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Friday, November 22, 2013
Gotta Hand It To FINIS Agility Paddles
We love to swim along the surf break just right outside where the ocean waves start to break. As we swim parallel to coastline, we are in a great location to watch the big rollers come in and then body surf to shore when the timing is right. Not only do we get a great workout just swimming parallel to shore, but we also get sprint work in as well as working our legs as we try to kick within the wave so we can ride the waves as far into shore as possible.
The combination of aerobic and anaerobic work in the ocean is a great mix to keep things enjoyable and challenging.
When we add FINIS Agility Paddles to the swimming and body surfing workout, it is about a rigorous a workout as we can do. We swim parallel to shore, then sprint to catch any number of waves, then kick hard to remain within the wave, and then swim back out, diving under each oncoming wave, to swim parallel to the shore beyond the surf break. Over and over again, it is a great way to get our distance in while working on finishing a race or a triathlon swim leg. The need to immediately pick up speed and tempo in order to catch a wave when the swells come in is also an additional benefit.
The FINIS Agility Paddles are nominated as the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Offering of the Year. Its nomination reads, "Its form factor is unique. Its benefits are unmistakable. Its color is distinct. The FINIS Agility Paddles are oh-so-cool hand paddles that feel just right when you swim properly. Conversely, with sub-optimal hand movement through water, the paddles function as a fantastic self-teaching aid and a catalyst for stroke improvement. The bright yellow paddles enhance the swimmers’ tactile feedback and feel in the water, no matter what stroke they are swimming: butterfly, backstroke, breaststroke or freestyle.
By elevating an athlete’s kinetic awareness, the paddles enable swimmers to make minute changes and discover the most optimal hand position throughout their entire stroke cycle. For its unprecedented convex shape, for its simplicity of design, for its fit like a one-sided glove, the FINIS Agility Paddles are a worthy nominee for the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Offering of the Year."
The strapless FINIS Agility Paddles help swimmers and triathletes maintain proper fundamental hand placement during all four swim strokes. The convex design teaches proper palm positive hand position by encouraging the swimmer to have an early catch. The paddle will only remain in place if the swimmer maintains traction with the water, thus creating more propulsion and maximum efficiency - which is vitally important in the open water.
The FINIS Agility Paddles are quite simply cool and are a fantastic self-teaching aid that immediately enables athletes to become kinetically aware of their strengths and weaknesses in their swimming stroke. Because the bright yellow paddles just seem to fit like a one-sided glove on your hands, you can use them in the pool or out in the open water to help find and fix flaws in your stroke and hand position.
Very importantly, the FINIS paddles are smaller than the massive paddles that are commonly used by competitive, collegiate and masters swimmers. But they are cleverly designed and have no tubing that is too tight, too loose or can deteriorate. The design of the paddles gives athletes instant tactile feedback from the water pressure on the paddle based on their stroke movements and hand position. The Agility Paddles can be used for all four strokes in the pool. In the open water, using the paddles is smooth and enlightening. From the time your hands enter the water to when your hands accelerate through the back end, athletes can feel exactly where and when pressure is optimally applied and where the plane of their hands is less than efficient. Any slight deviation from the optimal hand position makes the paddles come off and slows you down.
At times, the paddles will slip off. At times, the paddles will seem to have a mind of its own. But the uncontrollable slippage is due to stroke technique flaws.
In the open water, the paddles are a bit trickier to handle because of the surface chop that can occur. But under calm conditions in a lake or an ironed-out sea with no wind, the Agility Paddles work like a charm. Conversely, in a lumpy ocean where turbulence is the flavor of the day, there is constant unyielding pressure to focus on an efficient form in order to keep both paddles on, especially when sighting. Sighting with the paddles can particularly expose flaws as your head is raised, your hips are dropped, your elbows are relaxed and your hand position changes. It may require more than a few times to experience surface chop and sighting to get your stroke technique down correctly.
You cannot ask anything more for an open water swimmer or triathlete.
The nominees for the World Open Water Swimming Offering of the Year include a variety of products, services and concepts in the open water swimming world. The nominees include the following:
1. 21 Yaks and A Speedo, Storytelling Life Lessons by Lewis Pugh (U.K.)
