Teaching Technique Through Video Comparison by Scott Rabalais (2004)


Published


I am very excited that you guys are here today and this is going to be a lot of fun. I really appreciate Tim and ASCA in allowing us the opportunity to come in here and give a few presentations this year. I am sure that you guys are enjoying the meet and we will enjoy the meet tonight. It is a great opportunity for us to get together as masters coaches to share ideas because masters coaching is different from other types of coaching. Of course there are a lot of similarities, but we are dealing with a clientele – a broad range of age and ability and objectives and goals and motives and so forth, but I think one thing that every level of swimming has in common is technique and proficiency in technique.

 

I am not here to promote any particular product, but I think that this particular product is going to cause somewhat of a revolution in our abilities to study technique and to teach our swimmers on a higher level. This program has been out two or three years – three years okay? I think now it is just starting to get to that point where it is recognized and enough coaches are using it. I personally suspect that within the next four or five years it is going to become an industry standard. You should be glad to hear that – Mr. Dart Fish back there. It is just a tremendous tool.

 

For those of us who have done video taping, and I am sure a lot of you have, VHS tapes get a little cumbersome and you end up having a stack of 40 tapes. You can’ remember what is on which and the tapes start to drag, then you have all sorts of problems. This eliminates a lot of that.

 

I think all of us would agree that the technical aspect of swimming is tremendously important and we are going show you how the tool is important. At the same time we are going to try to learn a little bit about the differences between masters swimmers and what we might call elite swimmers. These would be your senior swimmers who you know: Ed Moses, Tom Malchow, Kristy Kowal – those types of swimmers. I think we can learn a lot by seeing the differences between the two and then maybe you guys even have some ideas about how we might bring those two a little bit closer together.

 

What I am going to do first is just introduce you to some of the swimmers – masters swimmers back home who agreed to help us out. I took volunteers from a masters team in Savannah and said, “who would like to be on film and be put up at the world ASCA clinic.” Of course nobody volunteered so I just picked five of them. All of them seemed to be in their 30’s or 40’s. None of them are former NCAA swimmers or Olympians. They are all just sort of your common masters swimmers. Some of them just started swimming a year or two ago, but there is a pretty good sampling and a lot of differences in strokes.

 

This is Allison Reilly, she is actually in her late 20’s and is a distance swimmer and has done a 10 mile distance swim. She has a goal of swimming the English Channel within the next few years and is pretty excited about that and she is a hard worker. She does a lot for our program. This is Holly Kenrich. A lot of you know that we had the long course nationals in Savannah in August and all these folks played a big role in it. Holly was Miss Souvenirs and Miss Hotels. She took care of everything in those two areas. This is Holly’s freestyle. And this is at our pool in Savannah. Next up we have Amy Lee Copeland. Amy Lee was the volunteer coordinator for our meet and is very excited about masters swimming. She attended the Auburn swim camp two years in a row.

 

All these people were joking after the video. They said that I certainly could show people how not to do things now. They were very nice about it and cooperative. Our fourth swimmer is Mike Pollack – he actually swam a good bit as an age grouper and is a real strong guy. He is actually more of a butterflyer type – mid 40’s and a good guy. I worked with him a few months ago on some specific things on his kick in his fly. He stays after practice anywhere from 15-30 minutes every time he comes to practice to work on it Finally Kemp Nussbaum who is a triathlete and he has improved his mile –from about 32 minutes to about 26 minutes or so over the last year and a half or so. Those are our volunteers in terms of our masters swimmers

 

Now we have some other swimmers that you are probably aware of. We have Tom Wilkins here. He swam, if I am not mistaken, at Stanford and we have got some different angles of him here. Obviously Tom is swimming fly towards the camera and at the same time we are showing you different views here that you can import into the program. Next up is Courtney Shealy. She is a University of Georgia girl – I am a little partial to the Georgia folks – so you might see a lot of Courtney Shealy. She was on the Olympic team in 2000 in the 200 freestyle and I believe the 800 free relay. And everybody knows Misty Hyman – this is her underwater work on fly which is some of the best in the business. We will get to see her swim fly a little bit later. We have Lindsey Benko – World Record holder in the 400 free. We have Jeff Rouse doing a little backstroke underwater work. Chris Thompson – great distance freestyler. If I am not mistaken he might have been the first American under 15 minutes in the 1500. This guy– Ed Moses – we will see a little bit more of him as we get into the presentation. Everybody knows him, a breaststroker and World Record holder in short course meters (200 breaststroke 2:02). – He has beautiful alignment. A little bit later we will see Tom Malchow and his fly. So, those are our volunteers today – actually Ed and those guys didn’t really volunteer, but we will take them anyway – they did a good job.

