SwimSwam Podcast: Ray Looze on What Makes a Perfect Breaststroke

On SwimSwam Podcast, we’re giving you an in-depth listen at all things swimming. Host Coleman Hodges welcomes guests and guest co-hosts alike to get perspective on our ever-changing swimming universe and break down the past, present, and future of aquatic sports.

We sat down with Indiana head coach Ray Looze, who has built up quite possibly the best breaststroke group on earth. He talks about the ins and outs of learning how to coach breaststroke, what he looks for in potential recruits, and how to build up a great breaststroke. Looze coaches, among others, American greats Cody Miller, Lilly King, and Annie Lazor. He talks about what each of them do really well, and where they don’t necessarily excel.

Music: Otis McDonald
www.otismacmusic.com

RECENT EPISODES

In This Story

53
Leave a Reply

Subscribe
Notify of

53 Comments
newest
oldest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Ol' Longhorn
2 years ago

Ok, this is almost like the missing quadrant. How is a wide kick any more drag than a wide pull? The kick is obviously a helluva lot more propulsive than even a killer pull. Mel and Coleman — you need to get Gary Hall, Sr. on this. I get how a wide pull might set things up better for the stroke, but you can’t pull the “drag” card for kick and not even acknowledge it for pull.

PsychoDad
Reply to  Ol' Longhorn
2 years ago

You do not need Gary Hall, Sr. Ol’, here I am to help you, with my PhD in Fluid Dynamics (psycho post #2 here): Pulling your feet forward to set up for the kick, you are basically kicking the water in the direction opposite to swimming. In addition, your tibia is vertical and your knees down and outside your body and the drag is significant. Hide the kick. Wide pull has more drag that narrow one, but I think Ray is using it to set up “stay on the top of water” position that he is advocating, rightly so. You are also pulling arms in the same body plane, except for the insweep but you have to do insweep anyway.… Read more »

fluidg
Reply to  Ol' Longhorn
2 years ago

There’s a fundamental difference between a wide pull and a wide kick: the pull is propulsive from the beginning of the outsweep until the arms come together for the recovery phase, so there is a net positive force throughout the arm cycle, regardless of the width. There is power available out there at the extremities of the arm span. A wide kick requires recovering and setting the feet outside of the slipstream, which is the worst position you can be in to minimize drag.

Chris
2 years ago

Cody Miller might be a good breast stroke swimmer but he’s no match for Adam peaty

Coach
Reply to  Chris
2 years ago

Well, who is?

SCCOACH
2 years ago

He coaches the greatest female breaststroker ever but let’s just troll about transfers in every article. Great work comment section

Ol' Longhorn
Reply to  SCCOACH
2 years ago

Dude, she hasn’t even finaled at the Olympics in the 200 breast and is not anywhere close to the WR in it. Catie Ball (held all SCY and LCM breast WRs), Galina Prozumenshchikova (WRs in 100 and 200, 3 Olympics with podium finishes) and those who won gold and silver in the 100 and 200 at Olympics (Rebecca Soni, Leisel Jones, Amanda Beard) would like a word with you. It’s like saying Peaty is the best male breastroker ever when he gets killed in a 200 and can get beat in the 50 and 100 in SCM.

N P
Reply to  SCCOACH
2 years ago

Well King is the fastest breaststroker ever, but I don’t know if she’s quite the greatest yet.

NM Coach
2 years ago

I’ve never understood why people bash Ray as much as they do. And Braden and I have exchanged this sentiment more than once…for as high of a level coach that Ray is, EVERYONE has access to him…if you want an interview with Ray, he’ll give it to you…and a REAL interview where you actually get REAL information and not a bunch of deflecting old stories that are funny to listen to, but don’t provide any nuts and bolts that you can actually use in your program.

Mel –> GREAT INTERVIEW, but you always do a great job…damn funny tidbit about how the culture under Matt Kredich is different than when you were there!!!! That was a HUGE understatement!

Entgegen
Reply to  NM Coach
2 years ago

How about you hold an interview with him and ask about all the transfers and allegations?

Wow
Reply to  Entgegen
2 years ago

Allegations? Care to elaborate…
From what I’ve heard and seen on this site was that Westphal was the one with the issues – not Ray, unless I’m mistaken.

Everyone’s coaching style is different. Ray seems to truly care about his athletes and is hyper competitive. He wants the best for them and seems to be quite straightforward about it. It may come off as hostile or rude to some, and it may come off as caring and dedicated to others.

NM Coach
Reply to  Entgegen
2 years ago

I too would like to hear about these “allegations”. Transfers? Let’s take the most recent one…Cora Dupree. Recruited to IU by Coley. Coley leaves, and Jonty comes in and she LOVED being coached by Jonty. If Jonty was still there, she wouldn’t have transferred. Her transfer had ZERO to do with Ray.

And I think her results this year, even after Jonty left, were excellent. So who knows why? One thing is for sure…it’s EZ for athletes to enter the Transfer Portal.

B hole surfer
Reply to  NM Coach
2 years ago

Can we get some idea of what that culture shift has been to/from? Newer to the sport so don’t really get the history here or what’s being implied

PsychoDad
Reply to  B hole surfer
2 years ago

B-Hole Surfers, a great ol’ Texas band. “Pepper” has ton of references relevant today: ”’Bobby was a racist…. Flipper caught a nasty virus…”

Ol' Longhorn
2 years ago

What? No discussion of the missing quadrant?

Wow
2 years ago

Where is Ian Finnerty training

Xman
2 years ago

Michael Andrew is someone I hope would spent at least 3 months with Dave Marsch (located in same area), and build his technique up.

Even going 2 or 3 days a week to LA to work with Dave Salo would be good.

Those coaches won’t be a drastic change from his current USRPT, but should be able to provide some assistance Peter cannot.

Pvdh
Reply to  Xman
2 years ago

Salo would be great for MA. But perhaps not for 200 IM

Xman
Reply to  Pvdh
2 years ago

Idk, he had a lot of breaststrokers, backstrokers and freestylers.

I’m sure he had a Flyer but I just can’t make one.

MarkB
Reply to  Xman
2 years ago

Louise Hansson

Anonymous
2 years ago

When Michael Andrew won long course 100 breast National Championships there was an analysis that said that MA had the most efficient stroke of all the competitors in the finals. I don’t think his “wider” kick is a problem. Maybe because he is so on top of the water. If anything it might create too much drag on the underwater pullout.

Entgegen
Reply to  Anonymous
2 years ago

His feet are definitely higher compared to others. His almost break the surface.

About Coleman Hodges

Coleman Hodges

Coleman started his journey in the water at age 1, and although he actually has no memory of that, something must have stuck. A Missouri native, he joined the Columbia Swim Club at age 9, where he is still remembered for his stylish dragon swim trunks. After giving up on …

Read More »