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  #1  
Old 10-04-2013
Suddethb Suddethb is offline
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Suddethb
Default Working with a Blind Swimmer

I have an old friend who has been profoundly blind since his teens. He and I bumped into each other at our pool today, and he asked for some coaching as he hasn't been swimming for over a year. He has a goal of doing a mile openwater swim with me. His stroke is typically rough, and while his right arm swings wildly high out of the water, the left barely clears. I'd love to introduce him to TI style, but he can't "watch" the DVDs. I learned by watching the DVDs and then practicing what I saw. Any suggestions on helping someone who's vision of the world is dark?
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Old 10-04-2013
nurledge nurledge is offline
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My instant idea if i were given such a student to assist , i would:

1. passing Audio resources to introduce TI concept as a start.
2. as for drill/practice there will be a lots of monitoring on him especially physical contact to correct balance/posture ,streamlining,etc. It has to be one to one coaching

regards,
nurledge
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  #3  
Old 10-04-2013
Rincewind Rincewind is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Suddethb View Post
I have an old friend who has been profoundly blind since his teens. He and I bumped into each other at our pool today, and he asked for some coaching as he hasn't been swimming for over a year. He has a goal of doing a mile openwater swim with me. His stroke is typically rough, and while his right arm swings wildly high out of the water, the left barely clears. I'd love to introduce him to TI style, but he can't "watch" the DVDs. I learned by watching the DVDs and then practicing what I saw. Any suggestions on helping someone who's vision of the world is dark?
Who taught him to swim in the 1st place? I am assuming whoever that was probably had experience in teaching blind people.
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  #4  
Old 10-04-2013
igorner igorner is offline
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Rincewind certainly makes a good point, someone who has experience in teaching the blind could probably offer a lot of good advice.

It would seem practical to me to have your student practice "imaginatively" on terra firma first to imprint the concepts and actions.....this works for me in teaching medical response to students who have never "seen" any of the scenarios that I use. I ask them to "see" themselves doing a procedure and then practice it. To be honest it works for me in TI.....I imagine my swim before I do it.

Since I do not have any experience in teaching the blind however I think I'd talk to such an educator as a starting point.
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  #5  
Old 10-05-2013
helixfairweather helixfairweather is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nurledge View Post
My instant idea if i were given such a student to assist , i would:

1. passing Audio resources to introduce TI concept as a start.
2. as for drill/practice there will be a lots of monitoring on him especially physical contact to correct balance/posture ,streamlining,etc. It has to be one to one coaching

regards,
nurledge
There is an awesome method of teaching people that is a perfect fit with TI - TagTeach. TagTeach is the skill of marking a correct response with an audible sound, right at the moment the learner is correct.

For example:
If the current focal point was: left hand on wide track. The coach would make the sound each time the learner moved into Skate position with his left hand on a wide track.

As the learner moves down the pool, each correct response is marked with the sound. Each incorrect is not. The learner hears no sound, self-assesses, then corrects himself on the next repetition.

TI is so beautifully constructed with specific, measurable/observable criteria that is just cries out for TagTeaching. I would sooooo love to have my TI coach tag me for the things I struggle with and cannot subjectively recognize when correct.

Another TI swimmer, familiar with Tag Teach, and I have tossed about ways for a coach not in the water to make an audible sound that the swimmer could hear. One of the mentors/founders of TagTeach (Karen Pryor) who worked with marine mammals in the 70's suggested a piece of steel tubing that is held down into the water with the upper part of it above the surface. One would strike the steel tube with another piece of steel and the sound can be heard underwater (I think I have that right).

She said that's how they used to call the dolphin and beluga to come to the side to be trained.

More on TagTeaching can be found here - tagteach.com TagTeach is huge in gymnastics, dance, golf, tennis, special needs kids, autism and so on - any endeavour where humans are learning a skill.

For anyone who teaches, attending a TagTeach workshop will blow your socks off! :)

Helix Fairweather, TagTeach Level 2 Certified
Keizer, OR
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  #6  
Old 10-05-2013
andyinnorway andyinnorway is offline
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I've never thought of this before but I would imagine TI is the perfect way to teach a blind person to swim freestyle because its broken down into separate skills/processes.

If you also introduce using the TT early on in the training then you would have the option of doing a full open mile synced swim.

The Tagteach system sounds great coupled with a qualified TI coach.

Please post any updates, great story.
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  #7  
Old 11-21-2015
Suddethb Suddethb is offline
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I moved this to "How to Teach Blind Swimmers" thread. I'm coaching two now.
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