Drills isolate the problem, help correct the problem, help ingrain the correction.
Drills are a useful part of working on form and technique in your swim. By stepping away from just swimming up and down the pool, you can focus on elements of your stroke and add the correct movement and control. You then give your speed the chance to improve through making elements of your stroke stronger.
Many novice swimmers who are just starting to swim can only manage a few lengths without taking a break. To improve your swimming by just continuing to do 500 metre sets may get you faster over time but will always be limited by inefficient form, also ingraining bad habits which will prevent you from getting faster and more efficient.
BUT drills and swim aids are only a tool and should be used properly and specifically. They are not to be used over mindless laps, use them with purpose to improve form and help with speed and fitness. Make sure you know why you are doing that drill and what it is aiming to improve.
Drills build awareness of what your body is doing and how important different elements of your stroke affect your overall body alignment, strength and efficiency.
Below is an example of the Fingertip Drag drill / Zip drill – Swim normal Freestyle dragging fingertips along the surface of water on the recovery. Focus on a high elbow recovery, which ensures proper hand and elbow position at your hand entry. You should also check your body position during this drill, focusing on good side-to-side rotation.
If you are looking to learn to swim or improve your technique and efficiency get in contact.
Swimming is a full-body movement, and efficiency comes from developing coordination between your upper and lower body. The kick provides stability, improved body position and propulsion, all components necessary for a more efficient freestyle.
In the water, over distance it is our arms that generate most movement providing approximately 85% of forward drive and the legs merely serve to 'balance' our position, preventing the body from rotating to far around and stopping our legs from sinking heavily “behind” us.
Notice in the left hand images below how the legs are creating drag by being outside the streamlined profile of the body.
With stroke correction drills to work and isolate the legs we can correct this over time and create a more streamlined body position as in the right hand images.
Perfect your freestyle/front crawl kick and improve your streamlined position. The kick should be generated from your hips, with the power transferring from your hips, through your knee and flex your ankle as your foot flicks down.
Contact Linda at GoodSwim if you want to perfect your stroke and swim more efficiently and effectively.
Swimming for surfers
No matter how much you want to surf, sometimes there are days when going out is just not an option.
So what to do...?
When conditions due to weather or otherwise make surfing impossible, keeping in shape for surfing is best achieved by staying in the water. Swim sessions are strong workouts for surfing, such as paddling and breath control.
It is a good idea to mix up your program to keep it interesting and prepare your body for different conditions and circumstances in the ocean.
Feel comfortable and confident with your ability and skills in the ocean.
Contact Linda for Learn to Swim, Introduction to Ocean Swimming, Ocean Swim Skills and Stroke Correction lessons.