Here's the group shot from the first course:
Perhaps the hardest area of freestyle technique to coach is developing a swimmer's catch technique. With that in mind, we have the coaches spend some time in the water working through some key drills and exercises focusing on developing a swimmer's propulsive technique.
One of these drills is the Scull #1 drill, an excellent exercise to develop your feel for the water at the front of the stroke. Check out the following short clip of the coaches trying this and under Paul's guidance experimenting with different stroke flaws (which might be present in your own stroke) to feel the effect:
|View here: https://youtu.be/F1BvEHR4uhM|
The next time you swim try this same sequence yourself (outlined below) but first make sure you've mastered the basic Scull #1 drill:
The Scull #1 DrillUse a Pull Buoy (make sure you don't kick) and have your chin on the surface:
If you have sinky legs you might need a larger pull-buoy such as a HUUB Big Buoy.
Lightly scull the water left and right in front of your head. Move your hands down in the water so that your elbow is higher than your wrist and the wrist is higher than your fingertips.
The key is to angle (pitch) the hand so that your hand is angled slightly inwards when sculling in and angled outwards when sculling outwards:
Get this right and you should move slowly through the water. Remember only to scull left and right - don't scoop backwards, that's breaststroke and definitely cheating!
Finally (and importantly for the experimentation below) keep your fingers together and hold the fingers and hand flat with a little firmness or "tone". About the same level of tone as you would use during a handshake - that's a "regular gentleman's handshake" not a "bone-crusher"!
You can see a quick video of Scull #1 here:
And if you are a Guru subscriber, watch our full drill video with complete coaching points here:
Experimenting With Scull #1Now we get to the experiment the coaches ran. Try this sequence the next time you swim:
- Keep sculling but spread your fingers wide on both hands - what happens? Do you lose feel for the water and speed?
- Perform 5 meters of regular Scull #1
You Can't Beat Experiential Learning
Remember everything you discover performing the drill will have the same effect on you full freestyle stroke.