Swimming With Your Hips
In August of last year I woke up one morning to discover that I was blind in my left eye. I had emergency surgery that day and then had to spend 2 weeks where I wasn't allowed to read, use the computers or nearly anything else that I normally do. Worse, for the first week, I had to sit in a chair tilted back at a 45 degree angle and with my head turned 90 degrees to the left. Pretty much all I could do the entire time was pet the cats and think.
One of the things that I thought about was a post by @evmo from the "early days" of MSF where he said something about being an "arm swimmer" but wished he could become more of a "hip swimmer." Using my hips is second nature for me as I came from a race walking background. To help with using the hips, I came up with the following insanely cheap and easy-to-make pool tool:
1) Cut a 4" length of 1/2" inner diameter PVC pipe. (3/4" works, too)
2) Use PVC cement to secure a standard end cap to one end of the pipe.
3) Get two(2) of the largest ball bearings that will move freely in the pipe and put them into the pipe.
4) Seal the other end of the pipe with a standard end cap. (At this point, no water should be able to get into the pipe.)
5) Take a piece of old swimsuit (yet another use for old swimsuits!) and wrap it around the pipe between the two end caps and then throw some stitches in the fabric to keep it around the pipe.
To use: Put two stainless steel safety pins in the fabric and then attach the whole thing to the INSIDE of your swim suit using the safety pins. Attach it to the suit with the tool centered in the front so that it is level and just below where the drawstring for a guy's swim suit is. When you swim this will create a concussive effect that can be felt when you move your hips. The point here is NOT that you will feel it, but it is the timing and the rhythm of the concussive effect that you are keying in on and trying to synchronize it to your attempts at hip movement. If someone can watch you and tell you when you are doing it right, you can remember the rhythm and timing and then duplicate it on your own.
A quick mash-up that I've tried and they work (Bad picture. The cat is "Dolby". He is in charge of quality control at Jansen Research Laboratories):
“Moderation is a fatal thing. Nothing succeeds like excess.” - Oscar Wilde