Monday, 12 November 2012

Tridynamic Winter Workshop with Swim for Tri

On Saturday, I went over to Hampton Outdoor Pool in West London for a workshop run by Tridynamic with Dan Bullock from Swim For Tri.  I went to Tenerife in February for a week's swim camp earlier this year and gained an enormous amount (as well as having a wonderful time with lovely people), and since I know that my stroke has dropped off recently, I was keen to get a little top up that will tide me over until Swim Camp 2013 and to see where I am currently going wrong.

The purpose of the workshop was two-fold.  Firstly to practice some key drills which can really improve FC (if done correctly).  Secondly to be filmed from three angles to identify things that can be improved.  And I suppose thirdly to have a good afternoon!

Firstly the drills.  We were encouraged to use central snorkels and fins.  This is pretty new to me because my pool doesn't let you use "toys" for health and safety reasons which is annoying as one particular drill that I've been struggling with since last February was so much easier with them!  We practiced the torpedo drill, extension drill, and then built into advanced single arm drill (the one I've been struggling with).  I think there may have been some other drills along the way but you can hardly take notes whilst in the pool.  As there were 12 of us, in 2 lanes of a 36.5m pool, we were able to swim along the black line, which really helps with thinking about body position.

Secondly, the filming.  I was a little bit disappointed with how I looked (despite being told by the other Martin who had come along to shadow Dan that he thought my stroke looked good).  My head remains a bit too high (which is something I was aware of).  My kick is rather bigger than I thought it was although not as bad as it used to be.  So, two things to try to work on there.  What was also interesting was with my arms.  They look ok at the start but go very wide as they get to the hips.  More of an issue on my right side, which may explain why I've been having right-sided shoulder pain again.

Anyway, so you can judge for yourself, Dan has kindly uploaded my video to YouTube!  (Everyone on the workshop was going to get a CD of footage with voice commentary sent to them afterwards as with a group of 12, there wasn't really time to look at everyone in detail).  I'm not quite sure how to embed a video, but you can have a look here.

I certainly had a good afternoon.  It was lovely to see Martin and Dan again, and nice to turn up to a workshop where you know both the coach and the organiser as you feel less awkward and they are both excellent examples of delivering good customer service as well as being really nice.  It was fantastic swimming outdoors in November.  I'd been worried that the pool was going to be chilly, especially when I arrived and saw the clouds of steam rising off it.  The water was a warm 28C and absolutely fine when moving around, although one of the ladies who was far more toned than me looked quite chilly (oh well, body fat has its uses!) as did the gentlemen on the side!  The sun even came out for about 5 minutes and one could almost imagine being in Tenerife.  The second swim at 5pm was actually in the dark.  The pool was closed by this time and it was an amazing experience swimming in the dark with just floodlights.  Being alphabetically last, I got to spend time swimming underwater and looking at the sky and watching some nearby fireworks!  Perfect, and just the mood enhancer that I needed.  Admittedly I was a bit grumpy when I got home because I was tired from the swimming, the drive and being hungry, but I cheered up after some dinner and then slept really well.  15 weeks to Tenerife.

Photo credits: Martin Boddie.


  1. Just watched the video. Can't see any of the things you mentioned but then I am a swimming ignoramus!! Sounds wonderful swimming in the dark. We've an open air pool nearby which did that in the summer. Perhaps I'll take up swimming just so I can swim under the stars... ;)

    Back to studying now. *sigh*

  2. So, so cool! I watched your video, and you look good to me! (But I'm a total newbie so ... ha!)

  3. Well done, the boost you need. Your swimming looks good to me but the I am a breast stroke swimmer, but would love someone to tidy my bad habits up!