 

What I would like to do here, in a few minutes is just go through some of our folks here and talk a little bit about technique and maybe some of the do’s and don’ts. We look at some of these masters swimmers and then come back and throw masters and elite swimmers on the screen at the same time, and let you see their strokes in a synchronized manner.

 

Let me jump into categories here because this is one of the great features of Dart Swim. You are able to categorize and organize your clips in a very advanced way. All the athletes that we have in the program are here, so for example if I wanted to go and look up Misty Hyman’s videos – there they are. We have camera type – that could be over or under water camera view. I have several there I did with the masters which are from the left side and the right side. Gender – male/female, and sport – swimming is basically what applies today. Strokes of which there are four. Then if you have more than one team – actually he’s got two teams so use two there.

 

A neat function of this is that you can see all the butterflyers or any other of the classifications. So, there are all your butterfly clips. These are just clips that I got actually from the program and then from just a little bit of film myself. Can you imagine over six months or a year how many clips you could eventually get in here. You might even have some on CD, so there could be really hundreds of butterfly clips and it would be hard to find the one you want.

 

I named them much like the imported ones were named because it made it easy, on the spot, to notice what they were. But they might not always be named that way so let’s say I want to do butterfly. I am going to push this little button up here – a little filter button alright? Then I will say I want to do the females, then I will click butterfly and will click there. Then we are going to go from the left side only, under water and I will click there. That is the way to bring them all into a filter and into a focus. So let me remove all of those and we will just go back to some of the butterfly videos.

 

I would like to see Allison do some fly. Actually that is all of Allison’s –I can easily find fly here. So we take Allison, she has come up on the screen and we had different speeds at which we could watch Allison. So we can go full speed. We can go half speed. We can go quarter speed or actually anywhere in between these. Right now I have it just set on half speed so we will play it and go full screen and there is some great video of Allison. Just hit it again and it will show again and we can pause it at any point. We can fast forward or we can go a frame at a time. I didn’t I didn’t set it up, but this can all be done on remote control so I can sit here and instead of hitting the keyboard or the little mouse guy just like you do on our TV – fast forward or one frame

 

I don’t want to take a whole lot of time trying to break down every single video we do here, but just maybe one or two points on each one that we might commonly see in masters swimmers. This is one for butterfly and breaststroke in masters swimmers. They are taught these strokes not with respect to what their body is doing and using their core strength, but more in terms of – let’s get the hips up, let’s drive the hands down, let’s have this big kick so we can get this nice dolphin action going okay? Of course the disadvantage of that is that you are going so deep under water, creating a lot of resistance, slowing down your stroke rate, among other things.

 

So here we have Allison – you can see she does the same thing on breaststroke – she just drives real far. Look at how far her head is under water. That is pretty deep. A lot of swimmers get their heads underneath the surface, but you don’t typically see the head being deeper than the chest. The press comes from the chest and you will see she has to recover and take a long time to get back up to the surface. She uses a little bit of her stroke to help push her up – a real strong girl.

 

This one is real well conditioned, but just a little bit too much undulation in fly and in breast. So, maybe in this case, we would teach the swimmer instead of coming up – whatever it may be – 30 degrees and down 30 degrees – maybe we want to think about 10 and 10 or 15 and 15 – just to flatten out a little bit.

 

Now let’s look at our butterfly screen and we will look at another butterflyer. Let’s look at Kip from the right side and we will slow his down a little bit. We will go at quarter speed. That is sort of a drastic up and down action where hands go really deep – I am going to tell Kip you all laughed – but here is a guy who just learned fly a year ago, so it’s not bad in my eyes. I have to say not bad because I am his coach. There is sort of an emphasis of what Allison was doing there in terms of getting a little bit too deep and then actually having to turn the hands up and drive back up to the surface. Then you have the compensation on the other end of the body where almost the entire legs are out of the water. So here again, we got to get the kick down in the water a little bit. With this, you are going to get great dolphin action – you are going to feel like a butterflyer, but you are creating a lot of resistance and doing a lot of extra work. Way up – DQ – if I had a white shirt on I would raise my hand DQ, okay?

