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  #1  
Old 11-29-2012
russellw russellw is offline
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russellw
Default Head position and hips ....

Afternoon all

After recently reading Coach David Shen's excellent blogs, I tried someone new today, and I just wondered what your thought are on this.

David said that he changed his head position to look slightly forward, as opposed to head down which helps with the higher position of the hips.

I am of the same, head lower and hips higher. Today I tried to look slightly forward. This made it much easier to breath, but I felt that my hips were not as high as usual. How would I counter act the imbalance caused by the different head position.

I also took from David's blog to spear shallower, which felt great, less drag, but I presume this would lower my hips and legs ?? Can't win !!!!

Your thoughts would be helpful ad usual !

By the way, I would encourage anyone to take a look at David's website, full of information, and inspiration. Plus, a lot of insight from David sessions with Shinji from a few years back.

Russ
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  #2  
Old 11-29-2012
daveblt daveblt is offline
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This is something that you will have to play around with and make small adjustments . There is no one exact way that will work perfectly the same for everybody . If you raise the head you may have to lean in just a bit more or spear just a bit more deeply .If you lower the head then you may have to do the opposite . I've been doing TI for 17 years and am still always making adjustments and looking for ways to improve.

Dave
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  #3  
Old 11-30-2012
tomoy tomoy is offline
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x2. It varies a lot for different reasons. If I'm going really slowly or having issues I'm trying to work out, I may look a little further forward. Lifts the head and makes breathing easier. It's a tradeoff I'm willing to make because it's harder to breathe when swimming slowly, so that helps.

If I'm swimming faster, less tired, or in the groove (!) the bow wave from my head is bigger and makes it easier to breathe. I can drop my eyes to directly point down + I can spear a bit shallow, and there's less resistance, and the speed keeps the back end up too.

Play around with it, and take careful note of the effects. They're all tools you can use whenever they might help.
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  #4  
Old 11-30-2012
CoachSuzanne CoachSuzanne is offline
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Be careful of making compromises to make a difficult to master task easier, thus avoiding the need to continue working on it.

What I mean is that head forward my make breathing easier, but the tradeoff is lower hips which creates more drag. So does the easier access to oxygen compensate for the extra drag you are creating?

likewise with spearing. The benefit is better streamlining if you spear straight ahead. The tradeoff is the added biomechanical difficult creating a good catch & anchoring/propulsive stroke.

Trading off a lower spear may feel like it brings the head down a bit...but the hips come up reducing drag and balancing out any drag created by the spearing arm. In addition, most people ... the vast majority, create far more drag then creating the catch & stroke & losing propulsion & efficiency there, than if they'd speared just a hair further down to begin with.
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  #5  
Old 11-30-2012
CoachPaulB CoachPaulB is offline
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In looking for the sweet spot for head position I have also made my lower abdomen a sort of focal point. By that I mean, like in so many sports and motion endeavors, I "firm" up my abdominal core muscles. It is a very subtle adjustment but requires some concentration. When Im successful at this task the first result is the elimination of the arch in my lower back. This tends to contribute to proper spinal alignment ( laser lead). Proper head positioning then becomes a little easier.
Incidentally, I am an open water swimmer and have relied on this corrective measure to help eliminate acute pain and fatigue in my lower back while swimming cold water and longer distance swims such as the 4.4 mile Chesapeake Bay Swim and the 10k San Francisco Bridge to Bridge swim.
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  #6  
Old 12-01-2012
russellw russellw is offline
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Many thanks to you all for your replies.

Yesterday my focal point was to firm up my tummy muscles, incidently, exactly what coach Paul suggested. I seemed to be a bit higher in the water, which hopefully led to a bit less drag.

As it happens, tonight I am gong for a swim analysis with a tri coach, hopefully I can post a clip for you guys to critique. Do I post on YouTube, and then link to here ???

One more thing after reading a lot from coach David is that focus on one thing at time. Too many times I have entered the pool hoping everything will click into place......, yesterday I believe I became a kaizen swimmer.... Continued improvement over the long haul. One thing at a time .......!!!

Will post a clip hopefully this week ! Thanks again for your feedback.
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  #7  
Old 12-01-2012
ashby ashby is offline
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Hi guys, have you got a link to Davids website?
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  #8  
Old 12-02-2012
russellw russellw is offline
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Forgive me guys, but the "David" I was talking about was coach David Shen's blogs and website....


http://www.dshen.com/blogs/training/archives/swimming

There is a wealth of information on here, with great descriptions of focal points, lessons and continued progress. An anspiration ....
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