A bad breakout can easily transform a good turn into a….not-so-good one. There are several important elements to performing a great freestyle breakout.
Having great plantar flexibility of the ankle is a prerequisite for developing a stronger, faster flutter kick.
Gary Hall Sr: “I consider frontal drag the number one enemy of the swimmer. In the medium of our sport, water, which is about 800 times denser than air, drag forces impact the speed of a swimmer at significantly lower speeds than in air.”
The motion of the pulling arm underwater is arguably the most important concept we must learn to swim fast freestyle and butterfly.
The important law of inertia comes into play at several key times during the flip turn and the approach to the wall is one of them. If a body in motion truly wants to stay in motion then the worst thing we can do is slow down while approaching the wall. Yet nearly every swimmer does.
Sculling with the hands is one of the best ways to teach a swimmer to feel the water.
Developing a fast dolphin kick is not easy, yet everyone can improve their dolphin kick speed with the right anatomical tools and training.
Freestyle Flip Turn Part II: Olympian and The Race Club co-founder, Gary Hall Sr., breaks down “the flip” in the freestyle flip turn.
Gary Hall Sr.: “Although coaches and swimmers commonly believe that one of the reasons fast freestlyers and backstrokers rotate their bodies along the axis of their motion is to reduce drag, I don’t agree.”
I call this sprint technique High Octane Freestyle because it demands more energy, yet produces more power.
The Race Club was responsible for training 53 Olympic swimmers that won 23 Olympic medals over 4 successive Olympic Games from 1996 to 2008.
Significant deceleration can occur very quickly, within hundredths of seconds, with very small adverse changes in our body’s position or shape.
We have discussed the two different basic techniques of track starts, weight forward and weight back, and the importance of coupling motions in improving the outcome of both techniques.
Over the next several weeks, I will break down the flip turn into four components: the approach, the flip, the underwater and the breakout. Each of these components is important and I commonly see mistakes made in all four of them, often by the same swimmer.