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Old 05-23-2010
ames ames is offline
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 72

Yes, thanks Chris for resurrecting this thread. I remember reading it last year but it was beyond my skills at the time and I didn't pay close attention... now it is more pertinent.

I am currently trying to find a way to transfer the feeling of ease I feel in breaststroke to freestyle. I can only swim a couple laps of freestyle before needing a break. Terry suggested I alternate laps of breaststroke with free using the same focal points of relaxation, wide tracks, streamlining, and feeling the support of the water, and I have started to incorporate that into my practice.

But I also thought maybe breathing interval could play a role. If I could match the same time between breaths as in breaststroke maybe I would feel just as relaxed. So I dusted off the Tempo Trainer that I got in February (who wants flowers on Valentine's Day?) and found the interval that I was most comfortable with, then halved it for freestyle (breathing every two strokes)... well it was not a magical solution but it was informative to play with tempos and find out how I felt at different tempos and how my spl changed. It also showed me how I speed up when I'm tired to get more air, but then doesn't stroking faster make me all the more tired?

When I first got my TT I didn't think I was ready for it because I had enough to concentrate on without trying to sync with those infernal beeps... ha... but now it is a useful tool. There are lots of different ways to use it, even for a newbie like me.

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Old 05-24-2010
Janos Janos is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Liverpool, England
Posts: 389
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Hi Ames,

This is a very interesting topic. I have not read all the threads, so I hope this has not already been suggested.

If we assume a swimmer is swimming at a stroke rate of 1.5 per sec, and that he is taking a breath every two strokes, then from taking a breath he has three seconds to expel the air, before he emerges again to take another breath.

When he starts recovery stroke, he has a 1.5 sec window in which to draw the required amount of oxygen. When he turns his head back to face the bottom of the pool, he has three seconds in which to expel all the air. The issues are many, but what is pertinent is how much oxygen we draw in. Too much, and we will not have time to expel it all, which will lead to a build up of carbon dioxide, that will force the swimmer to stop to re-oxygenate or 'get his breath back!'
So the swimmer must draw just enough, and exhale steadily to the count of three under water, with a final forced exhalation, the lungs are clear for a new exchange of air.
You can practice this for hours watching a clock..inhale 1.5 sec, steadily exhale for three seconds. There is no reason why you can't do the same in the water once all balance and form problems are resolved. You can extend the time for longer breaths, but the principle remains the same.
There is of course the fitness factor, but if you are training the TI way, this should not be an issue, when working on technique.

Kind Regards

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