Sunday, July 11, 2010

A Simple Secret

Sometimes the simplest things make the biggest difference. For years I’ve tried to learn flip turns, but the result was always some sort of weird sideways motion instead of a true flip. Observers said I didn’t keep my head down, so I tried envisioning my chin glued to my chest. It didn’t work – my head came up mid-flip, I listed to my side, and my feet missed the wall. Then my daughter told me she could do proper flip turns only with her eyes closed. When I mentioned this technique to my Masters swim coach, she gave me the kind of incredulous smile I give my younger sister when she says something stupid, but I know she means well. Of course, I should keep my eyes closed. So, I approached the wall, tucked my chin, squeezed my eyes shut, pulled my body forward and down – and over, landing my feet squarely on the wall. I pushed off and surfaced to “high fives” all around. I’d finally done a successful flip turn.

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