Swim School utilizes kicksticks as one of our main teaching tools.
This helpful tool assists in the development of freestyle armstrokes
as well as the integration and coordination of side breathing
with the armstrokes. You may read about "catchup freestyle" in
your research on refining the freestlye. The kickstick aids in
this process. Seahorse Swim School has kicksticks for sale for
$20. Let me know if you would like to purchase one and I will
bring it to our next lesson.
While researching stroke refinement for all strokes,
I have found the following websites to be very helpful. If, in
your own research, you find a fantastic website full of great
information that you would like to share with others, please submit
it to me via email for review to be included as a link on this
page. I look forward to developing a comprehensive and informative
list of links here and look forward to your input.
Swimming Practice Plans.com
Utube Videos of interest:
Video of muscles used in each stroke
Stroke Technique Suggestions
Head position is one of the key elements of a great backstroke.
Keeping your head still and back, chin up in a neutral position,
can assist in lifting your hips towards the surface of the water
allowing you to be more hydrodynamic. A hydrodynamic body position
is easily propelled by a strong kick.
The backstroke kick is a short, quick and steady
one that is done under water with straight legs and pointed toes.
The action of the foot/leg is similar to kicking a ball. Avoid
breaking the surface of the water with your knees and allow the
power of the kick to originate from the hips and come out through
Alternating ArmstrokesIn the recovery portion
of the stroke, the straight hand and arm are lead out of the water
by the thumb, and as the arm brushes past the ear it turns outward
to encouraging the hand entry to begin above the head with the
pinky. As your hand catches the water above your head, push the
water with a bent elbow to your hips. The motion of the power
phase of the arm is as if you were throwing the water from above
your head to your toes.
Body Position. Body Roll. As you reach your hand
behind your head, your body and legs should roll to that side.
Rolling your body allows you to essentially "grab" more water
behind you. A good drill to encourage body roll and correct head
position, is to kick on your back with your head in a neutral
position while rolling your shoulders from one side to another.
Hold & kick for a count of 3 seconds on each side. Remember
to keep your head still and back. To keep water from entering
your mouth and nose while swimming on your back, keep your head
& neck in a neutral position. Breathe in while recovering
and blow out while exerting energy.
Breaststroke is a difficult stroke to master in many ways due
to the combined elements of the arm and leg actions. The timing
is what makes this stroke a challenge. Your arms are going to
work first, working to pull your head and mouth out of the water
to breathe. This pull motion can pull your head up so much that
it forces your body in a diagonal position causing form drag.
Form drag is caused by your bodys position in the water. After
grabbing your breath of air, it is important to put your face
back down as soon as you can to assist in leveling out your body
in the water to be more hydrodynamic. After your arms have pulled
your face out of the water, they begin to recover. It is at this
point that your legs kick in. Both legs should move in synchronicity.
The heals of your feet come up to your rear end, then your feet
point outwards to begin the power phase and finally swoop around
grabbing the water and squeezing it between your straightened
legs. It is important to try to keep your hands together until
your legs come together and touch so that you can enjoy the gliding
action in this stroke. Breaststroke is all about the glide; enjoy