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TomBrooklyn
October 6th, 2007, 02:22 AM
My body dolphin is not too good now. I'm just a beginner.

MAC swimmer
October 6th, 2007, 07:36 AM
Try underwater dolphin kick with fins. Literally start the wave with the tips of your fingers. Have the wave proceed down your arms, move your head with the wave and then your torso, core and finally legs and feet.

25yards easy and slow over and over just to get the motion of the wave.

When you are ready, push off the wall and try to do the wave with speed and power. Baby steps. I am a novice flyer too, but since we can;t turn back the clock, we have to super exagerate what comes naturally to those who started the stroke as kids.

geochuck
October 6th, 2007, 09:20 AM
I think if you searh you will get lots of help. Here is a very recent topic http://forums.usms.org/showthread.php?t=8912&highlight=dolphin+kick

Blackbeard's Peg
October 6th, 2007, 10:38 AM
Tom,
A tip I have for you is that dolphin kick is not all legs. In fact, most of it lies in your core. You've got to get your whole body involved.

Using a Monofin will really help show you how your body needs to behave in the water. If you try to use all legs, you'll hurt your back, but when you start using your upper body as part of your kick, you'll start to see some improvements. Watch the video posted in this thread (http://forums.usms.org/showthread.php?t=9140) and check out the underwater shots.

The thing that worked best for me is real live dolphins. This sounds kinda out there, but go to your local dolphin-housing aquarium and spend 30 minutes watching the dolphins swim (esp if there is an underwater glass viewing area). The date was a success and my SDK has never been the same since!

poolraat
October 6th, 2007, 12:12 PM
I too have a weak dolphin kick but it has improved immensely since I started doing kicking with a monofin. I am finally geeting a feel for the whole body motion instead of just kicking from the hips down. Just recently the time and number of kicks to go across the pool underwater dropped significantly. And apparently it is having a crossover effect on my flutter kicking, both free and back as my time for kicking a 100 y has dropped about 10 seconds in the past month or so. Now if I could just figure out that breaststroke kick.....

TomBrooklyn
October 6th, 2007, 12:55 PM
Try underwater dolphin kick with fins....When you are ready, push off the wall and try to do the wave with speed and power
OK. I bought a pair of blue Zoomers, primarily for helping with the body dolphin, but I've been practicing on the surface. I'll try some underwater. I purposely haven't tried doing it with a push off the wall either, as I had this idea to do a standing start and see if I could generate motion just from the dolphin. But I'll try that now too.

3strokes
October 6th, 2007, 12:55 PM
Just my :2cents:

I found that I get a better feel for what the whole dolphin motion is about when I do it with my arms by my side, a la "Man from Atlantis". I actually go faster, farther with less effort, than with with the arms extended to the front (upper arms over ears, so to speak).

geochuck
October 6th, 2007, 12:58 PM
I never use anything false. 3strokes way is the way i do it. When the hands are there i use them in an up and down motion for balance.

TomBrooklyn
October 6th, 2007, 01:20 PM
Using a Monofin will really help show you how your body needs to behave in the water....The thing that worked best for me is real live dolphins.
Hi,
Where I swim now (Bally's Fitness), I think the lanes so short and crowded that I might not be allowed to use a monofin. But I'll stay on the lookout for an opportunity to try one.

I checked with the NYC Aquarium and unfortunately they don't have dolphins there. Where's the next closest place to see dolphins?

Blackbeard's Peg
October 6th, 2007, 01:53 PM
The National Aquarium in Baltimore is where I went.
They've got a nice dolphin show in a big auditorium, and have the window below.

chaos
October 6th, 2007, 02:46 PM
OK. I bought a pair of blue Zoomers, primarily for helping with the body dolphin, but I've been practicing on the surface. I'll try some underwater. I purposely haven't tried doing it with a push off the wall either, as I had this idea to do a standing start and see if I could generate motion just from the dolphin. But I'll try that now too.

my approach to BD on the surface and uw are completely different.

on the surface it is a good idea to start from a dead-mans-float (this will enable to you to see if your BD is generating any forward momentum)
i like to start like this: press your chest down (below your arms and head) while reaching your arms forward (shoulder width). for now let the legs just follow through. add the kick only after the core motion is really comfortable.

before i swim i always stretch my back and shoulders with a modified cat/cow sequence: hands on a railing. bend over so that your body forms a 90 degree angle at the waist. exhale and let your chest sink below your arms (i usually get a few "ahh feels good spinal cracks" on the first one) inhale and curlyour back letting the crown of your head relax down. for me, this core body motion very closely simulates the surface BD motion except for the rhythm.

