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Syd
September 2nd, 2007, 08:29 PM
As a kid my father and my coach always wanted me to swim the fly but I always resisted. Only once was I ever persuaded to swim the 100m fly. I went out hell for leather in the first 50 and even turned in front but the wheels came off in the second 50, in a bad way, and I ended up limping in the last 25m swimming one arm butterfly! I never tried again!

Now after a 20 odd year abscence from swimming I find myself actually wanting to swim fly and enjoying it when I do. It's a beautiful feeling when the fly is executed well: smooth, rhythmic and exhilarating. When you hit the zone in fly it is an even better feeling than hitting the zone in crawl. It is an addictive feeling.

How did I get into fly? Well it has only been recently really, but I started to do a set of 25m at the end of every practice. I started off really slowly: 10 times 25m at 30 sec's alternating fly and crawl. Slowly I have built that up to 40 times 25m at 30sec and more recently I have been adding a set of 10 times 50 fly at 90sec. Next I plan to cut the repeat interval down to at least a minute on the 50's and then add some 100's. I can't wait to try the 100's but I don't want to try before I am really ready for them.

I always laugh when I see SwimStud's "Fly: Just say no!" because that is exactly how I felt but I have to say now, a practice without fly is a a practice without my 'fix'!

Anyone else have a similar experience?

Syd

Red60
September 3rd, 2007, 05:49 PM
Syd, I am just beginning to make this transition. People have told me I have a nice fly, but I've never had any endurance and never did more than a 50. I have begun to really enjoy the feeling of swimming the stroke, and want to do my first 100 in competition this SCY season. I aspire to 200 sometime down the road. So I have begun to drill one arm fly and do 50s with lots of rest. I like your idea about the 25s--I think I'll try that, and build up to sets of 50s with lower intervals as you describe. If I could only avoid breathing, it would be really easy! That picking up the head thing really slows things down. I am trying to learn to breathe looking down at the water instead of straight ahead. Think that will take some time.

I'll be eager to hear how you do--I'll keep an eye out for this thread.

Syd
September 3rd, 2007, 08:11 PM
[QUOTE]People have told me I have a nice fly.../QUOTE] Quite. That is exactlty what my father and my coach used to tell me too. And it did feel nice - for the first 25m. It felt like I had the wind behind my back. But somehow after that the rhythm went, my butt started to sink and my shoulders and my legs started to work independently of one another.

[QUOTE] I aspire to 200 sometime down the road./QUOTE] I would love to do that too!

[QUOTE]So I have begun to drill one arm fly and do 50s with lots of rest./QUOTE] I do the one arm drills as well. One of my favourites is one a picked up from a Phelps video. It requires you to extend the non swimming arm to the front and take two strokes with the swimming arm. Now change and do two on the other side and finally finish off with two full strokes, both arms. It is quite exhausting at first but it forces you to keep that butt up otherwise you lose rhythm fast and start to sink.

[QUOTE]If I could only avoid breathing, it would be really easy! That picking up the head thing really slows things down. I am trying to learn to breathe looking down at the water instead of straight ahead./QUOTE] I know exactly what you mean. When I am really flying I am breathing with my head facing down. The higher you lift your head the more your butt sinks, the more resistance is caused and the quicker the wheels start to come off. I find breathing every two strokes helps me maintain a higher butt position and hence a better rhythm. In fact the single most important advice I could give anyone about the fly is: Don't let those hips sink!

Glad to know there is someone else out there who is in a similiar position.

Syd

MAC swimmer
September 3rd, 2007, 08:12 PM
Syd,

I try to do fly every practice too. 4 lengths of fly is about all I am good for. After a hard 25 I know exactly when the lactic acid burn hits me during my backstroke on the second 25 of an IM. The stroke absolutely kills me unless I specifically tell myself to ease up.

I like your alternating fly free 25s sounds doable. Frankly my ulimate goal would be to complete a 100 fly. Just that is an achievement in my book ( I taught myself fly at age 20...) Wish me luck.

Blackbeard's Peg
September 3rd, 2007, 08:20 PM
I think the challenge of the butterfly both attracts and detracts swimmers. On the attraction side, we all know it is a tough stroke, and thus being able to do it properly is a feat outright. There's something about being able to swim the butterfly that validates you as a swimmer too.

Of course there are the detractors... those who *think* it is too hard, or who say their shoulders can't take it.

I think most of us don't want that feeling of failure, and end up trying it at some point. Yes, it is tough, but why not challenge yourself right? Kudos to you three for giving it a whirl!

Syd
September 4th, 2007, 01:22 AM
Syd,

I try to do fly every practice too. 4 lengths of fly is about all I am good for. After a hard 25 I know exactly when the lactic acid burn hits me during my backstroke on the second 25 of an IM. The stroke absolutely kills me unless I specifically tell myself to ease up.

I like your alternating fly free 25s sounds doable. Frankly my ulimate goal would be to complete a 100 fly. Just that is an achievement in my book ( I taught myself fly at age 20...) Wish me luck.

All I can say is: persevere. At first it feels outrageously tiring. But, as time passes, it becomes easier and easier. The improvement is almost imperceptible at first but then, after a month or so, suddenly you find yourself skipping across the surface of the pool. Then you know you have found your rhythm. Now all you need to do is to increase your distance and speed and refine your stroke.

