Hi Don (you're Don with a new nickname, right?)
The Dodo wrote: I wondered about the "lift" one might possibly gain from that hand moving under the body action!
, I don't really know it but if you look at Alexander Popov, there's actually some body lift while he moves that hand under the body. It's not the typical loping stroke, that lift happens also then he doesn't turn to breathe.
The Dodo wrote:In FS I suppose one might ague that during the pull after an "SS catch", a down/back pull moving the hand under the body is likely to pull the hips down.
But I also remember that SS books advocates visualizing a rope under water and under your body and you should immagine to pull yourself by grabbing the rope. That means moving the hand under the body. Jono Van Hazel pulls quite under the body too.
Yes!, I had a bit of a "muck-up" when I tried to change my password some months ago, and ended up having to re-register as a new member (there's always been a bit of a problem with both old/new usernames e.g. I never get any email indication of new thread additions where I've formerly posted!) - so the former user name "Don Wright" got replaced by "The Dodo" (which I thought more appropriate for my age, being over 80 now - nearing "the end of life's road" possibly, though not extinct as a dodo yet!
). I think the problems occurred as a result of changing email addresses a couple of times over the years, and asking SS to alter things so I could still receive the usual Friday's blog via email, instead of them sending it down a "black hole"!
Thank you for the illuminating comments about body lift as the hand acts beneath the body
. I'll have a closer look at Jono's swim on the CMC DVD "extras". As a slight variation on the SS idea of pulling oneself along a taut horizontal rope, as one swims FS - I came across the idea somewhere of pulling/pushing on the rungs of a ladder (in same attitude as SS's taut rope) in order to get forward movement.
I've given up the idea of trying to get further before needing a "pit-stop", since I recently discovered my lungs can't hold as much air as healthy bods. (Result of discovering everyone else can hold a note when singing many seconds after I'm already out of "puff"
.) Think it's due to op theatre air still in the chest cavity after they "zipped" me up after heart surgery in 2010 (discharge papers said just "Pneumo-thorax" but I didn't understand the implication of that at the time) - and it's taken me some 6 years to understand, that my lungs are trying to expand when inhaling, against some internal trapped air pressure. Have now settled down to enjoy my swim session by trying to do each length of my FS mini sets, as fast as I possibly can - even if I need a minutes rest at each end!
So I still do lots of experimenting - about 6 mini-sets of varied FS kicking/breathing patterns - also spending time on fly drills, and 1/2 length efforts at full stroke (heart racing too much to dare a full length of that!). After many years of not doing any breast stroke at all, because the leg kick "murdered" my grotty knee joints I've added that back into my routine again, by using a less vigorous kick - and head submerged except when inhaling - also directing the impulse of the kick slightly downwards, to keep the legs well up by the surface. Can get better movement from my "on the side FS flutter kicking" now, by making the kicking more shallow and a bit more rapid
than before. I rarely try back crawl now, because the water pressure on the arthritic bones of my feet as each foot does a kick upbeat, is rather painful. It's a mercy I don't feel that when flutter kicking on the side or on the tum - I guess that's because I don't attempt to point the feet - so am kicking with what I think they call "crane" or "herons" feet - so it's no wonder that I get best results by making my flutter kicks of small amplitude, so the awkward feet don't protrude into the water flow so much.
There must be some critical rate at which breathing and energy expenditure can be balanced, enabling one to swim "forever" without any stopping for a rest. I can achieve that, should I wish, by swimming the old English back stroke - which was the first stroke I ever learnt - access to air all the time, and arms pull while legs rest, then legs kick as arms recover , and rest during a little glide. I've tried to replicate that steady relaxed action when swimming FS (by going extra slow and with a bit of lead arm glide) but it has never worked out for me, despite trying much good advice!
Best wishes to you - keep on experimenting - learning never finishes!
Bye / Don
P.S. Re the enthusiasm for using a front snorkel to check on breathing etc. I've put mine away for good - I found the breathing tube a bit too small for me to breathe happily. I must be in a minority - 'cos many FS swimmers can "sail up/down" with great ease using them - having the head in a neutral position, immersed in water all the time
is not my idea of pleasure!