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  #1  
Old 01-18-2018
Streak Streak is offline
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Default Stuart McDougal - stroke correction video

As mentioned in a previous post I had the pleasure of meeting up with Stuart McDougal and Dave Cameron last weekend.

Stuart kindly videoed me and sent me the analysis today.

Along with the first analysis in my signature below I hope that this one also helps newer TI practitioners with the basics. There really is not much of this on the web.

https://youtu.be/kZ6TB9gqc70
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  #2  
Old 01-19-2018
sclim sclim is offline
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Originally Posted by Streak View Post
As mentioned in a previous post I had the pleasure of meeting up with Stuart McDougal and Dave Cameron last weekend.

Stuart kindly videoed me and sent me the analysis today.

Along with the first analysis in my signature below I hope that this one also helps newer TI practitioners with the basics. There really is not much of this on the web.

https://youtu.be/kZ6TB9gqc70
Wow, watching the video -- uncovers a whole long sequence of unintended, and to me at any rate, unforeseeable consequences of seemingly trivial swimming imprecise actions! But I recognize similar unfavourable outcomes (notably that sudden left bent knee in that same point in the cycle that actually causes my foot to break the surface, and no doubt causes an abrupt deceleration in forward progress) in my own stroke, so it will be interesting to see if I can track down the root cause of these defects by working backwards like Stuart did in your swim video record.
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Old 01-19-2018
sclim sclim is offline
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Hey, trying to think it through, I'm still stumped. What exactly is the initial fault that leads to the feeling of imbalance that triggers the (premature?) left foot bent knee kick? I recognize the last symptom, the bent knee kick, but in me it happens so fast that I can't figure out why I'm doing it, much less prevent the imbalance and the preceding and underlying reason behind it.

From the video analysis, I understand it's something to do with the right hand being at and above the hip after exit; would the correction be more of an immediate lateral and low sweep of the elbow and following hand after exit?
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  #4  
Old 01-19-2018
Tom Pamperin Tom Pamperin is offline
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Originally Posted by sclim View Post
Hey, trying to think it through, I'm still stumped. What exactly is the initial fault that leads to the feeling of imbalance that triggers the (premature?) left foot bent knee kick? I recognize the last symptom, the bent knee kick, but in me it happens so fast that I can't figure out why I'm doing it, much less prevent the imbalance and the preceding and underlying reason behind it.

From the video analysis, I understand it's something to do with the right hand being at and above the hip after exit; would the correction be more of an immediate lateral and low sweep of the elbow and following hand after exit?
Yes, I think that's it. One of the recovery rehearsals from Freestyle Mastery involves using a large balance ball under your arm and rolling the arm over the ball to get a feel for that wider recovery.

Another idea I was experimenting with today was to "open the armpit" on recovery (and during the pressing motion), which seems to yield the desired wider tracks for the arm.

My perception when I'm doing a good recovery is that the first motion is the elbow swinging outward away from the body.
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Old 01-19-2018
Streak Streak is offline
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Yes Tom that's correct. Seems on my right side I am not swinging my arm wide enough causing the left knee bend issue. Same to a lesser extent on the other side. In an email to me here is further comment from Stuart which when read in context of the video makes perfect sense.

"Yes, kick from the knees early is a response to imbalance. The leg(s) are attempting to right the ship. The right low side arm pulling to rotate you to air, wings the hand and arm over the hip triggering the imbalance - lifting right arm from the shoulder, knee bends 90 and attempts to correct the imbalance; this is an unconscious move (unconscious incompetence :-)). It's like your right recovery arm is attached to your lower left leg, arm lifts, knee bends, hips drop. But this is a very common problem, not unique to you - I see this pattern all the time. Most will say you're kicking the knees, which is true - but that's not the source of problem. It's the recovery arm not swinging away from the hip. This is tied to the left side recovery arm decelerating at entry preparing for the breath - that's starts the problem. Use left high side arm to breath, drive arm to forward extension. The weight and momentum of arm driving will rebalance the vessel and maintain posture. This movement will turn off the impulse to pull (right arm) and allow it to extend away form hip swinging wide. However, do work on the feeling kicking from hips and not the knees. You can make this connection in torpedo with a light flutter, if you moving forward in this drill and each downward kick rocks your boat side to side (left kick down rocks right shoulder/hip down into water, right kick - left hip/shoulder in), then you're kicking from the pelvis/hips.

Isn't this fun to discover where the kinetic chain initially breaks down - it's all connected. Fix the source, the rest will mostly fix themselves."
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  #6  
Old 01-20-2018
sclim sclim is offline
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Originally Posted by Streak View Post
Yes Tom that's correct. Seems on my right side I am not swinging my arm wide enough causing the left knee bend issue. Same to a lesser extent on the other side. In an email to me here is further comment from Stuart which when read in context of the video makes perfect sense.

