Cr@p Swimmers R Us

Swimming Support Thread

6,241 to 6,260 of 11,788 messages
ImRio    pirate
14/08/2009 at 08:05

Speedy you could just get a normal snorkel to see if it will help you with your face in the water.  But from what you describe it is more a "I can't breathe panic" sort of problem.  Actually when you are swimming you don't lift your head out it is more a turn to the side under the arm that is going over your head to enter the water.  There is a sort of a bow wave created that allows you to breathe.  And you rotate your whole body not just your head.

24 lengths is great progress though.  Well done

14/08/2009 at 09:57
mmm...  I'm not sure whether a snorkel is the way to go at this stage or whether it will only add to the problem but just change it to "I can't breathe without the snorkel".  I dunno...  It might help with the face in water issue on the one hand but it won't teach you to breathe to your side.  I see the centre snorkle very much as a training aid, not a teaching aid??  You may be happy in the tri group sessions but personally I made little progress in that setting when I was at that point of just learning to swim.  the added pressure of being the only one who can't do this that or the other really didn't help me and I needed lots of quiet "me time" where I just chipped away with kick boards, getting my face in etc when the pool is quiet and not even think about doing any number of lengths. 
Edited: 14/08/2009 at 09:59
14/08/2009 at 10:36
I agree with Nam. I think it's better to spend time on your own without the pressure of feeling like an idiot surrounded by people who *appear* to be far superior in the water. All that will do is knock your confidence even further. The more time you can manage at the pool, just messing about putting your face in the water, the better.  Just holding on to the edge of the pool with your face in the water will help. Practice exhaling slowly, then raising your head for a breath, before going back in. Relaxation is the key. Once you've got the hang of that, move on to holding a float and gliding along with your face in the water as above. Small steps at a time are best. Just forget about the rest of it for now. That will come in time.
14/08/2009 at 10:54

Wot Nam and angelic said, Speedy.

Take things one step at a time and gradually build up -  focus first and foremost on being more relaxed and confident in the water.  I personally find working on things on my own much more helpful as you can do things in your own time, although the improvers class I went to this week was a much more useful level of instruction for me than the swimfit session I went to the week before.

But if, as far as lessons are concerned, you've only got the option of going to swim sessions with lots of other people who are "better" at it than you, it'll only knock your confidence and put unnecessary pressure on you.  You don't sound ready to be "pushed" quite in that way at the mo.

Plus, it could also be detrimental to your technique if your focus is more on keeping up with other people in the group.

I'm sure you'll improve really quickly - you sound like you've got enough base fitness and natural speed (if that's the right term) - so please don't get disheartened about where you're at right now.

I've found that quietly working on swim technique in small steps - including the breathing element - actually builds momentum, and I've probably improved more quickly than I would have done had i just focused on swimming lengths and getting flustered.   Of course, I've still got a long way to go, but I am improving, and I'm sure you can too.

Gyraffe    pirate
14/08/2009 at 12:23

Speedy Goth - just adding my voice to the others - one step at a time and all that. The other thing you could do is practice just bobbing under the water and holding your nose - ie - sit on the pool floor and have a look around and pop back up. Maybe separate "putting-face-in-the-water" from "swimming" as things to work on at different times.

Bear - I think the main thing is to really know what you are actually doing - it's one thing to 'think' you're going in six inches from your ear - but are you?  I have a wide arms drill where I reach as far to the side as possible - I hardly ever hit the ropes with my hand so I know my entry can't be as wide as it feels..... er , if you know what I mean.

ImRio    pirate
14/08/2009 at 12:26

I echo what Waff has said.  Thinking you are doing something and actually doing something can be miles apart.

When I did a Swim for Tri day where we were video'd.  How it felt like I was swimming and the reality were definitely different.

14/08/2009 at 12:59

yes - that was the biggest thing I took from the day I was video'ed - some specific stuff but just generally how far apart what I thought I was doing was from what I was doing.  Which unless you can be video'ed regularly, is tricky to achieve, without a coach constantly in attendance.

I get the impression my biggest problem is balance in the water, once Vit is over I'll sort out some coaching and work on that.  I do vaguely recall reading about a gadget that acted as a sort of swimmers' spirit level, making a noise at a different pitch according to your tilt in the water - anyone come across those?

I've found swimming one of the hardest things to learn, I really can't focus on everything at once, so I'd add my voice to those saying work on one thing at a time

I'm going to try the wide arms drill next time I'm in the pool, will be interesting to see what happens (apart from whacking a neighbourign swimmer in the head)

14/08/2009 at 13:06

in terms of multi-tasking learning to swim is like learning to drive a car...  mirror, signal, manourvre... *judders*... *stalls*...

14/08/2009 at 13:09

LOL I'll agree with everything everyone has said.  Swimming is a lot of things to take on board and I've found I've been constantly improving my technique working on different things over time.