Josh54
October 6th, 2007, 03:02 PM
I also use fins to practice BD but it can give you a false feeling of improvement felt when you take off the fins.

I also agree that the movement should start from the top of the body with the legs kind of following thru.

I have found that my BD has greatly improved by simply doing BD everytime I push off the wall swimming freestyle. I am improving slowly but surely and I hope to get to a fast 10m. underwater BD in the near future.

knelson
October 6th, 2007, 03:13 PM
my approach to BD on the surface and uw are completely different.

Worst font ever.

chaos
October 6th, 2007, 03:14 PM
just to clarify:
the motion i described is more useful as a butterfly drill not an off the wall/under water BD.

geochuck
October 6th, 2007, 05:23 PM
There is nothing that will make it happen but doing it, all the kicking drills will never give you the true feeling.

When I teach fly I have them do a one beat dolphin kick one stroke, then a two beat dolphin kick one stoke. Then we do a three beat kick one stroke, and then a 4 beat kick one stoke. Example here is a go swim video http://www.goswim.tv/drill_pop.php?id=2305_0_20_0_M

Then we get back to the 2 beat one stroke.

I like to come of the wall and kick the dolphin kick for 15 yards with my hands at the side.

From a dead man's float???? I like to feel motion.

Syd
October 6th, 2007, 07:54 PM
Just my :2cents:

I found that I get a better feel for what the whole dolphin motion is about when I do it with my arms by my side, a la "Man from Atlantis". I actually go faster, farther with less effort, than with with the arms extended to the front (upper arms over ears, so to speak).


3strokes, I like the method you describe: my rhythm is better and I am faster, too. However, I never practice this way because it would just be impractical for the breakout stroke. Or are there other advantages that I don't know about?

Syd

geochuck
October 6th, 2007, 08:05 PM
Syd that is the way you will learn your kick motion hands at side. When you swim the body motion you use is the same motion you will use when swimming fly.

When you dive in you do your arms out front kick. After you break out the body motion is as above.

I am sure others will tell you to do it with the hands out front, I think that is wrong.

chaos
October 6th, 2007, 09:08 PM
From a dead man's float???? I like to feel motion.


i like to feel and teach the generation of motion. this is easily missed if one starts from a push off.

Syd
October 6th, 2007, 09:27 PM
Syd that is the way you will learn your kick motion hands at side. When you swim the body motion you use is the same motion you will use when swimming fly.

When you dive in you do your arms out front kick. After you break out the body motion is as above.

I am sure others will tell you to do it with the hands out front, I think that is wrong.


I see. I will try your method. Thanks George.

Syd

The Fortress
October 6th, 2007, 10:53 PM
i like to feel and teach the generation of motion. this is easily missed if one starts from a push off.

I do this drill all the time. Love it. I think of it as putting my body in the Y postition, with my hands just a bit past shoulder position and start pressing with the chest with the rest of the body flowing though. This is called the caterpillar drill. Very slow.

I also do the drill George suggests. But I call it chest press fly. Arms at the side, doing the body dolphin, leading with the head, pressing with the chest. Last time my coach saw me doing this in warm up, she said I was very TI, George. ;) I'll do this drill on top of and below the water.

BUT I think the underwater kicking is equally important for learning a good body dolphin and a strong SDK, even more for the SDK perhaps. And I like to do them in a superman streamline position that mimics the starts and turns of a race. So I do four point dolphin kick shooters from a push (front, left side, right side, back) regularly with and without my monofin. I love my monofin. It's a rocking mermaid workout, you feel just like a dolphin and it's great for the core as Muppet notes. But if you really want to feel like a dolphin do the fly spin drill I posted on the other thread. Now, that is very fishlike.

Interesting, I do all the above much more than I swim regular fly. But my fly seems to be improving some.

geochuck
October 6th, 2007, 11:45 PM
I just do not like to see anything done from a complete stop it is hard to get a continuous fluid motion.

i like to feel and teach the generation of motion. this is easily missed if one starts from a push off.

