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tomtopo
August 12th, 2008, 09:52 AM
Great Videos to show your swimmers. Good stuff.

Phelps and Thorpe
At approximately 30sec, 48 sec, 1min, and more, you’ll see the hand enter from both Phelps and Thorpe when the opposite hand is in the EVF position and during the power phase.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vtfpfTUVWw0&feature=related

Slow motion – You’ll see the forearm in an EVF position as the other hand enters.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ub-_LlqR23g&search=ian%20thorpeFirefoxHTML\Shell\Open\Command

Grant Hackett – Great EVF and then the hand enters
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IwvtuHya40g&feature=related

Jason Lezak – The most pronounced EVF of all the competitors who’s hand enters the water while the other is in the EVF position.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4T9PCyVd9J4

Ziegler Holds off Laure Manaudou = Awesome looks at when one are is in the EVF position the other enters the water.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=om48QTqzUhE&feature=related

Rebecca Adlington Olympic 400 m Freestyle Great Britian – Her EVF is gorgeous and her timing is great too.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mI6xrhef-fI&feature=related

LindsayNB
August 12th, 2008, 03:23 PM
In the attached frame from the 2nd video how would you describe the position of Thorpe's left arm as his right hand enters?

LindsayNB
August 12th, 2008, 03:33 PM
For completeness this one shows where is right arm is as his left hand enters. Very different, and illustrative of the danger of using still shots in illustrating swimming technique. Depending on whether you use the left or right hand entry shot you could come up with two very different descriptions of his timing.

tomtopo
August 15th, 2008, 01:35 PM
If you watch frame by frame you'll see that the far arm and near arm look considerably different but look at the the same person when that arm is toward you and you'll see that it's in the power phase when the other arm enters. Good try! Come'on -- You can't actually believe that efficient timing occurs when neither hand is in the power phase - because that's what you're trying to defend. I will state this again, during the power phase of the stroke the opposing hand is out of the water and begins it's entry. If you believe any Olympian waits for their arm to catch-up to the other hand as you suggest in your photo - and you're giving that advice to other swimmers as the correct timing for optimum speed - We simply don't see eye to eye and that's that. I watched the video numerous times and because the arm is away from the midline - it looks like the stroke just started - well it didn't just start, he's past the EVF and in the power phase. And I hope we can all agree that during the recovery the hand moves from the exit point to the entry quickly enough to give the false impression that one hand is waiting for the other.

LindsayNB
August 15th, 2008, 02:07 PM
If you watch frame by frame you'll see that the far arm and near arm look considerably different but look at the the same person when that arm is toward you and you'll see that it's in the power phase when the other arm enters. Good try!

Just to be clear, you look at the first image and see his left arm in EVF or power phase?

No, I don't advocate swimming the catchup drill in races, my point is just that if you are going to rely on video for evidence you can't just select the frame that appears to support your position, and a lot of people do just that. There is a lot of variability in strokes, especially at different distances, and one size doesn't fit all. That said, some things, like dropped elbows are almost never effective.

The thing is that swimming mechanics aren't simple and the various components of the stroke are all interrelated. If one isn't careful one can easily draw false conclusions, witness the whole lift versus drag debacle. In some sense it would be ideal if we shortened the recovery time significantly so the arms spent more time pulling, but there are complicated whole-body reasons why it isn't necessarily better to recover the arms faster.

Btw, if you look at the side with the later catch and look at the time from when the hand finishes the pull, i.e. ceases to provide propulsion, to when he achieves his catch there is definitely a period where no propulsion is coming from the arms. Maybe that is a flaw in his stroke, or maybe there is a good underlying reason for it.

tomtopo
August 15th, 2008, 05:57 PM
Just to be clear, you look at the first image and see his left arm in EVF or power phase?

No, I don't advocate swimming the catchup drill in races, my point is just that if you are going to rely on video for evidence you can't just select the frame that appears to support your position, and a lot of people do just that. There is a lot of variability in strokes, especially at different distances, and one size doesn't fit all. That said, some things, like dropped elbows are almost never effective.

The thing is that swimming mechanics aren't simple and the various components of the stroke are all interrelated. If one isn't careful one can easily draw false conclusions, witness the whole lift versus drag debacle. In some sense it would be ideal if we shortened the recovery time significantly so the arms spent more time pulling, but there are complicated whole-body reasons why it isn't necessarily better to recover the arms faster.

Btw, if you look at the side with the later catch and look at the time from when the hand finishes the pull, i.e. ceases to provide propulsion, to when he achieves his catch there is definitely a period where no propulsion is coming from the arms. Maybe that is a flaw in his stroke, or maybe there is a good underlying reason for it.


First, let me say I do agree with you that one size does not fit all. The variables from body type, strength, flexibility, athleticism, etc., require swimmers to make adjustments. And we agree that their are some things that simply are counter-productive to efficient propulsion like a dropped-elbow, a poor kick, and drag, to name three.

Lift and drag forces simply exist and because we swim in water they are very important to propulsion. On the physical side of swimming, if you're a coach who would like to help swimmers get faster your instruction should be based on science. There isn't anything that I'm telling anyone in the forum that hasn't been said by Dr. James Councilman, Ernie Maglischo, United States Swimming (Training Categories and Training Design Guidelines) and ultimately based on science.

There are swimmers on this forum who actually believe that waiting for one hand to catch-up to the other before they start pulling is the way to attain optimum speed. I know that sound silly to you and I but I have read it more than once. Some swimmers give two hoots about the technical side of swimming but I'm not one of them.

Thank you for your time. Coach, it's fun exchanging ideas and I wish you and your team all the best. And I know that your swimmers should be very happy to have a coach who is passionate about the sport. Keep me posted about you or your team progress. Again, Thanks!

