and instant advancement. Likely most of you can clearly remember, when first beginning the learning path, something just as trivial that you have done which also instantly promoted a relaxed confidence. Some practice or drill which is slightly outside the TI basic instructions. (Coming from your state or experience as a beginner, there maybe something that Terry might even be able to use for the very basic instructions. Something that has been tried and proven useful.)

OK - enough wandering --- Yesterday as another phase in trying to build confidence in a fin free state I very simply bobbed to the bottom of the pool. One good push from the side lip to the bottom with a push off the floor back to the surface. (Told you it was trivial.) I worked my way down the side wall into deeper water with each bob until I reached the end and bobbed to the bottom and sat there for a few seconds. Once back to the surface one nearby guy remarked "don't make me come down there to get you." It is only 3.95 M deep but without the fins (my security "blanket") it was something new for me in building confidence. I swam for about 90 minutes after this without the fins in a much more relaxed state than any time prior. Knowing I "survived" several trips to the bottom had a relaxing effect I suppose. I've maintained since starting to learn to swim that a lot of "it" is getting to know the environment. Getting used of what to expect to happen. Now I can't wait to get back next Friday and continue more learning.

Now stop your laughing and offer some similar "practices". We've all been there .... look at Nicodemus's thread on how he sorted out his breathing. Something not found on any TI DVDs, I expect, but one of the most helpful threads on the site.

Mike
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Last edited by Mike from NS : 02-11-2012 at 05:44 PM.
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Old 02-12-2012
westyswoods westyswoods is offline
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Default Bottoming

Mike,

You might want to try this. Shallow end exercise, lay back exhale air and fall to the bottom of the pool lying flat on back. May need nose plug. I find this an interesting position and view. Can not hold it very long, but the more you can relax longer you'll stay there. Neat thing is can always stand up, just need to bust that uncomfortable feeling.


So happy to hear your progressing.


Swim Silent and Be Well
Westy
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Old 02-12-2012
Mike from NS Mike from NS is offline
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Thanks Westy !

I'll try that. Your suggestion also brought something else to mind that comes under a heading of "play" but it also builds confidence.

Get a weight and in whatever depth you're comfortable get to the bottom with lungs full of air. Lay on your back with the weight on your chest to keep you on the bottom. Block the nostrils and blow big bubbles (one at a time) from your mouth --- maybe better stated as "blow a mouth full of air" at a time and watch as the bubble forms a ring as it floats to the surface. Smoke rings in water !! Something else to practice that probably isn't on a TI DVD yet ! Google "dolphin bubbles" or "dolphin rings" to see the effect. I posted a link about 1-1/2 years ago showing the playful dolphins. We should learn to play too. But this bubble blowing helps develop breath control and confidence as well as being a fun thing to do. It's possible to do this in as little as 3 or 4 feet depth. The "cleaner" release of air - the better the ring.

Mike
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Old 02-12-2012
WFEGb WFEGb is offline
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A variation to Westyswood's suggestion:
Start with SG and blow out steady and (more or less) slowly. Blow out so much, that your body sinks horizontal. (It's nearly impossible to go down without your feet will first touch the ground... No matter how deep or shallow) You'll gain confidence to your buoyancy and will amplify the feel for horizontal straightness.

Regards,
Werner
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Old 02-13-2012
CoachSuzanne CoachSuzanne is offline
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Congrats on your breakthrough!

I suppose that playing "sharks & minnows" as a kid sort of freed me of any fear of not coming up for air. No matter how cut-throat the competition got...you always got up for air even if someone tried to hold you down. Not that I can't understand the fear that people have, but I guess I'm fortunate to have been able to play as a kid and had a pool nearby.

Trying to teach adults these same things isn't as easy as playing "sharks & minnows". ;)
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Old 02-13-2012
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CoachJohnB CoachJohnB is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CoachSuzanne View Post
Congrats on your breakthrough!

I suppose that playing "sharks & minnows" as a kid sort of freed me of any fear of not coming up for air. No matter how cut-throat the competition got...you always got up for air even if someone tried to hold you down. Not that I can't understand the fear that people have, but I guess I'm fortunate to have been able to play as a kid and had a pool nearby.

Trying to teach adults these same things isn't as easy as playing "sharks & minnows". ;)
Maybe you should teach them to play "sharks and minnows" Learning how to play in the water is just as important as learning the movements of proper swimming strokes.

Playing games is a great way to become comfortable in the water.
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Old 02-14-2012
Mike from NS Mike from NS is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CoachJohnB View Post
Maybe you should teach them to play "sharks and minnows" Learning how to play in the water is just as important as learning the movements of proper swimming strokes.

Playing games is a great way to become comfortable in the water.
Glad to see that you had said this John ! That's exactly my belief! If we are comfortable we would learn strokes and breathing technique much more quickly - and much more easily. As a adult we have learned "fear" and therefore tense up; whereas kids know little about fear and learn to do things by experimentation through playing. We older people tend to approach new things with too much of a closed mind with thinking: ... " we can't do that --- ". Kids often approach new things accepting the challenge. Things that experience tells us " we can't do" and therefore are reluctant to try. And why should the kids have all the fun ??

Mike
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