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Old 07-10-2011
deadprez012 deadprez012 is offline
Junior Member
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 10
Default Breakthrough: Weightless arm.

I was doing SSP today, according to the "organic workout" of Terry's "How Far Should You Swim?" article on the Swim Well Blog.

From the TI book, the first of the five focal points for SSP is "swim downhill;" this worked for me in the first several lengths, but began falling apart as soon as my rest went below 3 breaths. I couldn't tell right away if it was the short rest or the 30+ minutes I had already spent on that focal point that was reducing my efficiency. I could tell that I was feeling fatigue in my shoulders and neck on the second length on that focal point.

Then I switched to "weightless arm," felt a noticeable reduction in fatigue, and swam about a dozen delightful, relaxed lengths! I went back to the swim downhill focal point, with fresh imprinting of weightless arm, and met awesome success. I'm swimming in the lake tomorrow after a long, hot training ride and I'm excited to take these feelings of effortless balance with me to open water for the first time ever.

So for those of you out there wondering when progress is going to come: stick to the philosophy...but change the drill. It sometimes works wonders.

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Old 07-10-2011
Burger Burger is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 19


Sorry if I sound ignorant, what exactly is a "weightless arm" ? is it the same with marionette hands?
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Old 07-10-2011
borate borate is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 533

Originally Posted by Burger View Post
What exactly is a "weightless arm" ? is it the same with marionette hands?
This, from Terry...
"The Weightless Arm This referred to the sense you would no longer have a need to lean on your arms to support the weight of your head, when you had achieved balance. But we changed our language when we realized that well-balanced swimmers virtually always have the extended hand below the head with fingertips angled down. So we substituted a directional emphasis for the arm: Slice it down as you extend it forward and begin applying gentle-yet-firm pressure fairly quickly. The more balance-challenged you are, the steeper and deeper should be your angle of entry."

And look here.

Last edited by borate : 07-10-2011 at 04:06 PM.
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