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View Full Version : When did this change and what else do I not know about?



Judester
October 26th, 2014, 05:42 PM
Ok, when I was a kid on the swim team back in the early 1980s, we were taught that for freestyle, the pull arm begins the pull as the recovery arm lifts out of the water to begin the recovery. This is how I always swam freestyle. But then the other day, I was told by a coach that the timing has been modified. Now, apparently, the pull arm begins the pull towards the end of the recovery instead of the beginning. I should have known something was up months ago with all those catch up drills we were doing and when I heard my other teammates talking about their "glides" and not knowing what the hell they were talking about (as a sprinter, I never glided).

Then, I found out that now, when swimming breaststroke, the head is kept low into the water instead of forward with the top of the cap always peaking through the surface. When I learned breaststroke, letting the top of the cap (i.e., your whole head) under the water was grounds for disqualification. Is that no longer true?

And last but I'm sure not least, I found out that back flip turns are no longer practiced. Why not?

And what else has changed since the 1980s that I need to know about?

Sportygeek
October 26th, 2014, 11:49 PM
Freestyle timing - google "front quadrant swimming". It's not compulsory; you may or may not find it faster than what you've been doing.

Tell your gliding teammates number of strokes x stroke rate = time. (I'm willing to bet they were trying to reduce number of strokes, because someone told them distance per stroke was important. Gliding slows stroke rate lots, tho!)

Breaststroke - current rule is some part of the head has to surface during each stroke cycle (eg when you breathe). You get to legally do one fly kick in your pullout.

Backstroke turns - you don't have to touch the wall with your hand any more.

mattson
October 27th, 2014, 10:18 AM
My first time getting DQ'ed was in breaststroke, because my first stroke (after the pull-out) started before my head first broke the surface.
But that was ancient history. :cane:

Just as important as what has changed, is do you know why it has changed?
If you don't know the reasoning behind doing FQS (versus old-style windmill), then you may pick up inefficient habits instead of improving your swimming.

__steve__
October 27th, 2014, 10:30 AM
Have you first made sure your strokes don't fit the "If it isn't broke it doesn't need fixing" category?

Allen Stark
October 27th, 2014, 12:35 PM
Every stroke has had huge changes since the early 80s. The biggest difference affecting all strokes is moving from sculling to pulling.No more exaggerated Ss in free or even fly. Pulling is as straight back as physiologically possible (which does leave some mild outsweep and insweep.)
In free fly and back you can go 15M underwater on the starts and turns.People with good dolphin kicks are really taking advantage of this.
In free, front quadrant swimming is "in" for distance swimmers.Many sprinters,especially the stronger men are basically windmilling,to get the maximum thrust as fast as possible.
In back,you can now turn over on your front and do a regular flip turn as long as it is one continuous motion.(you can't do any actual swimming once you turn over.)
Breaststroke has had the most changes.The rule changes are that your head must break the surface every stroke,you can recover your hands and forearms(not your elbows) over the surface,you can do one dolphin kick on the pullout after initiating your pull and before your breaststroke kick, and you can not overlap your hand on the touch at the turns and the finish.
In terms of BR technique,keep your head neutral all the time and raise from the chest to breathe.The kick is narrow,keep your knees no wider than your hips.Recover your feet by bending almost entirely from the knees only,with very little hip flexion. The idea of recovering the hands over the surface turns out to not be a big advantage.Shoot your hands directly forward.If you are riding high in the water this may mean they come out of the water.The important thing is shooting them forward.

Judester
October 27th, 2014, 04:04 PM
Tell your gliding teammates number of strokes x stroke rate = time. (I'm willing to bet they were trying to reduce number of strokes, because someone told them distance per stroke was important. Gliding slows stroke rate lots, tho!)

That's I thought! I thought why would I ever want to "glide"? You can't go faster gliding. You can only slow down or at best, maintain that speed. But I guess that's the sprinter mentality and for sprinters, I would agree that gliding is counterproductive. But in distance swimming, I can see why gliding would be important - paced top speed eventually peaks out in distance swimming and once you reach your paced top speed, endurance becomes the important factor in maintaining that speed. Without efficiency, endurance goes downhill.


In free fly and back you can go 15M underwater on the starts and turns.People with good dolphin kicks are really taking advantage of this.

In free, front quadrant swimming is "in" for distance swimmers. Many sprinters, especially the stronger men are basically windmilling,to get the maximum thrust as fast as possible.

In back,you can now turn over on your front and do a regular flip turn as long as it is one continuous motion.(you can't do any actual swimming once you turn over.)

I'm actually one of the swimmers who takes advantage of the 15M start with the dolphin kick. Dolphin kick streamlining is one of my specialties. 😊

I was a sprinter in my younger days but I am now a distance swimmer in training for a 12 mile solo relay next year so this "front quadrant swimming" is a technique I'm going to have to master. Right now, my average number of strokes is 13 for 25 yards and my SWOLF is 41.

How is turning forward from a backstroke better than a back flip turn? The only advantage I see is that it may help backstrokers who have trouble gauging their distance from the wall while they reach for it while on their back.


