Monday, December 27, 2010
Flippers and Form
I am not a great swimmer. But, I can swim and I am a lot better than when I started August 2009. Form is so important to swimming, just like running, but my swimming form...needs improvement. I used to look like I was barely afloat, and now at least there is some rhythm to it. But it's not that graceful stroke that I see in my dad, Jenny, or my triathlete buds. I do like swimming a lot, and I know I will continue to get better with it over time. I'm just not having the rapid improvements that I want - and that's okay - this is not my number #1.
This morning, I went in to the Y for a swim. One of my triathlete buds, Adam, was lifeguarding, so we exchanged hellos and then I headed in. After 300 yards, he handed me flippers. I tend to do a scissor kick, and am not good at the flutter kick. My arms are better than they were, but the kick needs improvement. So, I did 100 yards with a kick board and flippers (fins?). Wow, I was motoring, at least in comparison to my usual crawl. So, I ditched the board and flippers, and kept going with my own two feet. The thing that is hard for me is maintaining that rhythm while kicking and pulling - it's a lot of coordination!
Do you think more coordination is needed for running or swimming?
Back and forth I went, doing my best to keep my feet fluttering and avoiding the scissor kick. I think the hard part is that I feel like my legs are just so straight, and I want to bend them a little more. But I kept going, and sort of tucked my legs in to shake them out during the turnaround. Anyways, I got in 1400 yards and it probably turned out to be one of my best swims ever. The endurance training from running helps, because I don't need to stop to rest at any point. I've done a 1 mile swim once, and that was torture (September 2009). I would like to get to a point where I can do a mile comfortably and regularly.
Good form is hard to maintain, both on the road and in the water. But slow and steady improvements are starting to happen!