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  #11  
Old 05-15-2014
CoachBobM CoachBobM is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Will_in_NY View Post
Sorry, I wasn't clear.

I'm thinking in terms of floating having broken form -- say, if I'm holding my knees to my chest and bobbing, or attempting to tread water, or in some similar position in which I'm nowhere near being in TI form.

How do I transition from such a position, in open water, to streamlined TI form?
You should find one of the TI positions that you can go to easily and proceed from there. Here are two possibilities:

1) Go forward into the superman glide position, then stroke back with one arm to the skate position and continue from there.

2) While kicking in a vertical position, let yourself "fall back" onto your back and go to your interrupted breathing position. Slip your lower arm forward, and then roll to your skate position and continue from there.


Bob
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  #12  
Old 06-17-2015
Cornelis Cornelis is offline
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Originally Posted by CoachStuartMcDougal View Post
Hi Will,

Welcome to the forum! And Excellent post.

This is a common problem and I see it frequently. You are emptying your lungs too quickly too early causing you to sink. Many triathletes are told to immediatley empty lungs when face hits the water. You do want to exhale (slowly), but not empty too fast. Empty lungs when rolling to get breath and refill tank quickly.

Each swimmer needs to experirment with their body type on how much air in lungs is needed to maintain buoyancy. A good test is (in pool) is fill lungs (big deep breath) then hold knees to chest and bob face down at surface for a moment. Very slowly exhale until you start to sink. For me, just under 50% capacity, the ship's going down.

Here's a SwimVice video on this very subject that may be helpful too: SwimVice: Breathing and Buoyancy

Stuart
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Hi Stuart, thank you sooo much for your advice on not totally exhaling to maintain buoyancy. I was stuck on skate-to-air for a couple of weeks, always sinking or being just under the water level when I turned. Just reducing the exhalation from my nose sorted everything out...so happy...2 months till Budapest Half Ironman....going to be a close call to be ready!
Also big thanks to Will in NY for posting his questions! :-)
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  #13  
Old 06-18-2015
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That's great to hear Cornelis! It takes time to discover good breathing timing and a continuous exchange; really a very controlled exhale followed by a quick inhale to maintain buoyancy, getting enough o2. The wetsuit keeps you buoyant making up of position errors that make breathing difficult too (not sure if you are wearing a wetsuit in Budapest)

I just read a triathlon piece on breathing with a warning of having too much air in the lungs causing hips and legs to sink. This advice seems to be spreading throughout the triathlon world. Having more air in lungs does not make hips heavier, but rather errors in body position causing hips/legs to sink.

The primary position errors that cause hips/legs to sink are 1. lifting head, looking forward and 2. reaching high and flat with recovery arm in front of head. When weight is displaced above the lungs, the back end is going to sink -- that's Newton's 3rd law of motion and gravity in action, not too much air :-)

Good luck at IM Budapest, you will rock (and breathe well on) the swim, bike and run - have FUNNN!

Cheers!

Stuart
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  #14  
Old 06-19-2015
jenson1a jenson1a is offline
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Coach Stuart

Regarding your statement: The primary position errors that cause hips/legs to sink are 1. lifting head, looking forward and 2. reaching high and flat with recovery arm in front of head. When weight is displaced above the lungs, the back end is going to sink -- that's Newton's 3rd law of motion and gravity in action, not too much air :-)

Isn't there a drill which says to push off in sg, then skate, and then lift recovery arm and position it overhead and see how far you can glide before rotating? I think this is a balance drill, but if it causes the hips and legs to sink, isn't that counter productive?

I have been doing this drill a lot and it probably has contributed to my pause at hand entry and also some hip/leg sinking.

Sherry
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  #15  
Old 06-19-2015
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Originally Posted by jenson1a View Post
Isn't there a drill which says to push off in sg, then skate, and then lift recovery arm and position it overhead and see how far you can glide before rotating? I think this is a balance drill, but if it causes the hips and legs to sink, isn't that counter productive?

I have been doing this drill a lot and it probably has contributed to my pause at hand entry and also some hip/leg sinking.
Hi Sherry,

I'm not sure of the drill by your description. You may be describing "zipper switch" which is not used any more due to creating a cramped recovery and instability as you note. The Swing Skate and Swing switch most of the recovery arm is in the water as a rehearsal for a fluid recovery and maintain lateral balance and weight as recovery arm moves to full forward position or "swing"

There is an "over-switch" exercise that involves a slight pause in full forward recovery position, but in whole stroke. This is not to feel an extra glide, but rather feel the weight of both arms in front of lungs that tip body forward to raise the hips - "swimming downhill" feeling.

Other than skate drill, there is no pause at hip with recovery arm to gain a longer glide. I refer to the pause at hip as a "Cardinal Sin" since 1. interrupts rhythm of a fluid stroke and its momentum, and 2. weight of recovery arm pausing at hip, stopping momentum, additional weight behind lungs, triggers over rotation elbow creep over torso - hips drop.

Hope that helps and/or makes sense.