Syd

Syd
September 4th, 2007, 02:00 AM
There's something about being able to swim the butterfly that validates you as a swimmer too.

Now this is probably going to stimulate some lively debate so let's put it even more bluntly. Rhythm is all important in fly. If you don't get that rhythm things start to fall apart quickly. Most swimmers, even casual swimmers, can complete 50m of the other 3 strokes without too much difficulty but not so of fly. A breakdown in rhythm in the other 3 strokes will lead to a less than optimal time whereas a breakdown in rhythm in fly leads to exhaustion and total stroke failure. Therefore it can be said: fly is the most difficult stroke. Now if you want to be a real swimmer you should, at least, try to master the most difficult stroke. Which means, if you can't swim fly, you are not a real swimmer! Now don't get upset with me. Muppet said it first!;)

Syd

Mighty Minnow
September 4th, 2007, 10:15 AM
Syd- I know the feeling....trying to get into Fly myself. Used to swim it oh, like 35 years ago....and when it all came together it was awesome; felt like I could swim it forever. Sadly, I stopped swimming, moved on to other sports/hobbies....life etc. After multiple injuries; wear and tear on body, started swimming again a little over two years ago. Just now I can finally finish a 50 without too much stroke disintegration. Have to agree that if I did not have to breathe, I'd have the stroke down perfectly.

I find I still don't have the core strength to keep it up....am thinking of getting a monofin to help with this. Has anyone else tried to use the monofin to imporve the butterfly?

BabsVa
September 4th, 2007, 10:20 AM
Love fly. It is beautiful to watch and to swim. To actually do it is to feel ... powerful, fast and strong ... like nothing else. I have a secret ambition involving fly - cannot utter the words yet.

geochuck
September 4th, 2007, 10:56 AM
I could never fly over 100m, it did come easy to me it was my arms with a two beat kick. You must realize it was when we just made the change from breaststroke to our own butterfly stroke. Of course my friends Jack Nelson and Bill Yorzyk could do the 200 with ease and I just did not swim over a 50 or 100.

swimminlyn
September 4th, 2007, 11:14 AM
Syd -
I was like you. In high school I would refuse to swim fly. I thought that stroke was the worse thing ever invented. I have gradually grown to love it. I am going to attempt the 200 fly this year. I may not be pretty at the end but as long as it is legal then I will be able to say I did it. I always work fly sets at the end of practice. If I can do them when I am tired, I should be able to do it at a meet.

Good luck to you.

Syd
September 4th, 2007, 07:54 PM
Syd -
I was like you. In high school I would refuse to swim fly. I thought that stroke was the worse thing ever invented. I have gradually grown to love it. I am going to attempt the 200 fly this year. I may not be pretty at the end but as long as it is legal then I will be able to say I did it. I always work fly sets at the end of practice. If I can do them when I am tired, I should be able to do it at a meet.

Good luck to you.

Thanks for the encouragement Lyn and all the best to you too. I am full of admiration for anyone who is willing to attempt 200 fly.:applaud: I managed to do a 100m in practice on Monday and again yesterday. I was tired at the end of both but was still swimming strong. Both of them were done at the end of practice. On Monday I went 1:18 and on Tuesday 1:16. I think I may just have the courage to try a set of 3 x 100 @ 3:00 in the not too distant future. See how it goes and build it up from there.:groovy:

Syd

Syd
September 4th, 2007, 07:59 PM
Love fly. It is beautiful to watch and to swim. To actually do it is to feel ... powerful, fast and strong ... like nothing else. I have a secret ambition involving fly - cannot utter the words yet.

UTTER THOSE WORDS - and then we all know about it and we can all hold you to it and it will be just a little bit more difficult to fail!;)

Syd

Syd
September 4th, 2007, 08:11 PM
Syd- I know the feeling....trying to get into Fly myself. Used to swim it oh, like 35 years ago....and when it all came together it was awesome; felt like I could swim it forever. Sadly, I stopped swimming, moved on to other sports/hobbies....life etc. After multiple injuries; wear and tear on body, started swimming again a little over two years ago. Just now I can finally finish a 50 without too much stroke disintegration. Have to agree that if I did not have to breathe, I'd have the stroke down perfectly.

I find I still don't have the core strength to keep it up....am thinking of getting a monofin to help with this. Has anyone else tried to use the monofin to imporve the butterfly?

Well I think that Fortress uses a monofin because it helps develop core strength. Maybe she will jump in on this thread. I have never used fins myself. They aren't allowed at the pool I swim at .

Back to the breathing thing: I find if my neck is totally relaxed, and I barely lift my head out of the water to breath, I can maintain a much more level body position which seems to be ideal for fly. Any jerky movements or stiff necks or too vertical a neck position will cause stroke breakdown.

Syd

The Fortress
September 4th, 2007, 09:36 PM
Therefore it can be said: fly is the most difficult stroke. Now if you want to be a real swimmer you should, at least, try to master the most difficult stroke. Which means, if you can't swim fly, you are not a real swimmer! Now don't get upset with me. Muppet said it first!;)

Syd

Now we're talking. Definitely the most physically demanding stroke! Timing, rhythm, balance, strength ... But no 2-flys for me; I'm sticking with 50s and 100s. (Fly is a bit hard on shoulders, after all.)

