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Swim Smooth




Joined: 22 Aug 2005
Posts: 1487
Location: UK and Australia

PostPosted: Wed Jan 11, 2006 3:24 am    Post subject: Swimming Visualization Reply with quote

I have been promising to pop a clip of some swimming up on the forum for a while and with the help of SE and TIUK_Ian, I now have some available for you at http://www.swimsmooth.com/downloads.htm#Video - hope you find this of benefit to you. I'm hoping to slip another clip up there soon following on from the Single Arm Drills Thread which is still going strong.

This is one for TIUK_Ian...Ian, last week I dropped down to our local club swim session here in Canada. The coach had a little look at me swimming and immediately commented..."you swim that TI thing right?" - it brought a smile to my face considering our discussions of days gone by and thought you might be keen to hear this feedback - all in good faith Surprised

Regards

Paul
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JetStream




Joined: 23 Apr 2005
Posts: 1184
Location: Aylesbury

PostPosted: Thu Jan 12, 2006 11:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great Clip Paul. I've got a bunch of underwater vids from the Olympics - I can see what they're doing right, but I can't seem to quite manage to do it myself.... oh well..

One comment on the clip: isn't his arm recovery quite high, especially on the 'breathing recovery'? He really seems to fling it over somewhat. A lot of what I've been taught is about keeping your arm low, so I guess that just shows that there's not one way of doing this - or that I've been taught wrong!

D
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wilbur4s




Joined: 06 Sep 2005
Posts: 3997

PostPosted: Thu Jan 12, 2006 11:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I know nothing about swimming, but that looks so effortles...he seems to have avery long amount of time with his arm out stretched. I take it this is good?
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Swim Smooth




Joined: 22 Aug 2005
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Location: UK and Australia

PostPosted: Fri Jan 13, 2006 12:20 am    Post subject: Thanks Reply with quote

Thanks Guys

I'm glad you brought this up actually as I always bring this same thing up at our clinics following a viewing of this clip.

Essentially wilbur4s, what you have there is almost classic "front quadrant swimming" where it appears as though Bill has almost done a "catch-up" at the front end of the stroke - thus making it appear as though he's gliding with the arm out-stretched. To answer your question, "is this good?" essentially yes, its a classic smooth and efficient freestyle stroke. However, what we talk about at our clinics is how a slightly shorter, faster stroke may be more specific to certain individuals in the rough open water situation. As such I always use examples of good efficient pool swimming (which for the majority of people is how they should learn to develop their efficiency) AND examples of efficient open water swimming with our two top surf Ironman swimmers in DVD # 2 - to see these guys in the pool is ugly (seriously), to see them in the open water is phenomenal. This is essentially our philosophy in a nut shell, train to be efficient in the pool and look to become more specific with your training closer to the season by incorporating some of what makes a good open water swimmer effective. Makes sense really, as very rarely are you ever in a situation in triathlon where you have totally flat water with no-one else around.

The best example I can offer of this is the legendary Australian surf ironman swimmer Ky Hurst. I was fortunate enough to witness a few of Ky's open water swims in Queensland (AUS) two years ago. In one professional 1000m rough water swim race in Noosa, Ky missed the start by a little over 60 seconds and came charging into the surf a good 100m behind the rest of the field. He caught a wave and surfed it in passing everyone in the field in the process to win the race. For a race lasting a little over 11 minutes, making up this sort of time gap against those guys is phenomenal. Ky then went onto trialling out for the Australian 1500m swim team at the Athens Olympics and placed third behind none other than Grant Hackett and Craig Stevens. His stroke looked 'very scrappy' compared to those two guys, but when Hackett was asked if he'd take on Hurst in the open water I believe his answer was a very certain "no!" As such, whilst you might not be doing all your races in the big surf...its worth considering skills like this which are fun to practice and can make significant improvements to your time with very little effort. As such we see it wise to feature this as part of our open water skills section along with drafting practice (another big time gainer).

Jetstream - this is the point I was hoping someone was going to pick up from the clip. As a swimmer, Bill was noted for being a little assymetrical with regards his stroke and was a predominant unilateral breather and typically swam with one straight arm recovery and one high elbow. His dominant breathing side is his right. As such the degree of body roll to this side is a little more than to his left resulting in a very high recovery on this side when he breathes to that side. You'll notice that it only happens sporadically and not even every breath to the right. As we were making a video about how to swim as efficiently as possible and with me being so pedantic about bilateral breathing, Bill was asked to swim bilateral the whole way - which as you can see isn't a stress for him but does depict his slight idiosyncracy every now and again. Hopefully you will agree that this is a great stroke regardless, however you could argue and say "surely you should have had the picture of absolute perfection for such a video" to which my response would be "what is perfection?" Arguably, Ian Thorpe is pretty much on the money with regards 'perfection' in the pool, but is this necessarily perfection in the open water? I would argue perhaps not. And again that goes back to our whole emphasis, its about finding out what works best for you given your history, experience, body type and natural biomechanical make-up. If that opens up too much doubt over "well what is the best way for us to swim then?" I'd again say, train as a pool swimmer, but develop the specifics of an open water swimmer closer to your set race.

