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  #1  
Old 09-25-2010
Alex-SG Alex-SG is offline
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Default BACK Shape & TI

Ideally we all want to be streamlined and swim effortlessly, in a straight line.

How does back/spine's shape affect the swimmer's TI stroke?
I assume rotation and swimming straight would be affected.

What is the impact of the following back conditions?

a. Scoliosis
b. Lordosis
c. Cifosis

Thanks. ALEX

Last edited by Alex-SG : 09-25-2010 at 09:12 AM.
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  #2  
Old 09-26-2010
Alex-SG Alex-SG is offline
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Any thoughts on this? Thanks. ALEX
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  #3  
Old 09-26-2010
ewa.swimmer ewa.swimmer is offline
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I have scoliosis and it doesn't seem to affect my stroke. I'm a bilateral breather and one side doesn't seem to be different than the other.
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  #4  
Old 09-26-2010
CoachEricDeSanto CoachEricDeSanto is offline
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I have always thought that any spinal curve would increase drag, esecially lordosis. I do notice that a lot of the elite do have significant spinal curves when they swim, however. So I don't know how important this is. I believe that flattening the lower spine will decrease the wake waves produced significantly. THis is just my hypothesis.

I would imagine kyphosis would limit the ability to reach in front. I also believe that swimming would be great if the kyphosis is caused by tight or weak upper torso muscles. THe repetitive reaching seems like it would be great for strengthening the correct muscles. This is also just my hypothesis.
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Old 09-28-2010
Alex-SG Alex-SG is offline
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Thanks for your replies.

I started this thread because I have seen swimmers zig-zag in the water (actually their hips and legs seem to move sideways at every stroke, IE... right hand spear -> hips/legs shifting to the left like a Tail)

I have been wondering what causes that.
Could it be...
a. an attempt to lean on the "spearing track" with the head
b. a curved spine which does not allow a clean core rotation (shoulders-hips-legs) but 2 rotations around 2 axis (upper back and lower back)

Should a TI Swimmer with a curved lower back absolutely try to flatten it then to ensure a normal core rotation?

ALEX
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  #6  
Old 09-28-2010
CoachEricDeSanto CoachEricDeSanto is offline
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I would say that the standard statement would be "keep it neutral". Just make yourself 1cm taller than normal.

I think that most of the fishtailing in backstroke comes from not holding on to your core muscles enough. People often try to press on the upper back without engaging the core to let the hips stay in line. I love the "Finish UP" drill from the back DVD to work on the core.

I also believe that extra effort in stretching the front of the hips so you can tuck in your tailbone to flatten the spine would reduce the drag that comes off the butt. I know I drop about 1 stroke per length in back and one in breast when I do this. But I don't see many elite with really flat spines, so the effort required for this seems to be in a fine balance with the energy savings from the drag reduction.
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Old 09-30-2010
CoachSuzanne CoachSuzanne is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CoachEricD View Post
I also believe that swimming would be great if the kyphosis is caused by tight or weak upper torso muscles. THe repetitive reaching seems like it would be great for strengthening the correct muscles. This is also just my hypothesis.
ACtually for people (mostly men) with a condition called Ankylosing Spondylitis where the vertabrae in the spine fuse together, extension exercises are recommended so that if/when the spine fuses, you are fused in an upright posture, rather than stooped forward.
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