Sighting swim drill incorporating with breathing with Coach Siri Lindley
Message: Swimmers must develop incredible core strength for elite performance! Happy Monday Masters…
By Lisa Ingarfield
On a recent call with a friend of mine, we got into a discussion about language and how our language has changed over time. We both have spent time living abroad; her in the UK and myself in the USA. The conversation started with accents, and how some people “lose” their accent when they move to a new country and live there for a while. I used myself as an example. For the most part, folks in the U.S.A think I am Australian. In the U.K, folks think I “sound American” and when I hear myself speak, I still hear a strong British accent. I have, admittedly, adapted my accent over time, code-shifting more routinely into U.S linguistic and behavioral culture as a means of camouflage. Not because I am ashamed of my Britishness, but because I am so darn tired of being asked where I am from, or being told that either my accent is lovely, or that I am not understood. For my friend, she reflected that while her accent didn’t shift significantly, the vernacular she used to “fit in” in the U.K did. She adopted terms readily used there, and strayed from North American terminology more frequently over time. She also expressed exasperation at being told her accent was cute, or having conversations interrupted or derailed because the focus shifted to the way she said a certain word. I can relate. It’s annoying.
I think what is interesting about all this is that rather than expecting our friends and colleagues to flex to incorporate us in our original state without fetishizing our accents, we shifted and changed to fit the new culture. In so doing, we lost a little part of our identity. Collectively, we realized that we made these changes because it was easier and more expedient. But at what cost?
Since we are both triathletes, our conversation shifted to athletic terminology and our need to code-shift depending on the nationality of our audiences. In the U.K, for example, a swimsuit is called a swimming costume, which here in the U.S.A seems like such an archaic term. When she and I have used this term in North America, the response is often laughter and puzzlement. The same is true for running machine (treadmill) and turbo (indoor bike trainer). There is the old adage that the U.S.A and U.K are divided by a common language. While both nations speak English they do so differently enough, leading to confusion and misunderstanding.
Triathlon is a global sport, and individuals of many languages participate across the world. My conversation with my friend led me to ponder just how much language and meaning difference is there within our sport and how much code-shifting happens for triathletes who routinely occupy international spaces. How much do they lose of themselves when they try to fit in, and what cultural norms dominate in the sport? Who is most at risk of needing to change to experience inclusion and success? What this line of pondering also highlights for me is the skill involved in existing in two worlds, two cultures, or more. It’s not easy, and takes practice.
Beyond linguistic code-shifting, there is also the reality of how women code-shift behaviorally to fit into sport. Sport broadly, occupies the domain of the masculine. Men’s sports often get more money and resources, more air time, and more sponsorships. Men’s sports are the norm, and women’s sports are often the add-on, or the afterthought. Systems, processes, and competitions are (historically) built for men around masculine norms. In sports where all genders participate, men are generally viewed as the main event, and women as the lesser “other” event. The 2016 coverage of the Ironman World Championship bears this out: women received 27% of the coverage as compared to the 43% for men. How much do women triathletes need to code-shift to be taken seriously in the sport? How much do they need to change who they are, to ensure their participation is featured by networks and taken seriously by sports journalists and fans alike? I don’t have any answers on this just yet, but I think it is worth consideration. What are we asking of women triathletes to “fit in” to the triathlon system as designed, versus being willing to redesign the sport and system so they no longer have to code-shift, losing a piece of who they are, to be equally recognized?
The latest podcast from Yogi Triathlete featuring swimming coach Eney Jones.
“The whole point is to be relaxed and centered during the storm”
Forward breath, two beat cross-over, Chinese take-out and driving with a snorkel. What the heck are we talking about?
Swimming, of course. Actually, we’re talking about downright intelligence of technique and execution that is steeped in science and equals less resistance and more flow in movement through the water.
Eney Jones is our guest today and she is straight out of the box. In other words, she is intelligent. She has an ability to take data and information and create new concepts that yield results. She has produced innovative tools and techniques that have greatly improved the performance of many well-known athletes. Eney is always stretching possibility and she does this by remaining in a state of curiosity. She has what yogis describe as a “beginners mind”. Refusing to rely on her decades of expertise, she is open to learning and by not resting on her laurels, she has become one of the most sought after swim coaches in the world.
