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Karl_S
October 25th, 2012, 08:21 AM
...might try both block and gutter grab. Would appreciate some feedback on potential back issues.
You could have someone time you to 10m and experiment with both the block start and the gutter start. When the coach suggested it I thought she was crazy but she insisted that a fair percentge of backstrokers, including some very good ones, are faster with the gutter start. Well we did the experiment and she was right! The average difference was about 0.3s for me, and none of my block starts were faster than even my slowest gutter start. We repeated the experiment a year later, the difference was smaller, but the qualitative result was the same.

ElaineK
October 25th, 2012, 03:49 PM
Does anybody have a good video showing an effective gutter start? I would be interested to see it- and, copy it! I'm not a backstroker, but every once in awhile I race 50 backstroke for the heck of it. :D

jaadams1
October 25th, 2012, 08:28 PM
Does anybody have a good video showing an effective gutter start? I would be interested to see it- and, copy it! I'm not a backstroker, but every once in awhile I race 50 backstroke for the heck of it. :D

2-19-12 - Kirkland, WA - 200 Back - YouTube

Not good, but I do this when the walls or pads are extremely slippery (or playing around). I use a "normal" gutter start 90% of the time though.
I don't really lift up at all at the signal, just prep for my explosion backward into my streamline and dolphin kick like mad.


Here's another one I found, but it's from a distance:
11-20-11 Cheney, WA USA-S 200 Back - YouTube


And a 3rd one, this one is better for a view of the start:
3-26-11 200 Back.mp4 - YouTube


A 4th one, which shows my gutter start vs. That Guy's block start, and we are basically in the same position at the 25 meter point of the race, showing that the start position doesn't necessarily dictate the race:
6-12-11 200 LCM Back - Corvallis, OR - YouTube

ElaineK
October 25th, 2012, 09:48 PM
Thanks James! :applaud: Great job on those starts, too! :cheerleader:

smontanaro
October 25th, 2012, 10:45 PM
Thanks for those videos James.

jaadams1
October 26th, 2012, 01:06 AM
Thanks James! :applaud: Great job on those starts, too! :cheerleader:


Thanks for those videos James

No problem! It's nice to be able to go back and see how I did at certain times of the year, or how I swam a certain race one year.

Sportygeek
November 5th, 2012, 03:46 AM
every once in awhile I race 50 backstroke for the heck of it. :D

I raced 50 back for the heck of it on the weekend (first time in almost 25 years). My race goal was "don't be embarrassing" (my squad is very freestyle-based). To my astonishment, I swam a time that would have made the final in our state open swimming championships this year (it includes multi-disability events).

Much to my frustration, I can only swim one day of this season's state champs (they inconveniently clash with paratriathlon nationals :bitching:). 50 back is not on the program for the day. 100 back is. Backstroke turn... help! :afraid:

ekw
November 5th, 2012, 08:42 AM
Much to my frustration, I can only swim one day of this season's state champs (they inconveniently clash with paratriathlon nationals :bitching:). 50 back is not on the program for the day. 100 back is. Backstroke turn... help! :afraid:

Bummer! Rio 2016 for paratriathlon?

I do practically all my kick sets kicking on my back, which allows me plenty of practice with my backstroke turn. Maybe that would work, even though your squad is mostly freestyle based?

Sportygeek
November 5th, 2012, 05:09 PM
Rio 2016 for paratriathlon?

That's the plan. First stop, 2013 Paratriathlon World Championships in London. It's our first Australian Paratriathlon National Champs this year - we're quite a few years behind the UK, US and Canada that way.

I didn't know the Paralympics were a thing as a teenage swimmer in the 80s - joined a club at 13, gave up 2 years later thinking I was crap. My 80s PBs are semi-crap by the standards of today, but looking at finals times from 1992 (when they switched to the current classification system), it seems I was one of the fastest in the world back then. We just weren't training like Paralympians do today (ie like elite athletes). You can only get so far in junior development squads, or segregated disability land, training 3 times a week.


I do practically all my kick sets kicking on my back, which allows me plenty of practice with my backstroke turn. Maybe that would work, even though your squad is mostly freestyle based?

And there's nothing to stop me swimming backstroke for part of a speed set. Very few people in my squad are interested in form strokes, but the coaches would get what I was doing (they saw that race and they can do the same calculation I did re state champs - they've trained other people to the Paralympics in swimming, so the multi-disability race stuff makes sense to them).

habu987
December 12th, 2012, 03:31 PM
Hey folks,

Back in the day, I was a backstroker and butterflier. Used to be mid 50s for both 100s and in the 2:00-2:05 ballpark for the 200s. After a good while out of the water, I started swimming again last summer. My backstroke was horrible all last short course season (swam the 100 back twice, with the first time being a 1:11 and the second, at the end of the season, being a high 1:06). Since May, I've spent quite a bit of practice time working solely on my backstroke, trying to get my technique and speed/power back to an approximation of what it used to be. On top of that, I've spent a good deal of time with one of the other coaches on my team, working one on one with her to have someone improve my back.

Could y'all take a look at this video of my 100 back from the end of October My 100 back - Sprint Classic at GMU - 10/28/12 - YouTube (I'm the one with the tattoos)?

Since September, I've dropped down to a 1:02 from that high 1:06 in the 100 and am aiming for a ~:58 in the 100 at Nats. My technique has come a long way since last season, but I've still got plenty to work on.

From the video, here's what I see, and I'd like to hear what y'all think, too.

-My flip speed is pretty pokey. That's something I've been working on since that meet, so I'm pretty confident that it's faster now.
-I need to continue working on my SDK--I'd like to eke more out of it at the 50 and 75 turns. I used to hit the 12.5 off my turns consistently back in the day and would like to work back out to that point.
-I can't tell how good my flutter kick actually is. Since I rotate at the hips, my feet spend most of the time pointing everywhere but up. When I'm doing flutter kick on my back in practice, I've got a fairly powerful kick, but I can't tell how well that translates to actually swimming back.
-My head naturally sits pretty far back in the water. My coach from 10 years ago had me curl my head forward almost to the point where my chin was on my chest and that helped back then, but I'm currently having problems remembering to do that consistently while racing.
-I think I still need to work on my catch. This was one of the main things that was wrong back in the spring--I had a garbage catch back then and I've made big strides since then, but I can't help but think I could still catch and push more water than I am now, and more efficiently, too.

Whatcha think?

rxleakem
December 18th, 2012, 09:48 PM
Hey folks,
Whatcha think?

Seems like you are making improvements with both your technique and time drops. Overall it looks like a solid swim to me. Your body position looks neutral and your head relaxed, things I have to work on due to the extra pounds I'm lugging around these days. The only technique thing that I can see is with your left arm, looks like it is crossing the mid-line of your body. Maybe feel out your body rotation to see if it is consistent on both sides. You might be kicking too fast, so work on pointing your toes and tilting your pelvis up.

Keep working those skd's (I have followed Ande and other's advice about having a set number of sdk's off each wall) and your underwaters will really make a difference in speed. Keep up the good work! :cheerleader:

thewookiee
December 19th, 2012, 04:14 PM
I have troube with getting equal hip rotation. My coach says that I do a good job of rotating to the left side, which provides me with a catch that is deep enough, but not too deep to be effective.

He says that I don't rotate much to the right side, which is causing me to catch and pull right near the surface.

Any advice on how to get my rotation equal on both sides?

habu987
December 20th, 2012, 10:08 AM
I have troube with getting equal hip rotation. My coach says that I do a good job of rotating to the left side, which provides me with a catch that is deep enough, but not too deep to be effective.

He says that I don't rotate much to the right side, which is causing me to catch and pull right near the surface.

Any advice on how to get my rotation equal on both sides?

Wookie, this is a similar problem to what I had in the spring, except I was pulling too deep on the right side and too shallow on the left.

I did a lot of paddle work--wearing paddles, take very slow strokes and follow the paddles with my eyes. That allowed me to see where my hands were entering, where I was making the catch (or, back then, not making the catch on the left side), and how deep I was pulling. The paddles also helped with figuring out how to make a good catch.

From there, once I was able to see how shallow and ineffective my left pull was, I was able to do the same drill while overemphasizing the roll to that side. After several days of that, I was able to focus on rotating sans paddles. The first few weeks, it felt like I was having to overrotate to the left just to balance out the stroke, but now it feels pretty natural, and I don't *think* I overrotate to the right anymore.

habu987
December 20th, 2012, 10:12 AM
Seems like you are making improvements with both your technique and time drops. Overall it looks like a solid swim to me. Your body position looks neutral and your head relaxed, things I have to work on due to the extra pounds I'm lugging around these days. The only technique thing that I can see is with your left arm, looks like it is crossing the mid-line of your body. Maybe feel out your body rotation to see if it is consistent on both sides. You might be kicking too fast, so work on pointing your toes and tilting your pelvis up.

Keep working those skd's (I have followed Ande and other's advice about having a set number of sdk's off each wall) and your underwaters will really make a difference in speed. Keep up the good work! :cheerleader:

Thanks!

I used to cross over like crazy with both arms, and it's something I have to focus on to keep from doing during a swim. Unfortunately, my mind is usually preoccupied with trying to get enough oxygen (oddly, I have no problem doing underwater 50s, but put me in a backstroke race and I start to go into oxy dep), not cramping, trying to keep my head tilted forward, and not dying, so I start to crossover from time to time.

I've really been working on the SDK and will continue to work heavily on them through Nats.

thewookiee
December 20th, 2012, 11:20 AM
Wookie, this is a similar problem to what I had in the spring, except I was pulling too deep on the right side and too shallow on the left.

I did a lot of paddle work--wearing paddles, take very slow strokes and follow the paddles with my eyes. That allowed me to see where my hands were entering, where I was making the catch (or, back then, not making the catch on the left side), and how deep I was pulling. The paddles also helped with figuring out how to make a good catch.

From there, once I was able to see how shallow and ineffective my left pull was, I was able to do the same drill while overemphasizing the roll to that side. After several days of that, I was able to focus on rotating sans paddles. The first few weeks, it felt like I was having to overrotate to the left just to balance out the stroke, but now it feels pretty natural, and I don't *think* I overrotate to the right anymore.

Habu,

Thanks for the tips. You mentioned that you had a coach that told you to swim with your chin almost touching your chest? Did I read that correctly?
Seems like that would make your neck muscles tight and breathing very difficult for you.

habu987
December 20th, 2012, 12:28 PM
Habu,

Thanks for the tips. You mentioned that you had a coach that told you to swim with your chin almost touching your chest? Did I read that correctly?
Seems like that would make your neck muscles tight and breathing very difficult for you.