Mahatma Gandhi, as you know, walked barefoot most of the time, which produced an impressive set of calluses on his feet. He also ate very little, which made him rather frail and, with his odd diet, suffered from bad breath. This made him (Oh, man, this is so bad, it's good) a super calloused fragile mystic hexed by halitosis.

LindsayNB
August 15th, 2008, 07:22 PM
Thanks to you too, I enjoy the discussions too.

tomtopo
August 16th, 2008, 09:47 AM
The underwater footage of Adlington's 800 Fr swim shows the stroke that I try to teach every swimmer (sprinter to distance). That's the style that I'm a proponent of and Doc Councilman advocated it back in the late 60's and early 70's. He didn't call the catch an EVF but I think he would have been okay with the acronym (I pray). The opposite of a catch is a dropped-elbow. What is the opposite of front quadrant (Rear-quadrant)?

Each competitive stroke can be separated into four different segments or quadrants. The front quadrant is where the "setting-up" of the stroke or a propulsive position is initiated; the beginning of the second quadrant and the end of the first quadrant is where power from the stroke occurs; the third quadrant where the recovery is initiated and the fourth quadrant is where the recovery makes the transition to the entry. The all important EVF position can be found somewhere in the first quadrant of each stroke.

No Olympic swimmer is without some form of EVF - No Olympic swimmer swims with a straight arm underwater at the beginning of their stroke.


I'm bothered by the term front quadrant swimming because everyone except catch-up drill swimmers use the front-quadrant to swim. Maybe I'm reading too much into the term but I wish people wouldn't use it. What do you think? Is front quadrant more like mirror image swimming?

LindsayNB
August 16th, 2008, 02:04 PM
No Olympic swimmer is without some form of EVF - No Olympic swimmer swims with a straight arm underwater at the beginning of their stroke.

I can agree with the first part (as long as you don't really mean truly vertical) but in the second part are you saying no Olympic swimmer fully extends their arm to the front? I presume you aren't because lots of them do, so what exactly do you mean? No swimmer leaves the front arm fully extended for very long?

What is your opinion on Popov's stroke as shown here:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CIzBaSiWdRA

I would say he has near zero front quadrant overlap, the pulling hand leaves the front quadrant as the recovering hand enters it. Perhaps that is a way to understand "front quadrant swimming" which, as I have said is a spectrum or degree not something that has an opposite. The more front quadrant overlap there is between the pulling and recovering arms the more "front quadrant" the stroke is. Popov has near zero overlap, catchup drill has the maximum degree of overlap.

Popov is much easier to discuss than Thorpe because Popov's stroke is pretty symmetric while Thorpe's is not.

tomtopo
August 16th, 2008, 05:10 PM
I can agree with the first part (as long as you don't really mean truly vertical) but in the second part are you saying no Olympic swimmer fully extends their arm to the front? I presume you aren't because lots of them do, so what exactly do you mean? No swimmer leaves the front arm fully extended for very long?

What is your opinion on Popov's stroke as shown here:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CIzBaSiWdRA

I would say he has near zero front quadrant overlap, the pulling hand leaves the front quadrant as the recovering hand enters it. Perhaps that is a way to understand "front quadrant swimming" which, as I have said is a spectrum or degree not something that has an opposite. The more front quadrant overlap there is between the pulling and recovering arms the more "front quadrant" the stroke is. Popov has near zero overlap, catchup drill has the maximum degree of overlap.

Popov is much easier to discuss than Thorpe because Popov's stroke is pretty symmetric while Thorpe's is not.

The two swimmers that demonstrate my point which wasn't very clear and I'm sorry about that, would be Rebecca Adlingtion and Alain Bernard. The portion of the stroke I was trying to talk about wasn't the extension but the begining of the catch. The young lady has an awesome EVF while Bernard's is present but as late as it can get. A vertical arm doesn't mean that the arm is actually straight but the difference in both swimmers is easy to recognize (Adlington's is bent throughout the stroke while Bernard's arm bend's little by comparison).

I'll continue to use Rebecca Adlington as my poster child (swimmer) for EVF and correct timing of freestyle for all distances. There will always be variables and exceptions (body type, strength, flexibility, and endurance) but I think she demonstrates a template that all coaches should consider copying. What do you think?

LindsayNB
August 16th, 2008, 05:43 PM
I can't find any video of Adlington. :(

tomtopo
August 16th, 2008, 08:16 PM
I can't find any video of Adlington. :(


I can't either. It'll show up soon I hope.

tygrr94
August 16th, 2008, 09:06 PM
Awesome, I've been looking for some of these.

What does EVP stand for?

tomtopo
August 17th, 2008, 08:44 AM
Early Vertical Forearm, just a more technical name for the catch or how you set up the stroke. Each competitive stroke can be separated into four different segments or quadrants. The front quadrant is where propulsion initiates; the beginning of the second quadrant and the end of the first quadrant is where power from the stroke occurs; the third quadrant where the recovery is initiated and the fourth quadrant is where the recovery makes the transition to the entry. The all important EVF position or catch should be located in the first quadrant of each stroke. If you'd like more information please email me at tomtopo@netzero.com Good luck, Coach T.

tomtopo
August 17th, 2008, 08:49 AM
Awesome, I've been looking for some of these.

What does EVP stand for?

Below is a powerPoint all about EVF. Coach T.

http://www.authorstream.com/Presentation/tomtopo-78276-pp-swimming-5-without-narration-Important-anEarly-Vertical-Forearm-Look-Results-Pictures-Search-Dreaded-Dro-w-Entertainment-ppt-powerpoint/