General Discussion Triathlon Talk » Michael Phelps Freestyle Video. Quite Remarkable. Rss Feed  
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2012-09-19 10:58 PM
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Subject: RE: Michael Phelps Freestyle Video. Quite Remarkable.
abqtj - 2012-09-19 9:05 PM

I'm pretty amazed at how much he moves up and down in the water throughout his stroke, it's like his head gets completely submerged by a few inches at times. 


it's partly due to his body density and partly due to the loping stroke...like a poster above said, it's almost a one armed dolphin hybrid with the other arm freestyle


2012-09-20 12:45 AM
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Subject: RE: Michael Phelps Freestyle Video. Quite Remarkable.
The way he pulls his shoulders in to get aero (hydro) is nuts too.
2012-09-20 2:25 AM
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Subject: RE: Michael Phelps Freestyle Video. Quite Remarkable.
The constant thrust he gets from his kick is incredible. If you look at his head position it looks like he gets the 1-2 cadence in his stroke from a slight lift in his head position just prior to breathing. This sort of serves to lift and drag the rest of the torso along for the ride.
2012-09-20 8:28 AM
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Subject: RE: Michael Phelps Freestyle Video. Quite Remarkable.

The two things that screamed out to me...

  1. Now THAT is the definition of "high elbow".
  2. The dudes ankles ARE MADE OF RUBBER!!!!

OMG does he have flexibility in his lower legs and ankles.  His dolphin kick and freestyle kick look more fish-like than human!

 

2012-09-20 8:46 AM
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Subject: RE: Michael Phelps Freestyle Video. Quite Remarkable.
Tom Demerly. - 2012-09-19 5:00 PM

In a nutshell Empfield points out that for a stroke to be truly efficient the swimmer must first acheive a minimum velocity. Getting to that velocity takes some baseline fitness, training and and technique.

This is backed up to some extent  by a pretty interesting article SwimSmooth put out not too long ago. 

2012-09-20 9:07 AM
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Subject: RE: Michael Phelps Freestyle Video. Quite Remarkable.
I'm shocked SwimSmooth finally put out an article like that, it's about dang time. That stupid Mr Smooth does a lot of damage by making it seem like swimming should look 'effortless' when done right. Horsepoop. Efficiency is of course required, and smooth technique must be ingrained into your muscle movement over a long period of constant swimming and refinement, but at some point, pure high turnover is crucial. The term 'swim fitness' is really abused, I think it makes more sense to say 'Cardiovascular capacity to maintain proper technique at a high turnover rate'


2012-09-20 10:02 AM
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Subject: RE: Michael Phelps Freestyle Video. Quite Remarkable.

fisherman76 - 2012-09-20 9:07 AM I'm shocked SwimSmooth finally put out an article like that, it's about dang time. That stupid Mr Smooth does a lot of damage by making it seem like swimming should look 'effortless' when done right. Horsepoop. Efficiency is of course required, and smooth technique must be ingrained into your muscle movement over a long period of constant swimming and refinement, but at some point, pure high turnover is crucial. The term 'swim fitness' is really abused, I think it makes more sense to say 'Cardiovascular capacity to maintain proper technique at a high turnover rate'

 

I am new to triathlons, swimmer my whole life. I am curious at what point you would need a rapid turnover in a race to the point that it breaks down your stroke. Being the first leg of the race, i couldn't see myself ever sprinting the last 100 yards to catch another swimmer.

 

My last race i tried to maintain a smooth lengthy stroke the entire time with almost zero kick. I feel like it worked out really well and i was happy with my time. More importantly, i felt great in my transition to the bike.

 

I do like the term you are using. As i get into better shape and increase my endurance, I can see where it applies. The only difference for me is that i would continue to maintain the same tempo, but just increase the amount of pressure i am applying as my arm comes through the water. Same cadence, more distance per stroke



Edited by MFConlon 2012-09-20 10:05 AM
2012-09-20 10:14 AM
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Subject: RE: Michael Phelps Freestyle Video. Quite Remarkable.

