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Racing with a snorkel
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I know this is probably going to stir the pot but lets try it any way.In August of 18 I came do with a case of legionnaires . It turned into double pneumonia before I knew I was in the hospital with 20% lung capacity and a tube. I spent total of 30 days in ICU and a week in rehab then a week of in house rehab before being told I could get back to it lightly. fast forward to the week before Christmas finally I cot to see a lung doctor and got some good news and some bad news.good news is I can train like normal minus swimming. Bad news is I now suffer from Adult respiratory destress syndrome. In short lungs are scared and lung capacity is down to 70-75% which means that for now if i want to compete in tris I have to use a snorkel (doc orders).I know that events that are sanctioned by USAtri I can swim with the snorkel . So how would you ladies and gents feel if someone showed at the start line with a Snorkel ?
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Re: Racing with a snorkel [jcmanser21009] [ In reply to ]
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jcmanser21009 wrote:
I know this is probably going to stir the pot but lets try it any way.In August of 18 I came do with a case of legionnaires . It turned into double pneumonia before I knew I was in the hospital with 20% lung capacity and a tube. I spent total of 30 days in ICU and a week in rehab then a week of in house rehab before being told I could get back to it lightly. fast forward to the week before Christmas finally I cot to see a lung doctor and got some good news and some bad news.good news is I can train like normal minus swimming. Bad news is I now suffer from Adult respiratory destress syndrome. In short lungs are scared and lung capacity is down to 70-75% which means that for now if i want to compete in tris I have to use a snorkel (doc orders).I know that events that are sanctioned by USAtri I can swim with the snorkel . So how would you ladies and gents feel if someone showed at the start line with a Snorkel ?

I guess the only issue here is the use of the word "Compete" since even with RD and USAT exception, you likely wouldn't be eligible for awards. Other than the awards issue, If the RD OKs it, have at it and enjoy the race.

808 > NYC > PDX
2020: Honu 70.3, CdA 70.3, NZ 70.3 WC
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Re: Racing with a snorkel [jcmanser21009] [ In reply to ]
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I'm sure I'd be quizzical. In a very polite way though but I guess it's human nature to question what stands out. Maybe if you're sending a question to the RD anyway why not ask to get a mention in the briefing? I think that would change puzzled looks into support.

AFAIK, most swim run events allow snorkels for anyone. So maybe that's worth thinking about?
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Re: Racing with a snorkel [OddSlug] [ In reply to ]
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never thought of that. Great idea
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Re: Racing with a snorkel [OddSlug] [ In reply to ]
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In the pool I am slower with a snorkel.

I assume this is due to added hydrodynamic resistance.

If you're competing with me in a race please use a snorkel.
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Re: Racing with a snorkel [jcmanser21009] [ In reply to ]
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jcmanser21009 wrote:
I know this is probably going to stir the pot but lets try it any way.In August of 18 I came do with a case of legionnaires . It turned into double pneumonia before I knew I was in the hospital with 20% lung capacity and a tube. I spent total of 30 days in ICU and a week in rehab then a week of in house rehab before being told I could get back to it lightly. fast forward to the week before Christmas finally I cot to see a lung doctor and got some good news and some bad news.good news is I can train like normal minus swimming. Bad news is I now suffer from Adult respiratory destress syndrome. In short lungs are scared and lung capacity is down to 70-75% which means that for now if i want to compete in tris I have to use a snorkel (doc orders).I know that events that are sanctioned by USAtri I can swim with the snorkel . So how would you ladies and gents feel if someone showed at the start line with a Snorkel ?

I wouldn't care at all, even if you were in my Age Group. I had a cervical disc replacement in October so understand why someone might need to use one to compete. I occasionally use a snorkel in the pool for drills. I personally don't think it would work very well--water getting in it, people bumping it, but if it allows you to compete more power to you. I will be working on a new type of siting (not sure how yet) as a result of my surgery.
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Re: Racing with a snorkel [jcmanser21009] [ In reply to ]
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The snorkel isn't going to make it easier to breath, it'll make it harder. You typically have to "pull" a lot harder to get the breath.

Also, using a snorkel open water isn't like using it in the pool with lanes lines that diminish the chop. I've had athletes swallow a lot of water who tried to use snorkels in open water.

Hope this helps.

Tim

http://www.magnoliamasters.com
http://www.snappingtortuga.com
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Re: Racing with a snorkel [jcmanser21009] [ In reply to ]
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jcmanser21009 wrote:
I know this is probably going to stir the pot but lets try it any way.In August of 18 I came do with a case of legionnaires . It turned into double pneumonia before I knew I was in the hospital with 20% lung capacity and a tube. I spent total of 30 days in ICU and a week in rehab then a week of in house rehab before being told I could get back to it lightly. fast forward to the week before Christmas finally I cot to see a lung doctor and got some good news and some bad news.good news is I can train like normal minus swimming. Bad news is I now suffer from Adult respiratory destress syndrome. In short lungs are scared and lung capacity is down to 70-75% which means that for now if i want to compete in tris I have to use a snorkel (doc orders).I know that events that are sanctioned by USAtri I can swim with the snorkel . So how would you ladies and gents feel if someone showed at the start line with a Snorkel ?

