Smooth Strokes Blog

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Can You Increase Speed Without Increasing Power?

Can you increase speed without increasing power?  Yes, and no.  Or rather, it depends.  To explain why the answer could be yes and it could be no, let's look at the speed equation: Stroke Length x Stroke Rate = Speed (Velocity) In terms of training in the pool, it is...

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Better Breathing Near The Wall

We are often focused on fixing breathing problems during the stroking part of the swim, what's happening away from the wall in the lap lane of the pool. But as I work with swimmers to uncover the causes of their breathlessness we may eventually come to look at what's...

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What’s In My Swim Bag?

What basic gear would I recommend for your swim bag (or swim kit, as some folks call it)? Well, let's take a look in mine to give you an idea what might go into yours. Swim Suit Probably the first, and most important item is my swim suit (or costume). I wear simple...

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Guidelines For Using Swim Training Devices

[Note: I am sharing this post, one among hundreds, from our Mediterra Dojo library.] Training devices are extremely popular among swimmers and triathletes – with new fads coming each year – and people are often looking to their coach to have an opinion on these....

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Should You Wear A Wetsuit?

Comfort Barrier If the water is cooler than you are comfortable with, or even really cold, should you wear a wetsuit? Well, my short answer to this question is, if the cold will keep you from swimming, but otherwise you are fit, capable and eager to go, then wear a...

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What’s Inside Our Online Training Site?

So, you've read one of the TI books, viewed all the free videos found on Youtube, studied a TI DVD or two, and even taken a workshop or series of private lessons, or attended a swim camp. How do you put all those ideas together and actually train during the weeks and...

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Stroke Training As Meditation

Finding Acceleration Again The other day I was helping one of my students, whose challenging life circumstances in the last few months had regretfully kept him away from the pool too much. He was in need of tune up on some skills that were progressing previously, but...

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One Stroke Technique For Everyone? Part 3

This continues from Part 2 of One Stroke Technique For Everyone? In the previous part I discussed how we might allow a swimmer to make compromises away from the ideal because she has limitations in her body that are unimproveable or there are other reasons that stack...

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One Stroke Technique For Everyone? Part 2

This continues from Part 1 of One Stroke Technique For Everyone? Improve What Is Improvable Let's consider some of the features that could be improved if an athlete were motivated to do so: soft-tissue and joint immobility low flexibility low strength poor...

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One Stroke Technique For Everyone? Part 1

Let me give you a short answer to the question in the title of this post: Yes, there is a technical ideal we are aiming for, for every standard-equipped human swimmer. And, yet we recognize that there is so much variety in bodies that some compromise is often...

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Distance Swimming in Kaş

As I write this I am sitting on our 'command boat' in the sea next to the peninsula in Kaş, Turkey. 30 minutes ago our swimmers begin the first strokes of their challenge swim on this final training day of our open water distance camp. The weather is promising- open...

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Concerned About Sinking Legs In Drills?

We have a student working through our Pool Comfort lesson series. In this series we guide people through a gentle process of removing the anxiety and stress they've felt in the water, which has previously hindered them from making progress in swim lessons, or...

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What You Can Learn About Speed From Butterfly

Even if you do not practice the butterfly stroke, you may appreciate this approach to solving the not-getting-any-faster problem... Coach Jamee and I have been working with a mother and three kids (10, 12 and 16) on a swim team who came to us to work on freestyle and...

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How To Eat More Vegetables – Part 2

Continued from Part 1... Why Bother Emphasizing Vegetables So Much? In this post I am not urging you to become a vegan or a vegetarian. I am simply advocating that you eat A LOT MORE vegetables than you are. If you are anywhere close to average, you are not coming...

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How To Eat More Vegetables – Part 1

Need a reason to eat more vegetables?  How about improving recovery after hard athletic efforts?  You may look up these Foods to Improve Athletic Performance & Recovery. on NutritionFacts.org. I've been running a lot longer distances this season. With two or three...

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Food For Nutrition, Before Entertainment – Part 2

Continued from Part 1. Do You Need To Eat Less Calories?  Or maybe you just need to eat better quality calories. Here are some ways you can go about it... Eat mostly plants. Fill up on them first. Leave animal products to the last and in the smallest amounts. Reduce...

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