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  #1  
Old 08-11-2012
jenson1a jenson1a is offline
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Default To Snorkel or Not To Snorkel?

In a recent thread about breathing, reference was made to another site by Coach Emmett Hines--title was Sucking Wind. This article made a "good sell" of why to buy a swimmers snorkel.

Site was h2oustonswims.org/articles/sucking_wind.html

Prior to starting TI, I never had much trouble breathing, but once I started TI, I got caught up in counting strokes, head down, etc all of which created a lot of tension. I have started to improve with breathing by reducing tension and practicing a lot of SG and skating drills.

My thought is if I do get one of these swimmers snorkels, perhaps my improvement will be more rapid. I did try a regular snorkel and it did help a little in lessening breathlessness after swimming several laps.

So my question is if I do buy the snorkel, I worry about becoming dependent on it. Need advice--should I stay the tortoise (slow and easy wins the race)? In other words, no "pool toys" or would it be worth my while to take the risk of dependence in favor of improvement?

Interested in anyone's opinion.

Sherry
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  #2  
Old 08-11-2012
KatieK KatieK is offline
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I think using a snorkel for part of your practice is a good idea. It lets you focus on other elements of your stroke. But I would never suggest using it for a whole practice. Maybe start out with a few 100 yards of easy swimming, then do a few 100 yards of swimming and drills with the snorkel. Then do the rest of your practice without it.

I personally HATE the snorkel, but I use it once in awhile because it helps me get a better look at my catch. Some of my friends have made big improvements to their stroke while using it. They're also really popular with age group teams.

Just don't be one of those people who swims for 45 minutes with a snorkel.
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  #3  
Old 08-16-2012
CharlesCouturier CharlesCouturier is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jenson1a View Post
In a recent thread about breathing, reference was made to another site by Coach Emmett Hines--title was Sucking Wind. This article made a "good sell" of why to buy a swimmers snorkel.

Site was h2oustonswims.org/articles/sucking_wind.html

Prior to starting TI, I never had much trouble breathing, but once I started TI, I got caught up in counting strokes, head down, etc all of which created a lot of tension. I have started to improve with breathing by reducing tension and practicing a lot of SG and skating drills.

My thought is if I do get one of these swimmers snorkels, perhaps my improvement will be more rapid. I did try a regular snorkel and it did help a little in lessening breathlessness after swimming several laps.

So my question is if I do buy the snorkel, I worry about becoming dependent on it. Need advice--should I stay the tortoise (slow and easy wins the race)? In other words, no "pool toys" or would it be worth my while to take the risk of dependence in favor of improvement?

Interested in anyone's opinion.

Sherry
The front snorkel is becoming part of several swimmers or all level's bag now. It is excellent, and the mere fact that you fear becoming dependent on it, is already a good start for avoiding this trap.

Don't worry and more importantly, don't forget to exhale the first puff off the wall vigorously ;-)
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  #4  
Old 08-16-2012
rolferdon rolferdon is offline
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I have been using the front snorkel for only a few weeks, I have found it to be helpful with drills. I generally do a lap using it, focusing on a particular point then remove it and repeat a lap with the same focal point. I use the standard Finis, tried the Freestyle but I am not advanced enough for it yet and get H2o in it too frequently.
I too had some concern about depending on it but I have not found it to be a problem. I actually don't like using it for full stroke because it tends to wobble even at my slow speeds!!
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  #5  
Old 08-16-2012
westyswoods westyswoods is offline
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Default Snorkel

It is one of three training aids I use, along with with a tempo trainer and resistance bands for keeping legs together.

All previous post are applicable IMHO.

Swim Silent and Be Well
Westy
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  #6  
Old 08-16-2012
KatieK KatieK is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rolferdon View Post
I actually don't like using it for full stroke because it tends to wobble even at my slow speeds!!
If the snorkel is wobbling, that means your head is making some rogue movements. The snorkel is a good tool for ironing those out.
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  #7  
Old 08-16-2012
westyswoods westyswoods is offline
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Default Snorkel Wobble

Excellent point by KatiK. When you don't feel the snorkel move you are keeping the head still.

Swim Silent and Be Well
Westy
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  #8  
Old 08-16-2012
CoachBillL CoachBillL is offline
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Default Another view on snorkels

I dislike snorkels. I would almost say I hate snorkels. I have a number of students who struggle with breathing (like many of us) -- they try a snorkel, and tra-la, the problem goes away. They say, well, I'll just use it to get ready for the tri next week (at least one local triathlon, bizarrely to me, allows snorkels in competition.) And they never get around to really learning to breathe. I'm sure snorkels can be used intelligently and usefully, but a lot of people, left to their own devices, just use them to put off learning to breathe, and waste all that time they could be using -- learning to breathe!
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  #9  
Old 08-17-2012
jenson1a jenson1a is offline
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Hey thanks for all the input. I think I am going to forgo the purchase of the swimmer's snorkel. those of you that recommended it,my hat goes off to you. I am basically a lazy person and really fear that I will use one of these as a cruthch and that I will have a hard time giving it up.

Like I said, I do notice some improvement in my breathing and swimming, but it seems that I have a very LONG way to go to even swim like some of you who have posted your videos. I guess I had hoped for a "magic bullet"!

Thanks again for all the input

Sherry
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  #10  
Old 08-17-2012
KatieK KatieK is offline
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I think that's wise. One thing I should have said before is that I think the snorkel is more of an intermediate-level tool. It's good for fine-tuning, but if it's used too early in the process it can become a crutch.

I agree with your instinct not to use it if you struggle with breathing.
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