The back stroke buddy
Author(s)Fonder, Gregory Paul
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Mechanical Engineering.
Alexander H. Slocum.
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The objective of this thesis was to study and improve one's own physical intelligence. Through studying bodily movements of people trying to accomplish new tasks, I realized one way to enhance physical intelligence was through teaching devices. My area of expertise in training was swim instruction, as I have been teaching swim lessons for over seven years. The initial problems that new swimmers encounter involve getting accustom to the water, submerging their heads, and floating on their backs. As a swim teacher, one can verbally instruct students through the first two problem areas, but in order to float on one's back, there are methods required to facilitate this skill. The most widely used approach is for a swim teacher to support the back of the student's head and neck with his/her hand and guide the student through the water. The goal of this thesis is to eliminate the need for constant support from a swimming teacher by developing a device which will apply the same teaching technique, yet enable students to learn using this device to swim on their backs without assistance. The apparatus created by following the criteria set forth is aptly named The Back Stroke Buddy. This apparatus consists of three parts - a head support, a neck support, and a base. A swimmer's head will lie in the middle of the base while the head and neck support, which are located below the base, cradle the back of the head and provide support. This device is made out of soft foam which allows it to be robust and one size fits all. While it does meet all the necessary requirements set forth, The Back Stroke Buddy does have other added benefits. This device, due to its durable nature, allows the user to swim into an obstacle such as the wall or a lane line while remaining unscathed. Although this device does enable the swimmer to float on his/her back, the strokes which can be performed while using it are limited because of shoulder interference. Future work on this product involves making The Back Stroke Buddy more conducive to all arm movements, obtaining a patent and producing it large scale to be sold in stores.
Thesis (S.B.)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, 2005.Cataloged from PDF version of thesis.
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Mechanical Engineering
Massachusetts Institute of Technology