That's correct--the coach told me to swim with my chin almost touching my chest. With how I float in the water, when my head is in the neutral position, I've got water constantly washing over my face on backstroke.

Back in highschool, I was plateaued at 1:00 in my 100 back for about an entire season. Both of my coaches threw pretty much everything in the book at me, trying to get me to break that plateau, but nothing worked. One of them finally told me to curl my head forward and sit up more in the water. The next meet, I dropped about half a second in the 100.

It's never been a source of breathing difficulty for me, though. Yes, it is easier to breathe with my head in the neutral position (well, ignoring the water that is constantly washing over my face), but it isn't markedly difficult to breathe with it tilted forward. It doesn't especially feel like my neck muscles are tight, although I've had my current coach (the one who gave me lessons all summer) point out several times that she can see how tight they are.

On a slightly different note, I've always been mystified that the elite backstrokes are able to swim with their foreheads so high out of the water while their necks are relaxed, since that is impossible for me, haha.

oldmodelt
December 20th, 2012, 01:11 PM
Hey folks,

Back in the day, I was a backstroker and butterflier. Used to be mid 50s for both 100s and in the 2:00-2:05 ballpark for the 200s. After a good while out of the water, I started swimming again last summer. My backstroke was horrible all last short course season (swam the 100 back twice, with the first time being a 1:11 and the second, at the end of the season, being a high 1:06). Since May, I've spent quite a bit of practice time working solely on my backstroke, trying to get my technique and speed/power back to an approximation of what it used to be. On top of that, I've spent a good deal of time with one of the other coaches on my team, working one on one with her to have someone improve my back.

Could y'all take a look at this video of my 100 back from the end of October My 100 back - Sprint Classic at GMU - 10/28/12 - YouTube (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dI_gZRwW4G8) (I'm the one with the tattoos)?

Since September, I've dropped down to a 1:02 from that high 1:06 in the 100 and am aiming for a ~:58 in the 100 at Nats. My technique has come a long way since last season, but I've still got plenty to work on.

From the video, here's what I see, and I'd like to hear what y'all think, too.

-My flip speed is pretty pokey. That's something I've been working on since that meet, so I'm pretty confident that it's faster now.
-I need to continue working on my SDK--I'd like to eke more out of it at the 50 and 75 turns. I used to hit the 12.5 off my turns consistently back in the day and would like to work back out to that point.
-I can't tell how good my flutter kick actually is. Since I rotate at the hips, my feet spend most of the time pointing everywhere but up. When I'm doing flutter kick on my back in practice, I've got a fairly powerful kick, but I can't tell how well that translates to actually swimming back.
-My head naturally sits pretty far back in the water. My coach from 10 years ago had me curl my head forward almost to the point where my chin was on my chest and that helped back then, but I'm currently having problems remembering to do that consistently while racing.
-I think I still need to work on my catch. This was one of the main things that was wrong back in the spring--I had a garbage catch back then and I've made big strides since then, but I can't help but think I could still catch and push more water than I am now, and more efficiently, too.

Whatcha think?

Send me your email. I'll email you the list of videos I've watched from YouTube in the last year. There's a bunch of them. Better than any advice an old guy like me can give you.

quicksilver
December 29th, 2012, 08:04 PM
From the USMS web site.
New

http://www.usms.org/articles/articledisplay.php?aid=1932

ElaineK
December 31st, 2012, 03:51 PM
Hey, Backstrokers! I am working on improving my 400 IM and would like to receive some constructive criticism on my backstroke technique. I would appreciate it very much if you would check out these videos and let me know your thoughts:

http://youtu.be/NqQ38Fn9CQI (Side view)

http://youtu.be/5FWmu-wErwg (Front view)

Thank you very much and have a HAPPY NEW YEAR! :chug:

ElaineK
January 28th, 2013, 02:19 PM
Pleeeeease? :bouncing: I really have been working hard on my backstroke :agree: because I would also like to improve my 50, in addition to my 400 IM. Backstroke used to be my worst (and slowest) stroke and I am finally swimming it faster than my breaststroke. I have two more videos from today and would be interested in your feedback.

There are no starting blocks at my community pool, so I did my best to duplicate a backstroke start. Should my SDK (if you can call it that :rolleyes: ) be narrower kicks or is it ok; just not powerful enough? What improvements need to be made on my stroke?

I have a developmental meet on Saturday and will attempt to race the 50 backstroke, following my 200 breaststroke :drowning:. I will also be swimming the 100 backstroke, in an upcoming meet at Auburn, as an extra event; one I have never attempted. So, any last minute advice would be most appreciated! Quicksilver? Wookiee?? Swimosaur?? ANYBODY?? :whiteflag:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vVKckXWupK4 (Underwater view of start)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fVk909tUfCk(50 "race". On this one, I know my start comes almost to a dead stop before I surface. It was my 9th start- at the end of my workout- and I had to really muster up the energy to get it into gear and keep moving!)

Thank you very much! :smooch:

smontanaro
January 28th, 2013, 02:46 PM
Sorry, Elaine, I can't comment on your backstroke videos. Can't see them here at work. Your comment to the thread reminded me that I have a question about backstroke starts.

I swam in a local meet a week ago, 100fr, 100bk, 50fr, 50bk, in that order. I swam a SCM meet back in October, and just down-converted my times to SCY to get seed times for this meet. I've been pleased at the (apparent) progress I've been making with backstroke in practice, and thought this meet would be a good test to see if I could capture that in a race setting.

My first three swims were in lane 5, the last in lane 4. (This is significant.) I hopped in for the 100bk got set, and .... EPIC FAIL .... the pad felt like it had oil on it. I slipped badly and basically had to start from a dead stop. Needless to say, I didn't beat my seed time in the 100. The time came for the 50bk and I was seriously considering just pushing off from the wall. When I hopped in though and brought my feet up, the pad in this lane (4) felt much stickier, so I did a normal backstroke start, had no trouble, and did, in fact, beat my seed time.

Here's the question: Should I have said something to the meet officials about the pad in lane 5? I'm not a very experienced meet swimmer. I had no idea if the pad in lane 4 would have been as slippery as the one in lane 5 until I got in for the 50, so I figured initially that was the way it was supposed to be and I was just a doofus for not being able to get off to a clean start. (I had no problems with the pads in the SCM meet - a different pool).

What's the proper protocol here?

Skip

__steve__
January 28th, 2013, 04:53 PM
Elaine, those links up there don't work

These might:

Elaines 50 back:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fVk909tUfCk


Back start:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=vVKckXWupK4

Looks good to me, but I'm still learning back myself

ElaineK
January 28th, 2013, 07:58 PM
Elaine, those links up there don't work

These might:

Elaines 50 back:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fVk909tUfCk


Back start:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=vVKckXWupK4

Looks good to me, but I'm still learning back myself

Thanks for the heads-up, Steve; I used the "share" links from YouTube the first time around. I edited my post and they work now. :agree:

ElaineK
January 28th, 2013, 08:00 PM
Here's the question: Should I have said something to the meet officials about the pad in lane 5? I'm not a very experienced meet swimmer. I had no idea if the pad in lane 4 would have been as slippery as the one in lane 5 until I got in for the 50, so I figured initially that was the way it was supposed to be and I was just a doofus for not being able to get off to a clean start. (I had no problems with the pads in the SCM meet - a different pool).

What's the proper protocol here?

Skip

I have no idea what the proper protocol would be, but I would have mentioned it to the officials. It couldn't hurt to mention it and I would think they would want to correct the problem.

Swimosaur
January 28th, 2013, 09:33 PM
Even better:

fVk909tUfCk

vVKckXWupK4

In general, I do not have a good eye for stroke mechanics, so please take my comments for what they're worth, i.e., not much.

To me, head position looks good (nice & stable!) and body position looks good. I don't know what to say about the kick.

In both videos, it looks to me like you are slipping a lot of water with your left hand. Maybe not so much with your right hand? I'd suggest trying to find a better catch & pull. Throttle down your stroke rate to something slower, and find something where you can really PULL on the water. Then, over a period of months, gradually increase stroke rate while maintaining the same efficiency. Yes, it's difficult.

To calibrate the underwater dolphin kick, I suggest the following. Get Bruce to time a 25 AFAP underwater SDK vs. a 25 AFAP back where you swim as much as possible (if 25 is too far, do 12.5). If necessary do it several times. That will give you an idea of how fast SDK is versus swimming. In my case, they are almost exactly the same speed, so in a 50, I can trade off SDK versus swimming at will. To me your SDK looks slower than swimming, so you may want to come up as sooner. Timing some sprints will tell the tale.

You can also calibrate 25s with slower, stronger pulls, versus 25s with a higher turnover rate (and presumably slipping more water). In my experience, increased turnover rate is not always a win. You have to play with it.

Any of this may be wrong! YMMV.

ElaineK
January 28th, 2013, 09:49 PM
Ok, Swimosaur, I'm not the most tech-savy person you know. :blush: How do I get my YouTube videos inserted in my post like you did (rather than just a link)? Thanks!!! :applaud:

As for your advice, thank you for taking the time to view the videos and post (what I feel) is good advice! :smooch: You are right; my SDK is slower than my swimming. I haven't timed it; I just know it is from the feel. I'm sure I would be better off getting up to the surface ASAP. But, I will have Bruce time it.

The slipping is something I was unaware of until you pointed it out. I will check that out in tomorrow's training session with my coach and see if he notices it, as well. Thanks for the suggestion on my stroke rate; I'll work on it.

Chris Stevenson
January 29th, 2013, 09:05 AM
my SDK is slower than my swimming. I haven't timed it; I just know it is from the feel. I'm sure I would be better off getting up to the surface ASAP. But, I will have Bruce time it.

The scientist in me pooh-poohs anything so subjective as "feel," do get it timed.

But I can guarantee that you are faster underwater -- in any race, not just backstroke -- at one point: just after the start/push-off.

You should work on your streamline. It doesn't look very tight and your head is sticking out well below your arms, which slows you down. Your head should be between your arms (shoulders on your ears) and you should squeeze those arms very tightly to present as narrow a profile as possible. Try to stretch and become "taller" in your streamline. Think about those little underwater "torpedo" toys that kids use, the ones that you fling underwater and they just keep going and going -- try to go for that shape.