As to the monofin issue, Minnow, here's a thread on monofins. http://forums.usms.org/showthread.php?t=7642&highlight=monofin. Post #4 also references a couple other fin/MF threads. I love my MF, and use it frequently. I missed it during my recent taper. I do a lot of four point dolphin kicking with it (back, front, left side, right side), do some drills with it, and do 25 shooters with it. Love those shooters. I think it helps build leg and core strength and helps with the undulation motion. My SDKs have significantly improved since I got it last December. Really helps on the backstroke starts and turns too! Of course, as non-MF Ande would tell you, you should be working on SDKs without the MF as well.

Keep your head down! I find I sometimes have to look up a bit to see the finish. Do some drills -- I still do caterpillar drill, chest press fly and lots of one arm fly.

Glad everyone is getting into fly and becoming addicts. Flop and pop! :bouncing:

bud
September 5th, 2007, 11:06 AM
... but I have to say now, a practice without fly is a a practice without my 'fix'! ... Anyone else have a similar experience?....
yep, that is just how i feel about it.

i've been through a number of mantras on my road to successful butterfly. my current one is "think 'forward' (not 'up')." that one has helped a lot in smoothing out the breath cycle.

i did a 200 in competition once, it was not pretty, but it was legal, and both me and my team got the points. ;-)

MAC swimmer
September 5th, 2007, 12:43 PM
I actually love fly for all the same reasons--the beauty, the absolute feeling of power. When someone comes into the pool who I don;t know, I unleash a furious 25 of fly just to let them know that I am a serious swimmer.

Here's a question: Besides being very tiring, why do my legs hurt first? The simple answer: My legs are weak, right?

geochuck
September 5th, 2007, 12:46 PM
Your legs should not hurt we do not kick with the legs. We use the full body when we dolpin kick.

meldyck
September 5th, 2007, 01:10 PM
I'm just starting to ramp up my fly workouts, planning for the 200 next spring at Austin. This morning I did a fly set of 12 X 25 yds on 60 sec just to warm up, then 5 X 100 yds on 3 minutes, just keeping it easy and fluid, and 8 X 25 yds on 45 sec with increased intensity. Felt great!! Total workout, including miscellaneous other 'off' strokes was 3700 yds.

meldyck
September 5th, 2007, 01:13 PM
Here's a question: Besides being very tiring, why do my legs hurt first? The simple answer: My legs are weak, right?


Paul,

I agree with George on this one. It sounds to me as if you aren't using your core strength but maybe just trying to get the power from pushing your lower legs down hard. Watch a flyer underwater and note how much of the middle is involved...

Fluid, very fluid.

Slowswim
September 5th, 2007, 01:22 PM
Paul,

I agree with George on this one. It sounds to me as if you aren't using your core strength but maybe just trying to get the power from pushing your lower legs down hard. Watch a flyer underwater and note how much of the middle is involved...

Fluid, very fluid.

George/Mel:

How do you fly kick? Is it any different when you do SDK?

meldyck
September 5th, 2007, 01:33 PM
George/Mel:

How do you fly kick? Is it any different when you do SDK?

Bill,

it's the same for me whether I swim fly or practice SDK.

Slowswim
September 5th, 2007, 01:36 PM
OK so I'm doing my SDKs wrong too.

Thanx.:whiteflag:

geochuck
September 5th, 2007, 01:39 PM
Here is a fly kick tutorial try to work it in to your routine http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SS04XT6JyV8

All kidding aside go to GO SWIM http://www.goswim.tv/videolist.php# go down to the butterfly videos.

There is a video here by Hickman on fly http://news.bbc.co.uk/sportacademy/hi/sa/swimming/video_masterclasses/newsid_2134000/2134870.stm

MAC swimmer
September 5th, 2007, 03:25 PM
Geo!! This is a great site. See it do it!! These are awesome videos. Now I need help on my back to breast turn.

Happy flying!

P

geochuck
September 5th, 2007, 03:36 PM
Geo!! This is a great site. See it do it!! These are awesome videos. Now I need help on my back to breast turn.

Happy flying!

P

Sorry no help from me I no longer swim backstroke or breaststroke. I will find it and post the video.

geochuck
September 5th, 2007, 10:06 PM
Mac - Go down the list you will find nine videos of back to breaststrke turn. They are not great but you must watch all nine to get the picture. You will find them as -
IM - ryg til bryst http://www.online1966.com/all.asp

Syd
September 6th, 2007, 01:30 AM
George, you are a veritable fountain of interesting links. It is going to take a while to digest the "Go Swim" site alone. Many thanks.

Syd

The Fortress
September 6th, 2007, 08:54 AM
Here is a fly kick tutorial try to work it in to your routine http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SS04XT6JyV8

All kidding aside go to GO SWIM http://www.goswim.tv/videolist.php# go down to the butterfly videos.

There is a video here by Hickman on fly http://news.bbc.co.uk/sportacademy/hi/sa/swimming/video_masterclasses/newsid_2134000/2134870.stm

Those were some great video links for drills, George! I looked at the fast hands one for breaststroke. It required four different swim toys!

