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Old 05-17-2016
Tom Pamperin Tom Pamperin is offline
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Default Speed Gain from Faster Recovery Motion?

I'm winding down a couple/few months of practice with my primary focus on low tempo, low SPL swimming. This has all been very short repeats (25m-50m with a VERY occasional 100m repeat).

Last session I was tuning up and starting to swim longer repeats. In the middle of my first 100m in a long time, I became aware of just how gradual/slow/relaxed my recovery motion is at these tempos/SPLs. It felt great, but I decided to see what happened if I sped up the above-water portion of the stroke (recovery) while keeping the patient lead arm/leisurely feel of the underwater portion.

My first lengths were at 14-14 SPL, then after the switch, 15-15 SPL. I figured I'd come in at 1:40, but got a 1:35. Then I swam another 100m and really tried to let the recovery happen very quickly but still relaxed. This resulted in a stroke that felt a bit weird (part fast, part leisurely) but I came in at a 1:30, at 15-15-16-16 SPL.

1:30 and below is what I consider fast swimming for me right now, but my perceived effort level was noticeably lower than expected for that time. This has me ready to experiment further with speeding up my recovery, as I think there is a LOT of time to make up here to increase tempos and speeds.

Has anyone tried something similar? Am I off course with the idea of a stroke that is fast above water but slow underwater? I seemed to notice less FQS overlap and a faster catch, which led to higher SPL and a gain of easy speed.

Thanks for any thoughts--this seems such an obvious experiment to me (now that I've tried it a bit) that maybe it's what everyone is already doing and I just missed it somehow.
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  #2  
Old 05-17-2016
CoachSuzanne CoachSuzanne is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Pamperin View Post
I'm winding down a couple/few months of practice with my primary focus on low tempo, low SPL swimming. This has all been very short repeats (25m-50m with a VERY occasional 100m repeat).

Last session I was tuning up and starting to swim longer repeats. In the middle of my first 100m in a long time, I became aware of just how gradual/slow/relaxed my recovery motion is at these tempos/SPLs. It felt great, but I decided to see what happened if I sped up the above-water portion of the stroke (recovery) while keeping the patient lead arm/leisurely feel of the underwater portion.

My first lengths were at 14-14 SPL, then after the switch, 15-15 SPL. I figured I'd come in at 1:40, but got a 1:35. Then I swam another 100m and really tried to let the recovery happen very quickly but still relaxed. This resulted in a stroke that felt a bit weird (part fast, part leisurely) but I came in at a 1:30, at 15-15-16-16 SPL.

1:30 and below is what I consider fast swimming for me right now, but my perceived effort level was noticeably lower than expected for that time. This has me ready to experiment further with speeding up my recovery, as I think there is a LOT of time to make up here to increase tempos and speeds.

Has anyone tried something similar? Am I off course with the idea of a stroke that is fast above water but slow underwater? I seemed to notice less FQS overlap and a faster catch, which led to higher SPL and a gain of easy speed.

Thanks for any thoughts--this seems such an obvious experiment to me (now that I've tried it a bit) that maybe it's what everyone is already doing and I just missed it somehow.
THis is exactly how I introduce "gears" swimmingn in our weekend workshops and coach trainings, but modifying recovery speed. Good work. You're starting to see fruits of your experiment
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  #3  
Old 05-17-2016
Zenturtle Zenturtle is offline
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Yeah, faster recoveries are good up to a point.
You have build a good movement base to vary your recovery upon.
usually improves balance a bit too.
Its also interesting to accelerate the arm right from the exit out the water and let that speed go int the fornt part of the recovery.
This acceleration calls for a more active kick to stabilise the acceleration which can give a more connected kick feel followed with that arm weight thats pulling forward idea.
this feeling is more extreme in an arm thats kept straighter.

Have fun.
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Old 05-17-2016
tomoy tomoy is offline
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Yeah, +1 on faster recovery. I posted on this, 1 week ago and somewhere else recently.

http://www.totalimmersion.net/forum/...?t=8655&page=7

One thing to focus on is how you're getting the arm forward faster. You can pull it out with back and arm muscles but it takes some shoulder tension to control that motion or you can fling it out from hip drive at the end of your stroke.. The latter was working well for me, but runs the risk of back twisting injury, so it requires a good deal of core control and shoulder relaxation when your arm is up there.
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Old 05-17-2016
s.sciame s.sciame is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Pamperin View Post

1:30 and below is what I consider fast swimming for me right now, but my perceived effort level was noticeably lower than expected for that time. This has me ready to experiment further with speeding up my recovery, as I think there is a LOT of time to make up here to increase tempos and speeds.
Well done Tom, and it seems you're into a very interesting challenge now: build a sustainable 1:30 pace. To me, a sustainable 1:30/100m (or 1:22/100y) is a trademark of good swimming.

As Charles commented in this old thread:

Holding 1:30 is a statement, a statement that their's a certain efficiency into the stroke. The better the efficiency, the less we need to throw in physical effort although- and this is what makes this pace fun - there still need to be some effort thrown to hold this pace

Yes, it's a fun pace, like you I'm experimenting to find the least effort gear to sustain it. Anyway I believe you need some good aerobic fitness to own it (say for 400m or more), not only a refined stroke.

Way to go!
Salvo
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  #6  
Old 05-17-2016
sclim sclim is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Pamperin View Post
I'm winding down a couple/few months of practice with my primary focus on low tempo, low SPL swimming. This has all been very short repeats (25m-50m with a VERY occasional 100m repeat).

Last session I was tuning up and starting to swim longer repeats. In the middle of my first 100m in a long time, I became aware of just how gradual/slow/relaxed my recovery motion is at these tempos/SPLs. It felt great, but I decided to see what happened if I sped up the above-water portion of the stroke (recovery) while keeping the patient lead arm/leisurely feel of the underwater portion.