 

Now in contrast to that let’s go find Misty Hyman from the left side. And we are going to slow her down because this is a beautiful butterfly. This is your Gold Medal winning butterfly in the 2000 Olympics. What I like here is the body line that we see in her stroke. She doesn’t get her whole body out of the water like we saw with some of the earlier masters swimmers – coming right up to the surface. Very powerful kick obviously – probably doesn’t use it a tremendous amount in her 200, but great off the walls. We will see this a little bit more later, but did you see her catch on butterfly? Very effective – I will show that to you one more time – we can speed it up a little bit. All the great butterflyers have the flexibility through their shoulders to be able to keep the stroke up top near the surface on entry, but yet press the chest down. So that may be what some of our masters are missing in that they really don’t have the flexibility to drive the chest down like that.

 

We will see one more butterfly – Tom Malchow – the man before the second man came along – okay? He is very efficient, very long with the stroke. Nice hip drive from both the chest press and the kick. Good head position there, he drives and keeps the head down looking straight down until it is time for a breath. And the chin just gets above the surface there when he is getting a breath.

 

These guys catch the water pretty well. Very up high in the stroke. A little different than most masters. They are going to be pressing down a lot and kind of getting into a survival stroke. This is a beautiful example of the body line there. Actually, I will get ahead of myself here and just show you one of these little tools here. You can take this and say, okay swimmer – this is your body line and you are kind of going this way and then you are kind of going this way and then we are going this way and down through here. You can see basically how you can just draw and a swimmer gets a good idea of what a proper outline would be in their stroke. Or use a comparison from this video to another video. When we get into showing you a couple of different things there – we will show you that when we get into some comparison video – yeah that is easy enough.

 

We will look at a little bit of backstroke here, so I want to go to my backstroke. I want to get this guy out of the way for now and we can come back and revisit him. We will start with the masters – we will start with Holly – my souvenirs/hotel girl and check her out. Once again she is a pretty new swimmer. Holly loves to learn about technique and goes to a lot of camps and asks a lot of questions which is good. We can see here that she has a huge, huge kick and I recommended to her that she develop her upper body strength a little bit. – She has a running background so we had the opportunity to build that upper body strength that is required for swimming or helpful in swimming. You can see there just where it stopped – how out of balance she is. In any backstroke you are going to see the foot go beneath the body, but in this case it is just extreme so we would want to work with her. Holly is real big on rotation which, to a degree, is good for everyone. But when you get too much rotation you get a real slow turnover and you end up kicking too big and everything is just sort of slow and big. So we want to work on sort of a push down catch. She is not really holding the water too well earlier in the stroke.

 

Now we will watch Amy Lee – my other volunteer. A little better body position than what we saw on the previous clip, but still she has a bicycling kick – we see this a lot in masters and in runners. See how she does that – the knee really pops up high to start each kick. She doesn’t have particularly great ankle flexibility. Here the feet are kind of pointing up a little bit. That is pretty common in masters swimmers, either we lose flexibility or didn’t swim earlier and develop it as we were swimming. Runners are particularly notorious for that. They come in and try to kick and their feet are just sort of pointing down. I always recommend anything that can help them relax –stretching or massage or – just to help them have a little more effective kick.

 

Amy gets fairly deep in her stroke there. Typically in backstroke we want to see a little bit closer towards the surface. That is a real common flaw in masters backstroke, unless they know to drop the elbow as you would in the freestyle here. Just drop it here when you are on your back and come through here. Most of them are just going to go real deep and they are going to press down and they are going to press up. It is no different than freestyle – a lot of freestyles just sort of naturally push down and push back up – kind of the way it was swum many years ago.

 

Now let’s watch some of our big guns. We have Tom Wilkins; we want to get him from the side, under water right side. He is a 400 IMer – not necessarily the best backstroker we have in the country, but certainly very solid. He is certainly one of the best IMers in the country. You can see –compared to the masters video – his balance line is a whole lot better there. And as I said, his kick is going to drop beneath the body line there. But it is certainly not unusually low. It stays pretty close toward the surface. You can see the amount of rotation that he gets. If we were measuring that – and we can do that – with head-on video and a little angle measuring tool we could stop and pull out some angles – that is a pretty neat thing to do. If we have time we can show you how that works. Just to give you sort of a frame-by-frame on Tom Wilkins you see a little bit what I was talking about. He are not so deep with the hand on backstroke – a little bit shallower, elbows the lowest part in the pool there. Rotation starts back to flat, head back on the water. His strokes are basically opposite each other – when one hand is up top the other hand is down – not the same as on freestyle which we will see. Everything is in pretty nice rhythm. He has a little bit of – sort of a dolphin action. I remember the greatest example of this was the Thomas girl from Australia – is it Petra? When she swims freestyle she has this little dolphin action in her freestyle and it is kind of the same thing that Tom Wilkins has there. It might help to get the hips up a little. I don’t really recommend it but I noticed that in his stroke a little bit.

