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  #31  
Old 12-01-2014
CoachSuzanne CoachSuzanne is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Danny View Post
Talvi, the important part of the process with swimming is the role that glide plays in all of this, so I think there is more involved than just gears. At the same pace but a lower SPL your speed will vary more over the course of a cycle. This acceleration/deceleration has a price. How much you pay depends on (a) how good a grip you have on the water, which makes acceleration easier and (b) how little water resistance you have, which hinders deceleration. These factors don't come into the gear analogy, but I think they are critical in swimming. This is the point that I understood Charles to be making.
I'd venture to say that in bipedal locomotion, whether it's bike, run or swim, a lower gear has higher forces or torque during the power application at a lower frequency (showing greater power variation) than higher gears...having a lower torque at a higher frequency and showing less magnitude in power variation.

while there may be less slowing in cycling or running, the variation in power application would still follow a similar pattern.

From that it follows that the "best" stroke is amatter of finding the intervals and efforts that suit a swimmers build, fitness & technique.
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  #32  
Old 12-01-2014
Talvi Talvi is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CoachSuzanne View Post
... while there may be less slowing in cycling or running, the variation in power application would still follow a similar pattern.

From that it follows that the "best" stroke is a matter of finding the intervals and efforts that suit a swimmers build, fitness & technique.
Perfectly put imo :)
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  #33  
Old 12-01-2014
s.sciame s.sciame is offline
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Originally Posted by andyinnorway View Post

I've actually had 8 or 9 swims in the last 2 weeks

I'm doing a little 50m PB experiment. Trying to improve my fastest time over 2 lengths without resorting to the extreme muscle engagement mentioned above.

I put my tempo trainer on 0.28 and swim 3 beeps on my head down stroke and 4 beeps on my breathing stroke, so a very deliberate lope.

Another way of putting this is I'm stroking at 0.84 on my right arm and 1.12 on my left.

At this curious setting If I have a 2 stroke push off, hold 17 SPL and turn on 1 stroke I swim a length in precisely 70 beeps.

At a tempo setting of 0.28 this gives me a 50m time of 38.08 ((70*0.28)+(66*0.28)) which is as fast as I've ever swum 50m in the last 4 years.

The great part is it's very repeatable, I've been able to do one or two repeats each day this last week.

It's also improvable in small increments as all I need to do to take 0.28 off this time is sacrifice one or more of my 'lazy' breath strokes.

The longer glide on the breathing stroke holds my system in the aerobic zone, which in turn let's me maintain consistent stroke length over the whole 50, but as my sprint specific fitness improves I'll start to take back some of those extra beeps.

In Theory, with 8 breathing strokes per lap my 50m time has another 4.48 seconds to improve before I'm swimming with an even rhythm on both sides.

Once I get there I would repeat the entire process at 0.27 and so on.

I'll report how far I get before Xmas but it's already taken me out of a 2014 rut as I was stuck on 45s for 10 months before this latest intense session.

You've got to love the plateau.
Hi Andy,
very interesting post as always, and kudos for having shaved 7s on 50m in such a little time.
Just wanted to ask you a few questions: after being stuck on 45s for 10 months, do you think this breakthrough was due more to having swum 8/9 times in 2 weeks (more than you're used to, I suppose, so more fitness), or more to the loping stroke experiment (that is a matter of technique)? Moreover, when you "turn on 1 stroke", do you mean that it really takes you only 1.12s from the last stroke - last hand entry - to when your feet leave the wall? In that time you have to do a short underwater stroke, flip, place the feet on the wall and leave the wall, it seems too fast to me, maybe I got it wrong.

Anyway, I too believe that one adult swimmer with a decent technique and fitness should be able to go under 40s on 50m without extreme muscle engagement and, I would add, without specific sprint training. After all there are swimmers who hold this pace for 1500m or more, in a totally aerobic zone. I often wonder if these fast long distance swimmers ever do sprint/anaerobic training or not, it would be nice to hear what other people think about it.