Stuart
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  #16  
Old 06-23-2015
CoachBobM CoachBobM is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jenson1a View Post
Coach Stuart

Regarding your statement: The primary position errors that cause hips/legs to sink are 1. lifting head, looking forward and 2. reaching high and flat with recovery arm in front of head. When weight is displaced above the lungs, the back end is going to sink -- that's Newton's 3rd law of motion and gravity in action, not too much air :-)

Isn't there a drill which says to push off in sg, then skate, and then lift recovery arm and position it overhead and see how far you can glide before rotating? I think this is a balance drill, but if it causes the hips and legs to sink, isn't that counter productive?

I have been doing this drill a lot and it probably has contributed to my pause at hand entry and also some hip/leg sinking.

Sherry
There is, indeed, a drill in which you kick off in a streamline or SG, stroke back to skate, bring your arm forward in swingskate, and then see how long you can hold that position before you fall to the right or left. The purpose of this drill is to develop a feeling of side-to-side balance which, once mastered, gives you more freedom in choosing the exact point in your recovery at which you begin your entry.

Unless I'm misinterpreting Stuart, I don't think his second point had anything to do with this. There's no way that pausing in swingskate should cause your hips and legs to sink, but this can be caused by having your leading arm too high. It's an aspect of freestyle that's counterintuitive: A simplistic analysis might make you think that your body will be most streamlined if your leading arm is high and "flat" (i.e., at the same level as your shoulder), but this ignores the fact that your body is like a teeter-totter that is balanced on the fulcrum of your lungs, and the wrist of your leading arm needs to be lower than your shoulder in order to balance your core body in a horizontal position.


Bob
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  #17  
Old 07-09-2015
novaswimmer novaswimmer is offline
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OK, I'm not really understanding this statement:

'...The primary position errors that cause hips/legs to sink are 1. lifting head, looking forward and 2. reaching high and flat with recovery arm in front of head. When weight is displaced above the lungs, the back end is going to sink -- that's Newton's 3rd law of motion and gravity in action, not too much air...'

I can agree with the head-lifting and face-lifting part -- because both positions (edit:) 'shorten the vessel' a bit. That can certainly tip the scales so that the feet drop. Also, a face-forward position will cause more drag.

But the part about the 'reaching high and flat with recovery arm in front of head'. Not sure what you are talking about here. Are you refering to spear depth? Or are you refering to the position of arm 'during' the spear above the water -- that is, how far out in front of the head the hand begins to enter the water?

If you are talking about the spear depth position, I would suggest that the angle of the spear position can contribute to legs rising or falling, but more because of the forces of water against the 'blade-shape' of the arm in the water as the body moves forward.

Below in Figure A, the water pushes against the arm angled more upward, causing it to rise even more : and legs to sink more.

In B, the water forces could -- depending on depth of arm -- generate a downward push on the arm, and subsequent upward movement of legs -- assuming the center of flotation or fulcrum (round white dot) is somewhere around the lungs.

I can't believe that an arm position in either A or in B would have much of an effect on the 'weight' balance of the body nearly as much as the force of water against the arm.



But maybe I'm just misunderstanding the statement.

Last edited by novaswimmer : 07-10-2015 at 02:13 PM.
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  #18  
Old 07-09-2015
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Hi Novaswimmer,

In figure a, the swimmer has both issues, arm above the lungs, head tilted forward. Although swimmer a did not lay arm flat and press down first, he entered earlier and scooped up toward surface. A swimmer laying extending flat on surface followed by pressing down before catch has a compound problem, 1. arm above the lung, 2. pressing down, lifts torso, hips drop quick. All pressure on fatigue/injury prone shoulder

In figure b, swimmer head spine aligned, lead arm below just below lung in catch position contribute to the balanced and stable platform. No pressure on shoulder, core (lats) are engaged. I often read those attributing Bernoulli's principle for fixed wing aircraft that contributes to some type of lift - our arms are not fixed wing aircraft. The pressures are almost negligible to provide little or no lift - it's all in body position.

Every "body" is different. I often have swimmers feel the difference between the two positions. Start off a length with neutral head and posture for four strokes, then look forward (like in figure a) and feel the body position change, tension in shoulders for the next four strokes - then finally release the head, goggles down and feel the tension disappear, hips rise.

Alternatively, do the same with recovery arm entry. Start off slicing deep below lungs for a few strokes, then next few strokes extend lay flat (or scoop up) on surface and feel the differences in your body position between the two.

Stuart

Last edited by CoachStuartMcDougal : 07-09-2015 at 10:12 PM.
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  #19  
Old 07-10-2015
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One thing I should have noted is also do the extreme arm and head positions in drill in a more static position, no forward moving forces when swimming freestyle.

Use both superman and skate drills. For example: in skate drill, raise lead arm to surface and feel what happens to body position; then slowly lower arm until hips naturally rise or where you feel most stable. Alternatively, start out with lead arm pointing 90 deg deg down at pool bottom, then slowly raise arm until you feel stable and hips rise to surface.

Lastly when you find the arm position that works best for *your* body, go back into skate (or superman) with the lead arm position you discovered, now extend from the shoulder, lengthening the body, moving the arm weight further in front of lungs - you will feel the hip(s) crown or pop just above the surface.

Stuart
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