 

Courtney Shealy because she is from Georgia. Very tall girl. One thing, if I were working with her on backstroke you can see that she is just carrying a lot of air into the stroke. You just don’t see much of that on the great ones and that could have something to do with entry. It could have to do with too abrupt of a change in the sweep. As she gets to this point here and then about right there she is going to go about a 90 degree sweep and water doesn’t like that – water needs to be held onto and swept through. She was pretty clean to that point and then all of a sudden she took an abrupt turn in the stroke and sort of lost the water – lost the feel of the water right there. Bad Courtney – Bad – but we will get better. She has probably retired. But in masters she can correct it. All right, we forgive you Courtney – it is okay. So those were a few backstrokers.

 

Now we will go back and switch to breaststroke so I want to go to my categories column here and find my breaststrokers. They are kind of the odd balls of the four strokes and we all know how misfit breaststrokers are. Let’s go look at Mike Pollack. And once again, he is not really a breaststroker, but he actually swims breaststroke like it was swum 25 years ago, before it got into the wave action. That is when he learned to swim and here again, this is something that he and I will continue to work on. He kind of has the 90 degree angle thing going. Just to show you this little angle tool – I am going to go here – straight out – that is his upper body and the lower body is let’s call it 117 degrees okay? And so with more of a wave breaststroker we would want to see more toward the 180 degrees. Because when you have your knees that deep and your body is nearly at a 90 degree angle you got a tremendous amount of resistance. It is kind of like the resistance we feel when we come off the wall in a breaststroke push off and all of a sudden you pull your knees up. If you ever watch yourself along the bottom of the pool – the little squares then all of a sudden boom – you just stop. That is because you have all that resistance here in your thighs. This is happening in Mike’s stroke. I don’t know if I will get a chance to do this today and I will put his breaststroke and superimpose it with another swimmers breaststroke as if they were swimming in synchronization. You can just tell when he gets to this point he falls behind. Then moved back ahead with another part of the stroke and fell back behind. So he has a tremendous amount of resistance compared to the wave breaststroker at this point in the stroke.

 

Our next contestant is Allison. Remember the butterflyer Alison – kind of went a little bit too deep. Now we will watch her on her breaststroke and see if she does the same thing and it’s amazing – you see a lot of commonalities from breast to fly. At this point we would want to see her hands up close to the surface. We want her going out this way. We don’t want her going down. She should be using more force from the chest instead of leading with the hands. So you see, even at that point, she got her elbows up out of the water, but we want to see more of a forward drive with the hands.

 

She has pretty good flexibility and is able to get her feet up real high. A pretty critical part right there in breaststroke is where you are catching the water with your feet and you are generating a lot of propulsion. That is sort of the beginning of the push – just like that would be the point when we have our feet on the wall in freestyle and your legs are slightly bent. You are ready to push – you want to be in great streamline position at that point to get maximum distance off the wall. Well, it is no different in breaststroke – same idea – when you get to that propulsive point in the kick you want to have your body in a position where it is most streamlined. We want her to be right under the surface of the water, arms extended straight out so that she can get the most distance from that propulsion from the kick.

 

Now we will go to our superb breaststrokers here – let’s go Kristy Kowal more of a 200 breaststroker than the 100, if I am not mistaken – very tall – very. Now let’s go back and slow it down a little bit because this is pretty nice stuff here – maybe like quarter and show her again. So she has a pretty good line, although I wouldn’t say it is as exceptional as Ed Moses who we will see in just a minute. She does get a little bit deep and almost resurfaces. So we can look at the line here. We always want to look for that great line in breaststroke. But you can see she really starts to almost float back up to the surface. Her hands are pointing up slightly. I don’t like to see hands pointing up in breaststroke or butterfly. It tells you maybe you have gotten a little bit too deep. Actually, if we are trying to streamline through the water and get your hands up there is a little bit of resistance there as well.

 

You see a really great catch there and you will see in all these breaststrokers how they are able to keep the elbows up. I don’t know if there are any of us in the room here who can do that, but that is very impressive. And on the in-sweep there that is the 180 degree line I was talking about. Remember, Mike had like the 90 or 100 degrees. That is 180 degrees, so basically what has happened there is she is sliding up into her breast rather than pulling the knees underneath her. This also tells you that she is not lifting the head to breathe. I don’t like to talk in terms of lifting the head to breathe in breaststroke – change in the body position – obviously the head will come out. There is your breath and then you are going to fall back into it. Great kick, feet back together, toes away from the body – looks great.