The back to breast turn videos were all over the shoulder spin turns though. I think the flip is faster. At least that's the one I'm trying. Hopefully, I won't DQ out of the box.

Allen Stark
September 6th, 2007, 10:43 AM
I'm not an expert,but I was taught that SDK is lower amplitude and faster than full stroke kick.I have also been told that you should move your upper body less in SDK,and then have read that was not true.I tend to move my upper body less in SDK,but I'm not that fast(my whip kick is faster.)

geochuck
September 6th, 2007, 10:52 AM
Allan have you ever watched Thorpe doing his dolphin kicks at the start of a race or when he comes off a turn. There is nothing to compare it to, it is great.

smontanaro
September 6th, 2007, 11:02 AM
So, is the SDK supposed to be qualitatively different than the dolphin kick during the normal fly? Higher frequency? Lower amplitude? Less core involvement? It seems to me that if what you want is a higher frequency during SDK you will have to have a lower amplitude kick and less core involvement, at least to some degree.

Skip

Allen Stark
September 6th, 2007, 11:03 AM
Not really,but I have studied Coughlin and Crocker.There SDKs are amazing.Coughlin particularly seems to often win her races underwater.

The Fortress
September 6th, 2007, 11:08 AM
I'm not an expert,but I was taught that SDK is lower amplitude and faster than full stroke kick.I have also been told that you should move your upper body less in SDK,and then have read that was not true.I tend to move my upper body less in SDK,but I'm not that fast(my whip kick is faster.)

I use a faster, high cycle, less amplitude motion for SDKs that is somewhat different than full stroke fly. Without the pull, I think you naturally have somewhat less upper body movement. Although when I SDK, I still try to start the motion from the chest. But I am probably using the core and legs more.

geochuck
September 6th, 2007, 11:14 AM
So, is the SDK supposed to be qualitatively different than the dolphin kick during the normal fly? Higher frequency? Lower amplitude? Less core involvement? It seems to me that if what you want is a higher frequency during SDK you will have to have a lower amplitude kick and less core involvement, at least to some degree.

Skip

The core does move however less than when you are swimming fly. The hands do not move up and down. I notice that the hands of many doing it go up and down as much as a foot, they should not do this.

inklaire
September 13th, 2007, 05:03 PM
... fly is the most difficult stroke. Now if you want to be a real swimmer you should, at least, try to master the most difficult stroke. Which means, if you can't swim fly, you are not a real swimmer! Now don't get upset with me. Muppet said it first!;)

I am definitely a phony swimmer, and were I to attempt fly, it would definitely be a faux fly. Around here, it just doesn't seem to be something which is taught to anyone over the age of 10, and I missed my chance a few decades ago. Does that mean I should hide in the corner wearing a pointed swim cap during IM sets? ;)

Syd
September 13th, 2007, 08:05 PM
I am definitely a phony swimmer, and were I to attempt fly, it would definitely be a faux fly. Around here, it just doesn't seem to be something which is taught to anyone over the age of 10, and I missed my chance a few decades ago. Does that mean I should hide in the corner wearing a pointed swim cap during IM sets? ;)

Don't worry inklaire, it was never taught to me either. I am also a few decades past ten and am only starting to learn it now. It just takes perseverance: getting past that 'this is absolutely impossible stage'. Once you have built up adequate strength to swim a 25m it starts becoming fun. Trust me on this one. My main problem now is to stop myself from swimming fly every practice. I keep telling myself I need variation but lately my practices have become exclusively free and fly affairs. Truth is I find breastroke boring (probably because I don't do it well enough) and water gets down my nose in backstroke!

Don't give up!

Syd

The Fortress
September 13th, 2007, 08:09 PM
Does that mean I should hide in the corner wearing a pointed swim cap during IM sets? ;)

I have the breaststroke dunce cap for my 100 IMs. Try not to let that stop you! How cool is it that we actually get to swim a 100 IM?!

Syd's advice is good. Patience and gradual build up. Don't do too much at once. Do some drills. Try fins for awhile to get a feel for correct body position. You'll eventually get the hang of it with a little determination and persistence.

geochuck
September 13th, 2007, 08:14 PM
Hey Syd you have it right - I also do not think any one should swim backstroke or breaststroke. There are only 2 events to swim fly and crawl, and no more than 100 of either stroke.

inklaire
September 13th, 2007, 08:34 PM
Thanks, Fort and Syd, for your encouragement. I haven't exactly started to learn the stroke -- I wouldn't know where to start (you have no idea just how long it took me to learn to swim the strokes I do know) -- but I still appreciate the sentiment. As it is, my current choice is to substitute breaststroke for fly in IM sets because I enjoy torture. :)

geochuck
September 13th, 2007, 08:45 PM
Fly to me is an easy stroke to do. Just do a double arm crawl and kick twice with the legs. Swim 3 strokes with out breathing and you are flying. Practice 3 strokes at a time until you can do four and so on. Then take a breath or two. After a while 25 yards then 50 yards, before you know it 100 yards.

