Breaststroke Arms with Flutter Kick: A Drill to Speed Up Stroke Tempo

Michael Butler
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Here is how to do it:

Get a 25-yard line visual in your mind, (a quarter of the pool).

You will start on the wall with your flutter kick and arms alone.

On the wall, take your hands off the wall and start the arms out so that they are quiet but taking you up.

The most important thing is to let the arms stay loose as if they are going to drop down or collapse off to the sides.

You should go underwater with your hands until you reach the front part of your body.

On the second breaststroke kicking cycle,—you have your arms stretched out in front of your chest, you will perform the pull down (as you did in the freestyle practicing).

The next interval is where you will focus on the pulling.

As you get ready for the third stroke cycle, focus on the turnover.

Think about bringing the hands in and preparing for the catch.

Keep the hands above water…as long as the hands are above water, and you keep the arms relaxed, it all looks like a nice glide.

There should not be much time below the surface.

If you are a competitive swimmer, then this drill should be part of your training.

Take the time to practice it at the end of your workout.

The drill can easily be used during training sessions to help with your stroke.

More Breaststroke Awesomeness:

One of the most interesting things about swimming is how the body achieves propulsion. Most people are familiar with the dolphin kick and the bicep curl-like stroke used in freestyle.

But not everyone is familiar with the flutter kick. It’s an extremely effective exercise for building the hamstrings and gluts, the muscles used in the breaststroke.

At the same time, it works to lower hips and torso parallel to the surface of the water … though it’s not really leg power that keeps you gliding towards the other end of the pool. Rather, it’s the coordinated sweep of your arms, starting with the shoulder, then the elbow and finally, the hand.

You may wonder if there's a way to increase the efficacy of the core, arm, and leg – the seamless way all three move together in the middle of the pool.

Here's an exercise from the American Swim Coaches Association, also in Fort Lauderdale.

Imagine you're making Z's with your arms. The same Z's you might see on a chalkboard in elementary school. It's like your arms are Z-shaped and you're about to turn into the next letter.