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  #1  
Old 06-28-2016
Zenturtle Zenturtle is offline
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Default head position. balance reaction simplified

Find the flaws in his logic. Or does he have a point?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=afLqay5L95Q
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  #2  
Old 06-28-2016
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Poor Clay - he does mean well, but I don't think physics was his major - after all he's a swim coach. I think the you tube comments of the video say it all. We are not boats (or lengths of lumber) where buoyancy is neutral floating on the surface, but rather mostly submerged closer to that of a submarine where center of buoyancy and center of mass are different in every vessel or body. Using Clay's logic, we don't see the bow of a submarine pointing up, but is the same consistent shape beginning with a narrow point to open the passage for the rest of the vessel to slip through. I do admire the building of his props though - he spent some time and effort to make a moot point.

Stuart
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Old 06-29-2016
lloyddinma lloyddinma is offline
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But, he does have a point at 1:48. Breathing is a lot easier when your head is less submerged and gets more challenging when you are spearing deeper.

(I remember CoachStuart has a glide drill sequence to experiment with getting the right head position.)

Isn't it fair to say that there is some trade offs to every great design? I could be wrong, but part of the reason we rotate 45 to 60 degrees in TI (head and torso combined), is to compensate for the head being slightly submerged.
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Old 06-29-2016
CoachSuzanne CoachSuzanne is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lloyddinma View Post
But, he does have a point at 1:48. Breathing is a lot easier when your head is less submerged and gets more challenging when you are spearing deeper.

(I remember CoachStuart has a glide drill sequence to experiment with getting the right head position.)

Isn't it fair to say that there is some trade offs to every great design? I could be wrong, but part of the reason we rotate 45 to 60 degrees in TI (head and torso combined), is to compensate for the head being slightly submerged.
pick the head up, chin goes down. since the mouth is at the bottom of the head, it actually submerges the mouth when you lift the head unless you lift it even higher. Problems all around.

Yes there are fast/elite swimmers with a higher head position but they can swim well in spite of it and at some speed & skill level the issues become less volatile, and there is a little room for play.

Most people are not at this level. But feel free to play with a higher head position and lifting the head to breath.

Clay does have a point about submerged heads and flat bodies which I agree with. But he presents his issue as if it's a dichotomy between heads up and submerged head. There are inbetweens.

Also the shoulder girdle moves much more freely when the head is neutral than when it's up.
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Old 06-29-2016
Danny Danny is offline
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Suzanne's point about the mouth is valid, and this may be a major problem. If we had our mouth's in our forehead, this might be a great way to swim. So here is an experiment that someone with a snorkel might try. With a snorkel you can try to swim like Clay's board and you don't have to worry about breathing. It would be interesting to see if snorkel swimming actually works better this way. :o)
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Old 06-29-2016
Zenturtle Zenturtle is offline
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The advantage of the wooden surfboard is that it doesnt have a survival instinct and no arms to act upon this instinct.
This makes that it resembles only a tilting of the head, and not an active lifting of the head.(lifting the head by pressing water down)
If the head is only tilted a bit forward and that happens independant of other actions that are going on, (so the tilting is not accompanied by pressing water down, or changing the arch of the back), the effect on balance is minimal.
Straightening the upperspine including the neck is a head lifting movement relative to the rest of the body. (swimmming with aquatic posture)
The head moves a bit forward and in the direction of the back (is up) when you swim with a long and straight neck. (compared to a forward hunched commen dryland posture)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xmx4nctdyFs
As you dont press extra water down when you lift the head in this manner its actually good for your balance, and it also lifts your mouth when holding the head at the same angle. so it makes breathing easier.
Dont think tilting the head a bit does improve streamline compared to a an inline head held in aquatic posture.

If a forward hunched posture is your normal state, just letting the head relax into weightlessness in your usual posture might bring the head in a position that is too low.

A Polish (?) coach shows Suzannes point that the mouth is lowerd when tilting the head and a little boy with very good breathing technique:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ExUnZ_XipBM

Last edited by Zenturtle : 06-29-2016 at 09:38 PM.
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  #7  
Old 06-29-2016
lloyddinma lloyddinma is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CoachSuzanne View Post
pick the head up, chin goes down. since the mouth is at the bottom of the head, it actually submerges the mouth when you lift the head unless you lift it even higher. Problems all around.

Yes there are fast/elite swimmers with a higher head position but they can swim well in spite of it and at some speed & skill level the issues become less volatile, and there is a little room for play.


.
Actually, Dave uses your exception with fast swimmers to underscore your over-arching point here at 0:25:

https://youtu.be/CGDmbFz2OI0


In my case I remember I had a nagging problem of having the head elevated from the early onset. I may then have rectified it by 'overcompensating' and having it lower than TI standard..
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  #8  
Old 06-30-2016
Danny Danny is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zenturtle View Post
The advantage of the wooden surfboard is that it doesnt have a survival instinct and no arms to act upon this instinct.
This makes that it resembles only a tilting of the head, and not an active lifting of the head.(lifting the head by pressing water down)
If the head is only tilted a bit forward and that happens independant of other actions that are going on, (so the tilting is not accompanied by pressing water down, or changing the arch of the back), the effect on balance is minimal.
Straightening the upperspine including the neck is a head lifting movement relative to the rest of the body. (swimmming with aquatic posture)
The head moves a bit forward and in the direction of the back (is up) when you swim with a long and straight neck. (compared to a forward hunched commen dryland posture)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xmx4nctdyFs
As you dont press extra water down when you lift the head in this manner its actually good for your balance, and it also lifts your mouth when holding the head at the same angle. so it makes breathing easier.
Dont think tilting the head a bit does improve streamline compared to a an inline head held in aquatic posture.

If a forward hunched posture is your normal state, just letting the head relax into weightlessness in your usual posture might bring the head in a position that is too low.

A Polish (?) coach shows Suzannes point that the mouth is lowerd when tilting the head and a little boy with very good breathing technique:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ExUnZ_XipBM
ZT, where do you find this stuff? Do you speak Polish? Do you have a team of researchers combing YouTube for videos? Tell us your secrets!
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  #9  
Old 06-30-2016
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CoachStuartMcDougal CoachStuartMcDougal is offline
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It seems ZT is independently wealthy and has plenty of free time to scan the internet all day for interesting videos.

Coach Dave Cameron is so right on head position and perceived head position on elite swimmers. There's no reason to bend your neck to get air regardless of speed. But there are still plenty of swimmers looking for the promise land of air as if their mouth is located on their forehead - since that is the human instinct to raise the head for air.

Why someone would advise a swimmer to lift head to be more buoyant and get air easily is beyond me. Almost as if they never paid attention to the body when the head lifts and is driven by perceptions without challenge.

Stuart

Last edited by CoachStuartMcDougal : 06-30-2016 at 06:33 AM.
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  #10  
Old 06-30-2016
s.sciame s.sciame is offline
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As far as I know, some pros of swimming with a higher head could be:

- it prevents overrotation
- it prevents cross over or too narrow tracks
- it aids proprioception
- stroke rate increases a bit (but you also reach less forward)
- it aids the catch (how firm does the catch feel when swimming head-up waterpolo style, it's like climbing a mountain)

As for breathing, I think it's easy both with high or neutral head once you learn.

That said, balance is not negotiable. If raising the head affects balance even just a little bit (as usually happens), I'd say forget about high head.

Salvo
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