Swimming, 25th April 2017

Being something of a glutton for punishment (or as some might put it, “unbelievably pig-headed” 🙂 I repeated my current Swimfit session for the umpteenth time, with much the same result as yesterday. For some reason despite feeling rather tired on my way to the pool I’m in quite a positive frame of mind about it today. I’m getting the distance done that I intended so I stay in touch with my target for the year and it does mean I’m getting practice in on my breaststroke and backstroke which I really do need.

Breaststroke is supposed to have a certain amount of undulation in the stroke and I think my body is too rigid in the water. Today I tried to be a bit more flexible and relaxed, stopping my hips being permanently low in the water, and to achieve a good streamline position with my upper body before starting the kick. It also occurred to me to question exactly how the “A-pull” might be performed. Naively perhaps, I’ve always done it with my arms starting in a streamline position and my hands describing an arc in the horizontal plane back to my hips. I wonder though if it might not produce more forward motion if it were performed more like a butterfly pull, with the hands and forearms dropping to the vertical near the front of the pull to catch the water, then rotating the arms backwards to the body around the shoulder, keeping the elbows high. Experimenting over the course of a few lengths it seems to me that the pressure wave I feel along my lower legs when doing the pull this way is far stronger than if I do it the original way. I’m not sure about the legality of it so I’ll have to check that. I should have a look at what Maglischo might have to say about the breaststroke transition too. One of the dangers I’ve already discovered, especially in relatively shallow water, is that it’s quite easy to have a downwards component to the pull, thereby bringing the body closer to the surface. I didn’t find it such a problem at the deep end though.

As for backstroke, I think first I need to work on getting better longitudinal rotation of my body and a wider entry position for my arms so I can get into a proper catch more quickly. An interesting apparent side-effect of the rotation I’ve discovered is that it means I’m effectively not having to lift my recovering arm out of the water. Instead it rotates out with the body taking much less effort.

For today at least I feel as though I could repeat the session every day until I do hit that target time. Of course tomorrow I might feel utterly sick of it and want to move on again.

Anyhow, after the main session I made the distance up to 2.6km with some front crawl. Last one out of the pool again 😀

Total distance for the month: 32,900m
Total distance for this year: 139,900m
Distance compared to annual target: 24,100m under

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