First time I learned to swim properly, the coach showed how easy it was to float and said everyone can do it. I tried and failed. I couldn’t float on my back without my legs sinking and pulling my head down. and if i face downward it is still the same. By taking a big breath before holding it I could almost float, i would be in 45 degree position, my legs still pulling down. The moment I breath out, my body would sink to the bottom. I disregarded what my coach said about everyone can float <like he did>, But throughout the training, I learned by myself that I needed to add forces pushing up to float in addition to moving forward. But my body in swimming is usually slanted, which causes a bit more drag. As I learned physics and biology, I accepted that my body composition caused my density to sink in water. In general, runners have dense leg bones and muscle and therefore their legs sink while their chest floats do to the air inside the lungs. In the case of body builders they have a dense body due to more muscles overall. so they would generally sink flat to the bottom.
It was when I learnt Total Immersion swimming I learned how to “balance” my body. I still sink if I stop, but I now am able to keep my body horizontal in the water and therefore reducing my drag effectively. The trick is simple, and it comes in different parts. The basics is in free floating my legs would sink and my lungs would keep my up, but when i place my arms forward, and look down to the floor, the angle of my body flattens a bit. Now when I do a glide, where i kick off from the wall and just glide without using my legs and hands, i keep the same position, head facing down, hands forward, maybe slightly lower. I find that my forward hands allows my body to flatten horizontally, until i slow down and my legs start to sink again.
So in swimming, total immersion adapts a front quadrant stroke, which ensures that one hand is always in front, where the other hand recovers and spear in before the other hand pulls down and back. In this technique the strokes allow for the hands to tilt or turn the body position. In essence, letting the body lie on its sides with every stroke. This actually allows for the sinking legs to turn to the side and maintain the horizontal body position. This interestingly makes me look like a floater, for which i am not, I just learned how to deflect the sinking motion of my legs to the sides and add to forward motion instead.
I noticed when I swim for long distances in the pool some people trying to balance in a static position, probably trying to emulate what they see, when it is actually my forward motion and tilting from side to side that helps me keep horizontal. Especially when i practice the 2 beat kick from the total immersion swimming, there is a significant amount of time that makes it look like we are gliding effortlessly in the water.
I hope that this article helps sinkers out there swim effortlessly.
If you are interested to know more about total immersion, then google it up or even better youtube it. It is the most graceful and yet still fast and enduring swimming I have experienced. you can probably find the books on it. I personally teach beginners how to swim, and I focus on how easy it can be, instead how to swim faster.
note: i’ll put in the links later,for now i just want to get this article out there.
I stumbled upon this song. Very inspirational
i also checked a video of her singing live to someone who has cancer. Quite touching. :’)
If you want to read the lyrics to song check the lyric video
I was observing the Moon Eclipse tonight (4 april 2015, 8pm brunei time), from a place that had a few crowds hanging out and walking by, I looked around and it seemed most people were unaware of what was happening. not looking to the sky. The last time I saw the moon eclipse was a few years ago in KK in December 2011. It was a similar environment. Something incredible was happening. Our shadow, earth with us on it, was blocking the sun’s direct light from reaching the moon, at ironically the position that can also be the fullest and the brightest for the moon. If we wand yet not a lot were appreciating it.
The last time I saw it I felt the same awe that I feel now. It was around the time I made the pivotal decision to change my health and fitness. I was 110kg then, I went as far as 90kg last year (now I’m up a bit to 95kg, but I’ll work on it again) and able to do a half ironman where I swam 1.9km, cycled 90km, ran 21km. There are things happening around us, opportunity is abound. and yet most of us are not open to it. Like the uncommon moon eclipse (moon eclipses are more common than sun eclipses). Life opportunities are quite common. Great opportunities come once in a while. Only a few of were aware of it. Few of use will take the time to find about it, and then take the time to make it to appreciate it.
For me the awe is still there. Understanding of how a full moon eclipse happens. How small we are compared to the earth, moon and sun… to the universe. and yet how important we can be to each other, near and far. How one event can be observed and affected by millions of individuals. How each one of us can take the opportunity to make something happen in our lives. To catch that moment. Reminds me of my understanding of the islamic concept of fate – qada’ and qadar. There are events that are fixed in the universe, and then there are events that man has the choice and ability affect. The full moon is a preset event, while the human ability to predict it, to observe it is a choice. Life opportunities are less likely to be predicted, but they can be anticipated, and we can prepare ourselves for that event. We don’t have to just allow events to past us by, we can observe it, we can study it, or we can appreciate it, in some cases. We can create it or create something with it.
This time my pivotal change is more on contribution and financial gains. I have gone far from the last moon eclipse, from losing weight to being able to do a half ironman. I look forward to see the next full moon and look back to my life from the this full moon eclipse. Everything is already set into motion, I would like to be prepared, be there when an opportunity happens. Once in a Blue Moon? How about Once in the eclipse of a full moon?
Heheh, funny how I feel more awe about a moon eclipse than the earth’s revolution around the sun. The Universe is Unimaginably Vast, The Creator truly is Great :)
Closing thoughts, If we on earth is experiencing a moon eclipse, the moon is experiencing an earth eclipse. Think about it.