Swim Like A Cyclist – But You Can’t Buy Speed!
Things To Consider:
- Water is 784 times denser than air. Fun fact, dirt is only 2.5 times denser than water!
- Your drag coefficient while swimming is always changing; you need to be aware of your body position at every point in your stroke and the water around you.
- How often do you watch yourself swim? You’ve probably seen yourself on the bike, maybe on the turbo.
- A good swim saves you energy for the rest of your race. Becoming a more proficient swimmer does not just save you a few seconds on the swim but it will improve your bike and run performance.
- Doing something over and over again without feedback creates habits. Are you creating good or bad habits?
Thinking Of Swimming Like A Cyclist:
- Good body tension = A nice stiff frame
- You would never use full suspension shocks on your TT-bike because you don’t want those precious watts being absorbed by the shocks. Keeping good tension throughout your body creates a stiffness to transfer the power generated by your arms and legs into forward motion.
- Body position or alignment = Aero (Frame, Wheels, Helmet, etc..)
- Your body position at each point in the in the stoke is your TT frame, aero-helmet, race wheels etc.., If you have a soft inactive core, over bending knees, over lifting of the head, then you are not riding an aero frame you are riding a mountain bike with a parachute dragging behind you.
- Catch/engagement with the water = Gears or chainring
- Are you pushing a “38 tooth chain ring” next to someone who is pushing a “53”? Keeping your hand and wrist in vertical alignment with your forearm as long as possible throughout the pull will maximize your leverage on the water.
- Continuous hand and arm movement = continuous pedal stroke
- Are you stomping on the pedals and trying to force yourself along by stretching and gliding – and slowing down – or are you maintaining a smooth continuous flow?
Unfortunately, you can’t walk into your local swim shop, swipe your credit card, and come out a faster swimmer. However, with proper feedback and a systematic approach you can greatly improve your swim this season! If you want to work on your “hydro” check out our swim coaching or video swim analysis packages. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to get in touch; either by email, facebook or leave a comment on here! See what’s up next week for our #SwimTechTues tip!