In my old age I do a lot of one arm fly 3 or 4 strokes on one side a then same on other side

geochuck
September 16th, 2007, 10:11 AM
Just watched this video, saw some great backstroke turns here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fkHFdWJ8lSI

This video breaks the backstroke down very well and has animations, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JuqQEQz3lmw

Getting back to fly here is the one on butterfly that I believe Hoffman showed us before http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f8ObFWoA5T4&mode=related&search=


Geo!! This is a great site. See it do it!! These are awesome videos. Now I need help on my back to breast turn.

Happy flying!

P

Syd
September 22nd, 2007, 09:31 PM
Yesterday I realised something while swimming the last 25m of a 100: Fly gets easier but it never gets easy. In fact, the only time fly is easy is when it is the first 25 of the first set and you are wearing fins.

And another platitude you are probably aware of: You must train the distance in order to swim the distance.

In the last few weeks I have been swimming fly almost on a daily basis. Most of it, however, has been 25's and 50's. Every now and then I will throw in a 100 when I am really feeling good, but it is the same everytime: it hurts like hell.

I keep going back to the same thought: why is it possible for me to complete 200m of all the other strokes except fly? Note: I am not talking about swimming a PB here but rather, just completing the distance.

Some practices I have been swimming up to 1000m of fly. 10 x 50 fly and 40 x 25 (alternating free and fly). I erroneously thought that amount of distance in a session would allow me to sail through a 100m but, in reality, not so. You have to train the distance to go the distance.

So yesterday I did a 100 followed by 5 x 75's and that was painful but manageable. In fact when I did a 50 afterwards I breezed it. It's all about breaking down new pain barriers and slowly increasing the distance.

This morning, when I raise my arms, there is a delicious aching sensation in my lats and I can't wait to get back and subject myself to more.:D

yours, truly hooked
Syd

Red60
September 23rd, 2007, 02:31 AM
Syd, glad to hear your update. I am thinking of you as I begin to add more fly to my workouts, beginning with the alternating fly and free 25s and a few 50s. I've also been doing 3 strokes one arm, 3 strokes the other, and 3 strokes both arms on sets of 3 x 100, and I think that's really helping with the feel of the stroke. I'm aiming to bump up to longer sets in the next week.

I am definitely beginning to feel a new rhythm. Yesterday, on the first 25 of a 50 I swear to God I had an aesthetic experience, in which the undulating rhythm of my body and the propulsion from my kick had me zooming through the water in the most astounding way. It only lasted about 10 seconds, if that, but it was fabulous. I want to get that back and stretch it out over a longer distance.

Have not had the guts to attempt a 100 yet, and am not in a hurry. I am taking my time. But I'm getting more and more excited about the stroke. I wonder about how you work on speed once you have the endurance, but that can wait for another month or so.

Thanks for the thread and the inspiration.

In the meantime, I'm curious: are there masters meets in Taiwan?

Syd
September 23rd, 2007, 07:54 AM
Yesterday, on the first 25 of a 50 I swear to God I had an aesthetic experience, in which the undulating rhythm of my body and the propulsion from my kick had me zooming through the water in the most astounding way.


That's a wonderful feeling! Even that 10 seconds is enough to get you hooked! Congratulations on your achievement! Glad to hear that you are getting excited about the stroke. I never thought I would be excited about fly either.

Masters competition in Taiwan?...well there is one next month... I will see...don't know if I am ready to participate yet...last time I competed was at the end of 1983 (about 24 years ago) and only got back into swimming recently.

Thanks for your interest.

Syd

Red60
September 23rd, 2007, 01:22 PM
Syd, I swam in my first masters meet last March, after a hiatus of 28 years. It was really great--totally affirming. I did not go nearly as fast as I had hoped, but the feeling of competition helped me achieve the mental buy-in to improve in a lasting way. I swam in two meets, and used the information gained from that to spend all summer drilling in anticipation of the SCY season in 2008. I will probably do a meet or two before the end of this year, then compete more frequently next. I have agreed to meet an old swimming chum at SCY nationals in Austin next May. Masters competition is characterized by a very supportive atmosphere, so far as I can tell. Very different ability levels are welcomed.

Ripple
September 23rd, 2007, 01:41 PM
I learned butterfly at age 44, it was one of my fitness goals for 2003. The inspiration was a woman who started doing it in the next lane one day. I think she must have been an exceptionally good swimmer, because I haven't seen too many people since who did it that well.
I'm a T.I. geek, so a lot of the learning came from their dvds and books. I figure if I could learn, anyone can! The hardest part was getting the hang of the body dolphin drill without the fins on. Once I nailed that part, the rest came a little easier. Using fist gloves has helped with the arm stroke a lot, I tended to drop my hands too much before trying them. I'll probably never be fast enough to be competitive, but it's a fun stroke to do and I enjoy it.

Flow Phaser
September 25th, 2007, 09:50 PM
Hi.

New here, but not to swimming. But getting back into fly, as per thread for first time in 10 years or so. I'm always so skittish about shoulder problems that I've avoided it. But now I think it's not such a big problem if you increase intensity, swims, and yardage slowly.

I only swim a true fly set every third workout or so. I've been at it 6 weeks now and today was my most 'intense" set yet: 6 x 75 fly/ez 25 free on 1:45. I mean, it was intense--and longish--for me.

It is a real thrill to get in the zone, huh?
:wave:

Syd
September 26th, 2007, 12:14 AM
Hi.