Hope this makes sense. Sorry I have a tendency to go on a bit!

Here's a link if you're keen to find out more about Bill Kirby and his history as a world class swimmer http://www.swimsmooth.com/about.htm#Bill

Paul
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SolarEnergy




Joined: 18 Sep 2005
Posts: 2251
Location: Quebec, Canada

PostPosted: Fri Jan 13, 2006 3:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Course it makes sens mate.

That's all it makes, 100% perfect sens.
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wilbur4s




Joined: 06 Sep 2005
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 13, 2006 8:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the response!
Quote:
Essentially wilbur4s, what you have there is almost classic "front quadrant swimming" where it appears as though Bill has almost done a "catch-up" at the front end of the stroke - thus making it appear as though he's gliding with the arm out-stretched.

Rofl

Hahahaha. I'm really sorry but you lost me! It's nothing to do with you but I am a complete dunse when it comes to swimming. And you might as well have saved you wise words and typed:

jbnc riawjv;a ;wjfn;q nvw;reonfva ;oh a;orlohfa;we4 ; owefh;a fwoerpqhpoifa bcvweuihf wefh aiuhfgv PULL BOY, jdbf weojfn w weoif owehf wefhjonvoahjkn owehqfoihfloknwqiu fehoqw weorhf wqu gnerlow waui gtlk bji BREASTSTROKE ISN'T GOOD FOR OPEN WATER SWIMMING, kjbf kierg oihgrt oihs jiot bhdsa uioht husdf uhb ugrth, LEFT ARM FOLLOWED BY THE RIGHT ARM

I'm going to have to have some coaching I think!
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AndyS




Joined: 05 Jan 2004
Posts: 9970

PostPosted: Fri Jan 13, 2006 9:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's a good movie, enjoyed it. It seemed his recovery went as he got tired at the end. Very Happy

I've been working really hard on my recovery and I still don't get it. But it's good to see you can still be quick and not be spot on with recovery technique.

In your post above you say "examples of efficient open water swimming with our two top surf Ironman swimmers in DVD # 2", is that DVD #2 in the Clean Up Your Stroke boxset?
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younggun




Joined: 26 Apr 2005
Posts: 4443
Location: Purf, Orstrayleeahh

PostPosted: Fri Jan 13, 2006 9:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

In case you want it in the thread...




Nice vid. He finishes the back of his stroke really well.
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IanC




Joined: 20 Jul 2005
Posts: 134
Location: Lightwater

PostPosted: Fri Jan 13, 2006 9:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

A couple of things struck me.

Firstly he seems nearly to slap the water and not really put any energy into driving his arm forward. My coaching has me entering the water a little ahead of my head and then drive forward and rotate at the same time. For a long time this made me get it a bit wrong because the rotation should be caused by putting the core into the pull, not to reach out. Bills style more or less makes that error impossible – I think.

Secondly on recovery his arm is as near as damn it vertical to the water – I know that is the same a high elbow but I had never thought of it as arm at right angles to the water prior to re entering the water. That is a really helpful thing to think about because a high elbow is really not all that helpful because it is a relative statement. Saying enter the water with your elbow and arm at right angles is an absolute statement that I can get my head round.

He looks to me like he has a very powerful kick because the forward momentum between strokes is relentless – its like he has an outboard motor strapped to his ass. Yet his kick seems nearly lazy. I wonder how many hours it takes to be able to do that – probably that should be how many years. A powerful but efficient (lazy) kick has to be a major goal for an Tri Swimmer

And like all the elite swimmers he seems to be 5 metres tall in the water and fused in a horizontal position. Laughing

Really very helpful and informative - thanks
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Matty W




Joined: 04 May 2005
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Location: In The Dog House

PostPosted: Fri Jan 13, 2006 11:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Paul,

Rachael has pointed this out to me that I tend to nearly do catch up. As my recovering arm enters the water the gliding arm starts to stroke. Now she has to me that I should start to sroke with the gliding arm as soon as the 'driving' arm exits the water by my waist. Doing this has the effect of making me sprint and increasing my arm turn over, as a result burning out my sholders in the process. So I take this method is good for open water, but isn't perfect for the pool!

Thanks Matt
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SolarEnergy




Joined: 18 Sep 2005
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Location: Quebec, Canada

PostPosted: Fri Jan 13, 2006 1:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

younggun wrote:

Nice vid. He finishes the back of his stroke really well.
You have hit what I consider as being the most important aspect of that kind of swimming (front cadran).

In fact, these guys are like magicians. While we have our attention on the front part of their style, being amazed by how easy it looks (this guy was on a sub 20min pace IMO), all the work is made at the end of each pull stroke. Requires very powerful back and triceps muscles.

