Congrats to everyone who participated, competed and volunteered at Depth Nats. It was a fantastic event. Now on to some Pool Training Tips with Phil.
If you break down a length of the pool into a distance to be covered against water's resistance each diver will apply a particular number of strokes, of a given amplitude, to maintain a certain speed throughout the dive. It is possible to think about this as an equation. Something like this:
Stroke Cadence * Stroke Speed/force*Stroke Amplitude = Drag coefficient* Speed
Every one of these is a variable you can adjust to find the optimal technique for you. Thats a lot of variables and the differences may be hard to identify without doing lots and lots of max attempts.
So where to start?
Drag is proportionate to speed squared for a submerged body so speed is an important factor. Increase your speed from 0.9 to 1.1m/s and drag increases by nearly 50%. Optimal speed varies between divers, strokes and technique, a rough guide can be found by looking at max attempts by high level divers. Divers with a long static hold and average flexibility using bifins might be doing their best dives at 0.9m/s or less, more athletic divers with excellent technique with a monofin may be aiming for 1.1m/s or more. If you think about where you fit into this spectrom you can get some ideas about what to aim for.
We can change the drag (coefficient) by improving our streamlining. Once you have your buoyancy sorted, start to pay attention to all the parts of your body that lead into undisturbed water - Arms, Head, Shoulders and Thighs. The aim is to become a needle!
Next week I'll focus on the other side of the equation, but remember that the equation is a lot like your finances. On the left is earnings, on the right is spending. In life it's generally easier to decrease your spending than increase your earnings!