 

Ed Moses from the left side. Very nice stuff here and once again, he used the high elbows through the pull, sliding up there. And he gets really good extension there early and there it is – beautiful – look at that – it is beautiful. Maybe at that point he was moving to the next stroke or the head may be a little bit high, but I am not going to tell him, but he really holds that glide. When I show this in regular speed, which I will show you in a second, it is really amazing the distance that he will get out of each stroke. If you don’t see them get to a point where they have actually perfect streamlining and the head is down between the arms because it takes a little while to do that – to get back to that position and back up. Some of them like to leave the head just a little bit high like that – it allows them to get back up into their breath. It might not be the best streamlining, but maybe for their stroke rhythm it helps a little bit We are going to show him in full speed. Look at this – this is a 50 meter pool – three strokes – two strokes right there and it looks like he got 20 yards so it is a pretty amazing distance per stroke. There is also a clip on here which I won’t show, but it showed one of his 100 breaststroke World Cup races. It might have been where he got a world record. And even compared to other swimmers at the world elite level, it was amazing just how much more distance per stroke he got.

 

And then finally freestyle – so we will go back here and find our freestyle clips and a couple of masters here – let’s see if we have neglected anyone – Holly’s freestyle, okay? When Holly tries to get her head down pretty well – she does a good job on it. Pretty stiff legged – you see a lot of that in masters – kind of these 2 X 4’s just trying to work. If you swam when you were young you developed the type of musculature that is fluid and long and loose and you are flexible. Then that kick just flows back there. it holds the water very easily, but if not, you know. Holly came from a marathon running background. And you can see it is pretty stiff with the toes pointing down the whole time. Another thing we work on with Holly is her upper body strength and being able to catch the water effectively. It is kind of a press down there, elbow drops pretty good. Not a bad, bad pull, but certainly it could be improved on and then you are half way through the stroke – look how deep her stroke is. Kind of rough there. You have to be careful of that. Swimmers can develop some, shoulder problems at times if their shoulders are not real strong or they get a real straight arm pull because that puts a lot of emphasis on your shoulder and takes it out of your core body.

 

Let me go ahead and jump down to the freestylers – there are some pretty cool ones here. We have Chris Thompson. We will slow his down a little bit to a half and crank him up. He has a pretty unconventional stroke here. I was talking with Bob last night and said that it is not uncommon to see distance swimmers that do not have really that so-called ideal stroke. because these folks, whether you are Brooke Bennett or Chris Thompson, are such highly trained machines; and, not advocating that for them not to continue to work on their technique, but I tend to see more of what we might call flaws or some unusual quirks in strokes of distance swimmers than we do in sprinters. You can see – his head is up pretty high – not there, but then he pulls it up right there. He kind of yanks his head around a little bit. He might just have been looking for the wall on that particular occasion. He is probably sprinting pretty well here because he is really working his kick a lot. I cant imagine him working a kick like that for a 1500. You will be able to see it in some comparison videos. We talk about catching effectively early in the front quadrant stroke. You will see in his stroke here how – see that – that is a beautiful catch there – holding a lot of water with his arm. There comes the other hand, so here he has this situation – everything is out in front of him. Many masters don’t quite do it that way sometimes.

 

Another freestyler – Courtney Shealy – left side right side – we are seeing great length in her stroke, reaching long. We would consider that a fairly ideal head position. There is not really ideal anything in swimming. I mean, it is going to be specific to the swimmer – what works for them, but you can see her entry there – pretty solid. Actually she does something a little unusual in that she drops her hand pretty early in the stroke. I think this is okay, because it sort of helps to get into the thinking mode of catching early She is effectively there and then she will straighten it out a little bit there, but she has a pretty effective catch as well.

 

So that sort of goes through our different strokes on different folks. Now what we are going to do is do some comparison video just to kind of show you how this works. Right now I am on single swimmer screen and I can go to a multiple swimmer screen. So we have two here, and let’s say I have Courtney Shealy and I want to also see Chris Thompson’s right side. We can click and actually drag him up into this video here so now we have two of them. We now go to big screen and we can show both of them swimming. There are kind of different points here and we can stop it anywhere along the way and view them together. We were talking earlier about effectiveness of catch and that is a pretty good example there. It shows the difference between Chris Thompson and Courtney And then we could take out Chris Thompson and we will put in Kemp and show the difference between those two guys there. And maybe you want to look at head position or actually body position. You can see Courtney is pretty flat – Kent is – I think you can look at that and see that he is not quite the same there. So you can actually view up to four videos at the same time which I will show you here in just a second.