New here, but not to swimming. But getting back into fly, as per thread for first time in 10 years or so. I'm always so skittish about shoulder problems that I've avoided it. But now I think it's not such a big problem if you increase intensity, swims, and yardage slowly.

I only swim a true fly set every third workout or so. I've been at it 6 weeks now and today was my most 'intense" set yet: 6 x 75 fly/ez 25 free on 1:45. I mean, it was intense--and longish--for me.

It is a real thrill to get in the zone, huh?
:wave:


Welcome to USMS! I absolutely agree with you. Increase the yardage slowly, do your rotator cuff exercises and, if possible, get someone experienced to check out if you have any problems with your stroke. This way you should avoid shoulder problems altogether. I haven't had any shoulder problems (touch wood) but then I am totally new to fly. I never used to swim it all really when I swam competitively as a kid. I mean I swam it occasionally in practice but not enough to do any damage to my shoulder. My shoulder starts to get twitches when I swim too much crawl or I use hand paddles too much but I have never felt sore shoulder joints with fly. Sore muscles, yes, but not joints.

6 x 75 fly at 1:45.:applaud: Congratulations! You are well on your way!

Syd

david.margrave
September 26th, 2007, 12:52 AM
As a kid I remember it took a couple years of competitive swimming before I really got the necessary strength and rhythm of butterfly down to where I wasn't always behind the curve. It's almost like there's a wave in front of you as you try to swim fly, and you need to have the strength and technique to get in front of it. You'll know it when it all clicks. Red60, it sounds like you just got it.

Now, I'll add that at a meet this weekend I saw a guy in his 70s complete the 200 fly. It's probably the most feared event in all of swimming, not many people at any age even attempt it.

geochuck
September 26th, 2007, 06:56 AM
I heard an old song, "Come Fly with Me".

I get very tired after about 6o seconds of fly, here I am the last three strokes of a minute of swimming fly http://oregonmasters.ning.com/profile/geochuck - I just watched it, only two strokes

Never did more then 2 or three 100s in a day, and never close together.

Never had shoulder problems from swimming fly.

bud
September 26th, 2007, 09:48 AM
... I keep going back to the same thought: why is it possible for me to complete 200m of all the other strokes except fly? ....

my first guess is technique issues, but conditioning (specifically for fly) will play a part too.

a lot of it is in your head too.
see:
Penguins Can Fly - Vicki Keith (http://www.penguinscanfly.ca/penguinscanfly/index.cfm?page=vicki_about)
"...Vicki came out of swimming retirement, and spent 63 hours and 40 minutes in Lake Ontario, completing 80.2 kilometres butterfly, setting 2 world records and raising over $200,000...."
:notworthy:


and yes... those moments of synchronicity will definitely keep you coming back for more.
;)

...

geochuck
September 26th, 2007, 10:44 AM
Here is Vicke http://soloswims.com/keith.htm

I was at this dedication with a few friends, Patty Thompson is in the picture she is my coaches daughter. http://soloswims.com/notl.htm

swimmerlady
September 26th, 2007, 02:45 PM
Hey - I did my first masters meet last January...and I worked up the courage to attempt a 200 Fly. I didn't recall ever doing one before in a meet, so after a 20 year or so break from competative swimming I decided that I would at least have done one once in my lifetime. It was a challenge - and I didn't say "never again". I plan to do one this December and I am trying to get a few others to do it with me....(don't want to be the only one in the event - there was one other brave soul with me the last time).

I asked my daughters swim coach who was an All American 200 flyer for some good sets to help me train. This is what she told me.
Do a 200. The first lap do 3 full butterfly strokes and the rest of the lap easy free. The second lap do 4 full strokes and the rest easy free. Add one butterfly stroke on each lap until you complete the 200. Do a good pullout at each wall.

It is a relaxing 200 - nice to do between sets of 25's or 50's.

Let me know what any of you think....

Flow Phaser
September 26th, 2007, 04:00 PM
Thanks for the welcome, Syd and gang. Best of luck with your training.

While we're on the subject, what is the thinking on training for a 200 fly? Build up to occasional 250s/300s for confidence? Do you ever actually swim sets of 200s? Or is 100s on interval, with the occasional 200 for time thrown in, enough to get you there?

Thanks in advance.

swimminlyn
September 26th, 2007, 04:18 PM
Swimmerlady,

I am going to attempt my 1st 200 fly in October. Up until last year, it was all I could do to swim a 50 fly. I decided to do the 400 IM last year. Still never trained fly but just knew that if I got through the 1st 4 lengths the rest would be ok. I have been doing lots of fly in practice this year. I do alot of drill. It is starting to seem easier.

Good Luck getting others to swim it with you. I get laughed at when I ask people to swim it with me.

fastjack
September 26th, 2007, 04:47 PM
What brave people you all are. You will not catch me doing a 200 Fly.

swimmerlady
September 26th, 2007, 05:40 PM
Swimmerlady,

Good Luck getting others to swim it with you. I get laughed at when I ask people to swim it with me.


Believe it or not, I may have company. So far I have one Yes and one Maybe. I only asked two people so far. Ya think their shaggin me on?