The daughter of an Olympic swimmer and world record holder, Eney was putting down 10,000 yards a day in the pool at the age of thirteen. She was literally born to swim and through a lifetime of being submerged, she is now living her purpose more than ever as she guides athletes, every day, to finding their most efficient stroke and movement through water.
Eney combines the principles of yoga and athletics to pull out the highest potential in each athlete and she believes, above all else, that we must enjoy what we do with our heart. Combining love and strength in our sport equals our greatest performance. By not giving the negative any energy she draws upon the unique strengths of each athlete to create their optimal body/mind connection in sport and life.
Related Eney Jones article: Scrutiny in the Flume
Two women. Two men. One incredible lesson in active longevity. If you want to keep moving, you have to keep moving.
A master class in active longevity.
Colorado Multisport is hosting a common injuries and prevention night for Boulder Aquatic Masters (BAM).
The clinic night will feature a local PT from Alta Physical Therapy. They will be discussing the common injuries seen in triathletes. Additionally, they will talk through the seemingly unconventional ways to assess injury, with the consideration that the location of the pain is often not the source of the injury. This amazing insight should be a great way to really understand your own body and how to provide feedback to any therapist, body worker, or trainer on what you are feeling. Understanding that the site for injury may not be the source of the problem will also help you keep an open mind to why therapists may treat other areas of your body which you may not have thought was the correct place to treat.
So join us for a great night of learning. Bring all your body and injury related questions so you can keep your body out of pain and achieve your 2017 goals!
- Date: Thursday, April 6
- Cost: FREE
- Time: Mingle 6-6:30, Talk at 6:30-7:30pm
- Bring: Yourself and injury questions
- Place: At Colorado Multisport
We look forward to seeing many faces we know and meeting those of whom we don’t know.
Courtesy of Eney Jones
Everyone works the bottom of their stroke, we reach, then push and propel ourselves forward. But we are dealing with two different elements while swimming, water and air. It is easy to be more deliberate underwater in a denser material, but rarely do swimmers work the “recovery” part of their stroke. They even hear the word recovery and they slow down and relax, and place their catch. Instead we need to speed up our airspeed as I call Split Tempo.
Having more speed and alacrity in the air will create a more deliberate forceful catch. Speed creates power. I have always found this helpful in Open Water but last week end watched it in Caeleb Dressel’s 40:40 100 relay split. In sprinting you want more length in the front of your stroke. The higher you can be in the water the easier it is to push yourself forward.
When you tell swimmers to speed up their tempo often they shorten their stroke. Working on Split Tempo will allow the stroke to be longer under water and faster through the air. In Caelebs’ 100 free split in the relay each arm underwater was .33 seconds. His left arm straighter and faster thru the air was .21 seconds and his right more arced arm thru the air was .23 seconds for a 1.1 second rotation of both arms. This is quite amazing because his is 6’3” inches tall. On a Finis Tempo trainer setting #1 set at 1:1 the beep is when his left arm hits.
See Video Caeleb Dressel 400 Medley Relay A-Final.
Katie Ledecky’s overall Tempo in the mile is 1:37 ( she is 6 feet tall) but once again she is faster thru the air than the water. Usually the difference is not as pronounced as Dressels’, but that is why most people are looking at his feet or just feeling a wave go by.
There are a few ways to work this:
- On land – Keep you upper thoracic mobile. Everyone uses cables to mimic swimming, but have the cables behind you and punch forward and down. Before a race rather than swing your arms around bend over and cross front and back ( think Phelps) .
- In the water – Use shells, biscuit sand dollars, whiffle balls or tennis balls with holes: something that will fill up underneath and drain thru the air.
- Drill – Grab paddles over the front end, slice thru the air, punch the catch.
Be deliberate and be fast thru the air and you will find your times dropping from easily from there.