 

Another cool tool is that we can blend the videos. So I have two up there and this is called basic blend. I will hit that function and we will run them. Now this doesn’t work quite as well with swimming and a moving camera because you have to have it stable. In a certain place – just to show you how it can work well – let’s go to the skiing video which is down here. If you just isolate on the skiers there you can see that these were not in the same race, but the camera moved the same way in each of these races. Then you can slide this little tool back and forth and dominate on one or the other. If you can just imagine that I have two swimmers I can sort of emphasize one swimmer and then emphasize the other swimmer. So that is a kind of neat little function there.

 

Let’s go back and look at some of our combined videos and start with backstroke. Where is my combined video? – no – not here – alright, let’s go to breaststroke So now we have four of them coming up and if you notice down here there are a couple of white buttons. What I have done – once these clips are imported and I have watched them – I took one clip and have synchronized it at a certain point. It was actually a point where they were in front of the camera – extended – just before they started the out scull. Then I went to each clip and I did the same thing. So actually I can take this to that synchronization point – this little red triangle guy here. That is pretty close. Then I can jump to full screen and get rid of Johnny here so I have all swimmers in their streamline extended position. We saw Ed Moses here – very good and then we head up a little bit. We saw Kristy Kowal right before she starts her out scull – she is kind of sliding up a little bit, right? And we have to believe that this is Mike or Kent up there at the top. Here again, not too bad. I think it is Mike because his feet are down – he has a flexibility issue there and his head is up a little bit too high. And then I think we got Allison here who is pretty well streamlined – head is up a little bit too high. Remember she had kind of gone deep and come back up so it is kind of neat that it has this function so you can move this down and watch them any where you want to alright? This is a pretty good spot here because you see Courtney and Ed sort of sliding up in their strokes. They are keeping that 180 degree angle. Allison does that pretty well. I think maybe she gets a little more vertical – she gets pretty high out of the water and Mike doing the 1978 breaststroke.

 

And then you can play them and you can set this just to play for 30 minutes or as long as you want to. It will just keep going, but I am hitting it each time here. It will automatically start over, but that is very cool. It is kind of hard, if you are watching and learning from this. It is kind of hard to determine what to look at; it kind of does a number on your head, but it is pretty neat that you can get four up there and compare and contrast all at the same time.

 

Now if we go to another stroke – butterfly. So here we have Misty Hyman top left. We have Tom Malchow on bottom left and then we have – it could be Mike – it could be Kent on the top right and one of the girls – maybe Holly on the bottom left. So we watch him swim a little bit and I just want to go back and slow it down – say to a quarter speed and get them cranking again. There are a lot of things that you could see at one time. We can just look at one of the important factors being the chest press and the differences between the masters and the elite swimmers. Going back to our drawing tool we could draw this neat little thing here and kind of show Misty Hyman, and then we can go over here and show Kent. Very different body lines. And once again, that is because she has the flexibility or the know how to be able to keep the stroke up near the surface while the chest drops. The hands obviously are not the lowest part –point of the stroke right there.

 

We talked about angles before. There is also another way to do angles. You can do sort of reverse angle so on the other one we opened up an angle and measured it. If I wanted to measure for whatever reason, around the outside of that and use 280 degrees I could. A question that you asked earlier about the lines and can you carry over from one to the other? Probably if I click on this line here and I wanted to move it. There is a way to do that because this is right now on what’s called a clip drawing tool which means you can only draw on one clip at a time. There is another function called a board drawing tool. Right here this allows me to draw lines across from one to the other and it might allow me to move them a little bit from one to the other kind. You do have that ability to move those lines a little bit. The tricky part in filming swimming is – especially when you have videos coming from all different places – is that your depth is going to change so one line might not exactly apply to another line.

 

We are going to go to freestyle. This time our elite swimmers on the right are: Courtney Shealy, this could be Chris Thompson. And then a couple of the masters swimmers on the left. Once again if we go back to the synchronization point that we have just passed and we want to take a look – I think I did this one actually on one of their arms – it could have been the right arm was just about entering the water. This is pretty interesting because if we can follow this down a little bit we can really begin to see that front quadrant idea. So you can see how on the right side you have Chris Thompson already in a catch up mode. The left arm is entering the water. And Courtney Shealy is going to get there about now. So she is still holding the water pretty well, but maybe not quite the same as Chris Thompson. Then our masters swimmers on the left – you have Holly up top and she is still going through her stroke because she really didn’t hold the water as well as she might be able to. Then finally the other arm. So she has kind of the windmill and is not really holding the water on that front stroke as much as did Michael at the bottom half. His hand sort of entered the water when he was maybe 2/3 of the way through the stroke. So little things like that you can pick up and point out to your swimmers in that comparison mode.