One person I swim with has excellent underwaters and she isn't even a very good kicker. Her secret is that she has an amazing streamline position (and it doesn't hurt that she is quite tall and skinny).

One way to work on streamline: put on some fins and do some sprints (with plenty of recovery time) while trying different positions, especially for your head. Since you go so much faster with fins on you might well be able to feel hydrodynamic inefficiencies directly (eg water hitting your cap), but of course you should also look at the clock. The hope is that the fins magnify streamline inefficiencies.

It isn't just for backstroke, do it on your front too. The "muscle memory" for streamlining is a little different front vs back, I think.

The Fortress
January 29th, 2013, 09:46 AM
The thing that grabbed my attention was where your feet were positioned on the backstroke start -- they're almost at the bottom of the x! How can you get a good push off with your feet way down there? I would move your feet up about a foot. You'll be in a better position to explode, arch your back and get a cleaner entry into the water.

Chris' advise is good. Long blade fins can really help you detect streamlining flaws with the SDK.

Swimosaur
January 29th, 2013, 10:58 AM
How do I get my YouTube videos inserted in my post ...

The URL for your first video is,


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fVk909tUfCk

To embed, use only the code following the "?v=". Remove the dashes from the following line:

[-y-o-u-t-u-b-e-]-f-V-k-9-0-9-t-U-f-C-k-[-/-y-o-u-t-u-b-e-]

Try it!

SuperChloe
January 29th, 2013, 12:29 PM
I agree with The Fortress. I know it can be hard to get a good start without the blocks to grab onto, though. I have had good luck with the advice to get my knees bent at 90 degrees before a backstroke start. It also looked like you were still getting into position and bouncing a bit when you started, so I'd recommend getting set into position really firmly before you do your start.

ElaineK
January 29th, 2013, 04:41 PM
The scientist in me pooh-poohs anything so subjective as "feel," do get it timed.

But I can guarantee that you are faster underwater -- in any race, not just backstroke -- at one point: just after the start/push-off.

You should work on your streamline. It doesn't look very tight and your head is sticking out well below your arms, which slows you down. Your head should be between your arms (shoulders on your ears) and you should squeeze those arms very tightly to present as narrow a profile as possible. Try to stretch and become "taller" in your streamline. Think about those little underwater "torpedo" toys that kids use, the ones that you fling underwater and they just keep going and going -- try to go for that shape.

One person I swim with has excellent underwaters and she isn't even a very good kicker. Her secret is that she has an amazing streamline position (and it doesn't hurt that she is quite tall and skinny).

One way to work on streamline: put on some fins and do some sprints (with plenty of recovery time) while trying different positions, especially for your head. Since you go so much faster with fins on you might well be able to feel hydrodynamic inefficiencies directly (eg water hitting your cap), but of course you should also look at the clock. The hope is that the fins magnify streamline inefficiencies.

It isn't just for backstroke, do it on your front too. The "muscle memory" for streamlining is a little different front vs back, I think.

Hey, Chris; this is great stuff! I didn't think I would hear from you or Fort and appreciate that you both posted advice. :agree:

Honestly, I hadn't even thought of my head position, as I was so focused on what my legs and arms were doing! So, I will definitely get that fixed and use more video for feedback. And, yes, I will have Bruce time me.

The fins idea is great too, so I will work on my streamline with fins, as well.

Thanks!
:D

ElaineK
January 29th, 2013, 04:49 PM
The thing that grabbed my attention was where your feet were positioned on the backstroke start -- they're almost at the bottom of the x! How can you get a good push off with your feet way down there? I would move your feet up about a foot. You'll be in a better position to explode, arch your back and get a cleaner entry into the water.

Chris' advise is good. Long blade fins can really help you detect streamlining flaws with the SDK.

There is a really good reason why my feet are positioned there- and, I only do it in my community pool. Did you notice the edge of the pool in the 50 yard video? We do not have blocks and the edge is rounded and difficult to hold. So, without being able to grip the edge, I needed to figure out a way to keep from slipping. To the right of the round plastic attachment on the wall of the pool where the water is pumped in, the concrete has a bump. I rest my left foot on top of the bump to keep it from slipping. The right foot is on the concrete, as well, because the tile is quite slippery.

Today, at Steve Lundquist Aquatic Center, I was able to place my feet higher on the wall for my starts, since I had a starting block to use. My coach/ training partner watched a few of my starts and said they are looking much better; my head was back and my back was arched. Now I need to work on a better streamline and more powerful SDK!

ElaineK
January 29th, 2013, 04:53 PM
The URL for your first video is,


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fVk909tUfCk

To embed, use only the code following the "?v=". Remove the dashes from the following line:

[-y-o-u-t-u-b-e-]-f-V-k-9-0-9-t-U-f-C-k-[-/-y-o-u-t-u-b-e-]

Try it!
fVk909tUfCk :banana:

:smooch:

ElaineK
February 3rd, 2013, 03:20 PM
OK, so here is my 50 backstroke at a meet. I had hoped to break :40, however, I came in at :40.45; still a personal best that I am happy with, since I am a breaststroker.

This was my last event of the day; 400 IM was my first. I was pooped out from the warm water and warm air, so my muscles were like silly putty, as you can see by my weak effort to get my butt up for the start. I also lacked the strength to get from the flags to the wall on my usual stroke count, going into the turn and finish. So, there was a bit of a time loss at each end. I hope to put it all together at Auburn, in two weeks, and make my goal.

Comments from the Peanut gallery?
8ocbQC7DH_I

slow
February 14th, 2013, 11:04 PM
Okay, here's a question...I searched "pull" inside this thread and did not see an answer.

If I am doing a backstroke pull set, and I notice that I start fishtailing a bit (with my legs), does that mean I am not getting enough rotation?

Thanks!

jaadams1
February 15th, 2013, 01:30 AM
Okay, here's a question...I searched "pull" inside this thread and did not see an answer.

If I am doing a backstroke pull set, and I notice that I start fishtailing a bit (with my legs), does that mean I am not getting enough rotation?

Thanks!

You possibly may be overreaching (i.e. reaching your hand above your head so that it crosses over inside of your shoulder width). This would cause your lower half to compensate for the upper half getting out of alignment. Try to enter at the 11 o'clock/1 o'clock position. I know it's hard...one of my downfalls as well. When I do it correctly, it actually feels like I'm not reaching far enough, but I'm actually where I should be.
Also, bodyroll could be the culprit as well.

smontanaro
February 15th, 2013, 01:47 AM
Back when I was first seeing a PT for tendinitis in my right shoulder, he took a look at my stroke. (Handy to have a swimming expert PT with a pool at the hospital where he works!) He told me I was overreaching and that when done right it would feel as if my arm was entering at 45º. That does help cure the wobbles since your hand enters where it will begin its pull, and doesn't have to sweep out first.

Karl_S
February 15th, 2013, 08:52 AM
You possibly may be overreaching (i.e. reaching your hand above your head so that it crosses over inside of your shoulder width). This would cause your lower half to compensate for the upper half getting out of alignment. Try to enter at the 11 o'clock/1 o'clock position.
Backstroke hand entry too close to the center line is definitey a common problem. Another is too much head motion. Both of these can lead to fish-tailing. I have drill that helps correct both of these problems - do backstroke with a pull-bouy balanced on your forehead. The solid one-piece kind work well. Like this one:
http://www.swimoutlet.com/product_p/20602.htm?color=29980
The kind with two pieces connected by chords don't work as well. Like this one:
http://www.swimoutlet.com/product_p/1241.htm?color=10890

Sometimes people will place a rubber donut, water bottle, etc. on their forehead as a backstroke drill. This helps steady the head, but it doesn't address the hand entry issue. A pull bouy is wider. If you cross your hand over, you will knock the pull bouy off with your bicep. It forces the entry at 11 & 1 - 10 & 2.

Another point about this drill, the pull bouy will partially obscure your vision so it helps with learning to swim straight, especially useful if you plan to race outside. A word of caution though, be very careful going into the wall. I count my strokes for the full length, and watch for the flags out of my preipheral vision so that I don't crash into the wall.

ourswimmer
February 15th, 2013, 12:53 PM
If I am doing a backstroke pull set, and I notice that I start fishtailing a bit (with my legs), does that mean I am not getting enough rotation?

Probably, but a better question is: Should I do backstroke pull sets?

Except maybe on the forehead as Karl S. suggests, which I may try, I cannot see how using a pull-buoy could help your backstroke at all. Coordination between pull and kick is critical to a strong backstroke.

habu987
February 15th, 2013, 01:16 PM
All right, here's a newer video of my backstroke in a meet--my 200 back from a meet 2 weeks ago. I'm the one doing the gutter start. I've got a video of my 200 back from a meet last weekend that I'll post sometime this weekend, too, along with my 100 and 50.


h768L4Y-Nu8

A few things I noticed:


My turnover is still pretty slow. My big problem with training to correct that is that my turnover rate feels much faster in my head than it appears. During this race, for example, I thought my arms were moving much faster than they actually were. That perception gap is something I'm struggling to correct.
In the back half of the race, I noticed that some of my breakouts aren't timed correctly--I'm not making a smooth transition from streamline to the first full pull cycle, as one hand is popping out of the water.
My kick still needs some work, since I should be getting a good deal more power from it. Kicking in streamline, I get a good deal of speed and power, but it doesn't really transfer over to swimming backstroke. I don't have a sissy kick when I swim by any means, but it should be stronger. On a side note, you don't see much splash from my kick because my feet rarely point up, as I'm quite the hip rotator.


Let me have it--what do y'all think? I'm trying to cut about 7-8 more seconds from my 200 by Nationals (I've already dropped ~6 so far this season), so I'm really trying to get the kinks ironed out now.

Like I said, I'll post another video of my 200 this weekend, along with videos of my 100 and 50, so I'll have the full gamut.

Thanks, guys!

mcnair
February 15th, 2013, 05:52 PM
You possibly may be overreaching (i.e. reaching your hand above your head so that it crosses over inside of your shoulder width). This would cause your lower half to compensate for the upper half getting out of alignment. Try to enter at the 11 o'clock/1 o'clock position. I know it's hard...one of my downfalls as well. When I do it correctly, it actually feels like I'm not reaching far enough, but I'm actually where I should be.
Also, bodyroll could be the culprit as well.