The Fortress
October 7th, 2007, 12:00 AM
I just do not like to see anything done from a complete stop it is hard to get a continuous fluid motion.

I will admit to pushing off the wall, coming almost -- but not quite -- to a semi-halt and then starting the chest presss. :laugh2:

chaos
October 7th, 2007, 02:27 AM
I just do not like to see anything done from a complete stop it is hard to get a continuous fluid motion.

hence the challenge.
like riding a bike: those with the best balance (think track stand) don't need any motion to stay upright, but most people can fake it if they're rolling.

TomBrooklyn
October 7th, 2007, 07:12 AM
I also do the drill George suggests. But I call it chest press fly. Arms at the side, doing the body dolphin, leading with the head, pressing with the chest. Last time my coach saw me doing this in warm up, she said I was very TI...
The Head Lead Body Dolphin is Drill Numero Uno of the "Butterfly and Breaststroke: The TI Way" tape (Now found combined with the old "Freestyle and Backstroke" tape on the "Four Strokes Made Easy" DVD. http://www.totalimmersion.net/four-strokes-details.html )

The Hand Lead Body Dolphin is Drill Number 2.

This DVD is currently my main instructional source for learning how to swim.

The Fortress
October 7th, 2007, 08:05 AM
The Head Lead Body Dolphin is Drill Numero Uno of the "Butterfly and Breaststroke: The TI Way" tape (Now found combined with the old "Freestyle and Backstroke" tape on the "Four Strokes Made Easy" DVD. http://www.totalimmersion.net/four-strokes-details.html )

The Hand Lead Body Dolphin is Drill Number 2.

This DVD is currently my main instructional source for learning how to swim.

Well, I already know how to swim. LOL. I still find it useful to do these drills a bit every workout to reinforce proper technique. Since I've never even seen these DVDs, the fact that I'm apparently swimming very TI only reinforces my opinion that shoulder injuries are not due to solely to poor technique. :thhbbb: :mooning: :dedhorse:

Since you've already found these sources, Tom, once you've got a decent body motion going, I'd grab that monofin and go. Even TI Dave uses a monofin when he's not pottering about in the OW, right Dave? And practice! This motion takes awhile to really get.

geochuck
October 7th, 2007, 08:06 AM
Every thing is fine with me every thing mentioned here will work with time.

I just don't want to spend more than a hour teaching the butterfly. After learning the movements it is going to be a work in progress. Throw away all your DVDs and get a coach.

When you hit 50 seconds for a 100m then you will finally find out you have it right. I still have a long way to go to reach that time. My best time about 1 minute for the 100m lc was nearly 50 years ago.

When we start to do 50 seconds for the 100 the goal then will be 40 seconds. Learning goes on forever..

13 days to go Mexico Here I come, we leve for Mexico October 20.

bud
October 7th, 2007, 01:32 PM
i got the most improvement in my dolphin kick by doing kick drills on my back (along the surface) w/o a kick board. it felt REALLY awkward at first, and the head tends to stay in place (which is not necessarily true in fly), but eventually i found a groove, and things have improved a lot since then.

this sdk thread (http://forums.usms.org/showthread.php?t=8345) has a number of coolbeans vid links. one thing i've found interesting is that in the SDK (streamlined dolphin kick) the head pretty much stays in place. in fly it tends to follow the sine wave motion of the stroke (but i'm finding in fly practice now that the flatter the "wave" the better). as with a lot of things, high frequency wave forms seem to be more efficient than low frequency ones (like twisted-pair telephone wires vs. fiber optics).

if you can watch vids in QuickTime (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/QuickTime) you can step them one frame at a time. i found this to be amazingly useful in analyzing strokes of the experts. this youtube download thread (http://forums.usms.org/showthread.php?t=9036) may help.

expert \`ek-spert\ n - "x" = the unknown factor, "spurt" = a drip under pressure. :-)

at this point i'm beginning to truly understand that you can't be tense in fly (i reckon the same applies to SDK). as i see it now, that is the ultimate hat trick (hey rocky! watch me pull a rabbit outta my hat!), knowing when to flex, and when to relax, and the changes are fast (which is a real challenge for those aging [nonexistent?] fast twitch muscle fibers).

