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  #1  
Old 05-13-2010
dobarton dobarton is offline
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dobarton
Default Core balance with breathing?

Ok, I'm finally starting to use the drills. I also understand the importance of going through them in order to improve one thing at a time, BUT...

I can do Core Balance quite nicely, I think. I can do it on my back or on my front. Turning to breath, however, causes me to sink... Then my face is under water facing the surface... Now I've got water in my nose and mouth... Now I'm freaking out... Needless to say, I'm "practicing struggle" every time I try Core Balance with breathing.

I'm pretty sure I'm losing it when my shoulders reach stacked position during rotation.

Do I just need to learn to continue to exhale until my face "breaches?" Or is there another way to turn so I don't sink? Obviously, my balance is not ideal. I don't have quite the same difficulty when skating and breathing, I think because in skate, I have a leading arm on "wide track" when I turn to "sweet spot."

Any suggestions? Or do I go past Core Balance with breathing and work on skating drills?
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  #2  
Old 05-14-2010
daveblt daveblt is offline
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It sounds as if you are not relaxed enough and need to work on balance . When you turn to air don't lift your head ,keep your laser pointing toward the wall and lean forward into the water .If you lift your head because you think you may not get to air soon enough it can cause you to tense up and sink.Roll just enough while looking down and roll past the stacked shoulders position to breathe in sweet spot . Balance and relaxation are the key to feel light and effortless.

Dave
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  #3  
Old 05-14-2010
archipelago archipelago is offline
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when practicing the core balance drill, I'm looking straight downwards, then when rotating to the sweet spot, I'm not changing the head position
- as the result my laser beam remains straight and I can breathe easily.
stay ralaxed, with as tall body as possible, check your head position when in the sweet spot, try to imagine you're holding something under your chin, then your head should keep the correct position
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Old 05-14-2010
cmperkins cmperkins is offline
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I agree with Dave and archipelago. When rotating from face down don't lift your head towards the water because your balance will go. Keep it flat and rotate around the head spine line.

It takes a while to learn that your face will breach the surface after a moment or two, but I know that the struggle reflex can kick in beforehand! You just have to learn to trust that the air will come.

The other thing to remember is to not exhale completely before you start your rotation as empty lungs will mean no buoyancy and your whole body will start sinking.
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  #5  
Old 05-14-2010
terry terry is offline
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Dobarton - et. al.
What drill guide are you using as your reference? The reason I ask is that we haven't used Core Balance (CB) as a drill whose primary focus was to improve breathing in 10 years or more.
CB does have considerable value as an exercise for improvement, but that value is more in the area of "teaching and tuning" your nervous system to make better use of your spinal stabilizer muscles.
These muscle are important in helping you
1) Maintain an actively streamlined bodyline throughout the stroke. In particular to keep one side of your body in a highly-stable low-drag position while the other side is actively-propelling.
2) Connect the propelling armstroke to the power source of core-body weight shift.

However CB requires a fairly high level of body control, which is usually the product of a few dozen hours of practice of easier drills, such as Superman Glide, Skate, SpearSkate and SpearSwitch. These drills are easier because you do them with an arm extended and only need to rotate, usually, 90 degrees or less - compared to the 180 degrees or greater rotation in CB.

If you do wish to practice CB the advice given above will be helpful, but you'll probably find it easier to master some basic breathing skills by following the drills in Lesson 6 of the Easy Freestyle DVD (SG, Skate and Spear are in Lessons 1 to 3).
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  #6  
Old 05-14-2010
dobarton dobarton is offline
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Default Which version?

I'm using the Easy Freestyle DVD. Maybe I obtained an old version, but Core Balance was in the first lesson and skating in the second lesson. I haven't gone past that because I really wanted to work long on skate and switch drills. I find that I am deriving a great deal of benefit from them. I was hoping I'd find better balance as I did more Core Balance drills. I think I will eventually.

What is very clear is that my head DOES come up as I turn. I'll work on that. But it is also clear that the more air that I've exhaled, the further I sink as I turn.

So, I'll keep working both drills and trying to find comfort in each.
Thanks for the input all.
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  #7  
Old 05-17-2010
archipelago archipelago is offline
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I agree with Terry, also for me the core balance drill is not the one to improve breathing skill at first place.
on the other hand, CB works very good for me in the way of better understanding of buoyancy and improving my head position. It also enables to isolate the weight shift mechanism - the activation and improvement of kick-hip engine...
... if You want, You can practice it without breathing at the beginning, or you can try to start on Your back(with one shoulder above the surface/in your sweet spot), then rotate to the face-down position, with one shoulder above the surface in just-enough rotation, then check your correct position(laser beam), then stand up - or try to rotate back to the sweet-spot position for air, but don't initiate the rotation with head or shoulders, try to do it from your hips with the help of the flutter kick. when You rotate along the long axis, it should guarantee also the correct head position.
anyway, if I may suggest, don't focus on your head too much - it could cause the tension. You better relax...
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  #8  
Old 05-18-2010
terry terry is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dobarton View Post
I'm using the Easy Freestyle DVD. Maybe I obtained an old version, but Core Balance was in the first lesson and skating in the second lesson.
Sorry for causing confusion. I understand now. Perhaps the voiceover or lesson guide did not make it sufficiently clear. Core Balance drill is intended mainly to teach how to rotate off your stomach, and to avoid rotating to a stacked position.

Breathing may be incidental to it, but I don't think of it as a breathing-skill drill, because many students may find it difficult to get a good and easy breath, as you did. When your arms are back, you really need to rotate onto your back to breathe. And that's way beyond the optimal rotation for rhythmic (whole-stroke) breathing.

HOWEVER, if you do breathe in Core Balance, and rotate to that point, you can give your spinal stabilizers some valuable work in maintaining alignment and keeping your laser moving forward as you roll. That WILL be a helpful skill for your breathing.
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  #9  
Old 05-19-2010
haschu33 haschu33 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by terry View Post
... - compared to the 180 degrees or greater rotation in CB.
Quote:
Originally Posted by terry View Post
... Core Balance drill is intended mainly to teach how to rotate off your stomach, and to avoid rotating to a stacked position.
How do you get 180 degrees or greater rotation in CB when avoiding a stacked position?
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  #10  
Old 05-19-2010
archipelago archipelago is offline
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I think with "avoiding rotation to stacked position" is meant to achieve easy rotation to a position beyond the stacked position. Imagine that from the just-enough to the sweet spot is approx. 180degrees.


Quote:
Originally Posted by haschu33 View Post
How do you get 180 degrees or greater rotation in CB when avoiding a stacked position?
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