Good luck with your 200 :banana:

hofffam
September 26th, 2007, 05:41 PM
why is it possible for me to complete 200m of all the other strokes except fly?

Because fly requires more energy to accelerate your body to a position that allows you breathe than any other stroke. In no other stroke is breathing so demanding.

Like breaststroke, fly is a relatively choppy stroke. The power from the arms is delivered all at once since both arms move together. Kind of like the difference between a one cylinder and two cylinder engine. Freestyle and backstroke are like two cylinder engines. Naturally smoother because the pause between power phases is very short.

In fly when your arms are recovering in the air only your legs are pushing you, which allows your body to sink. Then your arms have to lift your body so you can breathe.

I can swim a very nice 25 fly, pretty nice 50 fly, and it goes badly downhill from there.

bud
September 26th, 2007, 07:59 PM
... what is the thinking on training for a 200 fly? ....
stumbled across these and thought they may be useful to you:

Training for butterfly, esp. 200m (http://forums.usms.org/showthread.php?t=2820)

here is a bigger list of Butterfly Threads & Links (http://forums.usms.org/showthread.php?t=4552) that includes the above and another 200 fly thread, but they are all older posts.

...

Flow Phaser
September 26th, 2007, 11:29 PM
bud--

Thanks for those links. maybe I'll follow up with any Qs I have because--as always with swimming--there seems to be some contradictory advice. The whole thing about 1-beat kicking sounds pretty good though, especially for a 200.

:wave:

geochuck
September 26th, 2007, 11:42 PM
I happen to remember that butterfrog thing. I remember that it was Peter's favorite. I think he must have bought the DVD. One froggy kick for duffers only accepted in Master Swimming, one or two dolphin beats for real butterfliers and legal anywhere.

swimminlyn
September 27th, 2007, 09:09 AM
Swimmerlady,
Here is a link to join the ButterNuts....
It is a 500 Fly...

http://www.grinswim.org/~nasti/butternuts

My goal it to do it by the end of the year.

slowfish
September 28th, 2007, 11:28 AM
hey geochuck,

those are such great videos for seeing all aspects of the stroke. :groovy: do you know of any that show the fly to back, back to breast, and breast to free turns in nice detail like that?

geochuck
September 28th, 2007, 05:28 PM
I will have a look and see what I can come up with but my Chinese and Japanese is not good enough to do a proper search.

In the meantime learn butterfrog here is Terry's first viedo explaining the butterfrog http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xW_d3XpXltY

This was his second video, the promotional one http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wFuL-cskQn4&mode=related&search=

slowfish
October 2nd, 2007, 03:15 PM
i would love to get to the point where i can do 100 fly. i am reading through this thread to get some ideas and started incorporating them into a workout this morning. specifically, i did some 200s where i did a few strokes of fly on every lap.

my question all of you is what to do when your stroke starts falling to pieces - is it better to give in and do free? or is it better to just muscle through it with 1-arm?

geochuck
October 2nd, 2007, 03:21 PM
You just hold it together pace it from start to finish. This is the attitude you have to have http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8My0RFB9pKQ

slowfish
October 2nd, 2007, 03:28 PM
You just hold it together pace it from start to finish. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8My0RFB9pKQ

in my dreams! i don't care how slow i go right now, 25 is fine but once i make that turn, i can't get get even a 50 fly without loosing form. my goal is to eventually just be able to get through it and then work on speed.

geochuck
October 2nd, 2007, 04:04 PM
Fly swimmers get in trouble holding their form because they go overboard on the kicking portion of fly. If we make a big kick and then a little one you will find it much easier. Keep the kick below the surface this also helps.

bud
October 2nd, 2007, 04:38 PM
... my question all of you is what to do when your stroke starts falling to pieces - is it better to give in and do free? or is it better to just muscle through it with 1-arm?
practicing poor technique will only reinforce it. resting more, and/or changing strokes, and doing more drills will likely help you more than forcing things.


... i can't get get even a 50 fly without loosing form. my goal is to eventually just be able to get through it and then work on speed.

i know that feeling well... but i've gotten past it now.... that's a good goal. be patient, try different things technique-wise, do some reading, watch some videos, and keep chipping away at this forum. eventually you'll get where you want to be.

i got a lot of help/knowledge when i watched some super swimmers doing fly in videos i viewed with QuickTime, which allowed me to step through what they were doing one frame at a time. it helped me a lot in figuring out the timing.

...

swimminlyn
October 29th, 2007, 10:07 AM
Well I survived my 1st ever 200 fly. It was not as bad as I thought it would be. I went a 3:22 in scm. I am very excited about that. My goal was under 3:30 and didn't care if it was 3:29.99. I am definitely going to add that to my list of events for the rest of the year.

Next challenge....ButterNut....

Syd
October 29th, 2007, 10:21 AM
Well I survived my 1st ever 200 fly. It was not as bad as I thought it would be. I went a 3:22 in scm. I am very excited about that. My goal was under 3:30 and didn't care if it was 3:29.99. I am definitely going to add that to my list of events for the rest of the year.

Next challenge....ButterNut....

Congratulations Linda!:groovy: Oooooh! I am full of admiration! That must have taken some courage. How did you swim it? Easy out in the first 100 and then concentrating on the kick in the second 100? How did you feel afterwards? That's wonderful news!