I'd have to agree with this... I just found a good drill video from go swim that talks about this same issue. Check this link:

http://www.goswim.tv/entries/6189/backstroke---hand-entry-width.html

I like Karl S's drill idea too, though I've had enough "wall problems" lately that I don't think I'll be trying it any time soon.

mcnair
February 15th, 2013, 05:59 PM
OK, so here is my 50 backstroke at a meet. I had hoped to break :40, however, I came in at :40.45; still a personal best that I am happy with, since I am a breaststroker.

This was my last event of the day; 400 IM was my first. I was pooped out from the warm water and warm air, so my muscles were like silly putty, as you can see by my weak effort to get my butt up for the start. I also lacked the strength to get from the flags to the wall on my usual stroke count, going into the turn and finish. So, there was a bit of a time loss at each end. I hope to put it all together at Auburn, in two weeks, and make my goal.

Comments from the Peanut gallery?

You set a PR after doing a 400 IM, going just over :40 with an open turn. Pretty awesome if you asked me!

Karl_S
February 15th, 2013, 06:13 PM
All right, here's a newer video of my backstroke in a meet--my 200 back from a meet 2 weeks ago.
...
Let me have it--what do y'all think?
disclaimer: you are a faster backstroker than I.
comment: IMO the video shows pretty clear evidence of your L hand entry "crossing over". The entry looks pretty close to 12:00, whereas it should be 1:00 or even 2:00. The R hand entry may be a bit too close to the center line also, but it's clearly not as bad. Ideally you should get someone to video you "end-on" from the end of the lane as you swim toward and away from the camera. That should make it clearer. Try the pb drill I suggested above. I bet you'll knock the pb off frequently with the L arm. Going wider on the hand entry is probably going to feel way too wide at first. Fix it and I think you'll remove that subtle bounce in your stroke too.

I agree with you about the breakouts, but I'm not sure how much time it is costing you.
Really though, that was a nice 200 back swim. IMO you are a pretty darn good backstroker.
Now how did you drop 6-7s? I'd sure like to do that. By "this season" what do you mean? Drop since your first meet of the season? How out-of-condition were you at the swim you consider the start point for that time drop? How close are you to your rested and tapered time from last season?

ElaineK
February 15th, 2013, 06:14 PM
You set a PR after doing a 400 IM, going just over :40 with an open turn. Pretty awesome if you asked me!

Thanks! But, a side note is that I have been working hard on my backstroke for two reasons:
1. To improve my 400 IM
2. Because I can't train breaststroke as much as I would like to, because of nagging injuries.

So, there has been a trade-off. As my breaststroke race times have taken a dump :censor: , my backstroke has improved.

__steve__
February 16th, 2013, 11:44 AM
You set a PR after doing a 400 IM, going just over :40 with an open turn. Pretty awesome if you asked me!
Definately

Elaine, our seed times may place us in the same heat for long course this summer! Your backstroke has taken off.

slow
February 16th, 2013, 08:31 PM
Thanks for the answers to the issue I posted earlier. I am working things through and will check back when I find an answer.

ElaineK
February 16th, 2013, 09:51 PM
Definately

Elaine, our seed times may place us in the same heat for long course this summer! Your backstroke has taken off.

Athens, Greenville, or Mission Viejo? Where will I finally get to meet you? :D

Anyway, thanks! Today, I raced 100 backstroke for the first time and hoped to break 1:30, but I came in at 1:33.11. I was still happy, though, because it followed the 200 fly, as well as the 100 breaststroke that I raced just before backstroke.

Hey, Steve, that story about the mesh bag on the other thread was a hoot. No wonder your wife gave you such a strange look! :lmao:

mcnair
February 17th, 2013, 05:13 PM
Athens, Greenville, or Mission Viejo? Where will I finally get to meet you? :D

Anyway, thanks! Today, I raced 100 backstroke for the first time and hoped to break 1:30, but I came in at 1:33.11. I was still happy, though, because it followed the 200 fly, as well as the 100 breaststroke that I raced just before backstroke.

Hey, Steve, that story about the mesh bag on the other thread was a hoot. No wonder your wife gave you such a strange look! :lmao:

You'll break 1:30 easy when you incorporate the flip turn; have you thought about working on that recently?

ElaineK
February 17th, 2013, 09:15 PM
You'll break 1:30 easy when you incorporate the flip turn; have you thought about working on that recently?


No can do; I have Meniere's: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/menieres-disease/DS00535
Flip turns make me seasick! :eek: :eeew:

mcnair
February 18th, 2013, 11:23 PM
No can do; I have Meniere's: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/menieres-disease/DS00535
Flip turns make me seasick! :eek: :eeew:

Open turns are good... really, disregard my previous post!

__steve__
February 19th, 2013, 06:41 AM
Athens and Greenville:)

ElaineK
February 19th, 2013, 06:30 PM
Athens and Greenville:)

I will see you at Athens! Backstroke gridge? :D

habu987
February 20th, 2013, 12:19 PM
All right, here are my 50 and 100 back videos. The 50 was a decent race, besides going too deep on the start and kicking the rather shallow bottom...twice...on the turn. The 100 was horrible--ridiculously terrible and deep on the start and I died at the end, but my time was only .3 off my MPB. On a side note, the pads in this pool weren't attached at the bottom, and curved out from the wall, so every time I pushed off of them in warmup and during the races, I'd have to push them back to the wall before I'd start to move away from the wall, sapping a good deal of energy and momentum from my turns! I was really, really not a fan of this pool!

I'm the tattooed dude with The Beard doing the wall start in both.


50 back
gR1cMh71O2M

100 back
t43Sw5cO8Ng


And for reference, here's a head on shot of my 100 IM. Other problems with the race aside, you can see my arm position on back in the video.



dbwxtS0uHj8

habu987
February 20th, 2013, 01:37 PM
Now how did you drop 6-7s? I'd sure like to do that. By "this season" what do you mean? Drop since your first meet of the season? How out-of-condition were you at the swim you consider the start point for that time drop? How close are you to your rested and tapered time from last season?

I only swam the 200 back twice last season (fall 2011-spring 2012) and did pretty poorly both times. I was only training for fly that season, so my backstroke was a distant second priority.

Starting in June, I've spent my time primarily training for back and spent a good chunk of time over the summer working one-on-one with one of my coaches on my technique. I've dropped a shade over 6 seconds from my best from last season so far. I figure with a bit more technique work and a good deal more conditioning (I'm going to hammer the practices from now through mid April, as I've been very off and on in my training to date), I should be able to drop another ~1.5 seconds per 50. I mean, come on, just shaving The Beard has to be worth at least a couple seconds, right? :D

I haven't swum the 200 shaved/tapered yet, so I'm really looking forward to Nationals!

__steve__
February 21st, 2013, 05:49 AM
Nice swims habu387

I will see you at Athens! Backstroke gridge? :DO o,

what distance, 50, 100?

SuperChloe
February 21st, 2013, 09:27 AM
Today I was just swimming along at practice and my coach goes "Try to get rid of that scissor kick thing you do on backstroke." I was like...huh? I didn't know I did a scissor kick thing! I tried to focus on it but to me it just feels like I'm rotating, not scissoring my feet. Does anyone have any tips for dealing with this?

ElaineK
February 21st, 2013, 03:34 PM
Nice swims habu387O o,

what distance, 50, 100?

Ummmm, before I open my big fat :D , I better ask this: What is your PB (yards) for the 50 and 100? Mine is :40.45 and 1:32.79. I don't yet know which events I will race; it will depend on the line-up and whether my leg is healthy to race all three breaststroke events. Let's meet back here when the race info. comes out. But, meanwhile, which would you rather gridge? We'll have to make sure to enter the same seed time to at least get in the same heat, and, hopefully, in neighboring lanes. :banana:

__steve__
February 22nd, 2013, 10:36 AM
My LCM 50bk is 43.10, which places us close in seed, but my recent SCY is 36.something for the 50, I will convert that one to LCM and use that as seed (If I do the 50bk). However, I never completed a 100 back before, and Athens (if I can make it there, 80% sure) seems like a good time to try a new event, so long it does not interfere with target events. I can seed whatever for that one.

ElaineK
February 22nd, 2013, 03:45 PM
My LCM 50bk is 43.10, which places us close in seed, but my recent SCY is 36.something for the 50, I will convert that one to LCM and use that as seed (If I do the 50bk). However, I never completed a 100 back before, and Athens (if I can make it there, 80% sure) seems like a good time to try a new event, so long it does not interfere with target events. I can seed whatever for that one.

You're SCY is 36+ and mine is 40+. :dunno: And, I'm challenging you to a gridge? :afraid: How's that going to work?:notworking:

__steve__
February 22nd, 2013, 06:06 PM
Might work for a 100. I have a steep drop in pace for anything above a 50

But unfortunatley I already submitted the gridge paperwork and it's final:joker:
just kidding

ElaineK
February 22nd, 2013, 06:32 PM
Might work for a 100. I have a steep drop in pace for anything above a 50

http://www.usms.org/comp/meets/indresults.php?SwimmerID=06JWN&Sex=&StrokeID=0&Distance=&CourseID=0&lowage=&highage=

But unfortunatley I already submitted the gridge paperwork and it's final:joker:
just kidding

Yikes! You're way faster than me in everything!

Gridge is on: If I beat you, I get bragging rights on this thread. :D But, if you beat me, you owe me a :bighug:, unless I break 1:43.09 which would be a PB (My Auburn time of 1:32.79 converted to LC, using the Swimming World Time Conversion Utility.). :bolt:

__steve__
February 22nd, 2013, 07:05 PM
I think it will be close race

You would destroy me in any breaststroke event though

ElaineK
February 22nd, 2013, 08:56 PM
You would destroy me in any breaststroke event though

Ya think? Your race times are way faster than mine in everything you have listed. Have you timed yourself in breaststroke? The way I have been swimming breaststroke lately, I'll bet you would beat me. My leg has been too :toohurt:to get a decent kick and my times have been :censor: . I'm looking forward to my next PT appointment where I will get a lower body evaluation and exercises to correct those imbalances. Meanwhile, I will keep practicing my backstroke; no pain on that stroke. :D

slow
February 22nd, 2013, 09:44 PM
habu987, I think you were swimming pretty well. You already criticized yourself and know what you need to do. I'm not sure what your splits were but it looked good.

