What Do You Think Of Mr Smooth?

Welcome! Ask your questions and chat about swimming, technique, swimming training or Mr Smooth.
john_2121981
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Re: What Do You Think Of Mr Smooth?

Postby john_2121981 » Thu Sep 16, 2010 5:28 am

Hi

Mr Smooth Animation is really helpful for new swimmers like me....you guys have done quite a marvelous job with the animation.

I watch Mr Smooth Swim more than i watch TV now and really has helped me improve..

Thanks a lot again

Cheers

John

Frederick Chilton
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Joined: Sun Sep 19, 2010 11:20 pm

Re: What Do You Think Of Mr Smooth?

Postby Frederick Chilton » Sun Sep 19, 2010 11:29 pm

I wanted to thank you for Mr. Smooth. Before discovering your animation, I constantly perused You Tube for examples to help me improve my freestyle. Mr. Smooth provides more perspectives than any other source. Not only do I watch him before each swim to improve my stroke, but I find that he's also a great motivator. Again, thank you.

liquidripples
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Re: What Do You Think Of Mr Smooth?

Postby liquidripples » Wed Oct 06, 2010 11:05 pm

Hi - I've been using the mr smooth animation for about three weeks now and it's fantastic. Thanks so much for making it happen. I was wondering though if you're ever updating it maybe you could incorporate some features that would make it a bit easier to study:

1. If I push a space bar I feel like it should pause / resume the animation
2. If the animation is paused and I hit a left or a right key it would move up or down a frame, and up/down keys move it by 10 frames or so.
3. If I'm holding down the left or right keys it should fast forward / rewind.

It's already a classic though! Cheers!

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Adam Young
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Re: What Do You Think Of Mr Smooth?

Postby Adam Young » Sat Oct 09, 2010 2:06 pm

liquidripples wrote:Hi - I've been using the mr smooth animation for about three weeks now and it's fantastic. Thanks so much for making it happen. I was wondering though if you're ever updating it maybe you could incorporate some features that would make it a bit easier to study:

1. If I push a space bar I feel like it should pause / resume the animation
2. If the animation is paused and I hit a left or a right key it would move up or down a frame, and up/down keys move it by 10 frames or so.
3. If I'm holding down the left or right keys it should fast forward / rewind.

It's already a classic though! Cheers!
Hi liquidripples,

You need the Pro Console: http://www.swimsmooth.com/proconsole.html

This has all the features you describe (except the keyboard shortcuts themselves) and many more!

Cheers,

Adam

liquidripples
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Re: What Do You Think Of Mr Smooth?

Postby liquidripples » Sat Oct 09, 2010 5:06 pm

Looks great - exactly what I was looking for! will definitely be getting that soon
Cheers

kabin
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Re: What Do You Think Of Mr Smooth?

Postby kabin » Sun Oct 10, 2010 4:03 pm

New to the forum. Mr Smooth looks great but I'm having issues with the trailing arm movement. Looks like it adds drag as it slows and stops upon movement out of water. It's most easily seen with the lowest stroke rate setting. There should always be some forward body velocity so that trailing hand motion would seem to be inefficient. How does the simulation makes sense with a tangential hand slowing and then essentially stopping when hand is momentarily pulled out of water?

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Adam Young
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Re: What Do You Think Of Mr Smooth?

Postby Adam Young » Tue Oct 12, 2010 1:05 pm

kabin wrote:New to the forum. Mr Smooth looks great but I'm having issues with the trailing arm movement. Looks like it adds drag as it slows and stops upon movement out of water. It's most easily seen with the lowest stroke rate setting. There should always be some forward body velocity so that trailing hand motion would seem to be inefficient. How does the simulation makes sense with a tangential hand slowing and then essentially stopping when hand is momentarily pulled out of water?
Hi Kabin, you know, there are one or two small areas that could do with a slight tweak to make Mr S absolutely perfect - this is certainly something he could do with working on! To some I think he's a victim of his own clarity here - in real life this area of the water's surface is so disturbed and turbulent that's it's rare to get a really clear shot of this part of the hand exit. However, a slightly more fluid continuous hand exit would be a nice refinement to make.

Cheers,

Adam

John Lewis
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Joined: Wed Nov 10, 2010 9:18 am

Re: What Do You Think Of Mr Smooth?

Postby John Lewis » Wed Nov 10, 2010 10:09 am

It's really helpful just wish I could remember how to emmulate him once in the pool :?

jerryk
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Re: What Do You Think Of Mr Smooth?