BTW, how did you do that thrick of showing the reader within your post?
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Swim Smooth




Joined: 22 Aug 2005
Posts: 1487
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 13, 2006 2:10 pm    Post subject: Video Reply with quote

Thanks everyone,

Matty W, whilst I don't want to totally contradict what Rachael is saying as she's no doubt showing you how you may develop your open water stroke, it sounds like you need almost a happy halfway medium between what you've got and what you're trying to do IMHO. Besides that, Rachael is poolside with you, I am not, she's going to be able to obviously see exactly what is going on and how to correct that. I know that Rachael has got a tempo trainer which you may like to ask to use with her and see how that helps with some of your more specific sets. Ask her to analyse your stroke rate as it is now in strokes per minute and then set the tempo trainer to 2-3bpm faster and see how this feels and whether it encourages a more rhythmical stroke. I'd be keen to hear your feedback actually. This is not the only way to improve that rhythm, but it is a way...so give it a go. I hasten to add that I would normally save working with SR until about March / April time as you're building into the season.

Ian, Point # 1 - absolutely, Bill's core rotation or body roll is key to his relaxed stroke...if you look at it again you'll see juts how much he's rotating through hips hips / core - I'm just finalising some core exercises on the dry land for swimmers and triathletes and will keep you posted when they're up on the site. Bill's "slapping" is almost a sign of just how relaxed he is in the water...I would encourage swimmers to focus on a slightly smoother hand entry (as described in our video), but there are other areas which for most people will prove more successful initially, e.g. body roll. Point # 2 - remember, the result that you see in Bill's high elbows is not just a product of him thinking about this aspect of his stroke, nor his flexibility, its mainly controlled by his body roll. If you get chance, jump back to our video page on our site (link above), scroll down to the bottom and see our JigSaw Puzzle diagram to put this into perspective. Point # 3 - Bill has a hugely powerful kick - to see him kick is AMAZING - however, as you correctly point out, when swimming distance it almost appears "lazy", but with virtually zero drag - this is my biggest tip re. your kick...think not about increasing propulsion, but more about decreasing drag. Point # 4 - absolutely, 5 meters tall...funnily enough, Bill is only 3 inches taller than me (I was surprised) but in the water he's at least 3 feet taller!

Younggun, can you tell me how you got that video up there like that as I would like to put the video directly on my site like this with the buttons et al. Thanks!

Andy S, In your post above you say "examples of efficient open water swimming with our two top surf Ironman swimmers in DVD # 2", is that DVD #2 in the Clean Up Your Stroke boxset? Yes, absolutely, it comes as part of the boxset. The first disc is 75 mins long (pool) the second is 45 mins long (open water).

Wilbur4s, I think you'll pick up some good tips and understanding of the freestyle stroke at that Level 1 coaching course you're going on...PM me if you need anything clarifying.

Cheers

Paul
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IanC




Joined: 20 Jul 2005
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 13, 2006 3:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

$hit this stuff is complicated.

I take the point about the elbow position is to do with rotation absofrigginglutely!

But I was not seeing it as rolling to vertical I was seeing lifting my elbows. Now having just lain on the bed and rolled about and flapped my elbows about in various poses - its now obvious to me that the roll is much more efficient because the “lift” actually is limited by the range of articulation in the shoulder. In my mind I was trying to lift my elbow as high as I could (because a high elbow was good not because that meant you were rotating properly) but what I should have been doing was think about lift and roll to get the most effective total body position in terms of streamlining and power from the core. Its obviously more relaxed to do it with a roll than a lift.

Damn this stuff is hard but when you see videos like this its obviously all there to be done.

Just had a relook at the slippery video Glen did of me and the rotation I have is about 80% of the rotation Bill is showing so its not a major adjustment. Something to try tomorrow.

And what is happening with the timing of his kick – it looks to me as if sometimes its continuous and then misses a couple of beats – can’t quite figure out what is going on there, could you explain please Paul.

Just when I was thinking I understood it I discover I didn’t. d’oh!!!!!
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younggun




Joined: 26 Apr 2005
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 13, 2006 4:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

SolarEnergy wrote:
BTW, how did you do that thrick of showing the reader within your post?
Once you have the web address it's easy. You just stick this in your post:

Code:
<embed src="http://www.swimsmooth.com/images/snapshots/SwimSmoothVideo_High.wmv">
</embed>

TT seems to need the <http://> so don't skip it.

Swim Smooth, you should be able to stick this same code in your http for the page. The code doesn't reference any player so it just uses the default which is windows media player (WMP) normally. WMP defaults to using buttons. Easy peasy. If you specify a player or specify settings then sometimes the buttons disappear - there's probably a way to re-enable them but I don't know how off the top of my head.

If you put the path in as an href as you've done it'll open up in a seperate WMP window. The embed class I used forces it to be embedded in the window... When it's within your own site you can use indirect addressing as normal - no need for the full path. Let me know if that doesn't make sense or it doesn't work.

BTW is that you in the video? Good to put faces to names!

Adam
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martinc




Joined: 03 May 2005
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 13, 2006 4:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

lurvely technique.. right elbow goes rather high but hey!

check out the guy flailing up in lane 5 as bill glides by!!!

the wide shot showing the cameramen makes you realise just how quick he's going. Cool
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