I don't think your Doc knows much about swimming and about how using a snorkel affects your ability to breath. As Tim ("SnappingT") points out, the snorkel actually makes it HARDER to breath, not easier. I think you should just swim normally as only having 70% lung capacity is not really going to affect your triathlon swimming all that much; now if you were shooting to qualify for the Oly Trials in swimming, sure, your lungs would hinder that but, just for tri swimming, i can't see it being a big problem.


"Anyone can be who they want to be IF they have the HUNGER and the DRIVE."
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Re: Racing with a snorkel [jcmanser21009] [ In reply to ]
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sorry for your injuries..

as others said, not sure that the snorkel is going to help. At high effort this just adds an extra obstacle to airflow, probably better off breathing every other stroke 1:2 or even Gary Hall/monty's 2:3 breathing.

I went through flu, pneumonia, pleurisy, a decade or so ago. Lost about 20-30% of lung function permanently, which has been a bore. Swim sprint times are unchanged, longer distances really fall off.
For tris I used to swim the first few minutes with 1:4 breathing, but can't do that anymore.

my son had pneumonia and a collapsed lung in Dec 2017, was back swim racing in a month or so, and set PRs at conference meet in Feb. What it is to be a young dog..
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Re: Racing with a snorkel [jcmanser21009] [ In reply to ]
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Do it.
That way, when you beat me in the swim because Im slow as tits in zero gravity (just kinda float there), then I can legit say "ya well he had a snorkel"

I now bet you are imagining what tits look like in space. You are welcome.
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Re: Racing with a snorkel [Twinkie] [ In reply to ]
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I find it terrifying whenever I have to share a lane while swimming with a snorkel and pretty soon I'm breathing in water other swimmers have kicked up into the snorkel. I think open water with one of those freestyle snorkels would be a nightmare, especially with lots of other swimmers around.

I also swim slower with a snorkel than without one. Not sure why; I always assumed it was because the snorkel is tiny in diameter and restricts breathing somewhat. Maybe it is hydrodynamics too
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Re: Racing with a snorkel [jcmanser21009] [ In reply to ]
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I'd be happy you're there.
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Re: Racing with a snorkel [jcmanser21009] [ In reply to ]
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I'm going with others and saying your doc is wrong (no I ain't a doc but been swimming and diving for ages). If you had a neck issue, yeah snorkel. If not it's not going to help, it's only going to make it worse.

And seconding the issue of being in OW with one unless you are not near anyone and it's glass flat. I recently joined a swim program that uses snorkels often, and swam for the first time last weekend with one. There were a few lengths when I had to figure out whether I stop or could I get to the wall as it was full of water. Either through chop, or more often my habit of turning my head even though I didn't need to.. introducing water.

I guess just saying even without lung problems unless you practice quite a bit snorkel in a race is going to introduce ay more issues than it solves

As for how i'd feel if you showed up, wouldn't really care.
Last edited by: ChrisM: Jan 10, 19 14:39
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Re: Racing with a snorkel [jcmanser21009] [ In reply to ]
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Yes as others have stated, you doc has no idea what he is talking about, he probably thinks a snorkel is scuba. You get "less" air with a snorkel, not more. The only thing the snorkel does is allow you to keep your head straight and down. And in a race not sure that is even a good thing, and no doubt unless you start dead last, and stay there, you are going to get water in that thing and breath it into your lungs. That would be a horrible outcome for someone in your position.

Whats wrong with just swimming the pace you can? Swimming is swimming, train in the pool for the pace you can, and then replicate it at the race. Just stay right or left of the group(the opposite side you breath on), take it easy until it sorts out, and then find a pair of feet to swim easily on in a line, or back of a small group..It is already hard for you, no need to make it even harder...
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Re: Racing with a snorkel [jcmanser21009] [ In reply to ]
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Sorry to read of your plight.

There was a snorkel using participant the year I did IMWI. I didn't care.

ETA - If you want to try a snorkel, check out the power breather. It has 2 tubes vs one and uses one way valves to keep air fresher (no CO2 build up). The one way valves also help with splashing water. Drips of water run down the tubes and out the bottom one way valve, not into your mouth.

That said, it's still freaky to use one in open water. A group I swim with holds regular time at the local river so I tried it out. It would take a bunch of practice for me to not feel panicked with that and lots of other swimmers around me. You see, unlike goggles with an elastic strap, this has a plastic adjustable head strap that is not just quickly pulled off your face in a moment of panic (think flat turning disk like a boa on bike shoes). I'd love to retrofit the head strap to be a standard stretchy band. Last thing, I have a small mouth and the power breather came with a big enough bite piece that it was uncomfortable to hold my jaw like that. So I bought a replacement mouth piece for a generic snorkel and like it much better. (Of course, the dentist also uses kids plates to make molds of my teeth, so I may be an outlier here.)

