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  #1  
Old 10-19-2010
ob3517 ob3517 is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2010
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ob3517
Default going faster

Greetings everyone,

I've read and understand Terry's book and I've also gone thru his tape "Perpetual Motion Freestyle". I've done a lot of drilling for the past 2 weeks. I don't kick very well because of ankle flexibility, so I've had to use flippers on some of the drills.
I've improved my stroke count from previously about 24 to 25 strokes per 25m to about 20 strokes per 25m and it feels very smoothe compared to before, but that's only when I'm going very slow. As soon as I try to pick up the pace a little, it seems to fall apart.
That is the point right? To go faster with less effort. Am I rushing it too much? How long should it take to see a difference in my speed? Did anyone have a similiar experience? Thanks for the help. David
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  #2  
Old 10-19-2010
AWP AWP is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ob3517 View Post
Did anyone have a similiar experience?
David

The list is long. After all, 'good things come to those who can wait'. As long as there is continued mindful practice, you won't be able to help get better and faster.
And although 2 weeks is helpful it's only the beginning.The best way to remain smooth, and help in your quest for gradual speed, is through drag reduction and all matters drag! So when drilling and swimming really dial in to your place in matter (focusing on what you've drilled and why) and be a balanced, quiet and tall/streamlined vessel.


Alan

P.S. It is an open ended journey, keep going!
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  #3  
Old 10-19-2010
seungew seungew is offline
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.. since i've taken up TI swimming from my experience swimming in a masters club, the principles of getting faster seem to be the same - in that one has to drill to point of becoming more efficient.

This was a tough philosophy for me to adopt since I am a distance junkie when it comes to any endurance sport.

But I do agree that when I spend sometime in working on wider tracks, high elbows, I can feel the difference for sure in the first 200m. Its keepin the technique throughout a longer distance that is tough. Hence drilling.
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  #4  
Old 10-20-2010
PASA PASA is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ob3517 View Post
Greetings everyone,

I've read and understand Terry's book and I've also gone thru his tape "Perpetual Motion Freestyle". I've done a lot of drilling for the past 2 weeks. I don't kick very well because of ankle flexibility, so I've had to use flippers on some of the drills.
I've improved my stroke count from previously about 24 to 25 strokes per 25m to about 20 strokes per 25m and it feels very smoothe compared to before, but that's only when I'm going very slow. As soon as I try to pick up the pace a little, it seems to fall apart.
That is the point right? To go faster with less effort. Am I rushing it too much? How long should it take to see a difference in my speed? Did anyone have a similiar experience? Thanks for the help. David
Congratulations on the great improvement in SPL in such a short time! Also, congratulations on finding the point where your stroke falls apart. I think this is a key aspect of learning to swim more efficiently and faster. Over time, this breaking point will change to where your stroke "falls apart" at a faster and faster stroke rate. But actual improvement in efficiency and speed takes time and patience. At least, this has been my experience.

If speed is your thing, I think a key to improving speed is to repeatedly do exactly what you are doing - identify where your stroke falls apart. Then work on getting to where you can hold that pace without your stroke falling apart. But don't practice poor strokes at that too-fast pace. Instead, find the upper limit of the stroke rate where you can swim comfortably, and practice holding that pace with good technique and a relaxed stroke, and occasionally go into your discomfort zone by increasing stroke rate just a bit. Soon, you'll be able to hold that faster pace and now your breakdown point will be a bit faster, and you'll be able to work on holding an even faster pace.

If you are looking for long-term improvement, however, I would suggest that you first build a solid foundation - a great relaxed stroke - then worry about speed. I first patiently worked on getting each element of the stroke down to where it felt reasonably correct. It took me about three months of dedicated, relaxed, nearly daily drilling practice to get to the point where the whole stroke felt reasonably comfortable and smooth. The key during this learning phase was at all times to be totally relaxed in all aspects of the drills and stroke. In that time my SPL in a 25m pool at a comfortable pace dropped by about 4 SPL. I then began working on improving speed. I did this by alternating between two types of practices, one focused on holding a comfortable pace for an extended period and another focused on increasing speed. One practice I would try to hold a steady SPL at a comfortable pace for several repeats of 200s (8-12 sets). The next practice I would focus on building speed by steadily increasing the SPL by one on each 50 during several 200 repeats. For example, if my SPL on the first 50 was 18 per 25m (36 per 50), I would try to hit 19 SPL on the second 50, 20 on the third and 22 on fourth. This would require me to pick up the stroke rate each 50 just a bit, which resulted in increased speed, building each 50. After several 200 repeats, my stroke would eventually start to break down on the last 50, and that's where I knew I had hit my break point. I would usually do another set or two and then stop. Over time, my speed on these 200s has dropped by about 30 seconds per 200, but I don't feel like I'm working any harder now than when I started. I'm just moving faster through the water because my stroke is much more efficient (my SPL at a comfortable pace has also improved significantly) so that at any given stroke rate I'm able to cover a greater distance on each stroke than I was able to cover several months ago. Also, the pace I can comfortably hold on the 200 repeats with a steady SPL is much faster than where I was a few moths ago. The improvement, over time, has been dramatic, and gratifying.

Another key for me has been to regularly do basic drills. In any given practice, after a warmup, I try to spend a few minutes on some kind of switch drills. These drills reinforce my stroke, help me fix things that seem to be falling apart, focus on maintaining wide tracks and hitting the correct targets with a relaxed hand, and to improve my balance and core rotation. I often find that whatever my SPL was on my warmup laps, after doing a few drill laps my SPL on my main set is a stroke, or even two strokes, lower per 25 than it was during the warmup.

Keep up the good work, and remember, patience is key.
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  #5  
Old 10-20-2010
ob3517 ob3517 is offline
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ob3517
Default Slow Practice

Thanks for the reply. It is helpful to see how others approach practice, once they make a commitment to changing/improving their swimming. I'm a ways from doing repeat 200s, but I am going to keep my eye on where my stroke breaks down and push that limit.

My next focus is bilateral breathing, which is difficult to establish, however I'm finding that if you are relaxing as in TI swimming, you don't need need to breath as frequently.
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  #6  
Old 10-20-2010
quad09 quad09 is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2010
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Congratulations on you quick progress. Don't focus to much on your weak kick more than the timing of a well balances two beat kick with relaxed legs. I think (for me anyway) when i try to increase speed my stroke tends to shorten and it doesn't take much to increase drag. My suggestion is to stay as long and as flat as you can during every stroke. Breathing to both sides is very important in helping you accomplish this. Elongate that spine by leading with the top of your head.
Best of luck!!
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