14/08/2009 at 13:35

Thanks for the feedback folks. I might nip over to Decathlon this afternoon and see if I can get a float. I could also use a gel saddle for my tri as I won't be wearing padded shorts (can't run in them).

Actually I don't feel any pressure to keep up with the others at the tri session. I'm quite happy in my position as 'the one that can't swim'. I got quite a bit of individual attention for my £3.50 fee. I can't get there very often though so I think a float and maybe even a pull buoy are the way to go. They don't have them at my gym.

ImRio    pirate
14/08/2009 at 13:45
Speedy I wouldn't bother with a gel saddle.  Tri shorts have a minimal amount of padding and dry out quickly and are much more comfortable than a gel saddle will be.  Less is often more in the cycling world and as they are made for tri you can run in them very comfortably too.
14/08/2009 at 15:20
Gel padding saddle cover thingies are the devil's work!  You'll chafe to buggery! 
14/08/2009 at 16:19
Nam wrote (see)
Gel padding saddle cover thingies are the devil's work!  You'll chafe to buggery! 
Unless you use lubricant
14/08/2009 at 17:00

Hi All,

Bimble-bee - another vote for zoogs predators. Apparently the way you can tell whether goggles are a good fit is to press the eye bits (frames? lenses?) against your eyes, without putting the strap over your head. If they stay there for a few minutes with pure suction power alone without falling off, they should be a good fit. My zoggs predators literally stick to my face for half an hour without the strap around my head.

Just had a peek at the swimsmooth website - it looks great. Will absorb it all properly next week.

Off to the isle of wight for the weekend - hope to get some good sea swimming in!

Have a good weekend everyone! 

14/08/2009 at 17:29

Rio, I don't have any tri-shorts, only cycle shorts with some sort of enormous nappy sewn in them. I do have a gel saddle cover but I stopped using it as the shorts are better, however I can't walk in them let alone run! As it turns out I didn't buy a gel saddle, they were nearly the same price as my bike (I have a very very cheap bike!) so it didn't seem worthwhile. I'll just have to cope for 10 miles.

I did get a kickboard and pull buoy, so now I can practice at my gym. Also picked up some cycling gloves reduced to £1.75. Bargain! They're kids ones and they only had 2 or 3 pairs left, but they're identical to the adult ones that were £12. Lucky for me I have tiny hands.

Sadly I also have a tiny head. Any goggle recommendations for ickle headed people? Are children's ones any good? I already have a child's cycle helmet and now gloves. I'm not proud!

14/08/2009 at 19:06

Hello All, (not stalking Speedy)

I'm not a crap swimmer yet but hope to be one once current marathon campaign is over. Can anyone indulge a complete novice? How many sessions per week do you do/need? What's the minimum/ideal amount of sessions needed to at least get through the swim at a 1/2 IM? I'm thinking 2/3 a week at mo for the next 12m?

Also like speedy will need some new kit. Do men train in tri-suits or just use for races? My old baggy's will need upgrading!  

Thanks all,

14/08/2009 at 20:48
Hi Shadow Face
16/08/2009 at 14:23

Hi everyone,

Just back from long weekend in Paris, did a bit of swimming while there, but also manged to aggravate an old toe injury so had to rest from the running.  Then my goggles were taken from my room by housekeeping so I have no goggles now.  

Hope everyone has been wel, i'll have a read back later.

16/08/2009 at 18:53

Bad news on the goggles Shiva. I now have children's Zoggs goggles. They leave a comedy mark around my eyes but they don't let the water in. Hurrah!

After my crazy 30k off road race this morning I retreated to the gym pool with my kickboard. I was resting at one end watching the girl in the lane next to me swimming BS. I noticed that she didn't appear to close her mouth ever. Then I had a lightbulb moment as to where I've been going wrong. You're supposed to just breathe in then breathe out! Sounds bleedin' obvious, but that's not what I've been doing - I've been breathing in, holding my breath, putting my face back in the water  and then letting the breath go. D'oh! No wonder I've been gasping and spluttering.

So then I had a go at BS using this new approach and lo and behold I can do it! Properly! So then I tried it with the kickboard for FC again. Bugger. Different rhythm. Much harder. Managed about 15m before it went a bit wrong. Ah well. Definite progress though!

16/08/2009 at 21:44

Shiva - what on earth did housekeeping want your googles for!!! Wallet, cash, yes...but googles?? That's totally random

Speedy - great progress! I try to breathe properly for BS, but struggle to get the co-ordination right. I end up underwater more than above it. Which isn't exactly right.

Previously bookmarked threads are now visible in "Followed Threads". You can also manage notifications on these threads from the "Forum Settings" section of your profile settings page to prevent being sent an email when a reply is made.
Forum Jump  

RW competitions

RW Forums