"Yes, kick from the knees early is a response to imbalance. The leg(s) are attempting to right the ship. The right low side arm pulling to rotate you to air, wings the hand and arm over the hip triggering the imbalance - lifting right arm from the shoulder, knee bends 90 and attempts to correct the imbalance; this is an unconscious move (unconscious incompetence :-)). It's like your right recovery arm is attached to your lower left leg, arm lifts, knee bends, hips drop. But this is a very common problem, not unique to you - I see this pattern all the time. Most will say you're kicking the knees, which is true - but that's not the source of problem. It's the recovery arm not swinging away from the hip. This is tied to the left side recovery arm decelerating at entry preparing for the breath - that's starts the problem. Use left high side arm to breath, drive arm to forward extension. The weight and momentum of arm driving will rebalance the vessel and maintain posture. This movement will turn off the impulse to pull (right arm) and allow it to extend away form hip swinging wide. However, do work on the feeling kicking from hips and not the knees. You can make this connection in torpedo with a light flutter, if you moving forward in this drill and each downward kick rocks your boat side to side (left kick down rocks right shoulder/hip down into water, right kick - left hip/shoulder in), then you're kicking from the pelvis/hips.


Isn't this fun to discover where the kinetic chain initially breaks down - it's all connected. Fix the source, the rest will mostly fix themselves."
This is exactly what he said in his comments in the video, except he said it piecemeal and ad hoc, as he annotated the parts of your stroke, (the deceleration of the left hand just before entry, the resultant slippage of your right hand underwater, then the position of the right hand in recovery above the hip, then the cocking of the left knee to 90 degrees before the kick.)

I wondered at the time if he was suggesting that the whole sequence was cause and effect; it seemed that he was, although I wondered if maybe only the first half was cause and effect to itself, and then the second half was again a separate cause and effect. Now the above quoted paragraph clearly confirms my initial impression -- the whole sequence is a single logical and continuous chain of cause and consequences! Amazing! Now I have something solid to work on.

Last edited by sclim : 01-20-2018 at 06:01 PM.
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  #7  
Old 01-20-2018
Streak Streak is offline
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I have not been able to get to the pool since receiving the video. Cant wait to try and correct these things.

What's even more amazing is without Stuart's comments I would have looked at the video and not noticed any of these weaknesses. I guess that's why they call them coaches!
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  #8  
Old 01-24-2018
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Hi Joel!

Thanks for the shout and great seeing you in Coronado! And great that you are brave enough to show your video and share with others; so many swimmers both novice and experienced have very similar terrestrial movement patterns when breathing and on non-breathing strokes too. Also, a good example that balance is primal, not a cognitive choice - when the body is out of balance the (bending knees,) legs and pulling arms attempt stabilize the vessel or "right the ship". Here's a video from Coach Mandy on moving from kicking from the knees to kicking from the pelvis accessing the power from the glutes/core that may help too: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NBuydZ7y7VU

This spring let's find a day to swim around La Jolla cove! I would love a tour :-)

Cheers!

Stuart
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Old 01-25-2018
Streak Streak is offline
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Thanks Stuart. Looking forward to swimming the cove with you.
I have been practicing the corrections over the past few days trying to get things more fluid and at faster pace.

Today after doing a bunch of exercises I used the TT.
Started at 1.15 and started slowing in .04 increments down to 1:27.
My 100 time was consistently 1:35 for the first 3 and 1:36 for the last.

While it's good that I can maintain the speed at slower tempos, it's bad that my speed is not faster at the higher tempos! I am obviously losing some form at the faster tempos or possibly at the slower ones was trying harder to reach more fully to compensate for swimming slower. So next time I will get my form sorted out at 1:27 and slowly increase tempo in .02 steps hopefully maintaining my form and getting quicker times.
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  #10  
Old 01-25-2018
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Hi Joel,

Although moving up (slower) tempo can help you correct movement patterns it can also encourage incorrect patterns since there's more time to be in the wrong position too. In your specific, I suggest go down to faster tempos to clean up unnecessary terrestrial moves. Whipping hand/arm over the hip after pulling is a terrestrial movement pattern that eats up time making it difficult to hit faster tempos. I suggest starting at 1:10 drop down quickly, i.e. 1.10, 1.0, 0.9, 0.8. Do these with the ONLY focus of releasing an extended arm away from the hip at 5 o'clock (right side exit past hip) and 7 o'clock (left side exit past hip) - top of your head is the center of clock. Do 2-3 50's at the fastest tempo doing your best to just keep up with tempo. Then climb back up (slower) tempo scale, .85, .90, .95, 1.0, 1.05, 1.10 keeping the same focus exit at 5 & 7. Do this on the snorkle so you can focus only on the release at 5 & 7 and not break posture when rolling for air. Don't worry about clock time or SPL - the goal of this exercise is to clean up unnecessary, destabilizing movements of the high side (recovery) arm. Give yourself enough rest between 50's so you go out 100% mentally and physically on each 50.

Changing, correcting movement patterns is not easy, the mind wants to drift back into comfort zones. It's important move outside of comfort zone(s) to make new connection and correct patterns at faster tempos as well.

Have fun with it and enjoy the journey!

Stuart
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