Eney Jones has achieved remarkably diverse success as a leading pool, open water and Ironman triathlon swimmer, and is also a yoga instructor.
- Masters National Champion 100-200-400-500-1500-1650 5k freestyle 2009
- Open Water 5k Champion Perth Australia, May 2008.
- National Masters Champion 200-400-1500 freestyle Champion, Portland Oregon, August, 2008.
- Overall Champion Aumakua 2.4k Maui Hawaii, September 2008
- Waikiki Rough Water Swim 3rd place 2006, second place Overall 2009, 3rd place 2012
- European Record Holder and Masters Swimming Champion, 2005. Records included 200, 400, 800, 1500 m freestyle
- Over twenty time finalist in U.S. Swimming Nationals, including Olympic Trials 1980
- Gold medal NCAA 800 yd freestyle relay 1979, silver Medalist 200 yd freestyle 1979. United States National Team 1979-1980.
- Professional Triathlete 1983-1991. First woman out of the water in every Hawaiian Ironman participated (6).
Read the full article
“The physical nature of the sport is so different and simply being touched is what many swimmers dislike as they come to open water.”
From Swim World Magazine, by Robbie Dickson, Swimming World College Intern.
Grant Holicky, head coach of Rallysport Aquatics (RACE) in Boulder, Colorado, has been working with elite open water swimmers for several years now. Two of his most notable athletes are Joey Pedraza, who finished third in the 5k at the 2014 Nationals, and Christine Jennings, who has been to both World Championships and the Pan Pacific Championships for open water.
With all this success, plus the success that Coach Holicky has with his pool swimmers, you would assume that he has some of the best facilities in the country. However, that couldn’t be further from the truth, RallySport Aquatics practice in a six lane, hotel pool. Oh and it is outside the ENTIRE year. In Colorado. That makes for some very cold morning practices…
Read the full article…
by Justin Chester
Swim Pace Intensity:
One of the biggest issues I see today with Triathlon Swimming is one of intensity. It’s no secret that if you want to go faster in the swim portion of a triathlon, it’s going to take some focused higher-intensity swimming while training. As a Masters Swim Coach for the last 7 years, I find that when it comes to intensity, everyone has a different definition of “moderate” or “fast” and this leads folks to swimming every set at the same relative pace. I also see many folks who come to the wall after what was supposed to be a “fast” set who did indeed give it their everything (i.e. they’re definitely breathing hard) only to see their times only a small fraction faster than what their “moderate” set was. Furthermore, I’ve seen athletes who are fatigued, sick, or otherwise not recovered from previous days’ workouts who perform sets that are significantly slower than what is normal for them (which is completely understandable) but are disappointed that their times do not match their effort levels.
Issues like these led me to develop The Swim Pace Calculator (http://www.swimpacecalculator.com). This revolutionary tool serves to remove some of the ambiguity from swim pacing terminology (terms like “fast”, “moderate”, “threshold”, etc.) and assigns specific times to specific intensities so that swimmers can understand, not only race-day paces, but also to understand their growth as a swimmer and their fatigue levels.
The Swim Pace Calculator assigns a specific pacing time to the common swim terminology given in swim workouts by using an athlete’s test data to develop a matrix of times for various distances. The test is performed over two separate swim days with recovery in between and includes swimming at max effort, a 50, 100, 200, 400, and 800 (I’ll explain later about why this is the testing protocol). As you can imagine, these times are the “fast” times for each of the distances listed, but what is the split time for a “fast” 150, or even a “fast” 500? This calculator extrapolates all of those times for you in all of the common distance you’ll see in swim set. Next, this calculator takes a percentage of all of those max-times and assigns various zones. For example, if a max 100 is 1:25, then an “easy” 100 should be 1:40-ish. This calculator breaks the test data down into 5-zones.
