Sunday, 12 January 2014


When I was a teenager, I had a note pinned to my mirror: "If perfection could be attained, it would not be worth having." I still think that's true because if you were to become perfect at something it would be no fun any more. Half the fun is in the learning, and that's especially true when you're at the beginning of something - witness my joy at finally being able to switch neatly from a C to D and back again whilst playing Twinkle Twinkle during flute practice this evening. I played that little song LIKE A BOSS, man.

Adjusting faults when you're further down the path is harder, though. The coaching sessions with Dave have been well worth it because it's given me a clear focus on what needs fixing in my stroke - I don't need to worry overmuch about general rotation or my kick, which is nice. I do need to work hard on my hand entry, which I think is coming along ok - that was my big take-home from the session tonight, I really need to reach deeper and more sharply into the water than I have been doing. I know what that looks and feels like now, though, so I just need to stay on top of it. It's going to be weird to see how that works in a wetsuit, too.

The more difficult thing to correct will be my left arm. It is significantly less flexible in the shoulder, it seems (which is damned annoying because it's the right that got injured a few years ago), and my stroke tends to be too low at the elbow, too close to the centreline and not strong in the catch, so I'm losing power dramatically there. My right side is apparently fine, I must look hilarious moving down the pool in fits and starts. In terms of fixing it I really need to move to bilateral breathing now - I've been avoiding it long enough - and lots of drills, in particular single arm, doggy paddle and FQS. Yuck. The fact that these are the drills I absolutely hate is revealing.

It's interesting (to me, I appreciate everyone else is bored stiff) that in karate that strong right side is taking over excessively - in kumite I lead with my right leg WAY too much to the point it's a) predictable for my opponent and b) it's actually hurting my hip. So I think I need to have a chat with all my teachers and figure out how to balance myself.