Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: St. Louis, Missouri
Bikes: '06 Cannondale CAAD8, '04 Cannondale Ironman 2000
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Total Immersion focuses on reducing drag instead of focusing more on stroke. You start by learning balance in the water and move to other drills that help you be more "slippery" in the water and swim more "fishlike." Try www.totalimmersion.net
I have been swimming laps for years. I have never been a competive swimmer (other than elementary school). My fastest time for 1500yrds prior to TI was 29:20.
I started with TI in February. I swam 1500 yrds about 2 months ago - not swimming for time - just swimming - and did it in 25:10. That 29:20 time was my all out effort. I mean I was dead after swimming that 1500. The 25:10 time was me swimming harder than a warm up but nowhere near my hardest effort. After doing the 25:10 I went on and did 1000yrds of add'l swimming. Prior to TI it took me 25-27 strokes to swim 25 yrds - it now is 14 -17 strokes.
I learned TI by reading the Triathlon Swimming Made Easy Book and studying the Freestyle Made Easy DVD. So, being self-taught I know I am not perfect. So, I took a one-on-one single lesson from a TI coach. He was a great help and I have a number of things to work on. So, I know my times will improve from where they are.
Case in point: the day after my TI personal lesson I did a sprint tri that was a 300yard swim in a pool. The few weeks before the tri I did a few 300s and timed myself. They varied from 4:40 - 4:50. At the tri I was in a lane with two other people: a former college swimmer who said she'd swim it in about 3:40 and a young shaved down fit guy that said he would swim it in exactly 4:30. So, we left in that order (in other words I left about 5 seconds after the start of my heat). During the swim I decided to focus on two things the TI coach told me. I kept on bumping into the guy in front of me. I was thinking "4:30 my ass." I wasn't able to pass due to the other swimmer often swimming towards us. I passed the guy at the turn going into the final length. I looked at my time: 4:22. About 20 seconds faster than I had previously swam the 300 and this with me starting 5 seconds late and being stuck behind the guy in front of me (who finished right at 4:30). So, TI does help speed. I highly recommend it. If you can find a TI coach - its a help.