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Sinking when swimming

Hello all. Apologies - there must be a thread on this - but with no search facility....

I have a swimming problem. I'm learning bilateral breathing and am feeling nice and balanced until.....I try to breathe. I got someone to watch and he said it's all fine until I roll to breathe, and then it all goes to pot! My shoulders drop, my legs drop, I take a breath, then I rebalance for the next stroke until it all happens again three strokes later. There are drills for these things but the local pool won't let me use fins and I'm finding them tricky. Does anyone have a word of advice that would help? There's definitely something I'm missing and I think that once I crack this I'll be one happy lady!

Thanks loads in advance, lovely triathlon type people....


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    bennybenny Posts: 1,314
    -Get a personal coach for a few lessons. Train for a month and then have another lesson. I did this 2 years ago and was really a good investment, and it really won't cost that much if you have a fair coach.

    -join a club,that includes coached swimming sessions.

    -Try 'total immersion', just google it and you'll find out. Although you might see some people on this forum who don't like TI at all, there are as much that have improved signifficantly by it!!

    -waitfor a better post by someone else!!! [;)][:D]
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    transittransit Posts: 163

    Benny's giving good advise there, pick up advise from those leads.

    What I would say is that I am quite a good swimmer and I notice that when I breath or do drills with slow arm pull then I always sink too. It is part of the dynamics of swimming, so hopefully a bit of reassurance there?!?[&:]

    The obvious things to look out for would be your head lifting too high at the front rather than just rolling to the side. Also, as you breath if your stroke is slowing to give you more time this may also cause you issues. If your legs are already a bit low in the water then this is a bad starting point. Just a few suggestions so not sure how much they'll help.
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    BritspinBritspin Posts: 1,655
    Kicking drills & floating drills. One of the most effective drills for me is kicking without a float, arms infront &/or by my side. I soon learned to stop drinking the pool by rotating properly to breathe, not lifting my head & thus not dropping my legs..smoother, but sadly no faster.
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    bennybenny Posts: 1,314
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    i'm working on the early drills of TI techniques this winter to try and sort out my sinking. what I've worked out so ar is that I sink really badly when rolling onto the right hand side.... unfortunately that's my favoured side to breath on. ##

    Other than that, the drills are really usefull and they don't use any tools, (though they do suggest fins... I find that prefer not to use them... fins are ace to give a sensation of speed, but i'm not sure how much they really help.) basically the early drills are all about balance in the water and not about swimming. I think they are helping at the moment, the proof will be visible in a month or two when i've either had an epiphany, or gone back to muscling my way along the pool...
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    treefrogtreefrog Posts: 1,242
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    julesojuleso Posts: 279
    I'm not sure if it's really the done thing to resurrect a post that I started........but just in case anyone was also pondering this one, I've kind of sorted it by (doh) not 'stopping' to breathe (as they seem to encourage with Total Immersion) but by pulling through the water with the bottom arm while I breathe. Stop swimming = sink. Wonder why I didn't cotton onto that one sooner? Hopefully this helps someone.
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    triadtriad Posts: 62
    Whilst I am not an expert swimmer, I get the physics of it all and I am not sure that Total Immersion has all the answers. It sounds like to me that you are in danger of using the submerged arm to push yourself up to enable you to breathe. If that is the case, firstly you are likely to tire after some distance and secondly and more importantly, you will upset your body's balance in the water, which means that your legs will drop and start a sinking process which you then have to expend even more energy to rectify. Rolling on each side as others have suggested will help stable you're body so that you don't have to leverage off the submerged arm to breathe while swimming smoothly. To conquer balance and breathing, a few lessons and 'catch up' drills should work for you.
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    For me, I'm not sure if that would help - stroking whilst breathing. I think that would mean that I would be resting on the stroke arm. My breathing is started whilst the stroke arm is starting the recovery phase and my body is at maximum rotation. By the time my recovering hand hits the water, breathing is finished, and the other arm is just starting to catch and pull. Theoretically that should mean that I have hardly to move my head to breathe, in practice, I still think I lift my head, which makes me sink.

    I don't think TI claims to have all the answers, what it does claim is that it will greatly increase efficiency whilst swimming. I'm trying it for a bit and I'll work out if it is for me.
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    TommiTriTommiTri Posts: 879
    The thing to understand about TI swimming is that it is not different from normal swimming, it really isn't. Its just a slightly different way of teaching the principles of swimming on your side, high relaxed recovary arm etc.

    I think as aztechnology says you should be extending your arm whilst breathing, you should not be stroking until the breath has been finished and your recovery arm is entering the water. You should thinking about laying your head on your extended arm, and turning your head slightly towards the armpit of the recovery. If you are still sinking then you will need to keep working on your balance and body roll.
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    julesojuleso Posts: 279
    Thanks for taking the time to reply. I'll be back at Swim for Tri in a couple of weeks - if Keeley doesn't approve of how I've been getting along since I was last there I'm sure she'll sort me out. I think it's a longer process than I had expected, learning how to crawl! To be one of those ladies who swim nicely up and down for 40 minutes is perhaps further off than I thought.

    I've been trying to focus on keeping the top of my head pointing towards the end of the pool when I'm breathing - it does seem to help me to focus on the rolling aspect of it and it prevents me from lifting my head too much.

    Tsk. Tricky stuff, water.
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