Personally I'm most interested in open water swimming on 2.5k to 5k distances. However, what sometimes puzzles me is that, after 3 and a half years of silent practice and reading (by the way I'm a long time reader here and I always appreciated your posts and all the precious knowledge shared by the coaches and other passionate swimmers), I improved and am still improving in every distance from 100m and up, but only on the 50s I seem to be stuck at 43s like you were.

Best regards,
Salvo
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  #34  
Old 12-01-2014
CoachSuzanne CoachSuzanne is offline
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Originally Posted by Talvi View Post
Perfectly put imo :)

Thank you! It only occured to me in the process of thinking on these questoins. It might be my most brilliant thought this year. :) Thankfully 2015 is right around the corner and it won't take much to have brilliant thoughts to top my best thoughts of 2015...any thought will do.
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  #35  
Old 12-02-2014
Talvi Talvi is offline
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Prompted to go back and read this thread more carefully by Andy's Brubeck school of TT use (fascinating stuff) ... and this in Charles' explanation:

Quote:
Originally Posted by CharlesCouturier View Post
... Now all that said. You can chop at the back too. .. more rapidly roll over a very smooth and easy skate/catch, enjoying how easy it is to pull yourself over (since you didn't waste time at the front), BUT still focusing on ensuring you have a nice efficient dynamic exit/snap. Because it is holding on to this phase that will allow you to keep healthy distance per stroke. Again, just be careful with the elbows....
This is interesting for me (though perhaps I misunderstand).

My current focus is on kick timing (to trigger/drive that roll/ rather than using the arms) Yesterday, a snappier rotation felt like the nice way to feel it. I found it helpful to allow the catch/pull to happen through relaxation of the spear and then to only gently push, emphasizing attention on the "glide". This so-ordination feels like the core of the stroke to me (or the neural pattern if you prefer). If propulsion feed in at the right moment (and gently) then maintaining that co-ordination should provide the optimal moment in the stroke for force to be applied.

And now I'm wondering if that "lope" in Andy's new timing isn't also exploiting this, focusing on (finding) the moment power is being applied in relation to the rest of the stroke?
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A psychological disorder is: "Any personal construction which is used repeatedly in spite of consistent invalidation."
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"The water is your friend.....you don't have to fight with water, just share the same spirit as the water, and it will help you move."
~ Aleksandr Popov
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  #36  
Old 12-02-2014
Danny Danny is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andyinnorway View Post
No I don't try to pull from the end of the spear anymore. I try to leave the muscles of the stroking arm relaxed until the catch is in a good position.

To put that another way. If I want to 'cheat' my SPL I would start applying force the second a single finger nail is pointing towards the bottom of the pool.

If I wanted to avoid shoulder pain and hopefully sustain stroke integrity over a longer distance, I'll wait till I've got to my version of a 90deg bent elbow before turning on the power (probably nearer 130 in reality).


I've actually had 8 or 9 swims in the last 2 weeks

I'm doing a little 50m PB experiment. Trying to improve my fastest time over 2 lengths without resorting to the extreme muscle engagement mentioned above.

I put my tempo trainer on 0.28 and swim 3 beeps on my head down stroke and 4 beeps on my breathing stroke, so a very deliberate lope.

Another way of putting this is I'm stroking at 0.84 on my right arm and 1.12 on my left.

At this curious setting If I have a 2 stroke push off, hold 17 SPL and turn on 1 stroke I swim a length in precisely 70 beeps.

At a tempo setting of 0.28 this gives me a 50m time of 38.08 ((70*0.28)+(66*0.28)) which is as fast as I've ever swum 50m in the last 4 years.

The great part is it's very repeatable, I've been able to do one or two repeats each day this last week.

It's also improvable in small increments as all I need to do to take 0.28 off this time is sacrifice one or more of my 'lazy' breath strokes.

The longer glide on the breathing stroke holds my system in the aerobic zone, which in turn let's me maintain consistent stroke length over the whole 50, but as my sprint specific fitness improves I'll start to take back some of those extra beeps.

In Theory, with 8 breathing strokes per lap my 50m time has another 4.48 seconds to improve before I'm swimming with an even rhythm on both sides.

Once I get there I would repeat the entire process at 0.27 and so on.