Postby jerryk » Sun Nov 14, 2010 3:55 am

Mr Smooth is the best training aid that I have seen for swimming. If there were any enhancements to be made, it would only be by providing the ability to focus in on one specific part of Mr Smooth and see it through the entire stroke. An example is the wrist which would be nice to see the actual detail.
I know this sounds minimal but there is some importance in this as I try to emulate Mr Swim in the water.
You guys are awesome!!!

dmisita
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Location: Stamford, CT - USA

Re: What Do You Think Of Mr Smooth?

Postby dmisita » Thu Nov 18, 2010 4:37 am

How about an integration of Mr. Smooth and the Swim Types?

It would be nice if you could make Mr. Smooth into Mr. Overglider, etc. That way us non-smooth guys can have a chance to analyze what we're doing wrong . . .

Dave

Don Wright
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Re: What Do You Think Of Mr Smooth?

Postby Don Wright » Sun Nov 28, 2010 10:56 pm

Hi folks, I joined recently and this is my first entry in the forum. As it's the first one it might be helpful to explain "where I'm at!". I learnt to swim at age 21 in 1957 (whoops - now you know i'm 74!), first doing English backstroke (learnt from an old swimming book) after learning to float on my back, then moving on to breastroke and front crawl. Initially, I was awful!!! (It took me about 40 to 50 minutes to swim a mile on front crawl!) At that time there were no decent books on technique that I was aware of (and long before the age of DVDs).
I experimented swimming trudgen in the old Victorian baths in Portsmouth managed by old Mr Bland, who in his prime had swum the English Channel several times. He watched me in disgust, then shouted out "Don't swim that old granny stroke here - keep to modern strokes!", so after watching him do a length of butterfly during his practice time, I thought if he can do that in his seventies, why not me at age 24! That started an intermittent "love affair" with 'fly stroke, which in my opinion, is the nearest we will ever get to swimming like a fish, especially doing body dolphin near to the floor tiles of the pool! A few years later I lost myself in a totally different hobby - playing the Spanish guitar - and swimming took a back seat. Maybe just a swim once a week and on holidays. When I retired at 60, I swam more often, and at that time I could only manage doing 6 lengths of front crawl in a 25M pool, before getting too tired to continue! By the time I reached 65, I was diagnosed with angina, and feeling rough, did very little exercise apart from walking the dog. At 70, I woke up to the fact that there was more to life than dog walking, and since that time I started swimming in earnest, managing with my medication to get by with only a few attacks in a year. I bought Maglischo's book "Swimming Fastest" for its superb description of stroke techniqes, and a couple of DVDs, one of Tom Jager on Freestyle, and the other of Michael Phelps on butterfly (of course I can only do 'fly and it's drills at about a quarter of the speed he does things - but I love doing it). It looks like I'm running out of space, so I''ll just say that Mr smooth animation is terrific - but I have some questions to ask about the arm action, and will do that in later posts!!!

Don Wright
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Re: What Do You Think Of Mr Smooth?

Postby Don Wright » Mon Nov 29, 2010 11:34 pm

Hi folks! / This is my second post since joining - I went on too long about myself in the first one - but now I'd like to say a few things about Mr Smooth. I like the steady 6-beat leg action, and note that it ties up with the arm action in what some coaches say is the right action. I.e. the stroking arm's downsweep to the catch, coincides with the downbeat of the leg on the same side as the stroking arm. The start of the stroking arm's semicircular insweep (thats the "pulling" bit!) coincides with the downbeat of the leg on the non-stroking side (because the body is rolled towards the stroking arm at this phase, the actual effect is that the hand is pretty near the vertical plane through the central axis of the body). The start of the stroking arm's upsweep (thats the "pushing" bit, with the hand somewhere under the mid-chest), coincides with the next downbeat of the leg on the stroking side (the body at this phase, being rolled away from the stroking arm to facilitate the later arm recovery. I think that its possible to roll the body quite quickly during the upsweep, so as to increase the force of the upsweep - by adding further momentum to the arm action. Having noted all this stuff, I wish I could put it into practice - I just kick away concentrating more on the arm action!
In my own opinion, there are several things about Mr Smooth's arm action which look strange. When viewed from the "stern", you can see that when his recovering arm's elbow reaches it's highest point, he appears to flick the forearm around to the front. I've seen sprint swimmers pause that action, so as to do the flick - and I think it looks awful, and furthermore destroys the arm's momentum. That is the whole problem with the demand to have a high elbow during the arm recovery, as Tom Jager says on his freestyle DVD, "it contributes nothing to the stroke mechanics - it just looks good in a photo shoot!". You know how you can get a good shove of momentum with the quick overhead arm recovery in back crawl - well I reckon its possible to get more momentum using a more natural and continuous action, instead of the high elbow "grasshopper leg" style arm action. Running out of space again - I'll continue in my third post!