My first lengths were at 14-14 SPL, then after the switch, 15-15 SPL. I figured I'd come in at 1:40, but got a 1:35. Then I swam another 100m and really tried to let the recovery happen very quickly but still relaxed. This resulted in a stroke that felt a bit weird (part fast, part leisurely) but I came in at a 1:30, at 15-15-16-16 SPL.

1:30 and below is what I consider fast swimming for me right now, but my perceived effort level was noticeably lower than expected for that time. This has me ready to experiment further with speeding up my recovery, as I think there is a LOT of time to make up here to increase tempos and speeds.

Has anyone tried something similar? Am I off course with the idea of a stroke that is fast above water but slow underwater? I seemed to notice less FQS overlap and a faster catch, which led to higher SPL and a gain of easy speed.

Thanks for any thoughts--this seems such an obvious experiment to me (now that I've tried it a bit) that maybe it's what everyone is already doing and I just missed it somehow.
This is very interesting to me in my puzzle as a beginner if it is productive to spend all the time I was putting in to 50 m repeats (and 25m before that) to achieve low SPLs if it turned out I couldn't sustain it for very long; which is why I gave it up and turned back to 100s and more.

But here I find an experienced and competent swimmer putting in months of low tempo and low distance (25m and 50m) repeats to achieve low SPL. Obviously it was productive. What SPL values were you trying to achieve, and did you arrive at? Were these SPLs you trained at 25 and 50m and achieved at these short distances also achievable in the same numbers once you spun them out to 100m?
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  #7  
Old 05-17-2016
Tom Pamperin Tom Pamperin is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zenturtle View Post
Yeah, faster recoveries are good up to a point.
You have build a good movement base to vary your recovery upon.
usually improves balance a bit too.
Its also interesting to accelerate the arm right from the exit out the water and let that speed go int the fornt part of the recovery.
This acceleration calls for a more active kick to stabilise the acceleration which can give a more connected kick feel followed with that arm weight thats pulling forward idea.
this feeling is more extreme in an arm thats kept straighter.

Have fun.
ZT,

this is exactly what it's feeling like (except I'm not doing the straight arm). My kick feels stronger and more diagonally connected to the spearing motion, and I feel more stability in the core overall. My impression is that there's less "slippage" in the system, as if I've taken up some slack and gotten a tighter, more productive connection through the whole body. My head also felt more relaxed and supported by the water.

Tom
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  #8  
Old 05-17-2016
Tom Pamperin Tom Pamperin is offline
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Tom Pamperin
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tomoy View Post
Yeah, +1 on faster recovery. I posted on this, 1 week ago and somewhere else recently.

http://www.totalimmersion.net/forum/...?t=8655&page=7

One thing to focus on is how you're getting the arm forward faster. You can pull it out with back and arm muscles but it takes some shoulder tension to control that motion or you can fling it out from hip drive at the end of your stroke.. The latter was working well for me, but runs the risk of back twisting injury, so it requires a good deal of core control and shoulder relaxation when your arm is up there.
tomoy,

yes, I missed that; thanks for reposting it. It sounds like you're ahead of me on this. I think I'm doing the recovery more with the lats/shoulders and not the hips right now. I was really trying to be mindful of "painting a wide line" today and it seemed to work well.

One thing I noticed is that I was visualizing all of my body's motion going forward (hugging the surface) and not bobbing up and down at all. I'm not sure how accurate that perception is, but that's what it feels like.
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  #9  
Old 05-17-2016
Tom Pamperin Tom Pamperin is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by s.sciame View Post
Well done Tom, and it seems you're into a very interesting challenge now: build a sustainable 1:30 pace. To me, a sustainable 1:30/100m (or 1:22/100y) is a trademark of good swimming.
Salvo,

thanks for the comment. It's interesting to hear you say this, because I was kind of thinking the same thing (maybe I got it initially from Charles?): Hmm... I wonder if a 7:30 500m would be a good next target?

Yes, these speeds are pretty fun. We'll see...
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  #10  
Old 05-17-2016
Tom Pamperin Tom Pamperin is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sclim View Post
But here I find an experienced and competent swimmer putting in months of low tempo and low distance (25m and 50m) repeats to achieve low SPL. Obviously it was productive. What SPL values were you trying to achieve, and did you arrive at? Were these SPLs you trained at 25 and 50m and achieved at these short distances also achievable in the same numbers once you spun them out to 100m?
sclim,

thanks for the questions. It's interesting to compare as we seem to have opposite strengths and weaknesses, don't we? I think my focus on SPL is a holdover from early TI materials, which seemed to emphasize that much more (there wasn't even a green zone, just the implication that low SPL was a mark of efficiency--which it is, but I really like the newer focus on speed = DPS x SR.

I wanted to get as low a SPL as I could and still be swimming, without cheating with a longer push-off or overgliding, and could hold for something like 10 x 100m on 2:00. I was imagining 12 SPL since I had achieved that in the past with my old, bad, pre-wide tracks stroke. I got 13 SPL instead, with a very occasional 12, and one or two 11s.

As to how sustainable my SPL is, the 11-12 results are flukes. The 13 I can hold consistently for a set of 4 x 25, 3 x 50, 2 x 75, 1 x 100, with a speed of :47-48/50m. This takes an intense focus on stretching tall, and results in a much higher perceived effort than faster speeds at higher SPLs. Also, I had to work a while to get there. There were weeks where I never finished the 3 x 50m--I'd do one, fail on the second, and start all over with the 25s instead.

Endless variables to be curious about!
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