while i'm still testing it, i also recently discovered that if i kick in a slightly knock-knee (ankles wider) position it allows me to get more power as the top of my foot is flatter (so less slippage in the biggest power portion of the kick). hip flexibility (relaxation) is needed here for the legs to be able to turn that way. there are a lot of Yoga asanas (postures) that will help increase flexibility and strength in the pelvic region. ankle flexibility seems really critical too. swim.ee (http://swim.ee/videos/index_example.html) used to have a vid called "Frolander-flexible-legkicks (http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=Frolander+flexible+legkicks)" this guy is a rubber band!

my fly sets now mostly consist of kick out (as described above) and fly back, catch my breath, repeat (but i'm a bit of a lightweight... relative to many posters here). my facility is SCY (25yds).

in the earlier part of my fly practice/study i discovered i was really getting a deeper understanding of the body motion when i was able to start doing fly from a dead stop. this was a HUGE breakthrough discovery/moment for me.

if you are interested in doing fly... try these two articles (http://www.h2oustonswims.org/articles.html) by Coach Emmett Hines, they helped me a lot:
Slip-Slidíní Away (http://www.h2oustonswims.org/articles/slip_sliding_away.html)
Vive le Papillon! (http://www.h2oustonswims.org/articles/vive_le_papillon.html) (or Is There Fly After 25?)

geochuck
October 7th, 2007, 04:23 PM
I never did very many drills. I know a lot of them. I guess I was lucky I had no trouble doing the fly. I just brought my arms out clean entered clean, one big kick one little kick. Head went in and it was very natural for me. I di not have to think about it.

Did a few one length and two lengths sprints, under water dolphin kicks with the hands at my side. I raced the crawl sprinters from our club. But most of my fly training was to swim a couple of endless relays at our club. When i dove in off the racing block I did the dolphin kick with the hands out front, not moving the head and shoulders, but moved everything below the shoulders.

In a nutshell, head and chest go down, hips and legs go up, then thrust the hips down and I am doing the dolphin kick. All I can say is keep it simple, don't make it complicated.

heathweaver
October 9th, 2007, 02:12 AM
Here is a video of a drill done by Alexander Popov where he is practicing the dolphin vertical in the water.

I really like this drill as you can feel a difference in the water resistance. After, when you go back to horizontal, you can better feel the water resistance and what's slowing you down.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nzWzZb1niIQ

----------------
Heath

Twenty-Three Seconds
for in-depth freestyle swimming analysis
www.wbmny.com/swimming

RecreationalSwimmer
October 9th, 2007, 12:40 PM
My body dolphin is not too good now. I'm just a beginner.

I think deep down you know the answer. If you are a beginner, forget about the dolphin for the time being. First things first (assuming you are learning the freestyle aka front crawl)!

I'm such a wise guy...;)

TomBrooklyn
October 9th, 2007, 12:57 PM
forget about the dolphin for the time being. (assuming you are learning the freestyle!)
I'm working on both the short axis (Breast/Fly) and long axis (Free/Back). I switch it up. I'm mostly doing drills designed to teach the needed skills. I don't do much whole stroke swimming now. (What would be the point-to practice lousy technique?)

Mighty Minnow
October 10th, 2007, 01:22 PM
Am thinking of getting a monofin to help with my butterfly (mainly the dolphin kick.....) which model do you guys recommend?

geochuck
October 10th, 2007, 01:42 PM
Fort is the expert on Mono Fins.

The Fortress
October 10th, 2007, 06:54 PM
Am thinking of getting a monofin to help with my butterfly (mainly the dolphin kick.....) which model do you guys recommend?


I don't about "expert" here. I'm just winging it and experimenting on my own. But I do love my MF and I can state with some certainty that it has helped my SDKs on back and fly and helped my starts. I can pop off a backstroke start underwater to 15 meters pretty regularly now. Plus, it's just a super fun toy. I use the $99 finis shooter designed for SDK/dolphin kick type work.

Here's a thread on monofins: http://forums.usms.org/showthread.php?t=7642&highlight=monofins

Mighty Minnow
October 11th, 2007, 09:48 AM
Thank you Fort......have been following the other threads, too, still spending $99 on something makes me think twice......on the other hand, I NEED work on my Dolphin kick in fly. The arm strength is there, but when I was a kid (did not swim for 35 years) it was the core strength that helped me swim butterfly. Really want to get that effortless feeling back into my fly so any prop that helps me reach that goal is money well spent!