__steve__
February 23rd, 2013, 07:35 AM
habu987, I think you were swimming pretty well.I agree (for what it's worth), those were some sharp swims on youtube



Have you timed yourself in breaststroke? 50m probably in 55 seconds. Cant seem to get my kick working - feet don't catch water. I can make a kick-only work, just can't add it to the stroke. When the pool is clear and I have my camera I plan on consulting with Dr Frog on this issue via youtube to get it resolved. (sorry about hijacking part of your signature font)

My leg has been too
to get a decent kick and my times have been :censor: . I'm looking forward to my next PT appointment where I will get a lower body evaluation and exercises to correct those imbalances. Meanwhile, I will keep practicing my backstroke; no pain on that stroke. :D
Hope you get your frog legs back in tune. Have you tried lifting weights?

ElaineK
February 23rd, 2013, 05:40 PM
50m probably in 55 seconds. Cant seem to get my kick working - feet don't catch water. I can make a kick-only work, just can't add it to the stroke. When the pool is clear and I have my camera I plan on consulting with Dr Frog on this issue via youtube to get it resolved. (sorry about hijacking part of your signature font)

Hope you get your frog legs back in tune. Have you tried lifting weights?

Signature font? Steve, you can use this font anytime you would like! :banana:

Good idea to get your stroke on video. Dr. Frog (aka King Frog) is the BEST when it comes to evaluating other frogs! :applaud: But, I digress; this is the "Backstroke Lane" after all... :hijack: :blush: But, before I return to the thread topic, I will answer your questions: Yes, and, that was part of the problem. I was using the abductor/adductor machine (under the advice and supervision of our resident trainer), but it was adding to the muscle fatigue factor, making me more susceptible to injuries in the pool. My abductors are quite strong compared to my adductors, so I am looking forward to receiving more of a skilled evaluation of a PT (and USMS competitor), rather than just the advice of a less-educated trainer who doesn't swim. When I described the problem to the PT while she was reviewing my medical history, she hinted that she thought the origin of the problem was my back. I am guessing she will be prescribing some lower back strengthening exercises to balance out my stronger abs.

greenjeans11
February 23rd, 2013, 07:54 PM
Amen!

Swimosaur
March 25th, 2013, 11:30 AM
Pacing 200 back

Check out this race, from the recent Albatross Open:

Event 20, 200 Meter Backstroke

1 Swimosaur M55 GAJA 2:38.93 2:39.95
37.08 1:16.93 (39.85) 1:58.50 (41.57) 2:39.95 (41.45)

2 SwimmieAVSFan F32 TERR 2:32.72 2:35.50
37.47 1:16.95 (39.48) 1:56.61 (39.66) 2:35.50 (38.89)


Splits in lane 2 conform to the ideal formula N, N+2, N+2, N+2, very nearly perfectly! An excellent race!

Splits in lane 1, not so much! More like N, N+2, N+4, N+4.

Now, I'm not complaining! That was a good race & time for me! I have been working on and improving my splitting in the 200 back for the last year (yes, the above represents an improvement). The question is, beyond the obvious advice to get in better condition, how to learn better splitting in this race? I probably need to take my foot off the gas a bit in the first 100. How do you learn this? Are there sets or other training methods for learning to split 200s correctly? Thanks!

That Guy
March 25th, 2013, 10:22 PM
Pacing 200 back

Check out this race, from the recent Albatross Open:



Splits in lane 2 conform to the ideal formula N, N+2, N+2, N+2, very nearly perfectly! An excellent race!

Splits in lane 1, not so much! More like N, N+2, N+4, N+4.

Now, I'm not complaining! That was a good race & time for me! I have been working on and improving my splitting in the 200 back for the last year (yes, the above represents an improvement). The question is, beyond the obvious advice to get in better condition, how to learn better splitting in this race? I probably need to take my foot off the gas a bit in the first 100. How do you learn this? Are there sets or other training methods for learning to split 200s correctly? Thanks!
Good swims! In training, do repeats where you sprint the second half of the swim with low to medium rest. For example, 50's where you sprint the 2nd 25, 100's where you sprint the 2nd 50, and so on. Only having low to medium rest will mean that on the first half of the next repeat, you will still be somewhat tired from the preceding sprint, so your foot will naturally come off the gas. But then you must sprint again! That will teach you to crank it up, over and over again.

Swimosaur
March 26th, 2013, 09:58 AM
Good swims! In training, do repeats where you sprint the second half of the swim with low to medium rest. For example, 50's where you sprint the 2nd 25, 100's where you sprint the 2nd 50, and so on. Only having low to medium rest will mean that on the first half of the next repeat, you will still be somewhat tired from the preceding sprint, so your foot will naturally come off the gas. But then you must sprint again! That will teach you to crank it up, over and over again.

Thanks for the suggestion! But I confess I'm confused. The first time I read it, I thought, when doing a set of 100s as 2x50s, put low rest between the two 50s. Then I read, "Only having low to medium rest will mean that on the first half of the next repeat, you will still be somewhat tired ...", and I thought, maybe the low rest is after the 2nd 50, before starting the next 2x50?

It could be,

(50, low rest, <sprint 50>) ... high rest ... (50, low rest, <sprint 50>) ... high rest ... (50, low rest, <sprint 50>) ...

Or it could be,

(50, high rest, <sprint 50>) ... low rest ... (50, high rest, <sprint 50>) ... low rest ... (50, high rest, <sprint 50>) ...

Or I guess it could be,

(50, low rest, <sprint 50>) ... low rest ... (50, low rest, <sprint 50>) ... low rest ... (50, low rest, <sprint 50>) ...

Also, what do you consider low rest? Thanks!

That Guy
March 26th, 2013, 11:34 PM
Thanks for the suggestion! But I confess I'm confused. The first time I read it, I thought, when doing a set of 100s as 2x50s, put low rest between the two 50s. Then I read, "Only having low to medium rest will mean that on the first half of the next repeat, you will still be somewhat tired ...", and I thought, maybe the low rest is after the 2nd 50, before starting the next 2x50?

It could be,

(50, low rest, <sprint 50>) ... high rest ... (50, low rest, <sprint 50>) ... high rest ... (50, low rest, <sprint 50>) ...

Or it could be,

(50, high rest, <sprint 50>) ... low rest ... (50, high rest, <sprint 50>) ... low rest ... (50, high rest, <sprint 50>) ...

Or I guess it could be,

(50, low rest, <sprint 50>) ... low rest ... (50, low rest, <sprint 50>) ... low rest ... (50, low rest, <sprint 50>) ...

Also, what do you consider low rest? Thanks!
None of those. I mean repeats of 100's wherein you sprint the 2nd 50 of each 100. Then take low (5-10 seconds) to medium (10-30 seconds) rest before the next 100. Have a mental cue like "ok GO" when it's time to sprint. It'll come in handy in competition.

Swimosaur
March 27th, 2013, 09:13 AM
None of those.

Glad I asked! Thanks!

__steve__
March 27th, 2013, 11:22 AM
When I stroke left I sink, and my face goes under surface. With right stroke I surface and inhale. Is this pattern OK or does it need to be fixed?

That Guy
March 27th, 2013, 12:19 PM
Glad I asked! Thanks!
Since this is the backstroke lane, I should note that I rarely train backstroke this way. However in butterfly, I practice changing pace all the time.

Chris Stevenson
March 27th, 2013, 01:52 PM
None of those. I mean repeats of 100's wherein you sprint the 2nd 50 of each 100. Then take low (5-10 seconds) to medium (10-30 seconds) rest before the next 100. Have a mental cue like "ok GO" when it's time to sprint. It'll come in handy in competition.

In addition to this sort of set I think you need to work on pacing and lactate tolerance. (These are not independent things but they are not identical either.)

One suggestion is to do pace 200s where you decrease the rest as you progress. For example:

4 x 200 back on 4:00, rest 12/10/8 sec at the 50s, try to keep the same time on all 4 50s, and not far from your goal race pace.

Swimosaur
March 27th, 2013, 09:30 PM
So I tried this (for reference, PBs 100 back 1:05, 200 back 2:21). You can see what happened:

3 x [100 back cruise, :12 rest, 100 back fast] on 5:00


1. 1:17, 1:12
2. 1:17, 1:14
3. 1:17, 1:17


After #3, I was cooked. 1:17 is PB+:12 & 1:12 is PB+:07, so I was pretty happy with the first interval. 1:12 would be a reasonable time for the 2nd half of a 200, though I would prefer something closer to 1:10. Intervals 2 & 3 clearly hurt.

Swimosaur
March 28th, 2013, 09:14 PM
And I tried this,

2 x [50 back on :55, 50 back on :50, 50 back on :45, 50 back fast] on 5:00

1. 35, 36, 35, 35
2. 36, 36, 37, 38



That's roughly 20 sec, 15 sec, and 10 sec rest between intervals. Feels about right to me.

Chris Stevenson
March 29th, 2013, 09:44 AM
And I tried this,

2 x [50 back on :55, 50 back on :50, 50 back on :45, 50 back fast] on 5:00

1. 35, 36, 35, 35
2. 36, 36, 37, 38



That's roughly 20 sec, 15 sec, and 10 sec rest between intervals. Feels about right to me.

Based on one of your previous posts -- correct me if I'm wrong -- your goal 200 might be something like 38/40/40/40. In other words, 40 sec per 50 is your 200 pace, right?

That's a very good set but I think you need to also work on holding your desired 200 pace with less rest. You need to know what those 40s feel like and you need to be able to do them even when tired. At least, that's my $0.02...!

Swimosaur
March 29th, 2013, 03:23 PM
Based on one of your previous posts -- correct me if I'm wrong -- your goal 200 might be something like 38/40/40/40. In other words, 40 sec per 50 is your 200 pace, right?

For SCM, you are exactly right. For SCY, it might be something like 33/35/35/35. I am training in an SCY pool.


... I think you need to also work on holding your desired 200 pace with less rest. You need to know what those 40s feel like and you need to be able to do them even when tired ...

Today's set (a slight variation from yesterday):

2 x [50 back on :55, 50 back on :50, 50 back on :45, 50 back fast] on 8:00

1. 35, 37, 35, 34
2. 35, 36, 35, 34



This is a good set for learning what those 35s feel like; my challenge is the "do them even when tired" part!

ElaineK
March 31st, 2013, 10:58 PM
None of those. I mean repeats of 100's wherein you sprint the 2nd 50 of each 100. Then take low (5-10 seconds) to medium (10-30 seconds) rest before the next 100. Have a mental cue like "ok GO" when it's time to sprint. It'll come in handy in competition.

