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Aqua Fun Academy
Swimming Tip Tuesday

Swimming Tip Tuesday: Minimize the Kick

On this week’s Swimming Tip Tuesday we’re going to focus on how to maximize our forward propulsion by looking at the differences in how we kick our feet.

Swimming tip TuesdayThe basis of butterfly is dolphin kick, it is from this movement that the swimmer generates most of their forward momentum. When beginners are learning this stroke, some instructors will put emphasis on splash to differentiate between the two different types of kicks.

Dolphin kick is a wave motion generated from the hips. The swimmer will do the following sequence when performing the kick.

1-push the hips down towards the pool floor.

1a-bend at the knees.

1b- keep the feet close to the top of the water.

This is the initial ‘S’ or ‘wave’ motion. Then the swimmer will…Swimming Tip Tuesday

2- push the bum up towards to the top of the water.

2a-straighten the knees.

2b push the feet down towards the pool floor.

This is the second wave, this motion will become seamless with practice.

As the swimmer performs 2b (pushing the feet down towards the pool floor) they will execute that push gently the first time, tapping the water and hard the second time, forcing the water down beneath them. On the second kick, the swimmer engages the arms and adds to the momentum.

We’ve spoken about the mechanics but how do we maximize this movement? The answer is to minimize the amount of splash we create in the kick.

As I have emphasized in the past to avoid drag we want to maintain a streamlined body position. Remaining streamlined allows for the water to flow around the body without creating drag and assisting with the swimmers’ forward momentum.

Swimming Tip TuesdayIn the case of Butterfly we want to maintain the motion of water around us to avoid drag. Due to the wave like motion of this stroke it is in the swimmer’s best interest to minimize disruptions to the flow of water.

When we create splashes, we change the movement of the water around the swimmer. Due to the change in direction of the water’s movement, the swimmer needs to work against these other currents being created by large splashes.

As a result it important for swimmers to practice the execution of this kick, with great power and a small amount of splash.

Keep practicing, and we’ll see you next time for Swimming Tip Tuesday!

Swimming Tip Tuesday

Swimming Throwback Thursday: Water Volleyball

Swimming Throwback Thursday: Water Volleyball

Throwback Thursday to summer camp water activities with Head Counsellors Sayon and Hannah. After spending the mornings playing sports outside and breaking a sweat in the gym, what better way to cool off the afternoon in than in our swimming pool! Our afternoon consists of one hour of swimming lessons, followed by an hour of free play in the pool. By request, counsellors can set up in-water games like water volleyball (pictured in photo), water polo, capture the flag, etc… But most of the time, kids just want to do cannonballs!

Summer starts in two weeks! Don’t have a camp for your kids yet? Join us for a week full of outdoor and indoor sports, arts and crafts, and daily swimming! Learn more here: http://ow.ly/DITp30c1kvr

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July 26, 2016

 

About Water Volleyball:

Water volleyball is a team sport derived from volleyball in which the games are played in water. The sport is played in the United States, Europe and South America.

Water volleyball is mostly played in swimming pools. The court used varies from 3 X 2m to 6 X 5m in dimensions. A net that runs across the width of the court divides it into two equal halves. Different types of balls are used for playing, but the most suitable is a beach ball which is at least 28cm in diameter.

The sport is played at both recreational and competitive level. For recreational play, a team can have for 1 to 4 players, but in competitions each team should have four players.

Similar to that of volleyball, each play starts with a serve, followed by back and forth returns, until one team scores a point. However, the game play and scoring system works similar to that of table-tennis, where each team alternately gets to serve twice regardless of who scores the point, and the team to first reach 11 is the winner of the set.

There are some variations in, court size, the number of players per team, and the total number of sets played in a match, depending on which country the game is being played at.

Swimming Fit Friday Natation Forme Vendredi

Swimming Fit Friday – The Importance of Stretching

Today’s Swimming Fit Friday Post we will discuss the importance of stretching.

Many of us are guilty of neglecting stretching as a part of our regular routine. Though as we age it becomes increasingly important to stretch in our daily lives. Stretching dependent on the duration and intensity can be it’s own separate work out. For example Yoga is highly focused on learning ones body but also on stretching ones body and increasing the general range of motion. Our range of motion is composed of two elements; how well we can rotate and twist around a joint, secondly, how easily are these movements accomplished. The more frequently we stretch our range of motion increases. In the water it is relatively easier to work on expanding our ROM (range of motion).

I’m going to give some pointers on a helpful stretch one can do over time to help alleviate stiffness and reduce pain, which one can do in the water, as well as on land. Though the effectiveness of these movements is greater within the water.

A stretch for those of us with tight hips, or pain radiating down the outer most portion of the thigh the following stretch can help.

The equipment needed for this stretch is a pool noodle. Though it can be done without if one has a very strong scull.Swimming Fit Friday

  • Bringing the noodle underneath ones arms and keeping good posture
  • Place your right foot over top of your left knee.
  • Just above the ankle as well as to the left of your knee apply pressure and ease yourself into a seated position.

This stretch will open up the hips. If one has good balance within the water, try to pick your foot closest to the ground off of the floor – putting the body into suspend. This will further allow you to open up your hips and stretch the IT band down the side of the leg. Hold for up to 15-30 seconds at a time, on each side. If one is doing this as a beginner on land do so while sitting on the edge of a chair to Swimming Fit Fridaymaintain proper form.Swimming Fit Friday

Swimming Tip Tuesday

Swimming Tip Tuesday: Grey Ice

Our Swimming Tip Tuesday of the week:

Grey ice is unsafe. The grayness indicates the presence of water.