Have you first made sure your strokes don't fit the "If it isn't broke it doesn't need fixing" category?

If I'm not swimming as efficiently as possible, then something is "broken" or at least in need of a tune-up. And I know I can be more efficient than I am. I need to be able to switch off the sprinter in me and turn on the distance in me while I'm swimming distance, especially if I'm going to be swimming in a 12 mile race.

Allen Stark
October 27th, 2014, 04:15 PM
How is turning forward from a backstroke better than a back flip turn? The only advantage I see is that it may help backstrokers who have trouble gauging their distance from the wall while they reach for it while on their back.


Sorry, I didn't note that with the rule change you no longer have to touch with your hand at the turn in BK.This is why you need to notify the refs before you swim if you want official splits in a backstroke event,since the rules for backstroke require a hand touch at the finish.Therefore,if you swim a 100 BK and want an official 50 split(like for TT),you have to do a hand touch at the 50,

rxleakem
October 27th, 2014, 08:44 PM
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e7qQ6_RV4VQ

Huh, he even sings a bit about swimming! :drown:

FindingMyInnerFish
October 27th, 2014, 09:36 PM
Also he says the slow ones now will later be fast. How I CLING to that hope! :)

james lucas
October 29th, 2014, 01:03 AM
Now, apparently, the pull arm begins the pull towards the end of the recovery instead of the beginning.

As I have thought about my very Old School freestyle, I turned to Ernest Maglischo's Swimming Fastest, page 129. It observes that a faster stroke rate might be better for some swimmers, such as those with weak or broken-rhythm kicks, saying that swimmers "should not start that arm down while the other arm is applying propulsive force. Instead, they should stretch the front arm out, just under the surface of the water, to improve streamlining only for as long as they are completing the propulsive phase of the underwater stroke with the other arm. And they should begin moving the front arm downward, from the extended position toward the catch, at the precise moment when the rear arm releases its propulsive pressure on the water ... this will be when the rear arm approaches the thigh, not when it leaves the water. No swimmer should ... continue stretching the front arm after the rear arm's propulsive efforts have been completed ..." He notes that Popov "begins the downsweep with his front arm at precisely the moment he stops pushing back against the water with his rear arm."

orca1946
October 30th, 2014, 12:37 PM
It sounds as if you are just returning to swimming after some time off. I'm glad to hear that you are getting "new" info concerning strokes.Don't get overloaded to the point you do not enjoy swimming. We all change our stroke to what is "new" for a while to see if it works for us.

ande
October 30th, 2014, 02:27 PM
Hi
I live in Martindale and drive through San Marcos each day.
I say do what works for you and only attempt to change technique if it WILL make you faster.

Freestyle:
on longer swims there is slight a streamline glide with your hand / arm out front
when you sprint there isn't much of one

Breastroke:
Keep your head down, it's OK to go underwater

Backstroke:
Backstrokers turn over and do a freestyle flip turn
you only need a hand touch back stroke turn in 2 circumstances
1) back to breast turns in IMs
2) if you're doing a 100 back and you have a 50 split request or a 200 bk and have a 50 or 100 split request
but you also want a decent time for the whole race.
backstrokers must finish on their backs
so a roll over and free flip wouldn't count


Ok, when I was a kid on the swim team back in the early 1980s, we were taught that for freestyle, the pull arm begins the pull as the recovery arm lifts out of the water to begin the recovery. This is how I always swam freestyle. But then the other day, I was told by a coach that the timing has been modified. Now, apparently, the pull arm begins the pull towards the end of the recovery instead of the beginning. I should have known something was up months ago with all those catch up drills we were doing and when I heard my other teammates talking about their "glides" and not knowing what the hell they were talking about (as a sprinter, I never glided).

Then, I found out that now, when swimming breaststroke, the head is kept low into the water instead of forward with the top of the cap always peaking through the surface. When I learned breaststroke, letting the top of the cap (i.e., your whole head) under the water was grounds for disqualification. Is that no longer true?

And last but I'm sure not least, I found out that back flip turns are no longer practiced. Why not?

And what else has changed since the 1980s that I need to know about?

Silverdolphin
October 30th, 2014, 08:09 PM
Recently there was a video of a man, age group 65-69 in a race. He had the most beautiful, older-style breaststroke. The video was of another man winning eventually, btu what caught me was that after each push off this man caught up to and passed on every lap.Just reinforces other advice on this thread to stay with what works best for you-don't change just to change to what's current. If anyone here can tell us where to find it, check it out

Allen Stark
October 30th, 2014, 08:22 PM
If this is the video I am thinking about, it was the 60-64 age group at Auburn.If so the swimmer with the"old style" is Robert Wright.I have watched him swim several times and I think the reason he is able to go so fast with that style is his ability to ride very high in the water ,which I suppose, decreases drag. Is this the video?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sb0qr4BTMl0

Gary P
October 31st, 2014, 08:00 AM
Swam my first meet since the 80's earlier this month. Something else that I noticed has changed is the short course start. I remember having to have both feet at the front of the block back in the day. Now a staggered stance (one foot at the front of the block, one back) is allowed. I only remember being able to do that at long course meets.