After an awful lot of weeks off, I went back to Swish today to start another set of lessons. As always, starting again is more challenging than you think: you’re confronted by the fact that you’re not as good as you imagine you are.
But this is at least an opportunity to improve.
Things I learned this week: I haven’t been kicking hard enough, and my ankles were bent when I was doing freestyle, and flexed when I did breaststroke, which is exactly the wrong way round.
I’m not pulling back hard enough when I’m doing freestyle and I’m not flicking my hand at the end of the stroke. Together, that means I’m not gliding forward as much as I could, so when I breathe I’ve got less time to get air in, so each breath is smaller than it could be. (Irritatingly, I seem to be pulling fine with my left arm, but not my right.)
Oh, and I look sideways when I breathe, when I should be looking back.
Each of these things is fixable with thought, but of course then I forget each of the other things, and then do stupid stuff like executing a perfect stroke and forgetting to inhale. But these are things to work on.
So that’s freestyle. Breaststroke is just … confusing. I forgot again that I need to get my knees in close to my bum, and that I need my feet to be an inverted V, ankles at the top, and I’m still a bit unclear on how wide I should kick out, but give it another couple of months and maybe I’ll have this nailed.
I suppose the other impediment to getting better faster is I’m only going once a week: that is almost enough for maintenance, but not really sufficient to improve fast. But I feel bad asking people I know if I can borrow their swimming pools.
Oh, and I forgot my towel tonight, so I’m speeding home in a car now, still soaking wet. What a doofus.