WATCH: Erika Brown Break SEC Record in Women’s 100 Yard Freestyle (45.83)


Tennessee senior Erika Brown closed out her SEC Championship career on Saturday with a win, SEC Championship, and SEC Conference Record in the women’s 100 yard freestyle. She swam a 45.83 that is the 3rd-best swim in history, and makes her the 2nd-fastest ever in that event’s history.

Brown, as compared to Simone Manuel when the latter marked the fastest-ever time in this event of 45.56, has a very different approach to the race. At 5’11” tall, Manuel has a much more powerful stroke with a lower recovery, whereas Brown, who is only 5’7″, is more of a “sit up high and slide across the surface” freestyler, using a high windmilling recovery stroke. Brown, however, takes much fewer strokes in a yards race, owing to much longer spent underwater. This difference in particular is part of the reason why Manuel’s swimming, thus far, has translated better to the long course pool.

Stroke counts:

  • Manuel: 11-13-13-14
  • Brown mid-season: 9-10-11-13
  • Brown SECs: 9-11-12-14

Whereas Manuel swam about 65 yards of her race on the surface, Brown only swam about 50 yards of her race on the surface. So whereas Manuel’s distance-per-stroke was somewhere in the neighborhood of 1.3 yards, Brown’s is closer to 1.15 yards. That comes out to almost 6 inches per stroke more length that Manuel gets than Brown.

What’s even more interesting, is that Brown took even more strokes at SECs than she did mid-season, up to 46, meaning that as she’s tapering, her stroke rate is increasing.

Watch Video of Erika Brown‘s SEC Championship swim below:

Video of Erika Brown‘s Mid-Season 100 Free:

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Wild Bill
1 year ago

Impressive analysis

1 year ago

Appears to be prelims video.

1 year ago

Video is from Tennessee invite not SEC

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder of He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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