My favorite stroke tip

My favorite stroke tip


Beginning with the catch, and continuing through the finish of your pull:

  • Keep your fingers pointed straight down toward the bottom of the pool,
  • palm facing directly behind you,
  • elbows high.

This is a distilled version of the “paddle stroke,” which has been taught in elite USA Swimming programs since the mid-1990s, but has only recently been widely taught in adult Masters programs.

I like this stroke tip for several reasons:

  • It’s simple and easy to understand, even for new swimmers.
  • It’s high-leverage, meaning it can produce large gains in speed.
  • It’s useful for swimmers of all abilities.

fingers_down

I use this “stroke thought” almost every time I swim these days. If I’m feeling fatigued or unfocused, it’s surprisingly easy to fall back on an “S” pull pattern (an unconscious but ineffective attempt to gain more purchase on the water), or to let my elbows slip.

Yet another reason I love the FINIS Agility Paddles: it is much easier to “feel” the early catch, and sustain it throughout the pull. If you start pulling through at odd angles (rather than straight back), the paddle may slip right off your hand.

fingers_down3Is that a Zoolander face?

 

2 Responses to “My favorite stroke tip”

  1. Improving triathlon swimming performance – Part 2 | LoneSwimmer

    2013-05-31T10:52:15+00:00

    [...] expert swimmer will develop technique errors once they lose focus on their stroke or get tired, as Evan points out. So you must concentrate on correct technique constantly, and always expect new errors to develop [...]

    Reply
  2. HOW TO: Open water swim tips for triathletes | LoneSwimmer

    2013-06-03T03:27:54+00:00

    [...] This follows up Part 1 and Part 2 of common triathlon swimming techniques and remedies, and Evan’s tips on the best use of a public pool for training and a simple effective front crawl stroke tip. [...]

    Reply

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