View Full Version : Another newbie video swim

April 26th, 2010, 04:39 AM
Hello everyone

I know i ask a lot, but i work so hard (preparing for my first ironman in 3 months) that i try to grab every piece of information i can get.

YouTube- freestyle swimming training total immersion way

As soon as i watched into myself from aside (in video) i instantly noticed many areas to improve, however i would love to hear from all you guys first...

If i'm violating any of the forum rules, feel free to close / delete this thread.

Again, thanks a lot.

April 26th, 2010, 12:09 PM
Hey, welcome. I definitely see the TI influence there with the front quadrant swimming. Any analysis here is really limited to your recovery and alignment, which both look pretty good to me. Your right arm does tend to cross over a little when extended, and I could be wrong, but it may be that you're a little late getting your face back in the water after breathing so the recovery arm entry is a little awkward. When I watch the video you start to get air when your right arm is way back and ready to recover or maybe even has already started its recovery. I think you might benefit from breathing just a tad earlier and getting your face back in the water a tad earlier. A way to think of it is have your right cheek attached to your shoulder as you catch and turn to breath. You'll have more time to breath and might find that it helps your entry.

Look at this Thorpe video and notice how he's getting air while still pulling/pushing. Then compare it to yours. The difference is subtle but significant.
YouTube- Ian Thorpe Breathing

You also probably over rotate a tad when breathing, so both goggles come out of the water as well as your whole mouth. Your head tilts up a tad as well. Now Thorpe has a head tilt as well, but that works with his stroke and kick. In the TI stroke/kick it's probably hindering you a little. Try to lay your head a little flatter, and you'll get a better trough around your mouth to breathe. Also, by breathing earlier you won't have to rotate quite as much to get enough air. While some rotation is obviously good to limit drag, bear in mind that the further you rotate one direction, the longer it takes to rotate the other way and the less control you might have over your recovery. Look at 1:55 of your video to see a good example of what I'm talking about.

I initially read TI and saw the video when I first started trying to improve a couple years ago. It really helped me with balance, etc. One disadvantage which I'm trying to shed is the constant acceleration/deceleration, which I see with your stroke a little. Think about a car if you were to constantly accelerate, glide to a slower pace, then reaccelerate versus keeping your foot on the gas pedal lightly but steadily. Which would use more energy to get to point B in the same amount of time? The front quadrant idea is legitimate, but I think you can catch a tad earlier and still have both hands in the font quadrant, without as much deceleration each stroke. While I can't see your catch underwater, from my own experience I know that catching a little earlier helps my catch (as some have pointed out to me here).

Hope that helps.

April 26th, 2010, 12:37 PM
You might find it interesting to check out swimsmooth.com and look for references to "dead spots". There are differing schools of thought on how close to a catch up drill the freestyle should be. I would suggest that you at least experiment with/play with using the part of your stroke where you arm is extended out front and not moving at all to instead set up your catch.

April 26th, 2010, 08:49 PM
Breathe early and get that face back in the water before your hand goes in. You are recoverying your hand over your head which is allowing you to be lazy and too late in breathing. Try fingertip drag drills, or even swim that way for a while. As your hand passes right by your face, this is when you should be done breathing and getting your head back in alignment.

Allen Stark
April 27th, 2010, 12:45 AM
It is hard to tell,but it looks like you are dropping your elbows and not establishing EVF.

April 28th, 2010, 02:28 PM
I agree with the statements about head movements to breathe, though I think when someone learns TI they go through a stage where they breathe as you do. In a lap pool, it would be more efficient to keep one goggle in the water. (I learned by swimming with one eye closed - the one that is to remain in the water.)
Open water is a different animal, though, as wave action can make it harder to get air. How you approach this would depend on your swimming goals, I think.
Right hand definitely crosses the center line when your hand enters the water.
Left hand has a tendency to splay forward - by that I mean the left hand enters the water then the fingers move up while the wrist moves down. This is literally like holding up a 'stop' sign with your left hand, and it increases resistance. Fingertips should never be above the wrist.
Right now your hands enter the water about two or three inches below the surface of the water. You might try plunging them in about 6 or 8 inches below the surface. Terry L. talks about doing this in his TI book, the idea being the lower arms will help push your hips and legs higher and it sets up the pull more effectively if you happen to be a person who lacks the flexibility for a good EVF.
(I think most of the people on this site will disagree because they tend to be competitive swimmers, and such a hand entry will slow down a competitive swimmer. My guess is that you aren't trying to get your 100 under a minute, so what applies to a competitive swimmer may not apply to you.)
The lower hand entry might also balance you better in the water so that your kick propels you forward rather than helps you maintain your balance.
Stroke looks very relaxed, which is a good thing.