 

Now let’s see, there was one more comparison – backstroke. We can just jump into backstroke and we can pull a couple of them up. Let’s say we want to see Tom Wilkins swim backstroke on his right side and we want to go to multi view. And we want to see somebody else swim on their right side – Kim. So now I have stacked them top to bottom. See them swimming – actually got one guy going the other way and but still see the opportunity there to put three together and see the guy up here at the top. He is one of my masters swimmers there and he would be in video A except I want to isolate him in a single video.  This is another situation where the balance is not that great so the kick ends up being pretty deep and sort of slipping through the water on his stroke. He got a little too deep with a lot of bubbles there. And there certainly is potential for improvement.

 

There is another function called “in the action” – this guy right here. What we have seen here is all video that has been imported into the program through the function called “view the import”. So basically when you set up your camera and you turn it on, you want to take some video and you always have to take the lens cap off. Now what is kind of cool about this is that I never even really have to touch the camera and it would be best if we had a tripod, but we don’t. Tim why don’t you just kind of hold it and show everybody how nice they look today? I need to be in import mode. All you need to do to record is hit the button here and boom – he is recording you guys. So this is just kind of instant feedback here. I am done there and a little clip comes up over here on the left on my play list. So, let’s say I want to see you guys – finish with these guys and I am finished with these guys so let me downsize this a little bit. I can highlight this and bring her in there and these were you guys and there you are okay? So that is just a nice touch if you want to do it really quick on the deck. And you could do it frame by frame. You can pause, we can take you one little bit at a time there and move you around. Very cool – Steve you are looking handsome today man – you are looking good.

 

Now, another thing that we can do is called live delay. Let’s say that you want to film starts and you put the camera on the other side of the pool.  Put it on a tripod focused on the starting block and you can set it on a time delay Using “Tools/Options” I want to go to “in the action”. Let’s say I want to have a delay of 7 seconds. Normally that is on zero because you want to see what you are getting. Now I want to go live here. I am kind of new at this so bear with me, and then I will film. It is capturing, it should tape for 7 seconds capturing video. Then I go live and there is what we just saw a few seconds ago. So – a little tricky, but once you get into it you kind of figure this out. I am still figuring it out, but, you have the ability to tape someone and then have them hop out and watch it.

 

Another cool function is called a capture settings where you have a pre-roll and a duration. Let’s say I have it set up and I am watching some freestyle turns and someone does a turn and I think that was a great turn – we really need to see that again. I can hit my button – as long a I hit it within three seconds after it happened – and it will capture a whole three seconds of video prior to when I hit that button. So I don’t have to like tape every one and wait for just the right one. The best example is a diver. If a diver stands there two seconds and sometimes 20 seconds. You don’t know when they are going to dive. You can hit the button and it captures three seconds before when you hit the button and then in this case the total duration of – which can be adjusted – 7 seconds. That might be enough time to get them going through the dive and to the surface. Then the diver can come back on the deck and watch the video which starts three seconds before you actually hit the record button. It is a pretty cool option.

 

This is the standard version – and there is a team pro version and you can do some things which they call media books and more web production. But if you are wanting to just videotape your swimmers and do some kind of neat things with drawing tools and comparison video – it is like $500, it is not too bad at all.

 

Now, another thing I can do is let’s go back to my categories. We all have relatives that live in different cities that we can’t really show this to. So let’s take one of my masters swimmers – Amy Lee. Let’s say we are going to show her breaststroke. So, Amy Lee really likes this picture and she wants to send it to her grandmother in Montana or she wants to show Aunt Matilda how good her streamlining is on breaststroke and email it to her. So what she can do here is go to the clipboard and we got this little picture here. There is a picture and for mail you save it as a jpg file and send it off. It takes about 5 seconds.

 

Now there is another function. You can take this entire video clip and you can take pictures of it sequentially. You can set it to take a picture every 1/10 of a second, 2/10, one second – whatever you want. Right now it is set on 2/10 of a second. So what I can do is hit this button here – it is taking pictures. If we wind this up we will see how on 2/10 – so that is the time – basically 00, 2/10, 4/10, 6/10, 8/10 alright and these are all the pictures. You can click on any one and it will come up – another one 2/10 later, I want to see 2/10 later and you can send an album of 20 pictures or whatever to Aunt Matilda who has a slow modem and it will probably take it forever to download.