During wintertime, many of us like to skate or approach ice on small rivers or lakes nearby. However, the sturdiness of the ice is an incredibly important factor to whether or not we are able to enjoy this pastime. Nobody wants to be the person to end up falling in the ice. Whether it is proving a point to your friends or taking a (very bad) bet, what could seem like a fun innocent idea at first could end up being an absolutely nightmare within moments. It’s important to learn the rules of ice safety before heading out during the winter season.

The colour of the ice is a very strong indicator as to whether or not it is safe to approach and walk on it.  Clear blue ice is considered the strongest form of ice.
Grey ice however is considered to be the weakest of them all and is not considered safe in anyway.

However, there is also the indicator of ice thickness. It is said that 15cm is the minimum required thickness for a single person to walk on ice; 20cm being the required thickness for group skating or games.

Even with these indicators it is not enough to safely assess whether ice is safe enough for you alone or you and your friends to go out on. Ice thickness is a variable that fluctuates very often, and as such you need to be able to reassess the situation often. What could be thick ice one minute could be thin and unsafe the next. Also, one pocket of thick ice could easily be next to a pocket of thin ice, which could mean your next steps would be devastating. Common tips are to check the weather and to take note of the environment you are skating or walking on. Ponds and rivers fluctuate often.

Learn more about Aqua Speed here.

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Grey ice is unsafe

Swimming Motivation Monday: When Something is Important Enough

Today’s Swimming Motivation Monday:

When something is important enough, you do it even if the odds aren’t in your favour. – Elon Musk.

This is the mantra by which arguably the most important entrepreneur of the 21st century, Elon Musk, lives by. With this attitude, he took on the automotive industry and changed the social stigma on electric powered vehicles. With this attitude, he challenged NASA to colonize Mars. With this attitude, any one of us can can attack any problem knowing that our fears are nothing more than subsumed within our desire to achieve something better, something important, something worth fighting for.

The problem with a negative thought is not just contained within that moment. One singular negative thought can often serve as a catalyst for a chain of negativity. That negativity, if gone unchecked, will lead to pessimism, and ultimately defeatism and hopelessness. The resulting cycle leads to perpetual cynicism, and an aversion to new thought, new ideas, new experiences. A helpful tip is to look for the silver lining in every situation. If you’re thinking negatively because of the fear of failure, remember you only have to be right once. No matter how dim it seems, there is always a way through. Life never throws you more than you can handle.

Anyone who has failed to form good habits (or break bad ones) in the past and is now succeeding understands that continuous dedication and focus are key ingredients for progress. Remember that criticism is peoples’ way of coping with their own insecurity. If you’re ever facing criticism or condescension for your hard work and dedication, ask yourself if you’ve ever met a hater who’s doing better than you? Haters are actually lovers hating the fact that they are secretly in love with you. You keep doing you.

Being positive in a negative situation is not naive. It’s leadership.

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When something is important enough

Swimming Wanderlust Wednesday: Cheval Blanc Randheli

Today’s Swimming Wanderlust Wednesday: Cheval Blanc Randheli

You can shake the sand from your shoes, but not from your soul. This is the exemplification of Cheval Blanc Randheli’s approach to life. Bathed by the turquoise waters of the preserved Noonu Atoll, in a secluded lagoon, Randheli offered an experience of exclusive privacy. The striking 25 metre long square infinity pool and its beautifully landscaped surroundings provide an ideal getaway from the villa’s privacy.

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Cheval Blanc Randheli

Swimming Wanderlust Wednesday: Tropical Islands Resort

Today’s Swimming Wanderlust Wednesday: Tropical Islands Resort

At the intersection of German efficiency and the German yearning for warmer weather lies Tropical Islands Resort. Located in an old airship hanger, which also happens to be the world’s largest freestanding structure, Tropical Islands is home to the biggest indoor rainforest in the world, a beach, many tropical plants and a number of swimming pools, bars and restaurants. It is open around the clock, every day of the year.

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Tropical Islands Resort

Euro 2016 Swimming Wanderlust Wednesday: Stade Nautique

Today’s Swimming Wanderlust Wednesday: Stade Nautique

Even though we’re swimmers, we also love soccer! If you’re in France for the Euro Cup and need something to do between games, try dropping into the Stade Nautique in Auxerre, just south east of Paris. It boasts four heated indoor swimming pools with jacuzzi, and three outdoor swimming pools, one of which is olympic sized. If you’re coming in from a board short country, beware: the fashion police... I mean lifeguards… will make sure only Speedos are worn in the facility. Oh, and there’s a water slide. 

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Stade Nautique

Swimming Wanderlust Wednesday: Laucala Island Resort

Today’s Swimming Wanderlust Wednesday: Laucala Island Resort

A private island refuge in the South Pacific, Laucala unites dramtic rainforest-laced landscapes and white sandy beaches with unparalleled levels of luxury and privacy. Impeccably furnished bedroom and living areas open to private gardens, each with an infinity-edge pool lit by Tikki torches come dusk. Villas come with a buggy, so guests are free to explore the resort at their leisure.

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Laucala Island Resort

Swimming Wanderlust Wednesday: Thompson Hotel Toronto

Today’s Swimming Wanderlust Wednesday: Thompson Hotel Toronto

Toronto isn’t known for an ultra-luxury pool scene, but the AFA team is in agreement that the 6ix’s pool place to be is the Thompson Hotel downtown. One of the city’s few rooftop swimming locations, swimmers can enjoy beautiful views of the Toronto skyline from King West. There are also residences for Torontonians. Sometimes there’s no place like home.

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Thompson Hotel Toronto