Funny how swimming after a 35 year break, you find that strokes you hated as a kid are now your best strokes, and strokes that were your strength back then are not so good now......and of course goals are different now. Swimming more for fitness (I don't think I'll ever see those times again) than competition.

The Fortress
October 11th, 2007, 10:15 AM
Thank you Fort......have been following the other threads, too, still spending $99 on something makes me think twice......on the other hand, I NEED work on my Dolphin kick in fly. The arm strength is there, but when I was a kid (did not swim for 35 years) it was the core strength that helped me swim butterfly. Really want to get that effortless feeling back into my fly so any prop that helps me reach that goal is money well spent!

Funny how swimming after a 35 year break, you find that strokes you hated as a kid are now your best strokes, and strokes that were your strength back then are not so good now......and of course goals are different now. Swimming more for fitness (I don't think I'll ever see those times again) than competition.

An MF is a big ticket item, but it was worth it for me. You can also work on your core strength with a serious dryland program. That will help your fly too. I try to forget all my youth times. They seem pretty irrelevant to me. We're just at a different place in life with different bodies. But I still suck at the same stroke I sucked at as a kid. No change there. :rofl:

Richard P. Arnold
October 11th, 2007, 03:02 PM
I just joined masters. I swam fly in 1950. I am retracing my steps 57 years later. I normally swim about 1600 meters a workout. How do I build my fly endurance. I swam frog kick in 50 so this discussion very interesting. I swim in the 75-80 age group. I can inelegantly fly about 25 meters now. Any suggestions? I do 100 free in about 2'10" working out.

Syd
October 11th, 2007, 08:10 PM
I just joined masters. I swam fly in 1950. I am retracing my steps 57 years later. I normally swim about 1600 meters a workout. How do I build my fly endurance. I swam frog kick in 50 so this discussion very interesting. I swim in the 75-80 age group. I can inelegantly fly about 25 meters now. Any suggestions? I do 100 free in about 1'10" working out.

You do a 100 free in 1:10 in the 75 - 80 age group. :groovy: I am full of awe and admiration. I want to be able to say that too when I am your age! Thank you for the inspiration.

I have just recently started swimming fly and I have found doing long sets of 25's (alternating free and fly) helped a lot. At first 25 was all I could do until I lapsed into 'butterstruggle' so 25 was all I did. More recently I have expanded into sets 50's and 75's. My goal: to be able to do a set of 10 x 100 @ 2:00 and to compete in a 200m fly race.

Another suggestion (and I think this came up in a TI thread) is to do a 500 and at the beginning of each length do as many butterfly strokes as you can before your stroke starts to break down. The rest do easy free. For instance: initially you might only be doing 3 strokes of fly at the beginning of each length and the rest free. As you get stronger, you build that up: 4 then 5, etc until eventually you are doing the entire distance fly.

Check out this thread, too. http://forums.usms.org/showthread.php?t=8912It has some good info in it. Good luck with the fly and please tell us your progress. I would love to hear about it. And welcome to USMS!

Syd

Richard P. Arnold
October 11th, 2007, 09:26 PM
I apologize I meant a 2min 10 100 actually closer to 2min. So much for your inspiration, Last evening I swam eight fly 25s up, free back. I am tired today after doing that and a total of 1500 meters.

geochuck
October 11th, 2007, 10:30 PM
Richard your fly endurance does not come overnight. Varied workouts are very important. I would work on building the workouts up to 2500 to 3500m.

When I started to swim again I did 3000m a day, after a 25 year lay off. In six weeks I was quite able to swim 50 and 100s of fly and crawl, in fairley good time. Build up first so you can handle the fly.

Mighty Minnow
December 26th, 2007, 02:44 PM
Ok.....just ordered a Finis Shooter Monofin (since Santa did not get it for me)....can't wait to try them. Really hope they improve my butterfly kick!

pwolf66
December 27th, 2007, 09:45 AM
I'm trying mine out tomorrow. I have a feeling this is gonna hurt so good.

Paul

Mighty Minnow
December 27th, 2007, 10:16 AM
Paul-
Let me know how it goes......mine won't arrive for like 5-9 business days. Did you get the same model?

-Julia

pwolf66
December 27th, 2007, 10:25 AM
Yep, Finis Shooter Mono in size Gorilla :groovy:

Paul