To breathe, to feel, to know I'm alive.
Last edited by: Tsunami: Jan 12, 19 15:13
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Re: Racing with a snorkel [monty] [ In reply to ]
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As someone also with a respiratory problem, I'll go against what most folks say here. I can breathe a LOT more air in and out in with my snorkel. Why ? Well for starters the mouthpiece and pipe 'hole' is no smaller than the limiting diameter of a windpipe. (As that must be one of the limiters in getting air in and out, along of course with stuff like how powerful you muscles are that work your diaphragm etc to inhalf and exhale).
But more than the diameter of the pipe, what a snorkel allows is CONSTANT breathing both in and out. Whereas the in breath is limited to only being avaliable what, something like 15% (as an educated guess) of the time if on breathe-every-3.
So if your limiting factor is being able suck air in, being able to do it constantly (or ok 50% of the time as you're breathing out the other 50%) vs say 15% helps.

But i do agree there is more drag. However for me the ability to generate more power by being able to get more air in and out, easily outweighs that drag. (+ any technique flaws i have do not appear so much, as most of my technique faults are at the breathing point.)

The limiting factor for someone with no respiratory problem may be different.
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Re: Racing with a snorkel [BobAjobb] [ In reply to ]
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In 50 years of competitive swimming at the age group, high school, college and Masters level, I have never known anyone whose breathing was not restricted by a snorkel. As a matter of fact, coaches use snorkels specifically as a drill to restrict breathing. I would suggest that if a snorkel allows you to breath more freely, then you are likely not breathing correctly.
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Re: Racing with a snorkel [BobAjobb] [ In reply to ]
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since a snorkel doesn't restrict your breathing due to the size of the tube being the same as your windpipe, trying running a mile with a snorkel and let me know if it restricts your breathing.....it definitely does,
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Re: Racing with a snorkel [BobAjobb] [ In reply to ]
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I’m never holding my breath swimming, unless it’s a turn. And iti isn’t the mouth diameter, it’s the stale air that gets trapped in the tube, you are rebreathing bad air each breath. Maybe work on exhaling more fully, and just breathe more often.
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Re: Racing with a snorkel [jcmanser21009] [ In reply to ]
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Hello

like Monty and Tim, I'm surprised by your doc request.

The main reason is that from most studies, swimming is requesting much less air than biking and running, at same muscle effort level. Because arm muscles are lighter than legs muscles ? Because lack of access to air push anaerobic ?
Apparantly, from research studies, elite swimmers only use 3 liters oxygen per minute at 4mmol/L lactate (1 hour max effort), vs 4,5 liters for bikers.

At 52 years old, with my average lungs and heart and blood, I can't support 4.5 liters for an hour (neither 5mn), but 3 liters is OK.
And with my small swimming muscles (if I do not overuse my legs), 1.5 liter is probably enough.

Consequence is that swimming is putting less pressure on lungs and cardio system than biking and running.
Personally I noticed that on both breathing and BPM.

On the other side :
yes, in tri, I probably swim at a lactate level higher than bike and run, as it is a shorter part.
maybe snorkel giving constant access to air is better for you. Necessary ?

Either you want to follow your doc, and tri "pre DSQ", or you can test normal breathing (maybe limiting leg use) and see another doc with swimming experience ?

Hope you will find solution to overcome the issue. Good luck !
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Re: Racing with a snorkel [jcmanser21009] [ In reply to ]
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Like most my races. My first thought when I see something out of place I go “that guy is either very fast or a doofus.” (Like the guys I see doing the events in speedos, fat bikes, costumes, etc)

Then I don’t think about them. If I see them pass me I say, man looks like that guy is fast so he can do whatever he wants.
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Re: Racing with a snorkel [patentattorney] [ In reply to ]
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I just couldn’t care less at a race about somebody with a snorkel or any number of other things. I’m so wrapped up and dealing with my own race crap I can’t imagine worrying about somebody else.
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Re: Racing with a snorkel [jcmanser21009] [ In reply to ]
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Snorkels add more dead space (the volume of a breath that doesn't participate in gas exchange). This causes you to breathe in a higher percentage of carbon dioxide than ambient air would have. THAT is what primarily increases the work of breathing when using a snorkel. Unless your doc is a pulmonologist, I doubt they'd consider this.


https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12740732
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Re: Racing with a snorkel [jcmanser21009] [ In reply to ]
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I've swam 100 of thousands of yards in the pool with a snorkel. I couldn't sprint faster with one but for the Ironman pace swim I bet I may be faster with one. Never tried it in open water or a race so can't comment there.
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Re: Racing with a snorkel [jcmanser21009] [ In reply to ]
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I just saw a youtube ad for the power breather and it comes with different end caps for different situations. There have been many races where people have been using a snorkel, never heard anyone say anything bad about them. There was one lady who used one and was just recovering from a serious illness, we congratulated her for getting out and having the courage to get back into training and racing.
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