Monday, October 19, 2009

Pushing Swimming Pulls

No that title is not a typo - by swimming pull, I mean the pull in freestyle. (swimming pull - kinda cool name, huh?)

I wanted to talk about swimming pulls and pushes today because I am fighting myself to do them properly.

Done properly, the freestyle stroke begins as a pull down to approximately one's chin and following a transition point (the S) turns into a push back towards and to the thigh. Lots of people skip most of the push and bring their arm back up (to begin their reach again) prematurely (before completing the push). This simple error can eliminate as much as 1/2 of the stroke's power potential.

I'm fighting this myself. I naturally want to start my arm back toward the front as soon as I've reached my waist. If I concentrate on it, I can add an additional foot of thrust (push) to each stroke.

Unfortunately, it can be fatiguing if one is not accustomed to doing this additional work. I'm practicing when I go slow, with the hope that it will build the muscle for faster workouts later.

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