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Monday, November 25, 2013

Measuring And Maximizing Dolphining In The Open Water

Gerry Rodrigues, the founder and organizer of Tower 26, was tested by the World Open Water Swimming Association using the highly sophisticated SwiMetrics back in 2010.

The SwiMetrics tested Coach Rodrigues on his open water dolphining technique. Similar to the SwiMetrics velocity, force and acceleration measurements and tests that were utilized to analyze Michael Phelps' turns in the pool, SwiMetrics was used to analyze Coach Rodrigues' open water dolphining technique in a pool.

Imagine that the pool shown in the video is the ocean floor or lake bottom in an open water race or triathlon with an on-shore start and finish. You can see Coach Rodrigues pushing off at a 45° angle and, very importantly, he also pushes off the bottom with both hands. With his legs, Coach Rodrigues peaks at about 2.3 meters per second in an measurement of his instantaneous velocity. But, he also generates about 1.9 meters per second speed when he pushes off with his hands. You can also see that he remains streamlined throughout the pushoff and entry back into the water in his dolphining technique.

The white line represents the instantaneous velocity measured 60 times per second using the SwiMetrics technology developed by Genadijus Sokolovas Ph.D. The intersection of the green line and the white line indicates the velocity (speed in meters per second) reached by Coach Rodrigues at that specific moment.

Please keep in mind that the dolphining technique is appropriate for flat and calm conditions and must be modified when the ocean surf is large.

Copyright © 2013 by World Open Water Swimming Association

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