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DESERTFLOWERG's Photo DESERTFLOWERG Posts: 1,437
6/27/11 1:45 A

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In terms of fluid mechanics, I assume drafting in swimming works similarly to drafting in cycling and I know that in cycling the person "pulling" actually gains efficiency by being drafted. In cycling, while the person drafting may get a 15% gain in efficiency, the person pulling gets something like a 5% gain in efficiency. So it's a win-win situation. Some cyclist don't know this and thus do not want anyone drafting off them. . . but I'll gladly take any advantage I can get.

As I said, I ASSUME drafting in swimming and cycling works similarly - would like to know if this is not true.



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HELENGUNTHER's Photo HELENGUNTHER Posts: 294
6/22/11 3:38 P

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Carolyn, interesting post and discussion. I just did a sprint tri this past weekend and I drafted off another swimmer for a good portion of the 1/2 mile swim. I was never close enough to touch her, but I know swimming behind her helped pull me along a little faster.
I'm not so sure that it slows down the person doing the pulling. When I swim master's there are many times that i lead in our lane, and a friend of mine usually gets sucked along in my draft. I have never felt that I'm slower when someone is drafting behind me. I don't think it affects my speed (or lack thereof) at all.
I've never really felt anyone drafting off me in a tri. But again, I'm not the one most folks would draft behind.

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GLADGAD's Photo GLADGAD Posts: 5,690
6/22/11 1:06 P

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I can totally relate to the kicking. Sometimes I WILL start breast stroking and that kick will generally moves people off of me. Once I had someone yell at me for kicking her. I don't think she was drafting because we were way at the back of the pack. I yelled back for her to get off of my feet.

Another time, a woman was so close to me that her fingers got laced up in my toes! That was kinda weird...

-Carolyn

"God gave you your body as a gift, so you should take care of it." - My Mom
TENISWHIZ's Photo TENISWHIZ SparkPoints: (36,736)
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6/22/11 12:22 P

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Like Jean, no one would care to draft off of me. LOL.... But I can tell you this much. A tri coach I had a couple of years ago, is one fast cookie in the water. She taught us how to draft, but she also taught us what to do if someone is drafting you and you don't want them there. She claims she just starts kicking at the person's head. There's now way they can know if you are doing it on purpose or if they are starting to think they are getting too close and back off.

Sounds terrible! I'm too nice. But she is super competitive and places in her division all the time. She ain't draggin' anyone with her!





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JONNYSMOMMY's Photo JONNYSMOMMY SparkPoints: (36,721)
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6/22/11 11:34 A

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I am such a slow swimmer that I don't think anyone would be interested in drafting off of me LOL. I guess you could do some extra hard kicking to discourage them from staying at your feet. Either that or move over and slow down a bit until they back off. You are right though, I have read that drafting during the swim makes swimming more difficult for the person being drafted off of. Sorry that this happened to you. :(

Jean
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GLADGAD's Photo GLADGAD Posts: 5,690
6/22/11 11:17 A

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I understand the concept of drafting, and I know if you can pull it off during a race, you're going to go faster with less effort. Unfortunately for the person being drafted, they are now dragging you along.

In my last open water (ocean) tri, I had a couple of women who were drafting off of me. I don't know how long they were back there, but I can say that I was swimming my butt off and not going anywhere near as fast as I thought I could. I even wrote the race director because I thought we were swimming against a current, but she assured me we were swimming with the current. My physical condition that day was excellent as my bike averaged about 2 miles per hour faster than any tri before, and I was well within my expectations on the run.

That opens up the possibility that people drafting off of me caused me to work extra hard. Does this happen to you? Do people draft off of you, and does it slow you down? What, if anything, can you do to get them off of you?

-Carolyn

"God gave you your body as a gift, so you should take care of it." - My Mom
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