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  #1  
Old 02-21-2014
scollops71 scollops71 is offline
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Default Breath Timing / Drills

Still learning TI - have been using front snorkel to good practise to get my technique right. BUT....once I try to breath without, all hell breaks loose again, all becomes hurried and panic and breathless.

What I notice, my lead hand drops, my recover arm is almost full extended rather than an high elbow underwater, probably trying to take air too quick. Result water intake, breathless, panic and whole stroke rhythm completely lost.

The basic drill makes sense, just turn your head - in theory. If my shoulder is to the air I should be able to just face the air, for whatever reason I am not getting it. I suspect its early or late breath - I feel If I can nail this, I can be as comfortable as with front snorkel. (Thinking maybe I need to practice knock turns)

I still struggle breathing under water, nose, mouth trying to relax - again I do notice the standard huge breath before I go under water (over filling) then the gasp when trying to expel and take air at the same time. But I think this is a result of not being a comfortable breather.

Is there a pool drill to lock these skills in ? Standing in the pool with my face in the water is easy enough but once I move I seem to lose it, I am guessing its lifting instead of turning ? In which case how do I eliminate it...
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Old 02-21-2014
WFEGb WFEGb is offline
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Hello Scollops71,

think you addressed the most common breathing if not FS-problem: Relaxation.

Have a search in this forum for "nodding drill". Developed from Coach Brian Vande Krol. And offer the sequenz of drills some hours.

You're not alone! Breathing threads are by far the longest. (2ct: my favorite: "Getting out of breath")

Many relaxed breathers and best regards,
Werner
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  #3  
Old 02-21-2014
ScottMT ScottMT is offline
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The drills described in the thread titled " 1 length to 1 mile in 2 weeks - by changing my breathing" did miracles for me.
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  #4  
Old 02-21-2014
bx bx is offline
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The thing that worked best for me was one-armed crawl with passive hand held against side of body, or held out in front if you prefer. Search YouTube for "UNCO drill" to see some variations. Your legs will probably sink down due to swimming at 50% thrust, but don't worry because it might fix your breathing timing too.

Worth a try!

EDIT:
I think "true" UNCO has you breathing to the side OPPOSITE to the stroking arm. This is hard. Somewhat easier is breathing to the SAME side as stroking arm. It will still fix your timing, so don't worry.

Last edited by bx : 02-21-2014 at 10:46 PM.
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  #5  
Old 02-22-2014
scollops71 scollops71 is offline
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Thanks all for the tips -

I read the thread from Coachsuzanne nodding drills, which is a good start. Also UNCO drill - will give that a shot on Monday I think fresh start.

ScottMT - I practiced similar drills which seemed to go ok. But on commence of swim the big breath in still happened. So its something I need to rework I think, I practiced slowly releasing air and trying to sit under water, I was dribbling air out, and still was buoyant. So had to overcome the fear and blow it all out and hey presto sitting on the bottom blowing bubbles. Now I need to get that feeling into swimming. I might just focus on a couple of strokes to get it ingrained and timed correctly.

Thanks again..
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  #6  
Old 02-22-2014
ScottMT ScottMT is offline
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Once you get the rhythmic breathing going while bobbing, the idea/challenge is to carry that same relaxed rhythm to whole stroke. For me the key was to find the stroke rate/rhythm that allows me to get the right amount of air. So swim as slow as possible (so as to not get out of breath from exertion) but still stroke frequently enough so that your breathing rhythm is natural and relaxed (so you don't hold your breath or hyperventilate). This takes some trial and error but once you get this you can swim nonstop forever! And then over time, you can gradually increase your exertion level.
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Old 02-23-2014
scollops71 scollops71 is offline
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Thanks ScottMT - great tips, any thoughts around breathing nose or mouth. I seem to play with both and can't settle. Even down to blowing out only on stroke, I don't think I am relaxing enough to just breath, then a bite of air. In my case a gasp, gulp fill the tank. This must be an ingrained thing, frustrating ....

I had a video done recently and counted unto 8 strokes before a breath. I know in my head I ted to hold on as I struggle with the breath. So didn't want to upset my rhythm. Bit counter productive given you then become stressed and mess up anyway.

ScottMT - appreciate any other hints and tips to try in the pool this week ? Really need to focus on this. Lastly did you have any issues with keep looking down ? I can't help just looking forward, I need to change that too.

Much appreciated again all.
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  #8  
Old 02-23-2014
WFEGb WFEGb is offline
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Hello Scollops71,

Quote:
.. I can't help just looking forward, I need to change that too...
Not ScottMT, but 2ct: Did you ever imagine to fix a ball for tabletennis with your chin? Maybe to get the look-down-feeling you should even start your drills with some SGs and a real ball or similar thing... (A dog toys ball might be better because some of them do not float.)

Best regards,
Werner
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  #9  
Old 02-23-2014
scollops71 scollops71 is offline
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Quick update - did the swim today, ok had head down but probably was holding down as the water seemed further to get to. I also noticed just relaxing and doing a nod drill, the head kind of tilts naturally its side. So far superman side look seems ok, its the actual to air.

Either I am taking a lot of air in initially, as if I take a breath every two to start, I am trying to breath out and in on the breath - when I catch it. I breath through the mouth mainly. After getting water up the nose I put on the nose clip, just not sure if I should continue.

A few people have said through the nose to relax more and in through the mouth. I think I need a few more hours on superman and nod drills. I didn't manage to get to Unco drill, as today was just a hive of swallowing and snorting water. Not my best day. Hopefully try again tomorrow.....
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  #10  
Old 02-24-2014
Osmond Osmond is offline
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I feel for you scallops71!

I too have struggled with the ever elusive relaxed breath of air that has no water to it! I have found the biggest challenge to overcome is dropping that target hand rather than allowing it to remain patient. If your breath is late as well this causes a hurry up feeling in the brain!

Try this next session.... notice where your head alignment is as you pierce... your chin should be somewhat close to your shoulder.... then, as you start your catch allow your head to follow your shoulder out of the water.... watch your catching hand all the way under water as well as watching your relaxed recovery.... if your head is inline with your spine it should naturally follow your shoulder out of the water and back in.... lots of time for a relaxed breath!

Don't do more than feels good either... if you fall apart... stop.... regroup... start again. Don't ingrain the struggle for air.

I hope you find your magic breath!

Osmond
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