The basic principles of a freestyle stroke

How we walk, sit, stand, and carry our posture during daily activities affects how we move in our sport. It is especially important to learn how to move from the inside to outside of the body. Primarily, this means presenting a posture that permits the most efficient use of the muscles of the hips, legs, and torso the core. Learning to engage these muscles during flexion, extension, and rotation is central to performing better movements in all sports and begins with proper posture.

The basic principles of a freestyle stroke

The basic principles of a freestyle stroke

A systematic approach to enhancing your swim technique. It's true that making significant gains in the pool is difficult when we spend the majority of our training sessions working on our bike and run techniques.

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Swimming improvements, however, are often just a few technique sessions away. The change needs to occur in your mind before it transfers to the water.

As a coach and lifelong student of swimming and triathlon, I know that a more efficient swim does make an impact on your bike and ultimately your run, so I use the following approach when working with triathletes to make gains in the water.

It all starts here. Before you start thinking about all the other aspects of the swim, you must have proper body alignment in the water. Don't make the mistake of thinking your wetsuit will correct body balance.

Learning to swim faster starts in a pool and you will become a better swimmer by starting to learn how to get your body balanced properly in the water. Cues to look for: Head, hip, and feet positioning. Are they in alignment? Is the body long? Through a series of drills designed to promote proper body alignment.

The athlete needs to be able to identify when they aren't in position and how to self-diagnose and correct this before moving on to the next step. If the hand does not enter the water properly then your chances of getting a good purchase of the water up front is significantly diminished.

Are the fingertips entering the water before the wrist and elbow? Are the hands entering the water directly above the shoulder without crossover on both sides? After the hand enters the water, where do they set up for the catch? Does the hand stay below the elbow at all times?

Are the elbow, forearm, wrist, and fingertip in alignment? Most triathletes hand entry remains too close to the surface of the water and does not allow for a proper catch of the water. Often I see athletes "scoop" their fingertips up to the water surface, essentially putting on the brakes.

The hand entry should set up in line with the shoulder approximately four to six inches below the surface of the water. By recording and breaking down video of the athlete, along with on land demonstrations and drills.

Pause DrillTap Drill 3. After body positioning and hand entry is fixed, the next focus area is the timing of the pull. When does the lead hand start pulling in relation to the recovery arm? This is one of the biggest mistakes I see with novice swimmers.

This puts the body out of alignment causing unnecessary drag. Pause Drill, Tap drill. The Catch and Stroke: The next step becomes the purchase or catch of the water and the stroke. The goal is to grab hold of the water and pull the water back behind you not push down- this causes excess bubbles.

This is accomplished with the hand and forearm. Many people talk about early vertical forearm but few actually know what it means or how to achieve this. Assuming the entry and timing are correct the next step is the set of the elbow.

Setting the elbow and getting the fingertips to point to the bottom of the pool without flexing the wrist creates early vertical forearm. There are several different cues I give swimmers.Regardless of individual stroke style or rhythm, the most important core principle of an efficient freestyle, is having a buoyant body position, with head, shoulders, hips and heels at the surface of the water.

Swim Smooth's Learn to Swim Freestyle Program is an inspirational method of learning the freestyle stroke. With our help you can overcome the challenges and enjoy swimming smooth relaxed freestyle!

The Program is DVD based and built around a simple to follow 10 Step process. Cues to look for: The goal is to identify a stroke rate the athlete can maintain which produces the fastest times for a certain distance or distances. Let's face it—it does you no good to have a stroke count of 12 per 25 yards if it takes you 40 seconds to swim.

Most triathletes pay very little attention to stroke rate. In fact, this principle has been used by naval engineers for hundreds of years. To swim taller in the freestyle stroke, you enter your recovering arm early in the water once it has passed your head.

You also make sure to completely extend your recovering arm forward underwater before . Jul 04,  · Get faster, fitter, stronger at the pool by improving your swim technique with our series of Speedo Fit videos. Produced with an elite swim coach and filmed in slow motion to help you improve your.

The basic principles of a freestyle stroke

This course starts with an overview of the basic freestyle stroke mechanics, and common errors. Then, it presents a step-by-step approach to using video to analyze, evaluate, and coach the swimmer to correct and improve their technique.

Freestyle Stroke Analysis & Evaluation | IRONMAN U