Friday, August 03, 2007

Minor Swim Notes

I last posted a few minor swim notes at the end of June

Within two-plus weeks of that post my increased body rotation was settled into something workable (should still be better!)

Over the past three weeks I've paid more attention to the catch phase of my stroke. Rich Strauss has some worthwhile notes on this. [While I'm at this I may as well plug the whole Crucible Fitness training articles collection]

No, I haven't done a 1000m timetrial. No, I didn't switch to emphasizing the catch upon hitting a magic swim golf number. Yeah, I'm a rebel. Actually, Strauss' magic swim golf numbers look funny to me - sub-85 in a 50m pool strikes me as significantly better than sub-80 in a 25yd. pool.

Last night I took the opportunity to do a little swim golf (N.B. 25m pool).
Average time per 50m: 40 seconds
Average stroke count per 50m: 38
Hence an average score of 78.

So the trajectory of my swim golf scores looks good... FWIW, I have that going for me!

I've stayed leading the slower of the two intermediate lanes. Just now there's only one swimmer in the intermediate lanes who's faster overall than me, and he hasn't been attending all workouts. On the nights he's absent, it may look a little questionable for me to be finishing reps ahead of the faster lane, but whuddayagonnado? For one thing, my drill speeds are inconsistent (e.g. tough to slot for a mixed set in a tight lane when my kick drills are relatively slow and my pull drills are relatively fast). For another, the faster lane is more crowded, and if I moved myself up I doubt that anyone would move back.

On-going issues:
o in early days of emphasis on catch - coordination and muscles still developing;
o body rotation may still be less than optimal;
o when sprinting or stressed timing of right arm action may slip;
o seem to raise head when breathing to right - toying with thought that right arm may tend to be too shallow at start of pull.


Blogger Jenny Davidson said...

Congrats on swim golf improvement, this all sounds good!

My kicking is relatively much faster than my pull, I know what you're saying...

I've had good success recently concentrating on catch by doing this sort of long-doggie-paddle drill--50s with one dog-paddle (head up out of the water, really reach out and concentrate on length, light kick mostly for balance) and one swim, then a pull set, and after that it is AMAZING how much better the catch feels on regular swim. A well-chosen sequence of drills is MAGICAL.

Thank you for the great description, also the Crucible Fitness link will provide hours of happy distraction...

8/03/2007 09:54:00 am  
Blogger Iron Eric said...

I almost played swim golf a week or two ago. I really wanted to play...but I went to do some open water swimming instead.

8/03/2007 10:10:00 am  
Blogger Wendy said...

Good golf scores, you rebel, you!

(I'm a tad jealous.)

Is Strauss assuming open turns? That would be one more arm pull into the wall. A good quality flip turn gets you at least 5m off the wall before the first pull -- and significantly longer for the big boys.

Like you, I prefer to lead my lane rather than fight it out in lane 6. Although kick is not my strong suit, I was pleasantly surprised to find it is not the struggle to lead I thought it might be.

Good stroke analysis!

8/03/2007 10:10:00 am  
Blogger Bigun said...

thats a ton of shizzle going on there! Bigun pull in water. Bigun slow, but get it done. Bigun follow big line on bottom. Turn round when line stops. Repeat.

No wonder why I'm always last out of the water....

8/03/2007 05:23:00 pm  
Blogger Spokane Al said...

Way to go on the swim improvement. Swimming, at least to me, is very complicated and extremely difficult to master. Thanks for the links as I attempt to follow your lead and get a bit better (while following in the slow to medium lane).

8/04/2007 12:15:00 am  

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