Swimming

Post questions and tips on how flexibility training fits with training for other abilities.

Swimming

Postby elskbrev » Nov 04, 2008 16:20

I have always had trouble with the butterfly stretch and my 90/90 looked more like a 45/45 and I could not sit comfortably with legs criss cross in front of me, until recently.

I just learned to swim; first lesson was in early September. After a recent post-swim stretching session, I was able to sit properly with legs criss cross. I mentioned this to my daughter, a strong swimmer, and she said, "Oh yeah, swimming is great for that. I could have told you that." (Her butterfly stretch is knees on the floor. She has her full side splits, and not quite full front splits.)

Two things I must mention.

First, Kurz gave some great advice about how to do weighted butterfly stretch and other exercises in a Jun-08 post at http://stadion.com/phpBB3/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=1016, and I did follow it until early Aug-08 when I had to drop all stretching to let a serious hamstring tear heal (injured week of July 21). At first the adductor stretches seemed fine despite the hamstring, but the deeper you get into the butterfly stretch, the more the hamstring is stretched, so I had to quit them. It was great advice and I was making progress, but due to the hamstring injury I have not done the exercises he suggested since early August. I needed complete rest.

Second, I don't see swimming as a routine for increasing general flexibility for kicking, any more than jogging or bicycling. How could it be? Look at the range of motion. Yet, it seems to do wonders for loosening up the deep internal rotators of the hips and for strengthening the hip flexors, which lends greater flexibility to them.

Incidental, also, to the resultant increase in flexibility in my hips, could be other factors in my routine. Before each class, I warmed up with light dynamic stretching and PNF movements; after class, I cooled down with gentle static stretching and core strength work. During 30-60 second rest periods in class, I did slow leg raises to the sides, back and front underwater, or, at times, deep tissue massage to the injured hamstring as I sat on the pool deck with straight leg extended. A typical swim lesson included kicking with board to front, kicking without board on back, treading water, and freestyle practice, all while wearing those big fins they supply at the pool. Talk about a workout for the legs.

This is my first time ever in the pool, so this is all new to me.

Any swimmers out there?

Best regards,
Cindy
elskbrev
 
Posts: 79
Joined: Aug 08, 2007 07:08
Location: Wisconsin, USA

Re: Swimming

Postby CSta » Nov 05, 2008 12:17

Congratulations on learning to swim. You might just have saved your life. In addition to flutter kicking you might wish to try the egg beater kick.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lJpDiLynBp8
CSta
 
Posts: 329
Joined: Sep 05, 2008 14:54
Location: Columbus, Ohio

Re: Swimming

Postby elskbrev » Nov 05, 2008 16:10

That's perfect, thanks!! I wouldn't try this with big fins on my feet, however--consider the damage to the muscles surrounding the inner knee if I did.
Cindy
elskbrev
 
Posts: 79
Joined: Aug 08, 2007 07:08
Location: Wisconsin, USA

Re: Swimming

Postby CSta » Nov 07, 2008 12:29

Forgot to mention: breast stroke kick, which you'll undoubtedly learn.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PCFnpc-BFgk
CSta
 
Posts: 329
Joined: Sep 05, 2008 14:54
Location: Columbus, Ohio


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