I'll report how far I get before Xmas but it's already taken me out of a 2014 rut as I was stuck on 45s for 10 months before this latest intense session.

You've got to love the plateau.
I've been reading another thread on asymmetrical swimming in which Terry chimed in rather forcefully saying (if I understood him correctly) that we should spend our time trying to correct asymmetry rather than embracing it.

Seems like Andy's approach is somewhat different, but maybe not. Is he slowly working to cut down the time on the breathing side?

I'd be interested to hear what the coaches think of this strategy.
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  #37  
Old 12-02-2014
sclim sclim is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Danny View Post
I've been reading another thread on asymmetrical swimming in which Terry chimed in rather forcefully
("Symmetric v Asymmetric stroke", in case anyone wasn't sure)
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  #38  
Old 12-03-2014
Talvi Talvi is offline
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Thanks Sclim. The thread can be found here: http://totalimmersion.net/forum/show...mmetric+stroke
__________________
A psychological disorder is: "Any personal construction which is used repeatedly in spite of consistent invalidation."
~ George Kelly

"The water is your friend.....you don't have to fight with water, just share the same spirit as the water, and it will help you move."
~ Aleksandr Popov
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  #39  
Old 12-03-2014
s.sciame s.sciame is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andyinnorway View Post

I'm doing a little 50m PB experiment. Trying to improve my fastest time over 2 lengths without resorting to the extreme muscle engagement mentioned above.
Hi Andy and all,
loping stroke aside, and while waiting for your answers, I was inspired by your 50m PB experiment and did something similar and it worked. The lesson learned is that, even in such a short distance, planning the speed was more effective than going all out. So, if it can help anybody, here is what I did today:

Objective: swim 50m - SCM from a push off - in 40s (PB by 3s) without extreme muscle engagement nor going hypoxic, and in a repeatable way.

Plan: swim it at 20SPL and TT set at 72SPM - 0.83s/stroke -, allowing 2 beeps for the push off and 3 beeps for the open turn (the same non hurried but steady open turn I use to swim time trials and longer sets like 10x400)

Stroke build/tune: to get used to 72SPM (normally I swim around 60), I did it bottom up: just 4x25 kicking with snorkel in Superman Flutter position, but in the 4th 25 I also set the TT at 72SPM to synch an easy 6bk and a moderate body rotation not aided by the arms - because I want to be sure that my 50 will be hip driven and my arms will be as relaxed as possible, bottom up swimming. During the 4x25 kicking with snorkel I also observed my natural breathing, which was breathing in for 3 kicks every 12 kicks, so I planned to swim the 50 breathing every 4 strokes (switching side in the 2nd lenght for symmetry purpose).

Well, as mentioned before, it worked. To be honest, toward the end of each lenght I had to put some force on the arms to come in 20SPL as planned, but it was far from going hard anyway. I also tried to repeat it with a more economical 2bk after 1 minute rest, and I lost only 1 stroke in the way back, so I came in 40.83s which is still faster than my former plateau.
I will test it again to see how much repeatable it is.
Thanks for the inspiration,
Salvo
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  #40  
Old 12-03-2014
CharlesCouturier CharlesCouturier is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Talvi View Post
And now I'm wondering if that "lope" in Andy's new timing isn't also exploiting this, focusing on (finding) the moment power is being applied in relation to the rest of the stroke?
Not sure I don't recall having read about Andy's Loping. Generally speaking, Loping involves delegating different roles to both arms. Very often, one arm is pulling harder than the other one. So I see no direct relation between timing the arm pull with the body rotation, and Loping.

**edit**
OK, I just read the post. This is not orthodox, to say the least. In short, Andy is probably trying what I'm trying with a Jnr athlete. If so, then he will probably start "Loping" on the other side to develop more feel for water/efficiency for this other arm as well. That said, if he wants to embrace Loping style (unilateral asymmetrical sort of) stroke, I will still like him :)

My feeling, for what it's worth, is that this unorthodox approach teaches him to move less water back whilst pulling with the breathing side arm.

Last edited by CharlesCouturier : 12-03-2014 at 05:19 PM.
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