This is great stuff, That Guy! I have had the same problem splitting my 200 races of any stroke, whereas I negative split anything 400 or longer. Thanks! :applaud:

ElaineK
April 20th, 2013, 08:12 PM
My LCM 50bk is 43.10, which places us close in seed, but my recent SCY is 36.something for the 50, I will convert that one to LCM and use that as seed (If I do the 50bk). However, I never completed a 100 back before, and Athens (if I can make it there, 80% sure) seems like a good time to try a new event, so long it does not interfere with target events. I can seed whatever for that one.
So, are you going to Athens? If so, are you going to swim the 50 back and/or 100 back?? What will your seed times be??? FYI: My best times in SCY are 40.21 and 1:29.85 which converts to 46.22 and 1:42.92, according to the Swimming World Time Conversion Utility. Let's coordinate our seed times, so we can (hopefully) end up next to each other. :banana:

__steve__
April 21st, 2013, 06:06 AM
O o, June is getting close. I will do a practice run to see if I can make that time in a 100 first, it is outside of my endurance range.

ElaineK
April 21st, 2013, 12:37 PM
O o, June is getting close. I will do a practice run to see if I can make that time in a 100 first, it is outside of my endurance range.
Forget the 100 then; let's gridge the 50. :D

__steve__
April 21st, 2013, 12:54 PM
OK Elaine, sounds like fun :chug:

ElaineK
April 21st, 2013, 03:25 PM
OK Elaine, sounds like fun :chug:

What seed time should we enter?

ekw
April 21st, 2013, 06:20 PM
I talked my co-worker into entering a small local LCM meet. :cheerleader: Unfortunately, it's during Nationals so I won't be there with her. She is going to swim the 50 backstroke. Our pool doesn't have blocks and she doesn't know how to do a backstroke start anyway. What are the rules for a legal start? I'm assuming she will need to start in a gutter start position, but does she have to bring her arms back together on the start? Can she just let go of the wall and drop down and push off the wall? Basically, what would be the simplest legal way to teach her to start? She's not worried about speed but she will have a serious case of the butterflies.

ourswimmer
April 21st, 2013, 07:39 PM
Can she just let go of the wall and drop down and push off the wall?

Yes. Look at Rule 101.1.2.B (http://www.usms.org/rules/part1.pdf). She has to be facing the block with both hands on the gutter or block grips and her toes under the water's surface at the second long whistle. If she is not, the starter will remind her (e.g., "both hands on the wall, please, Lane 3"). Then she can just do a normal pushoff. No need to jump or throw the arms over if she doesn't want to.

__steve__
April 22nd, 2013, 07:50 AM
What seed time should we enter? If there's a LC pool available for a practice run, would the time done there, - 1 second, be a reasonable seed?

I will swim LC this afternoon and check for myself. I think I might go 46 seconds, but we'll see.

ElaineK
April 22nd, 2013, 09:11 AM
If there's a LC pool available for a practice run, would the time done there, - 1 second, be a reasonable seed?

I will swim LC this afternoon and check for myself. I think I might go 46 seconds, but we'll see.

Sounds reasonable to me. Since my best yards time converts to 46.22 in LC, 46 would be a reasonable seed time for me, as well. If we seed the same, who knows where we'll end up on race day. We could end up on opposite sides of the pool, depending on how other swimmers seed. But, if we end up next to each other with the best times in our heat, that would be cool! :banana:

arthur
April 22nd, 2013, 11:08 AM
Yes. Look at Rule 101.1.2.B (http://www.usms.org/rules/part1.pdf). She has to be facing the block with both hands on the gutter or block grips and her toes under the water's surface at the second long whistle. If she is not, the starter will remind her (e.g., "both hands on the wall, please, Lane 3"). Then she can just do a normal pushoff. No need to jump or throw the arms over if she doesn't want to.
The toes can be out of the water, but they can't be above the lip of the gutter. If there is a touchpad that comes out of the water the feet can be as high as they want on the touchpad as long as the toes are below the top edge.

Swimosaur
May 18th, 2013, 01:13 PM
Chris Stevenson & That Guy: It worked! Thank you!


... repeats of 100's wherein you sprint the 2nd 50 of each 100. Then take low (5-10 seconds) to medium (10-30 seconds) rest before the next 100. Have a mental cue like "ok GO" when it's time to sprint. It'll come in handy in competition.

In addition to this sort of set I think you need to work on pacing and lactate tolerance. (These are not independent things but they are not identical either.)

One suggestion is to do pace 200s where you decrease the rest as you progress. For example:

4 x 200 back on 4:00, rest 12/10/8 sec at the 50s, try to keep the same time on all 4 50s, and not far from your goal race pace.

From March 26 until taper time on May 5, I did lots of sets based on your suggestions. I had to modify the sets in most cases because I couldn't do them exactly as prescribed. But close! My notes include sets like,

4x50 on 1:00 = 34 35 35 34

4x50 on 55 = 35 35 35 35

4x50 on 50 = 35 35 35 35
and
4 x 50 on 45 = 35 36 36 35

4 x 50 on 50 = 35 36 36 35

2 x [50 fast + 50 EZ] = 31 31
and
3 x [100 back fast + 50 free EZ] on 5:00

1:08 1:10 1:10



It worked! At nationals, I did PBs in both the 100 and 200, dropping 1.6 in the 100 and 2.4 in the 200. Splits for the 200 were still not ideal, but much improved!

Event 25 Men 55-59 200 Yard Backstroke
================================================== ================
7 Jones, Judd 55 GAJA 2:21.02 2:18.64
32.69 1:07.62 (34.93)
1:43.38 (35.76) 2:18.64 (35.26)


First time under 2:20! :banana:

7539

The graph (click on it to make it larger) shows my times in the SCY 200 back from Sep. 26, 2009 to May 9, 2013. See that big drop at the end? THANK YOU VERY MUCH!

Any more suggestions? :agree:

ElaineK
May 18th, 2013, 04:36 PM
At nationals, I did PBs in both the 100 and 200, dropping 1.6 in the 100 and 2.4 in the 200. Splits for the 200 were still not ideal, but much improved!

Event 25 Men 55-59 200 Yard Backstroke
================================================== ================
7 Jones, Judd 55 GAJA 2:21.02 2:18.64
32.69 1:07.62 (34.93)
1:43.38 (35.76) 2:18.64 (35.26)


First time under 2:20! :banana:


Congratulations, Swimosaur! That is AWESOME progress! :applaud:

ElaineK
May 18th, 2013, 04:59 PM
While I am here in The Backstroke Lane, as an update to my previous posts about improving my bucket turn, I had to give it up- at least for now- and return to a more conservative open turn. :bitching: The torque on my neck was increasing pain I had started getting while doing PT exercises with weights to strengthen my trapezius muscles. My physical therapist recommended getting neck x-rays which ended up showing severe joint and disc disease at C2-7, bridging bone growths at C2-3 and C5-6, a curve in my spine to the left, and too straight of a spine from front to back! :eek: My doctor immediately went to work on getting me a referral for a consultation; my appointment is on Friday.

Sheeesh; if it's not one thing, it's another! :censor: I may have inherited a rotten set of genes, but I am still- and always will be- Elaine-iaK! :bliss:

Swimosaur
May 18th, 2013, 08:02 PM
... x-rays which ended up showing severe joint and disc disease at C2-7, bridging bone growths at C2-3 and C5-6, a curve in my spine to the left, and too straight of a spine from front to back! :eek:

Yikes, Elaine, that sounds terrible! Best luck to you as you deal with it! I know you will, and terrifically well, too, because ...


... I am still- and always will be- Elaine-iaK! :bliss:

Yes, you most certainly are!

ElaineK
May 18th, 2013, 10:08 PM
Yikes, Elaine, that sounds terrible! Best luck to you as you deal with it! I know you will, and terrifically well, too, because ...



Yes, you most certainly are!

:chug: Thanks, Swimosaur! Swimming, thankfully, makes my neck feel better- as long as I don't get too radical on my open turns! Swimming is probably the reason in the first place that I did not have too many symptoms of joint disease or any other neck symptoms. As long as I am moving, I feel good. The only indication I had in the past of a neck problem was no longer being able to breathe left on fly without pain; I had to teach myself to front breathe.

I was definitely a 'iaK in Sanibel during our vacation. On a few of the days, I started off with a 40 minute fast open water swim, before heading over to the recreation center for a 2,000 - 2,500 yard training session and PT in the gym. After breakfast (uhhhh, make that a late lunch...), Bruce and I went out for 2-3 hours of kayaking. I never felt better!

ElaineK
June 3rd, 2013, 05:12 PM
:applaud:to Steve for swimming a personal best time in his 50m FREESTYLE.
:waiting:to Steve for his NS in the 50m BACKSTROKE for our gridge. I guess I won by default! :D

By the way, at 47.11, I ended up slower than my (guessed) seed time of :46, however, it converts to a time close to my personal best; my only good race of the day. For that matter, it was my only "race" of the day. I was very tentative, due to my nagging leg muscle problems and having today's neck MRI hanging over me. :badday: Looking at the films, it's UGLY! It's back to the orthopedic surgeon, on Thursday, for his recommendation. (Dr. James is the former team physician and orthopedic surgeon for the Atlanta Falcons and Atlanta Thrashers, 2004 - 2011, and now just consults for the Falcons. I would hope I'm in good hands!)

YcfcNCXMLNI&feature=youtu.be

__steve__
June 4th, 2013, 07:50 AM
:applaud:to Steve for swimming a personal best time in his 50m FREESTYLE.
Thank you
:waiting:to Steve for his NS in the 50m BACKSTROKE for our gridge. I guess I won by default! :DSorry, I had to bail, but congratulations on your backstroke time. You can always fall back on sprinting when recovering. Good luck at the appointment

ddl
June 30th, 2013, 10:40 PM
The best backstroke team :D:


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hK15uHncNL4

Redbird Alum
July 1st, 2013, 02:43 PM
Looks like these "stick-people" need a lesson in turns! (or else head-gear!)

ddl
July 1st, 2013, 05:11 PM
They were sucked into the wall. :D

swimdoc
July 17th, 2013, 09:15 PM
I need some backstroke start advice. I had a great start 35 years ago with my toes over the gutter and a flexible back. Now, I just can't seem to get the timing down to nail a clean entry like the good starters do. I tend to push off the wall immediately as I'm launching out, only to smack my upper shoulders without a clean entry. It looks to me like the good starters release from the block, have their arms and torso beyond vertical (moving toward the direction of entry) before they actually push with their legs to get that beautiful arc and clean entry.

