Thursday, June 28, 2007

Holistic Swimming

Since September of last year I've been swimming twice a week with the YWCA masters swim program coached by Paul Cross. He's a great coach and I love the program. As of January I've been swimming on Sundays with LETC, coached by either Alan or Andrew. Again, both great coaches.

If you do the math that means that for the last nine and a half months I've rarely been in the water without a coach on deck, a workout written up for me, and access to constant feedback - I've been pumped full of technique, corrected and commented on for almost a year.

For several reasons (saving money, re-jigging my schedule, etc.) I decided not to sign up for the summer session with Paul and to swim on my own. I also missed the LETC group swim last Sunday so I've had four completely uncoached swim workouts in a row. It was fantastic!

Now don't get me wrong, it's no knock on the coaches. They're great and I'm pretty darned lucky to have access to three. It's just that I'm really enjoying swimming on my own. Much like running solo, when I'm swimming my own workout I can pay more attention to what my body is doing. In a group I tend to key off others, stress about keeping up, get annoyed at others being in my way and be distracted by various other ephemera and not pay enough attention to what I'm doing. Also, instead of focussing on recovery or kicking or whatever the aim of the workout is, I can focuss on what my body is doing, be more analytical about my swimming and really get a feel for the water and how I'm moving through it - call it holistic swimming if you like.

Not to say that I don't need more work on my technique, I'm just enjoying a different take on the sport.

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