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taruky
October 28th, 2008, 11:08 PM
Hey guys, it's been a while. I've been so busy and haven't had as much time to swim. Oddly enough both my son and I have improved tremendously since the summer season ended, and this is with much less practice oddly enough.

My son (just turned 9) began the summer with a 45 or 46 second 25M. He now is consistently getting 21-23 seconds in the 25Y. We just started working on the 50Y, so his endurance isn't quite up to snuff, but he's getting about 51 seconds. it's really interesting how he plateaus for a couple weeks, then one day he sets a new bar for the next couple weeks. I'll try to get video soon to see what people think, I can post his old video links for comparison.

As for myself, some of you may remember it took me a good 20 some strokes to go 25M. Well, I'm now doing the 25Y in 12-13 strokes. I haven't had a chance to get myself videotaped,so I don't know how good it looks, but I figure with the markedly improved efficiency I must be doing something right. Again, I'll try to post a video soon. One of the things I'm doing is angling my arms slightly downward on the extension and keeping my hand loose and slightly angled downward. I find this reduces the drag I used to get from my hand and makes it easier to keep my elbow high.

Reilly
December 8th, 2010, 10:21 AM
Hi Taruky

I found a post of yours that I could have written myself and am very interested if you have found the cause and had any sucess in overcoming the problem. You posted the following a while back:


"I'd like to revisit this thread if I may, because I am having a very similar problem to that of the original poster. I'm getting worn out very quickly. I definitely am exhaling underwater, through both my mouth and nose, and am doing nothing but taking a breath when my head exits the water. However, I find myself suddenly hungry for air if I do 3 or 4 strokes under water, and at the end of 50 m I am spent (even if I breathe every 2nd stroke). I also find myself wheezing. I don't believe it's asthma because I really don't have any associated cough (although I suppose a pulmonary function test might be a good idea). Of note, I am in good shape and don't have this problem running. Anyhow, I've been working with a swimmer's snorkel and still find myself exhausted, needing a rest every 50. My questions are as follows;

1. Has anyone else experienced that sense of wheezing and/or upper airway obstruction, especially people just starting to train seriously? Did it resolve with time?

2. Is this perhaps a CO2 tolerance issue that might be helped by using the snorkel regularly?

3. When my stroke mechanics stunk in the past I was much more comfortable and relaxed swimming. Now with the good extension and high elbow catch my endurance is much less although my stroke distance and speed are infinitely better. Has anyone else gone from a comfortable swimmer with bad mechanics to a better swimmer with less endurance like me? Is it just a matter of pushing myself harder and the rest will come? "

taruky
December 9th, 2010, 07:02 PM
Hi Taruky

I found a post of yours that I could have written myself and am very interested if you have found the cause and had any sucess in overcoming the problem. You posted the following a while back:


"I'd like to revisit this thread if I may, because I am having a very similar problem to that of the original poster. I'm getting worn out very quickly. I definitely am exhaling underwater, through both my mouth and nose, and am doing nothing but taking a breath when my head exits the water. However, I find myself suddenly hungry for air if I do 3 or 4 strokes under water, and at the end of 50 m I am spent (even if I breathe every 2nd stroke). I also find myself wheezing. I don't believe it's asthma because I really don't have any associated cough (although I suppose a pulmonary function test might be a good idea). Of note, I am in good shape and don't have this problem running. Anyhow, I've been working with a swimmer's snorkel and still find myself exhausted, needing a rest every 50. My questions are as follows;

1. Has anyone else experienced that sense of wheezing and/or upper airway obstruction, especially people just starting to train seriously? Did it resolve with time?

2. Is this perhaps a CO2 tolerance issue that might be helped by using the snorkel regularly?

3. When my stroke mechanics stunk in the past I was much more comfortable and relaxed swimming. Now with the good extension and high elbow catch my endurance is much less although my stroke distance and speed are infinitely better. Has anyone else gone from a comfortable swimmer with bad mechanics to a better swimmer with less endurance like me? Is it just a matter of pushing myself harder and the rest will come? "

Hi Reilly,

Yes I'm doing a lot better interestingly enough. Not sure why, just one day I decided to kick with little less fervor and relax. Also, fighting through those moments when you feel like you are starving for a rest helps you to realize that you were not on the verge of dying and that, in turn, helps you relax. Relaxation requires less energy. Now I can do about 15 laps straight, although that is without a flip turn. Flip turns wear me out quicker.

Swim really slowly as you get used to it, don't try to fight the water but kind of nudge yourself along. I make sure not to breathe just deep enough, not too deeply . Don't tense any muscles except maybe your core.

Hope that helps.

Reilly
December 10th, 2010, 01:56 AM
Hi. Thanks for the response. I do not have a very good kick. My legs are a bit low in the water and feet not pointed enough. I guess this creates more drag which makes me slower and maybe requires more energy. Working on it with my tri coach. Now that I am focussing more on the kick I seem to be kicking a lot more which is making my breathing more difficult.

I have done 3 1,5km swims in triathlons this season and the first two were ok. The third a really battled with breathing but this was 3 days after my coach showed me the video on my swim and spoke to me about my kicking.

I can and have done 30 to 50 laps non stop at our group swim sessions but I just feel like I am breathing a lot worse than everyone else and am also the slowest - which is due to higher drag.

Will experiment with an acceptable kick intensity an see what works. Tks

christophe
December 10th, 2010, 04:04 AM
Hi Reilly and taruky,

I've seen plenty of beginners kick like crazy to keep their legs and hips up when they do freestyle. As the quadriceps consume much oxygen, the swimmers are quickly out of breath.

Often, the problem isn't the kick but bad balance. Head and chest are too high in the water. As the lungs are the body's buoys and act like a pivot in the water, keeping head and chest high automatically makes hips and legs drop.

So to correct this, in fact you need to do something counter-intuitive: push head and chest deeper in the water so that the body is horizontal and the head aligned with the spine. If you do this correctly, the buoyancy of the lungs will automatically make the hips and legs come up.

A good drill to understand this is "Balance In A Prone Position":

http://www.enjoy-swimming.com/freestyle-swimming-drills-balancing-on-your-front.html

Good luck!

Reilly
December 12th, 2010, 12:26 PM
Thanks. I will try the drill. My head position is good but my coach does tell me to push my chest down more.