Tune your Two Beat Kick

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Post by cottmiler on Wed Jun 19, 2019 9:52 am

This wonderful video is from Total Immersion and you may have seen it many times but to master it is very challenging.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PwpvBMfUoAs

You have to be able to float on either side perfectly happy with the body at 45-60 degree angle.

The hard bit is to apply pressure on the water with the arm and twizzle over to the other side all without losing balance.

Ok , so when you can do that you need to include a breath intake and that,s when the body goes awol.

Note how after a leg flick the legs go back together for a streamlined slide forward though the water.

As Terry Laughlen says it takes a great deal of body control.

After 20 km of breathing every fourth stroke I would like to think that I can do this after a fashion.

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Post by Mike A on Mon Jul 08, 2019 4:11 pm

I haven't swum with 2bk for several years now. I mostly do the 4-beat (3/1) hybrid these days.

What jumps out to me from this video is that, while it looks pretty effortless, it is not very fast and definitely has the stop-startiness that Paul Newsome has long criticised. I also think the kick timing is somewhat off. One of the tips that has really helped my swimming lately is from a video by Brenton Ford, where he points out that the hip should already be lifted at least level before the force phase is applied. I don't see Terry Laughlin doing that here. The hip rotation seems more driven by the pull if anything.

The Ford video is worth a look. I think he leaves out some key stuff - particularly, in the example of the lady whose timing is off, that the low hip is often a consequence of trying to do the power pull while still rotated for breathing. Nonetheless, I think it's a useful focus point.

Rotate Your Hips Before Applying Power
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Post by nightcrawler on Tue Jul 09, 2019 11:24 am

I do not agree that the hip rotation adds more power and leds to a better pace, I tested it many times my fastest pace has always been when the legs off and applying the power not from the hip but from the core. Rotating the hips can cause sinky legs and hip, also, during the hip rotation you should kick more for balancing the core, rotation costs more energy. Instead of hip rotation I am trying to hold my legs flat and perform the rotation by the upper core and assuming my body as a one unit like a canoe.

This is not efficient (too much rotation leds to stabilize the legs and creates drag and more energy consumption, while doing this amount of rotation and waiting for the glide is also not efficient):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pLdQfIyqxtA

This is more efficient (watch 0:24-0:45)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G7Mv9giYCEA

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Post by Mike A on Tue Jul 09, 2019 2:05 pm

I agree minimal rotation is faster (all fast swimmers swim much flatter than the Terry Laughlin style, and we all swim faster when we don't have to turn to breathe!) - however, older and slower swimmers like me generally need to rotate a bit more, especially in choppy water. Being slower, we don't get as much trough from the bow wave, plus we often don't have the neck flexibility of our youth.

But I think the examples in your video are consistent with what Brenton Ford is saying about timing. While there is less hip rotation overall, there is still some rotation - but the point is, the hips are back level with each other just as the power phase of the armstroke starts. In the "bad" examples Ford shows, the swimmer is applying the power phase with the right arm whilst the right hip is still lower than the left hip. This means that the core cannot engage properly, and also that the swimmer is less streamlined in the power phase.

I think this problem is related to breathing, because 1) we tend to rotate more when going for a breath, and 2) if we don't get the in-breath quick enough, we sometimes finish the "catch" on the opposite side before the face is back in the water. In the case of 2) it's tempting to go straight into the power phase even though the hips are not level and the body isn't properly streamlined.

Of course, in an ideal world, the in-breath will always be finished in time for the power phase, but when that isn't the case, I have found it's better to actually slow down the catch and pull to wait for the hips to be back level before applying power.
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Post by nightcrawler on Tue Jul 09, 2019 3:32 pm

Dear Mike,
First of all thanks for your great comments and point of view to Cotty's topic.

Do you swim faster with ankle bands?
I am faster and more comfortable(with lower heart rate). More to say?

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Post by cottmiler on Wed Jul 10, 2019 1:59 pm

Since we are talking about body rotation, take a look at Paul Newsome here at 30sec mins onwards:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3WYyowAvb5U

Plenty of rotation which is his mantra of course.

I was swimming at Claremont a while ago and set off straight behind him. He reached the far end of the 50m pool whilst I was barely half way despite attempting to draft!

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Post by nightcrawler on Fri Jul 12, 2019 11:57 am

My students can swim 2600 m whilst I finish 5000 m. Different from me they are focusing on extension and rotation and reaching forward since they have been watching too much videos of elite swimmers in slow motion. But I am thinking in a different way, applying aritchmetichs and geometry in the water, just focusing on keeping the legs straight in a stramline position and trying to sustain my stroke per minute above 75. Which one is correct?

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Post by cottmiler on Sun Jul 14, 2019 2:27 pm

How about this for body rotation - almost 90 degrees.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4E9O2Iz4WwE

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Post by Don Wright on Mon Jul 15, 2019 9:47 am

Re Cott's clip!   Optical illusion due to camera angles?  The voice-over circa 2:02 says : -

"Your body will rotate slightly, but aim to keep as flat as possible!"

As it's a Speedo clip - they have got their heads "well screwed on" - so I give a lot of "weight" to their advice! There is absolutely no doubt that the body movement involved with an inhalation is a "disturbing" factor - so short distance competitors plan to do it as few times as possible!

If you think about the projection of a swimmer's body coming directly towards one, on a vertical plane.  I wonder what the difference in the projected area is, associated with frontal drag/resistance, for an FS swimmer with the stroking arm in mid-pull, when swimming flat - and then, at a considerable body roll angle?  Also, does the fact that the stroking arm is inserted more deeply in the water - due to the shoulder on that side being "dropped" down more as a result of bigger body roll, make any difference to the frontal drag?  Methinks we've all had this sort of discussion before re TI's analogy of an old sailing tea clipper going faster than other broader hulled vessels due to it's sharper hull/keel - using that analogy as their "support" for the idea that swimming almost on the side is more effective than swimming flat! Smile

Afterthought! Have just realized that faster swimmers will ride higher in the water than average bods, so the faster ones may have a smaller projected area due to the head/shoulders being up higher when "planing" due to strong flutter kicking.


Last edited by Don Wright on Mon Jul 15, 2019 10:39 am; edited 4 times in total

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Post by cottmiler on Mon Jul 15, 2019 10:22 am

When a swim coach says "flat" he means "horizontal" from a sideways viewpoint.

Admittedly, horizontal is a very long word with 4(! ) syllables.

Swimming with the chest flat seems to me to be the recipe for disastrous sinking legs.

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Post by Don Wright on Mon Jul 15, 2019 10:45 am

cottmiler wrote:...Swimming with the chest flat seems to me to be the recipe for disastrous sinking legs.

"Pressing the buoy" at the start of each (or at least, the inhalation) arm stroke is an answer to that! But "nodding" the head down periodically will increase that frontal drag - Oh heck!

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