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  #1  
Old 05-06-2009
5-rise 5-rise is offline
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5-rise
Default "holding the water"

Hi,


I have been puzzling over this idea of "holding" water with the lead hand and also how I've read that TI doesn't focus so much on pulling water back during recovery.

I was wondering if I may have had a "Eureka moment" today, and I'd be grateful for comments. Would I be right in saying the idea is that the lead hand, instead of forcefully pulling back water to produce propulsion, rather allows the spearing arm and rotating core to propel the body forward by acting as a lever for the rotation [/i] and this leverage is applied during the course of its rearward travel? [/i]. So it's not so much about the hand coming back, as the body moving forward?

Apologies if this is already patently obvious!

Thanks
Jon
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  #2  
Old 05-07-2009
daveblt daveblt is offline
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Instead of a lever you may want to think about the lead hand as an anchor that tries to holds the water without slipping so the core can rotate as the recovery arm slips in to the water . The lead hand moves back only as fast as your body is moving .If the hand moves faster then your slipping and not gripping.

Dave
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  #3  
Old 05-07-2009
naj naj is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 5-rise View Post
Hi,


I have been puzzling over this idea of "holding" water with the lead hand and also how I've read that TI doesn't focus so much on pulling water back during recovery.

I was wondering if I may have had a "Eureka moment" today, and I'd be grateful for comments. Would I be right in saying the idea is that the lead hand, instead of forcefully pulling back water to produce propulsion, rather allows the spearing arm and rotating core to propel the body forward by acting as a lever for the rotation [/i] and this leverage is applied during the course of its rearward travel? [/i]. So it's not so much about the hand coming back, as the body moving forward?

Apologies if this is already patently obvious!

Thanks
Jon
5-Rise your right on point. Holding the water with your recovery arm is a key point to strong core rotation and balance. I experience these "ah-hah" moments all the time when I'm in the water. So many place an emphasis on kicking and strokes that they never pay attention to hip rotation and gliding. Thanks for reminding us all of this valuable point.

Naji
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  #4  
Old 05-07-2009
pmuni pmuni is offline
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I find that when I place all my focus on my spearing hand and think about propelling my body as far forward as possible, the anchoring concept becomes more natural. I am now trying to keep my elbow high and drop the forearm for a more effective catch.

It is great when concepts that one reads so much about suddenly start to become a reality in the water.

The great thing about our sport is that we never stop learning and there is always room for improvement no matter what our level is.
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  #5  
Old 05-07-2009
5-rise 5-rise is offline
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Many thanks for the replies, I will take the comments with me to the pool in the morning!
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  #6  
Old 05-08-2009
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CoachDave CoachDave is offline
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CoachDave
Default The term anchoring

Keep in mind that the term anchoring refers to a sensation, not a reality. We can't violate Newton's Laws here.
To someone who used to grip a hand and then tug back, an arm came back quickly but moved little water and provided little leverage. When they learn to anchor, they feel like they're holding one spot in the water simply because there is much more pressure on that improved surface. Dropping my elbow could result in me getting less than 1/4 of the grip with my arm, but "holding" that spot feels like I'm leveraging against a wall of water. Whether you're pushing against more water or climbing a ladder, there are equal and opposite forces being applied, and you impact the water (or ladder) while it impacts you.

My favorite thing to think on blends a concept Terry brought up at a workshop I did with him in L.A. with a favorite mutant hero of mine. Terry didn't want people to exaggerate how relaxed the hand, wrist, or forearm were. in fact, some people were pushing it down to look floppy, even though it was still tense. Instead, we don't want loose, we don't want super-tight- we want taut. It has a position that it holds but it is not shaking with effort and tension.
Combine that with imagining you had your body infused with adamantium, a fictional lightweight and virtually indestructible metal. You also have retractable claws that go into your hand. You are tough, but when you start to put effort on that hand, you can't bend it back from the wrist because that sheathed adamantium claw is still making the hand almost a part of the forearm. It has some flexion, but it is more of a taut extension of the forearm than something that flops all over the place. It is both relaxed when it needs to be but engaged with the surface of the inner arm at other points in the anchoring process.
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  #7  
Old 05-12-2009
weinzwei weinzwei is offline
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When everyone talks about holding the water, and using the spearing arm to generate speed, could we theoratically not have hands and generate as much speed? I guess what i am asking is that it appears that all of my speed comes from my hands/forearms pulling the water. Hence i don't swim very fast and my shoulders hurt alot. Is it the rotation from our hips that gives us the speed? And if so is it the spearing arm coming down really fast and us twisting our bodies that gives us that speed?

Thanks,

Jon
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  #8  
Old 05-12-2009
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CoachDave CoachDave is offline
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Default Change the mindset

I have many people who come into lessons who are doing plenty of work on the power side. Some of them even have a start on a very productive pull, but it will never feel like that to them. They are going slowly for the same reason that I work less and go faster- it's about what you're trying to move around.
Spearing as a focus works well because the automatic response to driving that arm down puts the body more quickly into a more hydrodynamic position. It lengthens the body faster and puts you in a position where the same amount of effort in pulling gives you a lot more forward motion. The same power applied to different body positions produces different amounts of forward progress.
Pulling as a focus often draws someone OUT of being hydrodynamic. They pull earlier and in worse positions of leverage, and therefore have plenty of effort on a less hydrodynamic body- no speed there. It is no exaggeration that some swimmers I teach come in with two or three times the underwater resistance to their forward progress than I deal with simply because of the shape they spend most of the time in the water. There is no single force moving you forward- hip drive, leverage on the forearm, different pressures on different muscles throughout the stroke add up to a lot of differente things, but spearing is a great focus because it lines up many focal points that are unnatural and puts them in the right direction.
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  #9  
Old 05-12-2009
pmuni pmuni is offline
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Dave:
Thank you very much for your insightful comments. I have also found that focusing on spearing greatly enhances my streamlining and helps me finish my stroke correctly as opposed to pulling my arm out early.

I have also found that in order to get a proper spearing motion I have to time my kicking just right. Kicking downward with the foot that is opposite my spearing arm really sets my core in motion and delivers power to the speaing arm.

The challenge for me is maintaining so many things in synch at medium to higth speeds: high elbow catch, relaxed recovery, kicking, hip rotation, etc.
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  #10  
Old 05-13-2009
msloper msloper is offline
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msloper
Default Spearing

I think from reading one of the replies above (re holding the water) that I may have a problem understanding spearing.

Does the term imply only a thin hydrodynamic shape for the recovering arm as it moves into forward position, or does it imply a rapid spear throwing motion?

i.e. is the emphasis in the term spear on the speed with which a spear (and thus the forward trending am) is thrown, or on the forward trending arm's shape?

My heartfelt thanks to anyone who can help with this. I seem to be getting slower and slower, although more and more elegant, and everyone laughs at me (there are no other TI adherents in area in which I live!
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