2. Amphibia Sports Ring, Simple Silicone Solution For Swimmers (Ireland)
3. Bold & Beautiful, A Pod by the Shore (Australia)
4. Driven, Documenting Distance and Dedication (U.S.A.)
5. FINIS Agility Paddles, Training Tools of the Trade (U.S.A.)
6. Global Open Water Swimming Conference, Culminating In Cork (Ireland)
7. International Ice Swimming Association, Cooling To The Extreme (South Africa)
8. Ocean-navi, Navigating Throughout The Pacific (Japan)
9. Ocean Swimming & Prone Paddleboarding for Athletes with Spinal Cord Injuries (U.S.A.)
10. Open Water Swimming Manual: An Expert's Survival Guide by Lynne Cox (U.S.A.)
11. Oru Kayak, Origami of the Open Water (U.S.A.)
12. Ouma Academy, Swimming The Sea (Tunisia)
13. Plastic Disclosure Project by Ocean Recovery Alliance (Hong Kong)
14. Santa Barbara Channel Swimming Association, Far Forward Thinking In The Ocean (U.S.A.)
15. Swim Smooth, Styling Streamlined Swimming (Australia/U.K.)
Online voting takes place here.
Copyright © 2013 by World Open Water Swimming Association
2014 Global Open Water Swimming Conference
Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.
CLICK HERE TO REGISTER FOR THE CONFERENCE
The Global Open Water Swimming Conference is a conference on the sport of open water swimming, marathon swimming and swimming during triathlons and multi-sport endurance events.
The conference which has been attended by enthusiasts and luminaries from 6 continents, is devoted to providing information about the latest trends, race tactics, training techniques, equipment, psychological preparation, race organization and safety practices used in the sports of open water swimming, marathon swimming and triathlons.
The conference's mission is to provide opportunities to listen and meet many of the world's most foremost experts in open water swimming, and to meet and discuss the sport among swimmers, coaches, administrators, event organizers, sponsors, vendors, officials, escort pilots, and volunteers from kayakers to safety personnel.
Dozens of presentations at the 2014 Conference at the Mount Stuart House cover numerous aspects of the vast and growing world of open water swimming where attendees can learn and share the latest trends, race tactics, training modalities, swimming techniques, equipment, race organization, logistics, operations, and safety practices for open water swimming as a solo swimmer, competitive athlete, fitness swimmer, masters swimmer, triathlete, multi-sport athlete, administrator, race promoter, sponsor or referee.
The conference was first held in Long Beach, California as part of the 2010 USA Swimming National Open Water Swimming Championships. It has since been held on the Queen Mary in California, at Columbia University and the United Nations in New York City, and in Cork, Ireland. This year in September, it comes to another iconic location, the Mount Stuart House on the Isle of Bute in Scotland.
"The Global Open Water Swimming Conference was started due to the desire and need for athletes, coaches, referees, administrators, race directors, promoters and sponsors from around the world to share, collect and learn information about the growing sports of open water swimming, marathon swimming and triathlons," said founder Steven Munatones. "Other swimming conferences usually offering nothing on open water swimming or perhaps a speech or two, but we thought open water swimming deserves its own global conference. It is great that the community shares its information via the online social network, but there is nothing like meeting other open water swimming enthusiasts face-to-face and talking about the sport from morning to night."
Speakers at the conference include English Channel swimmers, ice swimmers, record holders, renowned coaches, world champions, professional marathon swimmers, renowned race directors, officials and administrators from the Africa, Americas, Asia, Europe and Oceania.
"Because the audience is passionate and educated about the sport and its finest practitioners, the Global Open Water Swimming Conference is also the location of the induction ceremonies for the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame and the annual WOWSA Awards that recognize the World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year, the World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year, the World Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year, and the World Open Water Swimming Offering of the Year. Special Lifetime Achievement Awards are also occasionally presented to individuals who have made significant contributions to the sport over their career."