Don Wright
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Re: What Do You Think Of Mr Smooth?

Postby Don Wright » Tue Nov 30, 2010 12:18 am

Hi folks!/This is my third post - I ran out of space on the previous one, at the stage where I was "chuntering on" about a more natural and continuous arm recovery for front crawl that might provide more momentum, instead of the "grasshopper leg" high elbow style, with its forearm flick around to the front. some coaches advise that the forearm moves relative to the upper arm, as if reaching over a barrel, during the downsweep to the catch. This usually ends with the upper arm almost parallel with water surface and the forearm at right angles to it pointing towards the bottom of the pool, the upper arm probably in a 10-oclock or 2-oclock position, at the catch and ready for the insweep, during which the upper arm will be brought in close to the ribs, coinciding with a body roll towards the stroking arm. All this time, the right angle bend of the arm is more or less maintained. During the following upsweep, the upper arm and forearm begin with the right angle bend, but towards the end the bend lessens a bit, as most of the force is generated by the forearm pushing back (and the body rolls away from the stroking arm). As the upsweep reaches its last stage, the other arm downsweep should start and the arm about to recover, turns the palm sideways and exits from the water with a bit of an elbow bend, In my opinion, that natural bend should continue as the recovering arm is flung round to the front, because of body roll it will NOT be a low recovery - quite the contrary! The naturally bent arm, swings around to the front, and the hand enters the water thumb first, not too far in front of the head, and as gently as possible so as to avoid turbulence, The forearm follows the hand through the same "hole", then the upper arm, and finally for a brief while(!!!) the outstretched arm is kept as close to the head as possible, for good streamlining, until it is time to start the downsweep! This style of arm recovery is not "classy" but there is no interruption at all in its continuous movement, and hence provides more momentum! WHAT DO YOU THINK?

RobT
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Re: What Do You Think Of Mr Smooth?

Postby RobT » Thu Dec 23, 2010 11:24 pm

I love it. Except as a Swinger i am frustrated I don't have the classic style. It's akin to having sand kicked in the face.

But it is absolutely fantastic to be able to see what you're supposed to do, rather than just guess.

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Paul Newsome
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Re: What Do You Think Of Mr Smooth?

Postby Paul Newsome » Fri Dec 24, 2010 4:59 am

RobT wrote:I love it. Except as a Swinger i am frustrated I don't have the classic style. It's akin to having sand kicked in the face.


Hold that thought Rob. We have something very special coming out in the first quarter of 2011 that will excite you no end as self diagnosed Swinger.

P.S nothing wrong at all with being a Swinger so long as you are working to refine the aspects of your stroke type that will ensure you're gaining the most from your stroke.

Cheers

Paul
2013 Manhattan Island Marathon Swim Champion. Don't forget to check out our valuable Know How section on the main site at http://www.swimsmooth.com/knowhow.html

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Paul Newsome
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Re: What Do You Think Of Mr Smooth?

Postby Paul Newsome » Fri Dec 24, 2010 5:23 am

Don Wright wrote:The naturally bent arm, swings around to the front, and the hand enters the water thumb first, not too far in front of the head, and as gently as possible so as to avoid turbulence, The forearm follows the hand through the same "hole", then the upper arm, and finally for a brief while(!!!) the outstretched arm is kept as close to the head as possible, for good streamlining, until it is time to start the downsweep! This style of arm recovery is not "classy" but there is no interruption at all in its continuous movement, and hence provides more momentum! WHAT DO YOU THINK?


Some interesting points there Don. You clearly spend a lot of time thinking about your swimming which can be both good as it helps you focus on improving the technical aspect of your stroke, but all too often can see the swimmer lacking in natural rhythm and timing by being a little too self analytical and subsequently "mechanical" or "robotic". This is best observed between Over Gliders and Swingers (are you an OGer by any chance?) - OGers typically look smooth in the water but Swingers are often much faster especially in the open water. Very nice to hear you discussing the importance of momentum though as this point is often missed in the world view of "gliding is good".

Your points about the recovery are also well observed. For years coaches have always discussed the merits of a high elbow recovery predominantly to set up for a high elbow catch, though I agree entirely with your point about the other coach explaining the purpose of the recovery merely to get the hand from A to B as efficiently and unforced as possible. You will most often observe Smooth and OGer types swimming with the style of recovery that you see with MR Smooth, though as I mentioned to Rob above, stay tuned for something exciting in early 2011 which will show an alternative "option" suited to other swimmers and those with lesser flexibility in their upper back and shoulders.

