Total Immersion Forums  

Go Back   Total Immersion Forums > Outside the Box: Open Water Swimming
FAQ Members List Calendar Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 05-22-2011
cynthiam cynthiam is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: San Francisco, USA
Posts: 169
Default Lengthening really does work

I was interested to read on another thread some talk about lengthening one's body while swimming in rough conditions.

For some reason I had thought that shortening one's stroke was the way to deal with choppy conditions. Last summer/fall when I first started swimming in OW I tried shortening. I wasn't sure if my lack of forward motion and control were down to my nascent swimming skills or the conditions.

Today I was back in OW for the first time in 2 weeks. The water has warmed up (to about 56F/13C), which delighted me. It was also windy and choppy, with a good flood tide. After I breaststroked & freestyled for a bit perpendicular to the incoming water, I turned into it.

I lengthened from head to toe and held a really patient lead hand, making sure it was on a wide track and not drifting in toward the center. Focused on circling my relaxed elbows and entering fairly steeply. Well, lo and behold, I felt in control (relatively) and made decent progress in spite of being slapped in the head and side by the chop. It also felt kind of leisurely.

I was breathing to one side only because I took a few nosefuls and mouthfuls on the other side. The lengthening and patient lead hand really helped me keep my head from coming up out of the water. I actually was breathing most of the time with part of my mouth in the water. I know I was rotating a bit more than I would in the pool, but not as much as I would have last year.

It was thrilling to feel so relaxed and semi-capable in rough-ish water. I did only short lengths, maybe 12 or so strokes at a time, then would stop to look around and decide where to head next. Instead of just trying to survive out there, I had a ton of fun!
Reply With Quote
Old 05-22-2011
naj naj is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: San Francisco, CA
Posts: 624

That's great Cynthia! You've come a long way in the last year with your ow swimming!!! I was in yesterday (Sat may21st) and it was still 53F/11.6 not 56/13.3 as you say. I checked both of the thermometers (Flag & Balcutha's). But that's not the point, the point is that your right, lengthening the body creates less drag especially in rough water. I know you'll be swimming from Alcatraz soon enough within the year and I hope I'm there to cheer you on!

Keep Swimming!
Reply With Quote

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump

All times are GMT. The time now is 01:48 PM.

Powered by vBulletin®
Copyright ©2000 - 2022, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.