The 2014 Global Open Water Swimming Conference Programme
Wednesday, September 17th
Leave Glasgow to commence 2-day tour of Scotland [closest international airport is Glasgow]
Thursday, September 18th
Stay Mainland, North of Scotland
Friday, September 19th
14:00 - Swim Loch Lomond
17:00 - Head to Isle of Bute
19:30 - Scottish Banquet
21:30 - Dinner Dance
Saturday, September 20th
09:00 - Registration & Coffee
10:00 - Speeches
12:20 - Lunch and WOWSA Awards
13:40 – Speeches
15:40 - Round Table
19:00 - International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Dinner & Induction Ceremony
Sunday, September 21st
09:00 - Registration & Coffee
10:00 - Speeches
14:30 - Swim in St Ninian's Bay on the Isle of Bute
The luminaries of the open water swimming world who will be honored in Scotland will include:
* Sandra Bucha (U.S.A.), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer and International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Swimmer
* Jon Erikson (U.S.A.), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer
* Claudio Plit (Argentina), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer
* Judith van Berkel-de Njis (Netherlands), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer
* David Yudovin (U.S.A.), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer
* Mercedes Gleitze (Great Britain), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer
* George Young (Canada), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer
* Dale Petranech (U.S.A.), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Contributor
* Melissa Cunningham (Australia), 2013 Irving Davids-Captain Roger Wheeler Memorial Award winner
* Vojislav Mijić (Serbia), International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Swimmer
* James Anderson (U.S.A.), International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Administrator
* Dr. Jane Katz (U.S.A.), International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Administrator
* Indonesian Swimming Federation, , International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Organisation
* Elizabeth Fry (U.S.A.), International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Swimmer
* Pádraig Mallon (Ireland), the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year
* Olga Kozydub (Russia), the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year
* Bering Strait Swim (international team), the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year
* International Ice Swimming Association (Ram Barkai, founder, South Africa), the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Offering of the Year
For additional articles on the 2014 Global Open Water Swimming Conference, visit:
* Olga Kozydub To Be Honored In Scotland
* Pádraig Mallon To Be Honored In Mount Stuart Castle
* Mount Stuart House, Splendid Setting For Swimming
* Colleen Blair To Kick-off Global Open Water Swimming Conference
* The Man Who Swims Better Than He Walks
* Joining In The Sea Goddess At The Hall Of Fame
* Mercedes Gleitze To Be Honored In Scotland
* The Incredible Career Of Merceded Gleitze
* Jon Erikson To Be Honoured In Florida
* The Incredible Career Of Mercedes Gleitze
* St Ninian's Bay To Host International Swim Conference
Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association
Swim Across the English Channel...
Who else is looking for a qualified open water swimming coach to help them swim across the English Channel?Chloë McCardel is a 6-time English Channel Swimmer who inspires and instructs. Access featured content by Chloë in this month's issue of the Open Water Swimming Magazine. Published monthly by WOWSA, the Open Water Swimming Magazine is a digital, interactive publication made available exclusively to WOWSA members. See what you've been missing! Become a WOWSA member today!
Open Water Swimming Magazine
Open Water Swimming MagazineThe Open Water Swimming Magazine is the monthly magazine entirely focused on open water swimming heroes and heroines of every age, ability, and background. Published by the World Open Water Swimming Association, the Open Water Swimming Magazine is a free benefit to WOWSA members.
WOWSA Member Benefits include 12 issues of the Open Water Swimming Magazine, the annual 276-page Open Water Swimming Almanac, a free listing in Sponsor My Swim, outstanding product discounts from FINIS, an entry in Openwaterpedia and more...
The Other Shore
The Other Shore follows world record holder and legendary swimmer Diana Nyad as she comes out of a thirty-year retirement to re-attempt an elusive dream: swimming 103 miles non-stop from Cuba to Florida without the use of a shark cage. Her past and present collide in her obsession with a feat that nobody has ever accomplished. At the edge of The Devil’s Triangle, tropical storms, sharks, venomous jellyfish, and one of the strongest ocean currents in the world, all prove to be life-threatening realities. Timothy Wheeler’s documentary brings Diana Nyad’s extraordinary adventure to life as Diana sets out to prove that will and determination are all you need to make the unimaginable possible.
2014 Open Water Swimming Almanac
An Almanac for Open Water SwimmingAn almanac is essentially a body of knowledge which is so complete that it enables people in different fields to make predictions about the future of their respective industries.
This, for example, was the purpose of the traditional farmers almanacs. It enabled farmers to determine as accurately as possible which crops to plant for the greatest harvests in a given year.
But the farmers almanac was just one example among many.
There are, of course, many different kinds of almanacs.
In fact, there is even one for open water swimming...
Preview the Open Water Swimming Almanac:
The trends are very clear.
The tide is rising for open water swimming.