Can anyone who's mastered the start give me some pointers? Is there a slight delay in pushing against the wall while emphasizing the arch and setup for entry? The good ones make it look so effortless. Me, it looks like brute force.

Thanks.

ElaineK
July 17th, 2013, 09:50 PM
:wave: Hey, swimdoc! I can't help you with your backstroke start, but I can say I'm glad to see you have recovered well enough from your surgery to be working on your backstroke start! :applaud: From one TOS survivor to another: CONGRATULATIONS!

I'm looking forward to catching up with you at Nationals! Good luck! :cheerleader:

swimdoc
July 18th, 2013, 08:29 AM
I'll be there...gasping for air!

Redbird Alum
July 19th, 2013, 05:11 PM
I recall a three step development for this.... kind of isolating the parts before putting them together...
- first practice with arms (push, throw) and head using no legs.
- second, practice with no arms (they just drop to sides and push legs and head position.
- third, put the two together and work on the timing.. arm push and throw with head followed by legs.

swimdoc
July 20th, 2013, 09:29 PM
I recall a three step development for this.... kind of isolating the parts before putting them together...
- first practice with arms (push, throw) and head using no legs.
- second, practice with no arms (they just drop to sides and push legs and head position.
- third, put the two together and work on the timing.. arm push and throw with head followed by legs.
Thanks! I'll give it a try.

wmst1
July 23rd, 2013, 09:38 PM
How close should your pull be to your body? I have been a very slow backstroker but I think I am faster with a better body roll now that I pull closer to my body. Before my forearm/upper arm angle never got less than 90 degrees (i.e. a wide pull) nut now I am trying to always get that angle to be less than 90 degrees (i.e. hand closer to body).

What do those who know about backstroke think?

ganache
July 24th, 2013, 08:29 PM
I feel that you should keep your hands in front of your body plane during the pull. Imagine where you place your hands on the gutter when you are pulling yourself out of the pool. This is where you are the strongest. You will need to roll a little to keep your hands from popping out of the water as you pull and keep them in front of your body. Another thing you should concentrate on is not pausing before you pull after your hands enter the water. Here is a good link to a talk on backstroke technique on the USA Swimming website: https://usaswimming.adobeconnect.com/_a792273714/p1izgs7jptx/?launcher=false&fcsContent=true&pbMode=normal

wmst1
July 24th, 2013, 11:49 PM
I feel that you should keep your hands in front of your body plane during the pull. Imagine where you place your hands on the gutter when you are pulling yourself out of the pool. This is where you are the strongest. You will need to roll a little to keep your hands from popping out of the water as you pull and keep them in front of your body. Another thing you should concentrate on is not pausing before you pull after your hands enter the water. Here is a good link to a talk on backstroke technique on the USA Swimming website: https://usaswimming.adobeconnect.com/_a792273714/p1izgs7jptx/?launcher=false&fcsContent=true&pbMode=normal

That video was great! Thank you.

Are there videos for the other three strokes?

ganache
July 25th, 2013, 07:01 AM
Yes, here is the link to the page on USA Swimming to lots of them. I really like the ones by Russell Mark. He has another one with back stroke called "Freestyle & Backstroke Rotation". Click on the "Recordings" blue text on the following link page.
http://www.usaswimming.org/DesktopDefault.aspx?TabId=1920&Alias=Rainbow&Lang=en

wmst1
July 25th, 2013, 10:42 AM
http://www.usaswimming.org/DesktopDefault.aspx?TabId=1920&Alias=Rainbow&Lang=en

found them

wmst1
August 1st, 2013, 09:16 PM
I am experiencing shoulder pain (impingement I think - top of shoulder). Should backstroke entry be back of hand first or pinky first?

Chris Stevenson
August 1st, 2013, 09:36 PM
I am experiencing shoulder pain (impingement I think - top of shoulder). Should backstroke entry be back of hand first or pinky first?

Ideally pinky first but it isn't worth blowing your shoulder out.

smontanaro
August 2nd, 2013, 08:23 AM
Does a more back-of-hand entry perhaps suggest not enough roll?

__steve__
August 2nd, 2013, 10:28 AM
Perhaps I'm not rolling enough. Not due to entry problems, but during release my entire forearm lifts the water in the air like I'm lifting weights

Karl_S
October 29th, 2013, 07:06 PM
New M 50+ SCM backstroke records:
http://swimswam.com/two-masters-world-records-fritz-bedford/

swimflyfast
November 19th, 2013, 03:56 PM
77 Year old David Costill Sets 500 1000, and 1650 Backstroke Record in the "Butterfly is Not a Crime" Postal Swim.
Check out his times at www.swimflyfast.com (http://www.swimflyfast.com) His 1650 time would have given him second place in Freestyle at nationals, his 1000 forth. He was smoking!

ande
January 3rd, 2014, 10:40 AM
As of 1/1/14 The wedge for backstroke is Legal! I look forward to trying it.
Has anyone trided it yet?

I'd like more info and to see FINA's official wording in the rules.


NEWS:

-As of Jan. 1, 2014, a new backstroke starting ledge will be permitted for starts. The ledge is comparable to the wedge or fin device now used on blocks for forward starts and hangs from the starting block by straps. The rule for use of the ledge will still require both feet to be in contact with the wall or pad, and the toes will not be allowed to curl over the top of the gutter or timing pad. Once an athlete starts, the ledge will have to be removed for turns and finishes. It is advised that a coach or teammate remove the device for the athlete after the start and place it on the deck. FINA will be releasing specifications and dimensions for those approved wedges in the coming weeks. We will pass along more information on this as it becomes available.
FROM: http://www.floridaswimming.org/szfllsc/UserFiles/Image/Officials%20Info/OFFICIALS%20NEWS/Officiating%20News%20and%20Notes_091613.pdf


EXCLUSIVE VIDEO: Testing New Backstroke Platform at USA Swimming Nationals (http://www.swimmingworldmagazine.com/lane9/news/usa/34908.asp)
Published:June 28, 2013


Pros and Cons of New Omega Backstroke Starting Platform (http://www.swimmingscience.net/2013/09/pros-and-cons-of-new-omega-backstroke.html)

smontanaro
January 3rd, 2014, 11:25 AM
So this is a little ledge dangled in the water from the block on which your heel rests? The only images I could find were above the water, and didn't show how the swimmer's foot interacts with them.

quicksilver
January 3rd, 2014, 11:52 AM
A short video...

http://www.swimmingworldmagazine.com/lane9/news/usa/34908.asp

Great news. Most backstrokers have never felt too confident about getting a solid foothold at the start.

ande
January 3rd, 2014, 12:41 PM
So this is a little ledge dangled in the water from the block on which your heel rests? The only images I could find were above the water, and didn't show how the swimmer's foot interacts with them.
I believe the best way is to have your toes on the touchpad and the ball of your feet on the wedge.
YOU WOULD NOT WANT TO REST YOUR HEELS ON IT.

wmst1
January 3rd, 2014, 11:59 PM
Should the finish of the stroke involve a flick down of the hand in order to initiate body roll? If not, how is body roll initiated as I have a hard time accepting that it is the kick?

Also should hand scull on exit or knife out on exit?

quicksilver
January 4th, 2014, 01:41 PM
Should the finish of the stroke involve a flick down of the hand in order to initiate body roll? If not, how is body roll initiated as I have a hard time accepting that it is the kick?

Also should hand scull on exit or knife out on exit?

Body roll is achieved by leaning into the stroke as your arm enters the water. You can use momentum of the recovery arm to help drive and rotate your torso for each roll. A backstroke kick is usually a constant 6 beat (2 left.. 2 straight up... 2 right). Legs straight, toes pointed. The kick pattern is a direct result of the rolling action.

Regarding the finish, when one leans into the catch with the entry arm, the roll is going to drive both the opposite hip and underwater hand closer to the surface (as it's getting ready for the recovery). Try to exit thumb first. As you said, knife out.

This coach has some good observations in his article on two different styles...

http://russellpayne.org/2011/10/13/backstroke-rocking-or-rolling/

PatrickJM
January 4th, 2014, 04:47 PM
It depends on the touchpad being used... I loved the Colorado pads at Greensboro a few years ago, maybe they're a bit more course than Omega. But I'm really looking forward to trying a submerged ledge.

ande
January 6th, 2014, 12:56 PM
Should the finish of the stroke involve a flick down of the hand in order to initiate body roll? If not, how is body roll initiated as I have a hard time accepting that it is the kick?

Also should hand scull on exit or knife out on exit?

"Flick Down" puts your hand deeper in the water, that extra little push probably isn't worth it.

ON exit, finish your stroke then pop your hand out thumb first. You don't need to do an extra little scull.

wmst1
January 13th, 2014, 12:35 AM
Thanks - that video was helpful. I prefer the Japanese swimmer's stroke to Lochte's stroke.

ourswimmer
January 13th, 2014, 03:00 PM
As of Jan. 1, 2014, a new backstroke starting ledge will be permitted for starts. The ledge is comparable to the wedge or fin device now used on blocks for forward starts and hangs from the starting block by straps. The rule for use of the ledge will still require both feet to be in contact with the wall or pad, and the toes will not be allowed to curl over the top of the gutter or timing pad. Once an athlete starts, the ledge will have to be removed for turns and finishes. It is advised that a coach or teammate remove the device for the athlete after the start and place it on the deck. FINA will be releasing specifications and dimensions for those approved wedges in the coming weeks.

