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Old 03-07-2016
novaswimmer novaswimmer is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2014
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novaswimmer
Default Focal point for just the right amount of head rotation for a breath.

I've been working on my breathing on an ongoing basis. It is by far the most difficult thing about freestyle for me.

One weird focal point I have been using lately is, as I turn my head to breathe, I close my eyes -- and feel the waterline moving downward across my face, first from ear, to upper eye, to my nose, and eventually as it just reaches below my mouth -- I take a breath. What this does is tells me just how far to rotate my head; no more.

Then I immediately rotate my head so I am looking back down (toward the bottom of the pool).

The whole point is not to over-rotate head, or pull the head out of the water too far which would affect my horizontal balance (=sinking legs), but it also makes sure the head is rotating along the body's long axis.

I used to just get a sense that I was rotating enough, then take a breath, but sometimes I'd end up with a mouthful of water. By feeling the waterline (it takes some practice), I KNOW when to take a breath, provided that I begin my rotation at the proper point of the stroke.

Maybe this will help someone ; maybe not!

Happy laps!

Last edited by novaswimmer : 03-07-2016 at 12:29 AM.
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  #2  
Old 03-07-2016
jenson1a jenson1a is offline
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Novaswimmer

Quote: One weird focal point I have been using lately is, as I turn my head to breathe, I close my eyes -- and feel the waterline moving downward across my face, first from ear, to upper eye, to my nose, and eventually as it just reaches below my mouth -- I take a breath. What this does is tells me just how far to rotate my head; no more.


This is a great focal point. Not only does it help the timing of the breath, but it also requires an awareness of what the body is doing. Too often when I practice the swim and nod drill, my mind starts to wander. your suggestion gives a different choice of what to concentrate on.

Also, I have been told to return my head to looking down as soon as I take that quick sip of air. Have had trouble with this since I usually time my head return with entry of the recovering arm. Causes too long of a breath. Will try your suggestion this morning while I warm up

Sherry
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  #3  
Old 03-12-2016
RSM
 
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Default That works

Nova, read your post yesterday, tried it in the pool and the first returns are promising. The pool was a bit too crowded for my first run to be very good, but every length I focused on it was an interesting experience and I definitely felt my rotation point stopping at more consistent point just past the lower corner of my mouth.

Of course I still gulped water fairly often, but one thing the TI drills have made me exceedingly comfortable with is how to deal with water in my mouth while swimming. I never stress about coughing, clearing my throat or any other 'normal' airways stuff because air never feels critical in the way it used to before TI.
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Old 03-12-2016
sclim sclim is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RSM View Post
Nova, read your post yesterday, tried it in the pool and the first returns are promising. The pool was a bit too crowded for my first run to be very good, but every length I focused on it was an interesting experience and I definitely felt my rotation point stopping at more consistent point just past the lower corner of my mouth.

Of course I still gulped water fairly often, but one thing the TI drills have made me exceedingly comfortable with is how to deal with water in my mouth while swimming. I never stress about coughing, clearing my throat or any other 'normal' airways stuff because air never feels critical in the way it used to before TI.
Can you confirm that the water went down your throat, not merely into your mouth then out again. I swallow a lot of water during practice, and I though it was only because I had not yet learned to catch the unwanted water in my mouth then spit it out again. Apparently this is not an obvious skill that everyone else has got but not me yet.
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  #5  
Old 03-14-2016
RSM
 
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Originally Posted by sclim View Post
Can you confirm that the water went down your throat, not merely into your mouth then out again. I swallow a lot of water during practice, and I though it was only because I had not yet learned to catch the unwanted water in my mouth then spit it out again. Apparently this is not an obvious skill that everyone else has got but not me yet.
Sorry for taking so long to respond. I actually had to hit the pool to check, and no, none went down my throat. I occasionally hit the gag reflex and cough if I breathe to late, but I swallow very, very rarely.
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