Niggles

I saw Sam Burch at Fix sports injury clinic this morning. He did some releases and massage for my shoulder. 

We discussed pain and he advised me on the kind of activities I should and shouldn’t do in order to promote my recovery. 

Fortunately  he doesn’t think it’s a serious injury. Though it is difficult not to take it seriously.

It’s mostly inflammation around my shoulder which is causing stiffness, pain and clicking. He gave me some theraband excercises to do to strengthen my rotator cuffs and suggested taking painkillers if, after exercise, I have pain. 

He also said I could swim,  but:

  •  not swim hard 
  • that if i feel pain while swimming, to modify my stroke, entering my hand closer to the body, rather than at full extension
  • not to over rotate my shoulders
  • Avoid club swimming
  • Avoid butterfly 

He also pointed out that all athletes incurr injuries during training and even compete with injuries or niggling pains. 

So, though the injury I have may not have cleared by the time of my swim, this doesn’t mean I won’t be able to do it. 

Fingers crossed 

In the afternoon I swam at Clissold Leisure centre, just to stretch and maintain mobility and test and adjust my stroke . In certain positions my shoulder was excruciatingly painful, but after a few experiments, changing hand entry and body position, I found I could swim quite well pain free.  

I swam for about 90 minutes , resting every 100m. I also did some kicking drills. 

I hope I have not aggravated my injury further. We’ll see. Tomorrow morning ..

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Urgh – Oh!

I had three swims today which i know was too much as I still have a groin injury and am supposed to be resting!

My first swim was this morning at 7am,  training with my clothes on.

The second was at the London Fields Lido where i had a 45 minute swim combining drills with 100 metres sets- slow – easy- focussing on improving technique.

My third swim was again at the lido and mainly consisted of 100 metre swims – easy /80 minutes.

I do sense an improvement in my stroke. It feels more relaxed and energy efficient, but my groin is still causing problems.

My main problem is lack of self disciple, impatience and

oh yes

I’m a bloody fool!

Remember: High Elbow

Tim had a look at my stroke on Sunday. Apparently my left arm (or is it my right) swing out really wide on the recovery and I am over extending in the catch phase,  wasting a lot of energy and placing  unnecessary strain on my shoulder by  pulling through with a straight arm.

The wide stroke, obviously contributes to drag, which I need to avoid. Narrowing my profile, making my body streamline, as if trying to thread it through the eye of a needle is the way to go. So I need to practise.

My  main challenge at the moment is not over extending in the catch phase of the hand entry, but entering the water closer to my shoulder.

My stroke was much better about three years ago, but has deteriorated, possibly as a consequence of overtraining and fatigue. By over training I mean swimming excessively, often without adequate hydration, nutrition or rest. Also failing to stretch and do regular dry side exercises.

The advantage of using a high elbow catch is that it encourages better shoulder rotation, engagement of the lats and shallow pull. This keeps the body shallow, i.e. on the surface of the water as opposed to under the water and reduces drag.