I hope someone from Santa Clara can tell us before Nationals whether or not they will have these devices. If so, I hope I can find a way to practice with one! On ordinary walls I usually stagger my feet to reduce the risk of slipping.

jackback
January 26th, 2014, 12:40 PM
a comment on Omega touch pads ... i think they are terrible ... i just competed in a masters meet at georgia tech and they have these pads ... the surface is far more slippery than other pads i've used ... completely bombed my first race the 100 scm back, after my foot slipped i was dead in the water ... didn't have the option of just holding onto the gutter as they are full height pads ... my 2 other starts were cautious and very slow ... omega should be pushing for this new "starting ledge"

habu987
January 29th, 2014, 09:47 AM
a comment on Omega touch pads ... i think they are terrible ... i just competed in a masters meet at georgia tech and they have these pads ... the surface is far more slippery than other pads i've used ... completely bombed my first race the 100 scm back, after my foot slipped i was dead in the water ... didn't have the option of just holding onto the gutter as they are full height pads ... my 2 other starts were cautious and very slow ... omega should be pushing for this new "starting ledge"

It really seems to depend on the model line of the pads! Over my ~18 years of racing, I've pushed off of pretty much every variety of pad on the market. I've had slippery and grippy Omegas, slippery and grippy Colorado pads, and whatever other brands of pads there are. The worst was one meet about a decade ago--prelims and finals of the 200 back I was in different lanes...and one had a grippy pad and the other had a slippery pad. Both looked identical, just felt different. Great prelims, bombed the start in finals.

jackback
February 10th, 2014, 03:45 PM
a word in regards to the new "backstroke ledge" that has been approved by FINA ... with the number of different blocks that are scattered about in our pools this device might be block specific which probably means it will be awhile till it gets to a pool near you ... could this be an instance of reinventing the wheel ? ... most pools i've swam and competed in have open finish gutters and use touch pads that hang on the gutter ... there is a built in backstroke ledge, its called the "lip of the gutter" ... years ago that is what we used and that was with or without touch pads and starts were quicker and i don't remember anyone getting hurt in 7 years of competition ... the only place you couldn't do this are in pools with overhangs on the finish gutters who also have full height finish pads, then a ledge would help ... but this is probably a small percentage of pools in this country ...
another problem with full height finish pads is it slows the meet down ... at a meet at georgia tech recently they had the full height pads and 85% plus people could not climb out at the finish end but had to slide over to the side wall at the conclusion of every race to use the ladder ( myself included ) ... thats 10 lanes of swimmers ... no "over the top starting" there

Chris Stevenson
February 10th, 2014, 07:45 PM
a word in regards to the new "backstroke ledge" that has been approved by FINA ... with the number of different blocks that are scattered about in our pools this device might be block specific which probably means it will be awhile till it gets to a pool near you ... could this be an instance of reinventing the wheel ? ... most pools i've swam and competed in have open finish gutters and use touch pads that hang on the gutter ... there is a built in backstroke ledge, its called the "lip of the gutter"

My recollection is that most non-US pools do NOT have gutters like this at the end of the pool, hence standardization on the gutterless so-called "FINA walls" (the full height pads you mention). I believe that's the main reason, back in the day, that you were not allowed to do stand-up starts in SCM/LCM meets or otherwise curl your toes over the gutter.

I haven't used one yet but I think the ledges are a great idea.

jackback
February 10th, 2014, 08:05 PM
chris ... thanks for the explanation of scm/lcm pools ... only swam yards in hs and college, as this goes back to 1965 - 72 ... probably aau meets back then were occasionally meter meets but never went to one ... with all the concern on reducing turbulence i never got the flush walls ... and they really sucked on fly turns ... plus if you never did a backstroke start while standing on the gutter and threw a racing back dive you really missed something !!!

loonytick
February 10th, 2014, 11:21 PM
When I swam in high school, things must have been in a transitional phase in our area. This was Middle TN, early 90s. Our pool was SCM, there were a couple others, but most were SCY. The bulk had gutters, but a few were flush. No correlation that I remember between gutter and y/m. We swam in all of them in a season, just adjusting each time.

I swam back in every meet, so I started with my fleet flat on the wall in some pools and curled over the gutter at others-the governing body for high school sports in my state allowed either. I MUCH preferred using the gutter. I don't know if it actually pushed me out farther, but boy, it felt a lot more like taking flight. I think those starts were my favorite thing about competing in backstroke, to be honest.

That Guy
February 10th, 2014, 11:24 PM
http://swimswam.com/usa-swimming-hopes-unveil-backstroke-wedges-mesa-grand-prix/

Chris Stevenson
February 11th, 2014, 03:42 AM
http://swimswam.com/usa-swimming-hopes-unveil-backstroke-wedges-mesa-grand-prix/

From the comment section:


At least for SCY, let’s avoid this expense and complications and go back to the 1980′s era stand up starts.

As for meters, if we just stopped using those slippery yellow Omega pads and used the nice, rough white Colorado swimming pads, we wouldn’t have to worry about this contraption.

Better yet, get rid of the in water start and just require everyone to be on their back by the 15m mark. No cost and easy to officiate.


Agree with all 3 points: I miss the stand-up starts, hate hate hate the yellow Omega pads with their vertical slats, and would love it to be able to dive from the blocks. This "Patrick Brundage" fellow sounds pretty knowledgeable.

jackback
February 11th, 2014, 08:58 AM
agree with those 3 points also ... as i said i left swimming in 72 for a 33 yr break ... when i left there was talk of switching over to block starts ... when i returned i was dismayed to see the change in back starts that made it more difficult to do a fast and consistent start ... the start has become overly dependent on the surface of the pad which is changeable from manufacturer to manufacturer and age of the pad ... at the very least how about requiring a"coefficient of wet friction" for the pads when new ... (surfaces on pool decks have to meet this by code) ... we are the lowly brethren of those block starter who luxuriate in there sloped, rough surface who place there toes over the edge of the block and push off a starters wedge and not have to get their suits wet prematurely ... that said they did do us a favor when somewhere along the line they allowed us to roll on to our stomach to to a turn and ended the dreaded hand touch/head bang

ande
February 12th, 2014, 02:55 PM
eVOLution of the Backstroke Breakout: Tennessee Trying More Tricks to Maintain Speed (http://swimswam.com/evolution-backstroke-breakout-tennessee-trying-tricks-maintain-speed/)

jackback
March 13th, 2014, 06:06 PM
swam in a LCM meet in Clearwater, FL this past weekend, without timing pads ... they had the required 2 timers per lane ... what was really nice is we started from the tiled pool wall ... i was able to securely snuggle my toes to just under the surface of the water on the wall and had great backstroke starts ... i haven't had my feet this high in years ... "tile" who would of thought !!!

ande
March 23rd, 2014, 11:42 PM
http://www.swimmingworldmagazine.com/lane9/news/USA/38291-m.asp?q=FINA-Releases-Video-Detailing-New-Backstroke-Starting-Platform

jackback
March 24th, 2014, 07:54 AM
I guess this block specific "anti slip" device is a easier than the alternative of making the Omega pad "anti slip" ... I for one am glad we will have this for Omega blocked and padded FINA pools (and meets should advertise that they will be available) ... but it could be awhile before we see this in a pool near you with different blocks ... they will need to have some extra devices around for when one fails in a meet

wmst1
September 16th, 2014, 06:47 AM
When do the hips move? Should the right/left hip rapidly drive down one inch when the right/left arm is straight up and perpendicular to the water? I am trying to eliminate flat backstroke as I think flat backstroke has a less powerful pull.

RkSides
January 17th, 2017, 05:15 AM
Quick question, may or may not be easy to answer.

I'm in high school and I swim a 50 back in my 200 medley A Team relay, and my time is a high 33 seconds, (33.71) and my coach needs me to get down to a low 32. By county championships and by state. County is in a week, and I already know what I do wrong, but she doesn't really *coach* me enough to help me fix them.

Problem: slow finish. Should I take another stroke? I usually take 2 strokes from the flags to the wall for a turn and 3 for a finish, and sometimes when I take 4 I hit my hand on top of the wall. Sooooo.. help? Thanks!

Jimbosback
March 13th, 2017, 11:13 AM
Any tips for learning to relax my head and neck while swimming back? I usually only swim 25s or 50s in practice, since the only time I swim back is in 100 IM. But I have decided to incorporate longer swims. After about 75 yards, my neck (traps, really) really tightens up and hurts. I thought I was in a good relaxed position, but not so much. Is it just conditioning?

@Rksides -- I am no backstroker, but what helps me into the wall is to accelerate my kick after the flags. and 1-2-3-lunge. As a breaststroker, I could always get a better start when the backstroker finished with a strong lunge, too.

polka_stripes
March 13th, 2017, 10:29 PM
Jimbosback, you want to stretch your chest muscle! I was having this problem recently - I can't find the exact link I worked off, but basically as you swim your chest muscles build and tighten, which pulls the traps forward and makes them stiff/sore. Stretch out your chest muscles to keep them limber and loose so they're not straining the traps. These are simple and only take a couple minutes after every practice. I haven't had trap pain since I started them - http://www.wikihow.com/Perform-Chest-Stretches

If you have access to a coach you should also get feedback on your technique, in case you're rotating something strangely, but stretching will probably help.

orca1946
March 23rd, 2017, 11:41 AM
Well try # 2 has worked out. I have used a piece of 1 1/2 inch PVC from home Depot. Drilled one hole in opposite end to run nylon rope thru to go around whatever block post/poles that you will be using with the starting block and used a caibineer to hold the 2 ends together with loops at the ends. This seems to work well as 4 of us tried it a practice last night. At least it will give me a chance to practice some type of starting ledge before Nationals.

Jimbosback
March 23rd, 2017, 11:14 PM
Jimbosback, you want to stretch your chest muscle! I was having this problem recently - I can't find the exact link I worked off, but basically as you swim your chest muscles build and tighten, which pulls the traps forward and makes them stiff/sore. Stretch out your chest muscles to keep them limber and loose so they're not straining the traps. These are simple and only take a couple minutes after every practice. I haven't had trap pain since I started them - http://www.wikihow.com/Perform-Chest-Stretches

If you have access to a coach you should also get feedback on your technique, in case you're rotating something strangely, but stretching will probably help.

(I thought I replied to this like a week ago!)
Thanks, polka_stripes. That makes some sense. I do back after a bunch of fly which probably tightens up my front. I do similar stretches on my off-days. Maybe I need to do

Any other suggestions?

swimdoc
March 24th, 2017, 07:43 AM
Thanks! But here's a bummer. I emailed the Riverside CC head coach to find out if the starting blocks at the pool have a back foot wedge or would accept the backstroke wedge, and his answer to both was "no."

ssumargo
March 24th, 2017, 09:38 AM
Every time the coach makes us do backstroke, my knuckles and wrists end up being bruised. For whatever reason, I am always slamming my hand on the lane dividers or unintentionally high fiving the swimmers on the other lane. I'm afraid of head butting my fellow lane mates when we circle swim, so I tend to scoot closer to the lane dividers. Are others doing the same or is my backstroke technique really terrible?

orca1946
March 27th, 2017, 12:35 PM
So -- NO back stroke starting ledge/wedge at Nationals??