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  #1  
Old 10-03-2010
Lawrence Lawrence is offline
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Default Swimming long distance in a pool: which turn to use

Question for those who swim sets of several hundreds metres or more in a pool during practice: does using a tumble turn lead to a gradual build up of carbon dioxide in the bloodstream?

I don't use a tumble turn and have held off learning it because I suspect it deprives one of air and that the 'open' turn (rolling onto one's back to breathe just before reaching the wall) is superior in this respect.

Any thoughts?
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Old 10-03-2010
Richardsk Richardsk is offline
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Hi Lawrence

Like you, I'm a devotee of the open turn. I have tried the tumble but without much success yet. I think it would probably be worth it, especially for longer races, if your tumble was faster than your open turn. Especially for older swimmers, the oxygen deprivation issue is a factor, but it doesn't seem to trouble some of the top British master swimmers in the older age groups. As one of the bottom master swimmers in the 75-79 group (in most events the actual bottom) I'm happy to just plod along with the open turn. When I get a bit faster I may do some work on the tumble ( flip for you transatlantic types).

I live in hope.
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Old 10-03-2010
Lawrence Lawrence is offline
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Thanks Richard. Pehaps I should add that I don't race so am not really concerned with saving time. Even for those able to sustain a tumble turn over long distances, I can't see how it doesn't come at an oxygen cost, given all the time one they spend underwater during and and following the tumble.
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Old 10-03-2010
Richardsk Richardsk is offline
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Lawrence

I think the only advantage the tumble has over the open turn is that it saves time. I'm not sure how much but it is obviously worth while for elite swimmers or even average competitive swimmers.

Apart from the personal satisfaction of adding another skill to your bag of tricks,which is a not insignificant factor, if you don't swim competitively, or even like me take part in competitions to compete against yourself rather than other swimmers, then learning to tumble could be seen as surplus to requirements.

I doubt if the oxygen deficit is huge in shorter distances -say up to 400m. Of course I may be wrong.
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Old 10-03-2010
Grant Grant is offline
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There is a growing trend of thought in my neck of the woods (west coast Canada) even while racing that an efficient open turn is the way to go. This approach is being adopted by some swimmers 60 and up. The theory is that the extra breath it provides at least makes up for the small loss of time and maybe even overcomes that loss. There is a mental benefit in that while in the midst of the open turn I have the thought that I am coming off the wall stronger and have lots of O2.
My personal opinion is that if one has mastered the flip turn then stick with it. A well performed flip is a thing of beauty and grace. For non racing personal enjoyment swimming the efficient open turn is a sensible approach.
May we all swim with ease at the speeds we choose.
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Old 10-03-2010
KatieK KatieK is offline
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I do open turns, but I'm planning on working on flip turns this winter. I don't like the way my open turns tend to get slower as I get tired. I find myself trying to sneak in a little rest. I think flip turns give a better chance for uninterrupted rhythm. Also, I like it that they work different abdominal muscles that swimming.

I haven't focused on them too much up to this point because *bad* flip turns cause major oxygen deficit. That in turn makes my stroke count go up which doesn't help my training. At the moment, I'm only interested in competing in open water.

I'm looking forward to it as a nice off-season project.
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Old 10-03-2010
haschu33 haschu33 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grant View Post
A well performed flip is a thing of beauty and grace
Yes! That's why I want learn it... later ...

I have seen really strange tumble turns in various pools. From watching I would say the secret is to hit the wall with speed, then you come out of the wall with speed. Maybe that a tumble turn does not work well when you are slow.
I have seen people doing a tumble turn, more precise doing a somersault... and then what? Some of them stop at the wall, and then kick off the wall the way they do it when they start directly from the wall. There are really strange variations.
For many of those amateur swimmers in the pool (like me) who use a tumble turn (unlike me) an open turn would suit them a lot better in every aspect.
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Old 10-04-2010
Mike from NS Mike from NS is offline
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I've got to add my $ .02 Canadian so that's only worth about $ .01785 US.....

I tried to start to learn the flip turn this summer in shallow water. My process was to somersault and get used to the different orientations. What I hadn't expected was the sinus pain and headache that came with the somersault. The vertigo and dis-orientation diminished over time after many attempts. And the last few times I had tried this in shallow water the sinus and vertigo were only slightly a factor. So for me it took many attempts just to get the first parts working. To get the learning curve started I used the "waterfall" flip turn with the somersault. Build some speed towards the wall and when ready to flip drop the head ... chin to chest.... and let the water pressure on the back of the neck help initiate the flip. Try to keep the hands out of the action.

In the deeper pool I've only tried it a couple of times so far .... but with practice I hope to have it nailed down by spring.
Mike

(PS: Hi Pat .. the Zumba Latin dancer!)
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Last edited by Mike from NS : 10-04-2010 at 03:03 AM.
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  #9  
Old 10-04-2010
ewa.swimmer ewa.swimmer is offline
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I can do a great flip turn but choose not to use them in long distances. I need the oxygen. If I do a flip I cannot streamline dolphin underwater for very long.
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  #10  
Old 10-04-2010
terry terry is offline
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Default Flip Turn: Fast AND 'Lazy'

A well-performed flip turn is indeed a thing of beauty. It also feels wonderful when done well. And finally, as with any swimming skill, pursuit of improvement is most rewarded by accomplishment when your learning process is organized, thoughtful, patient and persistent. Learning to Turn will indeed grow new brain cells.

While I have known how to flip for 45 years, I still work on improving it and still sense my turn improving. I have a vision of Continuous Improvement in my flip turn that I plan to sustain for another 40 years - so it's still getting better at 99.

The reasons I gave above are my most compelling ones for working on the flip turn . . . but I also race, and I know for certain that a fast flip gives me an edge there.

However, since my early-40s I've had to balance my desire for speed with a recognition that my aerobic capacity is slowly diminishing, bringing with it the potential for a buildup of CO2 in my bloodstream as I progress further into a long race that may involve 39 (1000 yd) to 65 (1650 yd) flip turns, each of which subjects me to about 4 seconds of breath-holding after 14 to 15 seconds of swimming.

Thus my middle-aged flip turn must be fast AND efficient. Actually more than efficient. It must be fast and 'LAZY.'

The query is timely as this week I expect to approve the final edit on our newest video, which shows step-by-step learning processes for the Flip Turn AND the Open Turn AND the pushoff AND the breakout.

Keep watching.
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