I’ve been following a training regimen, alone, in preparation for my second Tri — Nation’s. My first one was Nation’s 2010.
I have anxiety about the swimming, but have recently found more comfort and success.
Since drafting in swimming is legal, and a big boost in saving energy …
Would someone want to practice it with me … and of course do it during Nation’s?
I’m averaging around 3’30” per 100 meters.
I’m signed up to swim in the DC Club Wave.
This will be more difficult to than it's worth. I'd honestly just focus on getting comfortable in the water (particularly body position) and you'll do great. In my opinion drafting in the water is only going to be a benefit once your technique is as good as it can be.
Thanks for your comment.
I've been self-instructing via the Swim Smooth online sessions. They claim 18-25% reduction of effort through drafting.
You should give the DC Tri Masters swim program a try. Some coaching from the deck might provide pointers to improve your stroke and achieve additional reduction in effort. You would also get a feel for what drafting is like and that might help you on race day if you find yourself behind a person that you want to follow.
You can buy a pass and then use the session when you can make it to the pools.
Also try to practice in open water. I believe that they still hold open water swims at National Harbor during the summer. The biggest gain that I have made was just getting comfortable in the open water and improving my sighting.
Thanks for the helpful responses.
What is the 'etiquette' for swim-drafting during a race? Seems to me many people will NOT want a stranger drafting them.
I'm surprised that pre-agreed drafting couples or triplets seem to be an exception.
I would think that, even if for some reason one were to LOSE 10% in speed by drafting with slower partners, that 18%-25% less-energy expended would be more than worth it.
And pre-arranged drafting would mean splitting the lead evenly -- 50-50 for couples; 33-33-33 for triplets.
Pre-arranged drafting works well on paper, but not in reality. Too many other swimmers and environmental factors involved that will cause you to expend more energy than necessary to keep track of your partners. If you put yourself in the back of the wave, you will be caught by the next wave and the next and the next.
The way that the pros and all armatures draft is to find the feet of the person that just swam past them and hang on. If they are too fast, wait for another one and another one. Strangers drafting off one another is how it is done and done often at races.
The etiquette is to not touch or grab people's feet. It's not like bike drafting where you take turn pulling. In swimming, it's find feet and hang on for as long as you can or want.
Thanks for that. Clear and helpful.
I presume your auto-correction changed 'amateurs' to 'armatures'!
I agree with Dave. Master's swim practice should be a good place to learn. You get the most benefit by staying on someones feet which is kinda like lane swimming with very short seperation intervals. You also get a good boost by swimming with your head level to their hip and the group pracices that as well.
Completely cool to do this to a stranger and the closer you can get the better. However if you do start touching their feet or knocking them from the side it will slow both of you down. You also wont be making very many friends.
Also just to note - I don't think a 20-30% energy savings translates to a 20-30% faster swim split. In my experience you probably get 5% faster and feel fresher for your bike. So to bring that swim time down its much more important to practice swimming fast and swimming in open water. GL