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Old 11-06-2009
Willem Willem is offline
Junior Member
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 21
Default TI in traditional master swimming group?

Hi I'm member of a triathlon club. Most members swim together 3 to 4 times a week and most af them swim very good and can swim very fast and long. The swim coaches are teaching the traditional way and aren't familiar with TI.

Is it possible to participate at this swim sessions and doing the traditional drills, with keeping TI focus points in my mind? Sometimes they use drills like: sculling, kickboard, swimming with fins and/or paddles, pull buoy, swimming with fists, tapping the armpit, dragging arm recovery,...
The other part of the session is building distance and working on speed, but here it's not a problem to keep my TI principles in mind, I guess.

Participating at a traditional swimm class is the only option for me to swim in a group (TI is not well known in Belgium)

So my questions:

If I swim on my own (and include the TI drills), let's say, two times a week and moreover take part on the traditional swim class, once or two times a week; is this harmful for developing my TI style?

Are their traditional drills I certainly have to avoid? (it's not very pleasant for the teacher when someone says, "I don't do this drill".... especially not when he is one of the weakest swimmers in the group ;-) ). Or can I do the drills with TI focus points.

Thanks for your answers!

ps: excuse me for my sloppy english!

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Old 11-06-2009
CoachDave's Avatar
CoachDave CoachDave is offline
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Minneapolis, MN
Posts: 249
Default Sure!

They can't tell you what to be thinking, so make a few adjustments:

Sometimes they use drills like:
sculling- you can do kind of a half underswitch to set the grip with patience kickboard- hmmm tough on this one- maybe ask if you can streamline kick or skate
swimming with fins- keep the kick light and exaggerate the hip drive and the tight kick staying behind the hips
and/or paddles- get some finger paddles or finis freestylers if they INSIST on paddles, but here, like kickboard work, I'd avoid most of it
pull buoy- request a "mock pull"- I'll put up a post on it
swimming with fists- make sure the fist isn't tense and drawn back but instead in line with the forearm, and this is great!
tapping the armpit- If this is to get you staying tight then extending wide and patiently, see if you can do the same without coming in to the armpit. Many adults don't have this mobility and wreck their posture when doing this.
dragging arm recovery- a wide zenswitch could be the same- make sure you lead by the elbow and have a slight shrug out in the shoulder.

There is no point if there is no purpose- at least ask why you do each thing so you know what the coach is trying to build into your stroke.
Dave Cameron
Total Immersion Master Coach
Head Coach- Minneapolis YWCA Otters and Masters and MN Tri Masters
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