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Fists drill to improve your feel for the water for front crawl


Make a fist and use your forearm to gain a purchase on the water.

There is still a gradual catch, which should be performed slower than the rest of the underwater phases, followed by the gradual acceleration into the pull and push phases of front crawl.

If your catch is too fast, or powerful at this stage, we find that by the time your hand travels to your hip it has slowed down considerably. It is much better to do this phase of front crawl slower, catch more water with a high elbow to gain a better purchase, then accelerate here from the point your hand starts pulling back.


Promotes a feel for the water and improves the catch element of the front crawl stroke.

This drill aims to teach you how to maintain correct catch phase technique and in using the forearm as a paddle. Try not to grip the fist to hard as this will create un-necessary tension in your forearm affecting your stroke.

This drill can also be used for increasing your awareness of potentially slipping water, which we don't want, as you want to pull still water to gain the best purchase on it.

To find out more, sign up to a series of Speedy Swimming endless pool video analysis lessons in Chertsey:

Or sign up to our pool based technique lessons in Guildford Lido:

If you need to improve your entry phase for front crawl and found this post of interest and useful then please get in touch.

We'd love to help you on your swimming journey and to achieve your swimming and triathlon goals!

Email Nick on or call on 07958 635142

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