Last point from me though and one which I wish to address and clarify and warn for all our swimmers out there:

DO NOT FOCUS ON ENTERING THE WATER THUMB FIRST!

Sorry to be so strong on this point - as open as Swim Smooth is to look at the individuality of different swimmers, swim types and what other coaches say, this is the one point which I am very keen to highlight. Entering into the water thumb first is the number one cause of shoulder pain and impingement in swimmers and coupled with a cross over (as most are) is something that is highly recommended to avoid. This point is still taught in the UK believe it or not. It shouldn't be. You will still see great swimmers doing it (normally be because 10 years + ago this is how it was taught) though (like with many young ag group swimmers) if you've got good body roll, excellent flexibility and good shoulder stabilization maybe you'll get away with it, if not you could be asking for trouble. Even then it will still detrimentally affect how you set up for the initial part of the catch phase by slicing through the water rather than feeling it and getting a good purchase early into the catch phase. So instead focus on a neutral finger tip first entry into the water with the middle finger of each hand extending forwards in front of the respective shoulder and not across the midline.

Hope this all helps. Enjoy Christmas!

Paul
2013 Manhattan Island Marathon Swim Champion. Don't forget to check out our valuable Know How section on the main site at http://www.swimsmooth.com/knowhow.html

smallyfish
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Re: What Do You Think Of Mr Smooth?

Postby smallyfish » Tue Dec 28, 2010 6:00 am

With Mr Smooth,I believe his is really a big aspect of the freestyle swim stroke that many people overlook. Sham though as it can have such a massive impact on how relaxed you feel in the water,it would only be by providing the ability to focus in on one specific part of Mr Smooth and see it through the entire stroke. An example is the wrist which would be nice to see the actual detail.
I have heard that to swim in the river is different from in the lake, also different from in the sea,I wish one day I will feel that in person.It's a shame that I makes HSLA structural steel plateand all the things that makes a ship,but I can't swim!

Don Wright
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Re: What Do You Think Of Mr Smooth?

Postby Don Wright » Sun Jan 02, 2011 9:47 am

Paul Newsome wrote:
Don Wright wrote:DO NOT FOCUS ON ENTERING THE WATER THUMB FIRST!
... instead focus on a neutral finger tip first entry into the water with the middle finger of each hand extending forwards in front of the respective shoulder and not across the midline.
Paul

Thank you for your expert correction Paul! I've probably escaped shoulder trouble so far because I roll quite a bit (45 degrees perhaps). You also made the point about such an entry as I make as "slicing into the water", and I think you are very right on that point. It probably comes from the way I do arm recovery in fly stroke, with my arms swinging around in front of the shoulders with palms outwards, so the thumbs go in first - and thats where I tend to "slice into the water" as my arms go about 10 inches down into the water (with too much bubble entrainment!). On that action , I think experts "lay" their arms onto the water, which is similar to The SS method of arm entry for front crawl. In your YouTube video clip of Hannah doing her stuff, and in other similar clips, I must admit to being surprised by how little disturbance such smooth arm entry seems to cause. You are also right in your other assessments! I am inclined to be an OGer, but am trying to correct that. Although I don't swim that much, in trying to do my best, am probably fussing too much over studying technique! Bye / Don

hammond
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Re: What Do You Think Of Mr Smooth?

Postby hammond » Wed Feb 02, 2011 9:15 pm

I am have only recently become interested in swimming now that I have a pool just around the corner and as the pensive overglider type, I think Mr Smooth is the perfect tool for me -- I can really study his every move. Together with the knowhow section, it has really helped me develop a rhythm that avoids me breathing in loads of water. What I liked from watching him is that he starts turning his head as he starts the roll which makes the timing so much easier. I think I was turning once I reached full extension on each 3rd stroke (probably because I am counting them in my head 1-2-3-breathe) which which seems to be too late. This, along with a full exhalation before turning, makes breathing a lot more comfortable for me. Whoever put this together, thanks a bunch!!

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Paul Newsome
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Re: What Do You Think Of Mr Smooth?

Postby Paul Newsome » Wed Feb 02, 2011 9:53 pm

Not a problem Hammond - well done for picking up on the timing of his breathing and also the exhalation - this indeed makes a massive difference for swimmers we work with and will hopefully now help improve your rhythm and timing too.

Keep us posted!

Paul
2013 Manhattan Island Marathon Swim Champion. Don't forget to check out our valuable Know How section on the main site at http://www.swimsmooth.com/knowhow.html


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