Friday, January 30, 2015

The "Pull-Setup-Release" Drill Sequence

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Here's a neat drill sequence to try the next time you swim.

Grab a pull-buoy and swim the following 50m straight through:
12½m Scull #1
12½m Doggy Paddle
12½m Swim (with pull-buoy)
12½m Swim but release the pull-buoy and let it slip out without
breaking the stroke
As you release the pull-buoy in the final section, introduce a gentle kick behind you. Feel the majority of the propulsion coming from your arms and the gentle kick keeping your legs high in the water. The pull-buoy will float away but you can collect it afterwards.

(You can see demonstrations of the Sculling and Doggy Paddle drills here and here - and full instructions in Swim Smooth Coaching System here and here.)

Sculling is a great way to improve your catch and feel for the water.
This drill sequence is fantastic for combining a better kicking technique - to reduce drag and effort - and improving the effectiveness of your upper body propulsion. Both these things will act to have you travelling more quickly and easily through the water. Give it a try the next time you're at the pool, repeating it 4 times through.

Whilst this sequence is beneficial for any swimmer, it's particularly effective for Kicktastics and Arnies:

As a Kicktastic, use it to tame the power of your leg kick and shift your propulsion towards the upper body. You should notice a drop in your effort levels and breathing rate as you moderate your kick and improve your catch technique.

For Arnies, use it to work on keeping the legs higher in the water. As you start kicking, keep the legs nice and straight and press the water backwards (not downwards) in front of the head.

Swim Smooth!

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