When it comes to triathlons with swims greater than a few hundred meters, I would rather emulate Sun Yang than Michael Phelps.   

2012-09-20 10:31 AM
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Subject: RE: Michael Phelps Freestyle Video. Quite Remarkable.
Hook'em - 2012-09-20 10:14 AM

When it comes to triathlons with swims greater than a few hundred meters, I would rather emulate Sun Yang than Michael Phelps.   

 

Agreed..I actually modeled my stroke after the late great Fran Crippen. Insanely good distance and OWS swimmer

2012-09-20 11:09 AM
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Subject: RE: Michael Phelps Freestyle Video. Quite Remarkable.
Tom Demerly. - 2012-09-19 3:13 PM

AdventureBear, FWIW, total immersion techniques, videos and drills are pretty relevant to me. The "swimming downhill" concept is a golden nugget from their doctrine.

I think a good athlete pulls together relevant excerpts from a lot of resources, and T.I. and Terry Laughlin are huge resources in swimming doctrine.

No examination of swimming freestyle is complete without a detailed survey of the Terry Laughlin/Total Immersion swim philosophy. It's relevant.

Yay!  =D

2012-09-20 12:14 PM
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Subject: RE: Michael Phelps Freestyle Video. Quite Remarkable.

I am new to triathlons, swimmer my whole life. I am curious at what point you would need a rapid turnover in a race to the point that it breaks down your stroke. Being the first leg of the race, i couldn't see myself ever sprinting the last 100 yards to catch another swimmer.

My last race i tried to maintain a smooth lengthy stroke the entire time with almost zero kick. I feel like it worked out really well and i was happy with my time. More importantly, i felt great in my transition to the bike.

The point would never be to break down your stroke, just increase turnover. Nothing at all wrong with a long smooth stroke, it's how the vast majority of triathletes swim. However, there won't be a single FOP swimmer doing that, you just can't go as fast doing that.

The only difference for me is that i would continue to maintain the same tempo, but just increase the amount of pressure i am applying as my arm comes through the water. Same cadence, more distance per stroke

I think I know what you mean, but eventually you (should) reach a point where that 'increased' pressure is sustainable and comfortable, and there isn't a 'lower' setting. The remaining factor would be increasing turnover/cadence. 



2012-09-20 1:02 PM
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Subject: RE: Michael Phelps Freestyle Video. Quite Remarkable.
fisherman76 - 2012-09-20 12:14 PM

I am new to triathlons, swimmer my whole life. I am curious at what point you would need a rapid turnover in a race to the point that it breaks down your stroke. Being the first leg of the race, i couldn't see myself ever sprinting the last 100 yards to catch another swimmer.

My last race i tried to maintain a smooth lengthy stroke the entire time with almost zero kick. I feel like it worked out really well and i was happy with my time. More importantly, i felt great in my transition to the bike.

The point would never be to break down your stroke, just increase turnover. Nothing at all wrong with a long smooth stroke, it's how the vast majority of triathletes swim. However, there won't be a single FOP swimmer doing that, you just can't go as fast doing that.

The only difference for me is that i would continue to maintain the same tempo, but just increase the amount of pressure i am applying as my arm comes through the water. Same cadence, more distance per stroke

I think I know what you mean, but eventually you (should) reach a point where that 'increased' pressure is sustainable and comfortable, and there isn't a 'lower' setting. The remaining factor would be increasing turnover/cadence. 

 

oh absolutely, there has to be a point at which you can physically increase tempo but maintain proper form.

 

At a 1 mile distance, what you would consider a FOP time?

2012-09-20 2:09 PM
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Subject: RE: Michael Phelps Freestyle Video. Quite Remarkable.
for an olympic distance, right around 20 minutes would put you at or near the front, depending on conditions. For reference's sake, that's an average pace of roughly between 1:10 and 1:20 per 100 yards. If you're sustaining that kind of pace, you're FOP. I'd say MOP would be anywhere from 1:20 to 2:00/100 yard pace, and anything slower would be BOP. I'll probably get jumped all over for that last bit.
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