 

Let’s see if there are a couple of more drawing tools that we could use here. When we went to full screen and we got a couple of other neat little things here. If you want to draw a circle around a head – just to kind of point it out – here is our circle. Or let’s just say we are going to focus on the upper body, you can do a rectangle as well. Another thing that you can use is called a measuring device and I don’t know how much of it applies to swimming but it probably would. Let’s say that I would show this more like a baseball video and it showed the stance of the guy and were able to measure that stance. So you have one measuring tool – let’s say that is one meter. We have our one meter measuring stick and we go somewhere else, what will happen is you will draw another line and it will be based on that being one meter okay? So that could help you at some point.

 

We can draw text. If she is sending this to Aunt Matilda and I hit text and I type it in. You can save that on there so that is a pretty cool little function. We have a little clock function here. Very cool and you can change the color of these numbers and the size of it and make it bigger. So you can measure here conceivably how long it takes to take one stroke. If I used it as a drawing board tool I could have clocks on each one. It is kind of arbitrary when you are drawing this because you don’t really know this is a one meter reference, unless you are able to go in the video and place a yardstick and then draw this line over it so for swimming. It probably won’t do you a lot of good, but some other sports it will work pretty well.

 

This is kind of a golf function because golfers have the swing thing – that kind of is built in for golf and follows the path of the swing. This is for a golfer too, so they can measure their stance, which if we moved horizontally maybe it could work for swimming. The lines here – these are like being in prison and you can just click on one of the lines and you can change like this way – you can change this way, if you were trying to show something like how small a tunnel they could swim in. you could compare a video now and a video tomorrow. It all depends on the standard and making sure that they are swimming at the same depth from the camera so this will function better. If you really want to make them feel enclosed then you have these full jailed cell areas screens. That might be hard because the lane line is not horizontal so it is not an exact tool.

 

You can change – in the text – the line size. If I wanted to draw a line and I wanted to change the width of that line I could jump that up to 6 or move them back, or if you wanted to draw an arrow that is the direction she is swimming at that point you could do that.

 

That is one of the things when you get into using this, there is so much that you can do with it – you have to sit down and determine what approaches am I going to take – am I going to go front – side – left –right – above water – below water – underneath. The possibilities are endless. I just pretty much stuck to basic left and right. bringing this in.

 

You can actually take any clip and download it to a CD or a DVD. And all of these clips are anywhere from 10 to 30 or 40 megabytes so they are big.  I am sitting here and loading all these clips on the computer which I do in DV import function. See, we have our under water camera and it feeds into here. You have to have a fire wire which runs from your digital camera to your fire wire connection in the back. Or, it could be a fire wire card so this is a 4 pinned or a 4 pin on the fire wire and that allows you to export from here, import into here – digital video. Basically when you have an under water camera hook into the feed from the under water camera and it’s just going to come through here and then feed into the computer. Then you can do your recording and your playing right here. Then once all those clips come up – for example – I am taping you guys right now. And I want to have my play list ready to go to and stop okay? The clip is not saved when it is in the play list, so I actually have to go in and save those particular clips. But, when I am saving them as clips I can go in and preview them here. So I am going to the preview function here and it allows me to play it. I know I am overtime, but I am getting there. Then I can play this clip and I don’t have to save all of it to a file. I can just save parts of it. That is part of the process too – just getting the clips in there.  You want short clips. You don’t want long clips. You don’t want to go swim 200 freestyle because you are talking many, many megabytes there. If you get two or three stroke cycles for any stroke that is ample enough to be able to see sort of what is going on with the swimmers. Oh yeah, all the drawing tools, the text, the time, the lines all that, you can save that and you can do voice-overs. I didn’t bring that function, but you can talk into it and save that whole thing as a  project. Then shift that to a CD or a DVD and they take it home and it is theirs. It is kind of hard to email some of this stuff because it is such a big file if you are emailing a 30 megabyte file – even on high speed it takes a long time to do that. So, I think that pretty much covers most of it and I encourage you use it. This means a lot to the swimmers to be able to do this kind of stuff. It takes a little while and a little bit of doing, but I think if you want to take a step forward and really develop your skills as a masters coach it will certainly be appreciated among the swimmers. Thank you for your attention – I had a lot of fun and enjoy the clinic.

 

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