Every Breath You Take

Swimming is my best of the 3 triathlon sports. While I didn’t like swimming as a young child, I grew to love swimming by spending the majority of my youth in the pool. I remember getting a crab badge for not being able to pass the first level in the Red Cross swim system.
As a coach, I’ve always believed it was important for the kids to learn bilateral breathing. Learning to breath on both sides to create  equality in their strokes.  I also know that the harder you swim, the more oxygen you need

I always breath bilaterally in my swim sessions, usually every 3 strokes, but sometimes I breathe every 5. The other day, in a speed session, I learned something new. I learned to breathe for speed. I learned that I can use a combination of bilateral and single side breathing. I needed to breath a little more to maintain my pace for the whole 300 meters. So I took 3 breaths on the left, then 3 breaths on the left.

Now, that really changed my arm entry.  Strange, I know.  But it did.  I noticed that when I took 3 breaths on the left side, that my hand entry fell short and when I took 3 breaths on the right, my left hand/shoulder dropped.  I wasn’t as streamline.  If I only took 2 breaths before changing sides, it wasn’t as noticeable.  If I took 5 breaths on one side, then I was able to correct it.

It was quite an insight for me.  I will be exploring this a little further and hopefully be able to swim with a friend who will be able to watch my stroke and give me visual feedback.

Have you changed your breathing style?  How did it go for you?  I would love to hear from you.



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