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  #1  
Old 01-15-2009
ny1301 ny1301 is offline
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ny1301
Default feel awkward doing spear-switch

Have to admit that after learning backstroke successfully using TI method, I was a little bit over confident, and started freestyle without doing each drill enough. Now I decided to re-do all the drills. Here is the problem:

In spear-switch, though I keep my recovery side shoulder out of water, I don't feel to be able to kick start rotation and get any propulsion out of it. As a result, I have to 'spear' out my hand in an awkward way, totally disconnected with my rotation.

I am wondering that if I am gliding slowly, should this spear-switch increases or maintains my speed? for now I feel I am slowing down unless I 'pull' hard. And the next question is should I 'pull'? I expect to get some propulsion from weight shift, not pulling hard.

The great part about TI is, I know I have dozens of things to improve, not just go to the pool not knowing why the next lane guy swims faster than me. The down side is, being too eager to attack those problems sometimes makes me sleepless on bed.
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  #2  
Old 01-15-2009
the_walrus the_walrus is offline
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I had very similar awkward feeling when doing underswitch drill first.
My error was that I was waiting for gravity force to trigger my rotation - without any kicking at all. Turned out to be impossible.
I thought it had to be obviously core muscles what would give rotation momentum to my upper body, shoulders and spearing arm.
So then when I tried to do this drill with a constant light flutter kick I felt that it gave me enough support for rotating my upper body.
One month later I saw an excellent TI Freestyle demonstration by Shinji on youtube. Starting from 0:50 you can see his very moderate but very effective kick.
I have been working on it for two month and only now I begin feeling I'm doing something OK.
I learn this kick primarily in under(spear)switch drill - I use constant flutter kick during recovery and pause it just before switch. Then I use a lightest kick to trigger body rotation and only then I spear my hand.

Talking about switch speed - It must definitively increase your speed. It is not as fast as overswitch but it should speed you up.

And please don't exaggerate problem of pulling. You definitively have to put more force when you accelerate then when you are swimming at a constant speed. And you have to accelerate during spear switch unless you use fins to maintain good speed during recovery

Last edited by the_walrus : 01-15-2009 at 03:23 PM. Reason: errors
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  #3  
Old 01-15-2009
ny1301 ny1301 is offline
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Hi Walrus, thanks for sharing your experience for improving this under-switch.
Those definitly help. I'd like to discuss a little bit more details. Do rotation and 'spear out hand' start at the same time (just after kick)? Do they finish at the same time?
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  #4  
Old 01-15-2009
AWP AWP is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ny1301 View Post
Hi Walrus, thanks for sharing your experience for improving this under-switch.
Those definitly help. I'd like to discuss a little bit more details. Do rotation and 'spear out hand' start at the same time (just after kick)? Do they finish at the same time?
Simultaneously, that's right.
As you're Skating do a mental check: Balance, alignment (head/spine), lead arm on its track (aligned w/ shoulder), light flutter kick.
As you bring your 'recovery' hand in line with your face, pause briefly, initiate the catch phase, hand angled down palm facing back (hand below elbow elbow below shoulder) and 'wait' (timing) for the downbeat of the opposite leg (lower leg) to initiate rotation driving your "high" hip down sending energy 'through' to your spearing arm.
This timing will have to be played with. Alot!
Develop a sense of holding your place with your "anchoring" arm while letting the 'force' from your downbeat to hip rotation to spearing move you forward.
This movement will happen in degrees. Keep at it with a deliberate intent yet relaxed and with an adventurous spirit.
Much luck.
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  #5  
Old 01-16-2009
the_walrus the_walrus is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ny1301 View Post
Do rotation and 'spear out hand' start at the same time (just after kick)? Do they finish at the same time?
Well as I understand it spearing movement is composite consisting of several movements.
As for me it starts with shoulder rotation. I've been to pool today and checked it once more. At first my shoulders begin to rotate and only when shoulder line is almost horizontal, fast hand spearing starts - I'm talking about extension of elbow. Though the catch is performed simultaneously with shoulder rotation.

Not sure if it is right but it definitively feels so.

About finish - yes everything finishes at the same time.

Last edited by the_walrus : 01-16-2009 at 05:26 AM.
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  #6  
Old 01-16-2009
ny1301 ny1301 is offline
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Wow! AWP and Walrus, those are the most detailed and inspiring tips I have got for spear-switch, and I feel like I can imagine all those movements in front of my monitor: catch first; 'wait' for the kick; shoulder rotation; elbow extension... I am quite confident now.
There is just one problem: the local pool will be closed for one week for some upgrade (from yesterday) :-( I'll report back later.

thanks again. Your guys are really helpful!
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  #7  
Old 01-16-2009
AWP AWP is offline
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Just to add, the fine details, be sure that hip rotation precedes any shoulder rotation to really take advantage of 'effortless' movement. The timing between the two is minute or simultaneous. Much luck.
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  #8  
Old 01-16-2009
ny1301 ny1301 is offline
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Thanks for this fine tip! I am eager to try it out. May have to consider bathtub while the local pool is in closed :)
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  #9  
Old 01-17-2009
daveblt daveblt is offline
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You could also try some fins .I used them for quite some time in spearswitch at first but now I find that I don't really need them anymore or need them for any drill.


Dave
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  #10  
Old 02-07-2009
ny1301 ny1301 is offline
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ny1301
Default I did it

Today I was able to do spear-switch for the first time, thanks to everyone here. The result is a shock to me. I learned to swim from one end to the other end of the 25m pool only one month ago, and last time (Tuesday) I got in pool, it took me 25 strokes. Today I made it in only 14 strokes! And I did not pause for gliding longer! Actually my form may collapse if I pause as my left side balance is not good and I have to take 10 deep breath before I finish the other half of a lap.

11 strokes reduced after 10 minutes of practice! I felt really thrilled. Once again, it ensured me not to skip any drill!
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