Syd

swimminlyn
October 29th, 2007, 11:21 AM
Syd...
I kept it long and smooth. Relaxed the 1st 100 and build the last 100. It was an awesome feeling when I was done. Nothing hurt the whole time except my abs toward the end. I think next time I can go out a little faster. I will just say that the 800 I swam on the 1st day hurt much worse than the 200 Fly and I swam the fly after a nice battle I had in the 200 IM. On the 1st day of the meet I also did the 100 fly followed by a 50 free and right into the 400 IM. 100 fly was a 1:32 and the 100 fly in the 400 IM was 1:35 I think. My fly felt real good all weekend and the frees hurt.

Have you raced your fly's yet? Trust me you can do it. Once you get through it whether it is a 50, 100, or 200 it is a great feeling to have achieved it.

BabsVa
October 29th, 2007, 11:47 AM
Well I survived my 1st ever 200 fly...

Awwwwesome.

Syd
October 30th, 2007, 02:44 AM
i've been through a number of mantras on my road to successful butterfly. my current one is "think 'forward' (not 'up')."

I have to say this has been the single most important advice in improving my fly. Thank you:notworthy:! Thank you:notworthy:!

Syd

Mighty Minnow
October 30th, 2007, 10:16 AM
Hmmm.....all this talk is making me want to enter the 50Fly for a meet on Nov. 18th.......just not sure I can hold it together for 50Meters (short course).

swimminlyn
October 30th, 2007, 11:35 AM
Go for it Minnow. It is not as bad as you think it would be. If I can hold it together for 200 SCM you can do a 50 SCM. I couldn't do more than a 50 until last year when I decided I was going to do the 400 IM.

Let us know how it goes....

Good Luck

That Guy
October 30th, 2007, 04:03 PM
Well I survived my 1st ever 200 fly. It was not as bad as I thought it would be. I went a 3:22 in scm. I am very excited about that. My goal was under 3:30 and didn't care if it was 3:29.99. I am definitely going to add that to my list of events for the rest of the year.

Next challenge....ButterNut....

Great job! I'm also working on the ButterNut. I need to get through the mental barrier that tells me that 500 yards of fly is impossible. Some marathon runners say, "I'm not going to run 26 miles, I'm going to run 1 mile 26 times." So with that in mind, here's a set that I did this morning: 20x25 fly on :25, and at the end of each 25, I began a normal open turn but paused just before releasing the right hand's grip on the wall. Then I waited for the interval and continued. I swam the last 25 in 16 seconds so since I didn't do anything illegal (like touching the bottom) I could claim that I did a 500 fly in 8:11. I'm not making that claim yet. I'm going to try more sets like this (move up to 50's and 75's, or 25's on 5 seconds rest, etc.) before taking on the Big Kahuna.

Richard P. Arnold
November 5th, 2007, 10:04 AM
I am 75. After a year of swimming straight freestyle building up to 1600 meters non-stop I joined masters a month ago. I swam fly in school 57 years ago. I decided I wanted to try again. Gratefully my coach swam fly in college and I have now, with a start, been able to go fifty meters with a respectable fly. My best 25 meter time is around 24secs. I finally, in this last week, according to coach have really mastered the rhythm. I don't know what my potential is at this age but i am starting to get two or three hundred meters of fly in each work out. There is a meet Saturday and, at least, I am going to try it and see where I get. I know I can to better than 24s eventually. Any old guys out their with advice. :dunno:

J0nath0n3
November 6th, 2007, 07:19 PM
Dude omg, i know, I am trying to hard to keep a steady 100m fly.. but i die at around the 75m..lol

Richard P. Arnold
November 17th, 2007, 12:25 PM
Well I am swam the fly at a meet in Portsmouth NH. 50 M in 58. I know I can do better. I also did 50 free in 49s. I am now trying to build fly endurance for the 100. It will take some more work at 75. I won both age groups being the only one entered. Not a great accomplishment. :applaud:

Syd
November 17th, 2007, 12:51 PM
Well I am swam the fly at a meet in Portsmouth NH. 50 M in 58. I know I can do better. I also did 50 free in 49s. I am now trying to build fly endurance for the 100. It will take some more work at 75. I won both age groups being the only one entered. Not a great accomplishment. :applaud:

Congratulations Richard! I think that is an excellent start. It is just over a second a meter. Your next mark will be to go under 50. The world record for the 50m fly in your age group is 36.06. You are more than half way there.

well done

Syd

pwolf66
November 17th, 2007, 12:55 PM
Not a great accomplishment. :applaud:

I so beg to differ. That is STILL a heck of an accomplishment. You're in the pool swimming at 75. Way to go!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Paul

Mighty Minnow
November 19th, 2007, 11:41 AM
I DID it!
Swam the 50M fly yesterday......it was not pretty at the end, AND I almost scratched cuz it came right after the 100 IM......time was slow, BUT I now have a time to work on. Still have to work on the kick as I don't feel I have much power from the kick. I feel like I'm all arms.....am still considering getting a monofin.......30 plus years ago I felt I could 'fly' forever. Just want to get that feeling back!

That Guy
November 19th, 2007, 02:25 PM
Great job MM!