Video: How To Become An Olympic Medalist In Backstroke

by SwimSwam Contributors 5

March 28th, 2017 Industry, News, Video

We’ve been lucky enough to become friends with some of the most accomplished swimmers out there. We’ve also noticed that we have been lacking in backstroke content. What better a way to fix that than to grab our good friend Arkady Vyatchanin, Beijing bronze medalist in the 100 and 200 backstroker. Arkady shares his secret to having proper alignment and a great catch in backstroke. The Backstroke Ketchup drill.

Instead of a generic ketchup like we know from freestyle, the backstroke ketchup drill has you recovering to your side before the next arm takes a stroke. This is a fairly advanced drill as it requires a strong kick to keep your momentum together while both arms aren’t generating any forward power and just recovering.

Arkady uses this as a pre-meet warm up drill along with a touch up drill that really engages his core and helps you automatically feel a better, snappier backstroker even after a few 50s. Mix this drill into your normal backstroke warm up and stay alert as to how you feel prior to and after trying it.

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Music by David Cutter


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“Win the genetic lottery”

big calves

Yeah. By tomorrow night I’ll be an Olympic Trial finalist. But unfortunately my calves won’t ride high enough in the water.

tea rex

the aerial photography is cool


Not a very good instructional session. All i learned was he is an amazing backstroker. Thats got to be god given. His catch, roll and kick are just perfect. My jaw literally dropped, and now im like i cant do that! Lol wow beautiful technique fingertip to toe.


Agreed on the instructional aspect – the video doesn’t focus on the actual stroke drill save for a couple seconds here and there. The video is well produced and visually interesting, but not a good training video. Completely skips over that an excellent kick and core strength are needed to do this drill correctly.