Determining what type of swimmer you are:
The Swim Pace Calculator takes the test data from the 50, 100, 200, 400, and 800 and develops a regression curve. What does this regression curve tell you? By understanding how much your pace falls off for each doubling of distance, we can determine what type of athlete you are – a sprinter type athlete or an endurance type athlete. A sprinter athletic type has a relatively high regression rate (>10%) which means their pace will fall sharply as the distance increase (a regression rate of 10% means that an athletes’ pace will drop by 10% each time we double the distance), whereas an endurance athlete will have regression rates at or below 5%. For pure swimmers whose specialty is the 50m or 100m in swim meets, having a high regression rate does not hurt race performance. But put that same swimmer into a 750m sprint triathlon swim, and their endurance friends may finish minutes ahead.
The Swim Pace Calculator allows you to understand what type of athlete you are, and then apply specific training to get you where you want to be. Are you training for an Ironman but have a sprinter regression rate? Then you need more swim sets that focus on maintaining that speed later in the set, like performing sprint sets at the end of long workouts. Or, if you’re a swimmer that can already go forever, then it’s more beneficial for you to work on pure speed while maintaining that endurance athlete type. Mix in very high intensity sprint sets with relatively short rest intervals to increase overall speed.
Multi-Dimensional Performance Prediction:
The Swim Pace Calculator ultimately is used to understand the relationship between intensity (perceived effort) and the expected time for that intensity level for a given distance. Since we cannot monitor HR or other physiological markers during the swim portion of a triathlon, all we have is our perceived effort level. Learning what various intensities feel like in training will allow us to race at a specific intensity and have a reasonable idea of what time that will yield us.
The Swim Pace Calculator takes the regression curve from the test data and extrapolates out to the half-Ironman and Ironman swim distances for the various zones. Are you planning on going easy in your half-Ironman swim? If so then you can see what Zone 2 will mean with respect to time. Are you planning to crush that Ironman swim? Then you’ll be able to predict what the clock will say when you pop out of the water.
We can also easily identify when athletes are fatigued or otherwise not feeling well. Say for example I assign a set to one of my athletes that includes 5×200 at Zone4 with a Rest Interval of 20-seconds. In the past, she was able to maintain the 3:15 split for each of those, but on this particular day she reports that she had to work exceptionally hard to maintain those times (or she’s not even able to maintain those times), I know that she’s either fatigued or she may even be starting to get sick. I’ll likely prescribe lighter workouts for the next few days and then reassess.
By Nicole Odell
When you plan your race or event season, do you ever sit down to think about why you are doing a race or event?
Often we might think, well, I’m doing a half ironman because it’ll help me get ready for a full-distance race. But the why should be a bit deeper than that.
And I think all athletes at some point in a race, especially when things get a little rough, think, “Why am I doing this?” Having a why will let you answer that quickly so you can get back to focusing on what you are doing.
Every race on your calendar has a purpose, a WHY. The WHYs will vary, but when you go to bed the night before a race, and wake up in race morning, the WHY will put your efforts into perspective.
Let’s look at some common WHYs.
It’s a “training race.”
But why is a training race? What are you training for? What aspects of the event are you testing out? The WHY should be specific: I am doing this race to test out my nutrition plan in a race situation for my A-race. Or: I am doing this race to push hard and work on my ability to work in a group.
It’s a bucket list item.
I am doing this race because I’ve always wanted to and it will be a great accomplishment.
To honor others.
I am doing this race to bring awareness to those who no longer can. Having that additional motivation beyond just finishing can often push you when things get tough.
To win or go for a personal best.
No doubt, this is a WHY for many athletes. If you are a professional athlete, winning gets you your paycheck. If you are an amateur, you might be trying to collect points or qualify for a championship race. But as most of us don’t win, we’re aiming for a personal best. I am doing this race to push my limits as an athlete.
Because I love the sport.
Hopefully this WHY is in all your races or events.
Can you have multiple WHYs? Absolutely. One will likely be your main focus, but other WHYs can help motivate and drive you as well. No matter the level of event, local fun run 5k, IRONMAN triathlon, or charity ride, there is a WHY.
Know the real reason why you have a race on your calendar and you’ll be more motivated for your training, and come race day, knowing that WHY will help you achieve your best.