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Old 01-19-2011
borate borate is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 533

Originally Posted by eganov View Post
Allow me to ask an organic question:

Should the hip rotation, recovery hand spear and lead hand pull all occur at roughly the same time?
Roughly, yes. It's fluid motion that varies with speed and how patient the lead arm is before the other begins to pull. Different swimmers, slightly different timings.

Study this, which shows the stoke at various speeds, performed by a master.

The kick and concurrent hip drive drive serve to shift (rotate) one's weight as the spearing arm is stretched, as if reaching for a ladder rung. Thus, the body is streamlined.

Once firmly anchored (the catch), the spear arm waits patiently for the recovering arm to enter the front quadrant, or pierce the water, then the pull begins.
Take note that the pull is not especially aggressive. The weight shift actions noted above, not just the pull, help to propel the body forward 'past' the arm.

Last edited by borate : 01-19-2011 at 11:42 PM.
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Old 01-21-2011
cynthiam cynthiam is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: San Francisco, USA
Posts: 169
Default Less enjoyable drills

Originally Posted by terry View Post
Would you share which drills you find less enjoyable, perhaps frustrating in some way and why. The insight will be valuable and could lead to improvement in the process. Or perhaps to suggestions that could ease your path.
"Less enjoyable" and frustrating are probably better ways to put it, LOL.

Early drills with rolling to sweet spot were very difficult for me as a newbie in the water at age 47. Not only could I not hold the skate position, I couldn't get air once rotated (my face was still under water). I tried and tried and just couldn't get it. So I laid those drills aside and did others, usually those without a breath.

Ear hops were not helpful for me, they introduced a bit of a hitch. I don't know if this drill is still recommended.

I know there are at least two more that I've found "annoying", but I can't remember them right now.

All this being said, I'm in an iterative process here in TI land. Those skate-sweetspot-skate drills are now what I use along with superman glide/flutter at just about every pool session. I'm still less coordinated on my left side (even though I'm left-handed for most things -- fine motor skills are better on the left, gross better on the right), but I can hold a skate and rotate to air pretty consistently. The right side is easy.

Part of my frustration early on came from not having particularly acute kinesthetic awareness. I couldn't tell what I was doing wrong. Even during and after my TI beginner weekend workshop I didn't know what was "off" much of the time. It was great for a while to have a TI buddy swimming with me occasionally -- he really helped me improve (thanks, Naji).

On more than one occasion I wished I could see someone with poor form doing some of the drills with a comparison to someone doing them properly. I think that would have helped (in lieu of video of myself).
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Old 01-21-2011
Lawrence Lawrence is offline
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: London, UK
Posts: 804

I agree it would be very interesting to see some TI learning materials aimed at the 'organic' student of freestyle as opposed to the 'driller'.

Terry, if you happen to read this, I also wondered whether you have given any thought to producing a 'fundamentals of freestyle' book, emphasising more the 'how' than the 'why'. Although in my view the 'why' is interesting, I suspect for most people the 'how' represents the initial priority.

Last edited by Lawrence : 01-21-2011 at 04:35 PM.
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Old 01-21-2011
eganov eganov is offline
Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 37

I really would like to see a Mr. TI, the TI equivalent of Mr. Smooth. It's a great tool for organic/wholestroke learners. Absent that, I agree, it would be nice to see the perfect TI wholestroke broken down into a list of the component parts. Of course, it would have to be sequenced but after one complete sequence (including bilateral breaths) it's just a repeat.
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